Max Payne Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 21 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 58 Ratings

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  • Summary: Max Payne is a man with nothing to lose in the violent, cold urban night. A fugitive undercover cop framed for murder, and now hunted by cops and the mob. A man with his back against the wall, fighting a battle he cannot hope to win. Prepare for pain with this much-anticipated 3rd-person shooter. [Rockstar Games] Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 21
  2. Negative: 0 out of 21
  1. Yes, this game has the power to rip families apart, it's that cool. With nice graphics, violence, swearing, and Matrix-style camera angles galore, this is a must-have for action game fans.
  2. 90
    The Dual Shock organizes controls logically and offers the sharp response, especially considering the cool Bullet Time and Shootdodge aspects, which slow down time for Matrix-style gunfights.
  3. This excellent, visceral shooter is just the tiniest bit on the short side, but remember what the man said: In a New York Minute, everything can change.
  4. Bullet Time…just looks so friggin’ neat. [Feb 2002, p.110]
  5. The control is not nearly as fluid as it needs to be. [Feb 2002, p.84]
  6. Once Bullet Time’s novelty wears off, you’re left with a repetitive shooter, blasting the same species of enemy over and over. [Feb 2002, p.158]
  7. 50
    On the Playstation, it’s (practically) just as fun [as the PC], but the additional flaws it picks up really cut into the experience. I’d seriously flag this as a “rent first” title.

See all 21 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 20 out of 26
  2. Negative: 4 out of 26
  1. Jul 21, 2011
    Going back- its still a good premise. Good cop turns bad-cop by way of dead wife and newborn baby by way of drug addicts hosing down said family with bullets. Of course then you get to the end and it really feels like the plot had been reaching for a convenient method of telling you the whole story out of the blue. Gun play is pretty fun even today- although Max Payne 2 feels a little tighter in this regard. It looked really freaking sweet at the time (on PC) and I'm sure most of that got carried over the Playstation 2 with this port. The bullet time effect really didn't quite start with this game (completely) but it popularized it into its deranged cousin that gets thrown into most titles these days... Expand
  2. Feb 23, 2012
    Max Payne is a game you either love or hate. The gameplay is extremely simple and never evolves, though the environment, the story and the way the story is told through perfectly narrated noire stylings, this can be a great game. Personally I love this game. Even though the graphics are not the best, it's completely immersive. The majority of the game you'll be fighting your way through snowy back alleys at night, dark parking garages and abandon hotels now occupied by junkies and vermin. The environment is what makes this game and if you don't like the environment, these's not much here for you. The story is a generic action affair: you're a cop who's now gone fugitive on the premise that your wife and child were murdered by gangsters and the police have a mixed bag of evidence on who did it. The gang is sleezy and deals drugs to junkies in some not so appealing places, setting the backdrop for where you'll find yourself. Along the way you'll also find connections between cults and politics and blah blah blah. There's not much here but cheezyness, but it's wrapped in noire comics style cutscenes that are really mindblowingly engrossing. Seriously, the comic book story telling is enough to get anyone interested. Now apart from all this great story telling, if you don't like it, you really have nothing. For the gameplay is just plain ok. You run around and shoot people in slow-motion and dive left to right. It's really damn simple and wouldn't get a passing grade in and of itself. where you find yourself doing it and your incentive for being there is what makes the game worth while. So in the end it's a decent action game with a very entertaining and engrossing story. I wouldn't recommend it for anyone looking into anything deep, though if you enjoy the occasional generic story, this will do well to catch you for longer than you'd think. The story may be same old, but the story TELLING is amazing, and the environments are some of my personal favorite in gaming. It's dark, it's cold, and it's damn well entertaining.â Expand
  3. Dec 4, 2012
    Man, it's **** dark. and that's a good thing. One of the best shooters at the time for PS2 and it probably still is one of them. It's like a movie.
  4. Oct 10, 2012
    love this game! the story is engaging and creepy but just the right amount. bought this game for about 3$ just for the fun of it, didn't know what to expect and was blown away! the only things that i don't really like about this game is its frame rate, if you have the choice to play it on the xbox or pc, play it on that. but it doesn't break the game. at the end it gets a bit too hard but, hey! everyone needs a challenge! Expand

See all 26 User Reviews