Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne

millions of North Americans should be able to buy this game today…

so, how is it?

I hear it is the same game as Max Payne 1, just highe rez gfx and better physics.

Is this true? Is it worth the $$$? or is it just another cash cow hyped up game?

edit: the game was just released on the warez scene this morning… which is really interesting since the warezers had to buy a copy and then crack it… instead of the usual “steal a gold master”…

There goes the “sure, copy protection gets cracked, but at least we get that initial sales window” argument.

I bought the pre-sale. I plan on buying the game eventually, but…

resists the urge to feed the Torrent Gremlins

Well, I know that the bullet-time won’t be as big of a draw for me now since I’m used to it in games. I really have mixed feelings about this one since I tried to play Max Payne again and was completely bored my second time through the game. I guess it depends on how fresh it feels. Does the game do anything cool like let you use vehicles?

I don’t get this. In every shooter basically all you do is run around and shoot things without bullet time. Yeah maybe you get a vehicle now and again but in essense you are killing everything in sight. Add bullet time to it and you still run around killing things but in cool and stylish ways that you can’t in other shooters. So how can bullet time be a bad thing? The other thing is very few games have cribbed it so it isn’t like it is a complete cliche now.

– Xaroc

pimped from elsewhere:

"While the graphics offer nothing ground breaking. Bullet time is of course, excellent. The physics in this game are absolutely stunning, they arent over the top, they are very well done.

The game plays just like MP1, which was captivating. The game runs very smooth on high detail. It has the comic book style cut scenes along with real-time rendered cut scenes as well.

Running through the buildings and diving through open doors to blast your enemies is an experience you dont feel to often. You can enable bullet time for the cinematic reload effects, which are fucking amazing, to say the least.

The weapons offer a diversity of killing methods. The shotguns blow the enemies back a few feet, while the ingrams are a quick and painfull death. While the models lack blood marks, the walls and floors are splattered with them.

The quality of the graphics, much like MP1, are still great. The models have been improved quite a bit and offer different facial expressions, unlike MP1’s constipated look. The models around the world range from great to horrible. Up close some models lack detail, but look decent from afar. Other models just look great, and offer a variety of detail to keep your eyes happy.

The music. Mafia better watch out, theres a new kid in town. The music is simply outstanding. You have to hear to know how great it is. It sets the mood instantly in any situation. The voices are of course, top-notch. Every character, big or small, has excellent voice work. The realism this offers really makes the game that much more enjoyable.

The sound effects are true to life, from what i hear. They sound hard and loud. Their sound changes based upon your setting. Echo in a hallway or sound shallow in bullet time. Every gun offers something to please your ears, nothing sounds out of the ordinary.

I give this game 9/10.

It is graphically great. The sounds are splendid. The game play and physics are what one would expect. The game would get 10/10 simply if it had better quality graphics in some areas. The high score is simply due to what the game offers.
"

Bullet time isn’t a cliché? You must not watch TV or movies. Or a bunch of Japanese guys doing ping-pong skits.

I haven’t soured on bullet time but I agree with Mark that Max Payne was missing something in the combat department. I liked it fine the first time through, I finished it, but I didn’t find it “replayable”. Hard to pinpoint what it lacked (variety? Interesting AI?).

I’m just not looking forward to the sequel. The idea of that writer attempting a love story just makes me feel queasy.

I’m not saying bullet-time is a bad thing. I’m just saying that it’s not anything fresh anymore. By the time I was halfway through Max Payne bullet-time was no longer anything cool but rather just a tactic I used to clear a room. Most of the time I didn’t use it unless I got killed and had to replay a section of the game.

I suspect that Max 2 is a game that, while I’m not really looking forward to it, I will enjoy once I start to play it. I might just wait for a demo to get hooked on the game, though. I don’t really feel like spending $40-50 on it right now. My action game jones is getting satisfied by playing Halo on Legendary mode.

