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Max Payne 3 Review - -
Max Payne 3
Reviewed by
IG Staff
Max Payne 3 PC Preview. Max Payne 3 is a solid game made for the PC, with incredible visuals and sound to go along with that. This is a no brainer for any action shooter fan out there. If you have not tried this legendary series yet, then Max Payne 3 is a perfect introduction. Have fun, play games.

Gameplay 9.5
Graphics 10
Sound 9.5
Value 10
Review Date: June 2012
Donna Millheim


Max Payne 3
(PC Download - Reviewed on PC

Rockstar Games sent over a code for the PC version of Max Payne 3 to see how it compares to the console versions. The look and feel is classic since I played the original Max Payne games on the PC. I felt right at home. Max has cumulated a following since the earlier games and fans are happy to see Max is back, bigger and better than ever. Max Payne our flawed hero still has some action left in him. I have played and reviewed the Xbox 360 version and I was more than a little curious on how this game would do on the PC. Was it going to be one of those disappointing ports?

I am happy to report; Max Payne 3 is not some half assed port over. Rockstar Games would have had fans sending not so nice emails to them if this would have been just a port over. Thankfully Rockstar Games had the presence of mind to make sure that this legendary pillar of gaming was fully optimized, they advise that the PC version was being developed in parallel with the console versions. Good on you Rockstar Games…you so… rock.

Right out of the box or Download Max Payne 3 runs spectacularly, with frame rates that bring this shooter to life on the PC. I was more than a little thrilled to find that the mouse and keyboard controls work dead bang on. Aiming around with the mouse controls feels so precise. I got way many more head shots this way as opposed to the console version.

The PC version also has a lot going for it in the way of customizing the visuals as well. There is even an optional 3D function.

Our test machine we ran Max Payne 3 on was a custom built system. Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit, AMD Phenom II X6 core processors. 3.20Ghz. with 8 GB of RAM. Nvidia® GeForce GTX 570. We are running the game through HDMI cable at Full 1920 X 1080P resolution with DirectX 11.

Fear not fellow Impulse Gamers, you too can get your Max on, the lowest tested specs for Max Payne 3 are:

Windows 7/Vista/XP PC (32 or 64 bit) Intel Dual Core 2.4 GHZ or AMD Dual Core 2.6 GHZ, or better 2GB System RAM NVIDIA® GeForce 8600 GT 512MB RAM or AMD Radeon™ HD 3400 512MB RAM

Low Recommended Specs

Windows 7/Vista/XP PC (32 or 64 bit) Intel Dual Core 3GHz or AMD equivalent 3GB System RAM NVIDIA® GeForce 450 512MB RAM or AMD Radeon™ HD 4870 512MB RAM

At this level, you will be able to comfortably run the game at 30fps at 1920 by 1080.

High Recommended Specs are still achievable by most of shelf systems.

Windows 7/Vista (32 or 64 bit) Intel i7 Quad Core 2.8Ghz or AMD equivalent 3GB System RAM NVIDIA® GeForce 480 1GB RAM or AMD Radeon™ HD 5870 1GB RAM

At this level, you will be able to comfortably run the game at 60fps at 1920 by 1080.

Highest Tested Specs

Windows 7/Vista (64 bit) Intel i7 3930K 6 Core x 3.06 GHZ or AMD FX8150 8 Core x 3.6 GHZ 16GB System RAM NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 680 2GB RAM or AMD Radeon™ HD 7970 3GB RAM

Running the game in full screen is a big surprise, especially in full 1080P. The game runs very smooth. Playing with the settings just to get a feel for how the visuals look at the different levels, the games look and feel is solid even at some of the lower settings. It’s at the highest settings that the game really turns into an eye popping affair. I wanted to test things out a bit graphically as the bullets went to flying. So since Max Payne 3 gives you the toys to have a visual feast, I went ahead and did a slow dive through a window. The window shattered into large pieces and small shards, those parts broke apart as they struck things… absolutely a visual thrilling feast.

Characters movements look smooth and fluid. Clothing seems to pop with some textures at the higher resolutions. Environments look spectacular with rain effects, and rain puddles glisten with secondary light blooms from light sources. Explosions give off a satisfying orange glow. Bullets and bullet wounds look appropriately painful and deadly leaving an entry wound and sometimes a large exit wound.

