Max Payne 3 isn't one of these games. You're left with the feeling they had an idea, downed some jelly beans and then ran with it. It is boldly violent, unapologetically vulgar and narrated in language that adds flesh to its character's bones.
Nine years have gone by since Max Payne 2 and the titular character remains defined by the memories of his butchered family. To ease the pain he pops painkillers as if their TicTacs and washes them down with scotch neat.
When the game starts, Max is hired muscle working a security detail for the wealthy Branco family in SÃ£o Paulo, Brazil. In a town burdened by poverty, flooded with drugs and perverted by prostitution, Max watches the Branco family attend night clubs in helicopters and party on lavish yachts. When the time comes for his services to be rendered, the clichÃ©d trophy wife gets kidnapped and things slowly spiral out of control.
As Max wreaks havoc in search of the missing wifeâ€”and ensuing red herringsâ€”the game elegantly flashes back to his days in Hoboken, New Jersey, explaining how the gun-yielding, bullet-dodging anti-hero ended up in God's forsaken city, stuck between the past and the present:
The way I see it, there's two types of people. Those who spend their lives trying to build their future., and those who spend their lives trying to rebuild the past. For too long I've been stuck in between, hidden in the dark, locked on a course of destruction.