There’s very little that’s “fresh” in a game like Halo, but it’s so well executed that it’s kind of hard to care. I’m kind of hoping the same is true for Max Payne 2.

I don’t play as many PC games as you do, Mark, but aside from Viewtiful Joe (which came out last week) I can’t think of another game that made heavy use of bullet time, so I’m not sure how it’s old, either. I see Gallant’s point, but none of those things are video games.

"It was raining, sheets of leaden gray water like the funeral shroud for a day gone bad. I shook the water out of my worn jacket, shedding droplets in spray of shimmering gloom that matched my mood. I was at the Mall. It was Wednesday.

The guy at the counter stared back at me with eyes long since dead, crushed by the pulling weight of his retail store past. I tried to ignore their silent plea, but something in his pathetic gaze caught me. Maybe it was my own howling beasts, lurking in the back of my mind, ready to tear me limb from limb whenever I looked away from the future. Maybe it was just the fact I had two PlayStation games to trade it.

I made the deal. Like a high-school stud wannabe scurrying home from the 7-11 with his first copy of High Society and a fresh hanky, I made a beeline for home and the PC. The rain still fell, drenching the city like a cheap whore’s perfume, but I didn’t care.

I had Max Payne 2, and I was gonna kill something."

Er, pardon that bit of excess. Got the game today. Dunno exactly why; I though the first had some killer combat but the whole noir shtick was more parody than homage. But this one (two disks, btw) seems to move the franchise a bit closer to being noir rather than parodying noir. Chandler and Hammet’s legacies are safe, don’t get me wrong, but at least it’s not “run out of the house and impale yourself on a chain-link fence” bad writing this time out.

Music as noted above is very atmospheric and suitable, though it gets to you after a while. Don’t play this one while riding a real downer; you might just go hang yourself or something.

Combat is top-notch so far–the same great dive into rooms blazing action, which requires a bit of thought but isn’t usually frustratingly difficult. Mind you, I’m only a little way into it so it could get worse but so far so good.

Graphically I like the look, and pretty much share the thoughts of that review posted above. Physics are cool, for sure.

I got it for like $20 with trade ins so I can’t really say if it’s an immediate buy at $50. Seems slick though and so far is delivering on what it promises. I’d definitely not recommend this one for folks with small kids who might play it or watch it–if you have kids keep 'em away. It’s rather intense in its depiction of execution-style killings and general carnage and violence. Doh, hence the M rating :)

The Matrix game has bullet-time throughout. It’s a big part of that game.

I agree about Halo being well-made, and that being the difference. Like I said, I suspect I’ll enjoy MP2 when I play it, but I have a decided lack of enthusiasm for it at the moment. It’s probably due to my attempting to replay MP and being utterly bored. I’ve still got that taste in my mouth.

I never replayed Max Payne either. I think the whole “unlock new difficulty levels” thing is dopey.

Which is a perfect example of the execution part of a game point. Enter the Matrix being a example of bad for those wondering. :)

I feel the same way. If a game is “finishable”, in the sense it has story, missions or whatever, I’ll play it like I’m possessed until I finish it, after that I probably won’t touch it again. Exceptions are only made for truly spectacular gameplay (The Thief games would be the perfect example). Because of this I want to make the most out of the games I play, and usually turn up the difficulty a notch or two.

I can see why they choose to make the “New York minute” unlockable in MP1, you really need to know the maps to be able to play that one well, but ordinary difficulty levels should really be made available right from the start, like in Halo.

With MP2 I’ll probably go looking for a difficulty level crack before I install it.

“The rain was coming down so hard it was like all the angels in heaven decided to take a piss at the same time”

From the TV show Dick Justice on one of the TVs in the game…

Yeah, listen to the TVs in the game. While they don’t actually have full-motion images on them (more like slide shows) they have hilarious dialogue.

In games.

– Xaroc

The box is definitely the coolest PC game box I’ve ever bought. I wish all games came in DVD slipcases like MP2.