To me it’s sometimes the little things the little details that the designers worked in to give it that level of detail you may not even expect, but are fascinated to see when you notice it. Spent brass fly’s, hits the ground and rolls around, weapons ejection ports work as weapons are fired. Slides on automatic pistols work.

Bullets tear into cover and other objects around, masonry and shards of stone fly from bullet damage. Items on shelves rattle around with close hits and fly apart on direct hits. All looking good on this optimized version for PC.

The actor’s actions and features are all motion captured at such a spectacular high standard. I found myself targeting bad guys at various areas just to see the reaction. In the middle of testing out one level at a soccer/football stadium, I literally whooped with surprise and joy at the visuals one bad guy kill took. It was what I called the Die Hard kill, kicking things into bullet time as an enemy came rushing my way machine gun blazing, I brought up my aiming point and walked it up his legs to his knee caps. All in slow motion as he legs and knees sported new holes he collapsed in a heap. For close in kills Max is darn vicious, pistol whipping an enemy and then pulling off a close and personal shot to the head.

All of the actions and reactions of the characters to bullet hits and falls and explosions looks mesmerizing and detailed.

The Max Payne series was what brought the slow motion Jon Woo kind of gunplay to gaming and Max Payne 3 carries on the tradition in spectacular way.

Throughout the game there are QuickTime events that intermix with the story narrative seamlessly. One in particular stands out for me, falling towards a buildings edge in slow-motion Max must take out the targets on the rooftop before hitting the edge. If there are any targets left they will just walk over as Max hangs helpless on the side of the building and places a round in his brain pan.

Of course Max Payne 3 is all about the gun battles. So, the obvious concern is in the controls, does it work well? Yes it does. I am using a Track Ball Mouse because I feel it gives me more control and it is my preference over the years.

The aiming settings can be adjusted depending on what kind of controls you are using. The controls for aiming can be tweaked to even adjust the horizontal and vertical aims, you can also control the reticule appearance and the aiming assists. For the PC there is free aiming which is great. If using a controller of some sort, there are an extra two settings to consider.

Those extra choices are as follows. Soft Lock, enables the player to cause the aiming point to start to gravitate towards the closest bone of the enemy. Creating different reactions from the Euphoria engine when you score hits on an enemy.

Hard Lock is the other choice while using a controller. This one is best used for those that are not used to shooters. Pressing the left trigger on a controller the reticle snaps to the closest enemy.

To help a gamer along there are several difficulty levels, each one is there to suite different levels of players. Plus as you getting better at the game, playing at different difficulty levels adds to the replay ability of the game.

Max Payne 3 further brings us multiplayer with plenty of cool customizing. You can customize your character, being male or female….customization goes further by changing the characters head, hair, glasses, hats, torso, accessories, hands, legs and even tattoos. Players can customize their crews to match up even. The multiplayer is a fast paced thrill fest with all the coolness of the single player game, only going against fellow players, making it a lot tougher and more of a challenge.

Thinking and strategizing human beings are even tougher than the game AI. If you get used to the single player, then for the most part you will have all the knowledge and skills to play multiplayer. The covering system is the same. One of the cooler things in multiplayer, the death screen that pops up shows you who took you out and also shows an outline of a human figure and the outline shows bullet hits on where the enemy player shot you.

Multiplayer maps are of good size, with whole buildings to go into and several floors including the roof to explore and fight in.

Most of you that have looked over my thoughts on Max Payne 3 for the Xbox 360 know that I like the game. It is a solid game. I am not sure what I was expecting for a PC version, certainly not as much as what is delivered here. Max Payne 3 is a spectacular addition to PC gaming. If you, as a gamer have been holding out because you are a steadfast PC gamer and nothing else, then here is the game for you.

Max Payne 3 is a solid game made for the PC, with incredible visuals and sound to go along with that. This is a no brainer for any action shooter fan out there. If you have not tried this legendary series yet, then Max Payne 3 is a perfect introduction.
Have fun, play games.

BUY Max Payne 3 here!


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