Before GTA V: A Look Back At Max Payne 3

In my opinion, Max Payne 3 is Rockstar’s best game. It eclipses even Grand Theft Auto IV in every way,...

Ryan Musker

Contributor

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In my opinion, Max Payne 3 is Rockstar’s best game. It eclipses even Grand Theft Auto IV in every way, from technology, to gameplay to the story line. Every thing about Max Payne 3 oozed Rockstar, from the attention to detail to America-poking writing to the maturity. It’s all trademark Rockstar, and it’s there in spades. So let’s take a look at why Max Payne 3 is so great, and how it will affect GTA V.

Rockstar spent an enormous amount of money on Max Payne 3. How much? Estimated at $105 million. Yes, more than the budget of their own GTA IV. And every dollar spent shines through in the game. Rockstar is known to spend massive amounts of money (and get even larger sums of money back, to be fair), and this dedication shows through in the game.

Nobody does detail quite like Rockstar. From Max’s suit crinkling as he runs, to the way small parts of the environment shatter and leak as bullets enter them from all angles, Max Payne 3 is some of the most destructive and technically impressive games in years. Now, GTA V isn’t going to look quite this good on account of it being an open world game, but hopefully some of the tech comes back for round two.

Facial animation was excellent in Max 3, and if the GTA V trailers are anything to go by, it looks like GTA has stepped up as well. Animation vs. precision, a hot debate surrounding many players in recent years, was perfect in Max Payne 3. Rather than animation fighting control, they simply coexisted and helped each other, making for a very fluid combat system.

One of the key elements of Max Payne 3 was it’s fluid controls. Every claim Rockstar’s advertising videos made about the precision of a great FPS were true. No other third person shooter gives the sheer control that allows players to spin 360 degrees while shooting people. The movement and navigation controls are a big improvement over GTA IV and Red Dead Redemption, the turning circles in both those games were similar to trucks when playing on foot. Max Payne 3 plays as fluidly as a game like Battlefield 3.

Luckily, the control precision of Grand Theft Auto V has been compared to Max Payne 3, and for anyone who played Max Payne 3, you’ll jump for joy solely on that fact. I made a friend of mine hyped for GTA V (he wasn’t a true friend before the hype started, believe me) just by telling him that fact. Max Payne 3 is one of his favourite games, one of mine, and on that will certainly influence GTA V.

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