40 to 100 Hours
The Bottom Line:
Lets go straight into some different aspects of the game:
- Action -
The single player campaign provides you with action packed opportunities for stylish killing, enemies often come from different directions, clever AI and plenty of them too. Combining with bullet time, the "Shoododge" move, variety of weapons and stylish character animations as well as the cinematic kill cam, the game stands out of as an solid and entertaining 3rd person shooter.
However, from 20 hours into the game, I have already felt rather bored of the action, although the game does indeed provide all the ingredients of a stylish shooter, but chapter after chapter of the same flow makes it repetitive. Should there were more "boss" fights or even more environmental challenges to wake the player from time to time, I would think the single player experience would be even more exciting.
In contrast, the mutiplayer experience is highly fantastic, it is action packed due to the map designs (currently only three maps for team Deathmatch) are all fairly open, this encourages none stop action, combining with all the said points earlier, MP becomes the core value of the game.
You should register on Rockstars social club to create and/join a crew (clan), the crews will continue on running through other future Rockstar games, creating your own circle of friends to game with, the satisfaction of team work, the sociology is very satisfying. This is one of the main reasons why games such as this last so long in your gaming career.
(My crew is called, "Cloud Nine", it is aimed to be for the slightly more mature minded players who wish to develop team work with each other, you are all welcome to play with us).
- Story and Art -
Action video games are often liner by their story, but for me the importance is how they tell it and get the player interests and involvement into their world.
The style of the story telling where you travel back and forth from Max's memory back to the pass to unfold more background of the situation was also a merit on keeping the player interest and involvement.
Max Payne trademark is it's comics style of visuals, here in Max Payne 3 they have made the screen dividing characteristic from comics into 3D moving narrative, a little like the movie "Plup Fiction".
On the slight negative note: when I first saw the trailers, the art and visual look totally fantastic, however having now played the game, I feel the narratives are quite weak, by that I mean, they are not overly constructive or necessary direct the story or mood very well; a flash here and there, they don't grabs you into the game none do they add the mood of the moment, they became just a pretty effect, flashy tricks if you would call it.
Having said that, the colour, blurs and double exposures on some frames at times are so stylish and slick, at times I would take photographs on the screen to appreciate the art.
The overall design on characters, clothing, areas are as expected; good quality in theme designs by Rockstars, as the game processes you will visit different locations with a different looks of Max Payne to keep the player feeling fresh and excited art wise. Not to mention the image of an slightly aged Max Payne to portray as a broken man, weathered, dirty. The high quality graphic from his hair, wounds, wrinkles and skin pores, combining with the voice actor's character makes him a believable fantasy hero.