Why Max Payne 3 Will Kick Ass on PC

With full DirectX 11 support and tessellation aplenty, Max Payne 3 is looking seriously sexy.

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In June this year, Max Payne's slow-motion, shoot-diving, beard-sporting self is making a return to our screens in Max Payne 3. And mighty fine it's looking too, if our previous looks at the game are anything to go by. But there's one version that's looking especially sweet, and it's not on the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3. If you really want to experience Max Payne 3 at its ass-kicking finest, it's all about the PC version--if you've got some suitably beefy hardware to support it.

The sceptical among you might be thinking the PC version is simply a console port. After all, that's a practice that has become commonplace in modern game development. But Max Payne 3 on the PC is no mere port, according to Rockstar. It has been developed alongside the console version and sports a number of PC-specific enhancements that make use of everyone's favourite collection of application programming interfaces, DirectX 11.

That's a boon for anyone with a relatively new graphics card, so you can expect lots of tasty tessellation for smoother, more detailed visuals, as well as support for higher resolutions and frame rates than on console. Also promised are full mouse and keyboard support, customisable controls and visual settings, an absence of any load times, and support for Nvidia's 3D Vision technology.

The proof is in the pudding, though, and thanks to an extended look at the game running on a GTX 680, we found there's plenty to be excited about. In a level set in a huge stadium, Max and his buddy were on the run from a group of rebel soldiers, each of them pretty pissed off at our hero. As the pair made their way around the stadium, we got a great look at some of the visual enhancements made to the PC version.

The most obvious was the higher resolution of the game. While the console versions look great, on PC the visuals look crisper, rendering the brisk action with a level of detail that made Max's bullet-time shenanigans all the more impressive. The enhanced detail was readily apparent in facial animations too, with Max's monologues being full of furrowed brows and menacing grimaces. Those moments were further enhanced with bokeh-heavy text that floated and flashed around the screen, forming part of the game's attempt to blend graphic novel elements with in-game action.

But the most impressive visuals came during heated firefights. Transitions to Max's bullet-time ability were incredibly smooth, making use of all kinds of neat visual effects like motion blur. The flare from Max's guns was suitably bright and flashy as he laid waste to the many soldiers in his path, picking them off with carefully placed headshots. Stray bullets left puffy trails of smoke behind them, shattering nearby panes of glass and sending stray shards flying around the screen. Also neat were the many empty bullet shells that fell from Max's gun, creating that always satisfying "clink" sound as they hit the ground.

All that visual loveliness comes at a price, so you'll need a relatively modern graphics card to get in on the action--anything from Nvidia's GTX 400 series or ATI's 5000 series, through to the latest Kepler-powered GTX 680 or ATI's HD7970. Rockstar has promised to support users with less sporty hardware too, though you will miss out on some of the DirectX 11-specific enhancements.

Max Payne 3 is due for release on June 1 in the EU and May 29 in North America, which should give you just enough time to save for that upgrade.

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Discussion

102 comments
camsau
camsau

Can't wait for this mother f...king awesome game on PC, GTX480/Core i7 930/12gb RAM/5.1 Surround with Dolby Digital, Gonna sound awesome on my speakers. :D Bullet Time for the WIN FTW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! @cammewau 

onewithtoenail7
onewithtoenail7

you know, i dont think we PC players can honestly continue to flaunt our obvious superiority until we stop being such shallow graphics whores... should not the precise aiming of a mouse and the many additional layers of gameplay depth allowed by a keyboard be enough? if the only thing we can do with our fancy hardware is continue to push the over-importance of graphics that has made this generation of games into 5-hour long strolls from pretty cutscene to pretty cutscene, then i dont think we deserve it. dont get me wrong, max payne is an excellent piece of storytelling, but the vast majority of games dont consider the use of visuals to enhance gameplay nearly as much, i dare say LA noire and max payne 3 are the only ones that made use of bleeding-edge graphics for artistic elements. everything that is great about max payne's visuals you can get from the console version, the PC version just has more fluff that hardly justifies a 3000$ rig.

IamNick2k11
IamNick2k11

This game is going to rock so much !

Zomdon
Zomdon

Max payne 3 hopefully be worth the wait and lets hope it has some influence on Gta V

IamNick2k11
IamNick2k11

This alone has made me sell my Xbox and Tv and upgrade my computer a hell of alot ! Evga 580 GTX 1.5gb Intel i5 2500K And 8gb of corsair vengeance memory =) + a new desk and 7.1 surround sound headphones.. BRING IT ON !

SPBoss
SPBoss

I hope my 580 can do maximum graphics :/

jt3ldp
jt3ldp

this game looks amazing! i probably wont buy another game for PC for a good while after this! Next buy will be Gta V

iiIsSueZ
iiIsSueZ

@483paul 20 years old, self employed landscape/wildlife photographer, better things to spend my money on than making my AI look a bit pretter. Plus, I know what the Sun looks like.

bandarman
bandarman

I like that R* finally made a PC game which is not a direct port. At least this way we won't be going through the terrible experience that GTA IV PC users had. Looking forward for the game! With R* its an immediate buy for me.

DjTIEST0
DjTIEST0

this is the first game from Rockstar that NVIDIA talks in its forums well lest see my gtx 560 cant wait

NP1_PC
NP1_PC

Good stuff Rockstar... Now all we need is an article in a few months saying 'Why GTA V Will Kick Ass On PC'.....here's hoping

scorpgul
scorpgul

I just hope the game is truly optimised for PC like Battlefield 3 which make good use of both the GPU and CPU. Arkham City and Witcher 2 lag and stutter like hell while I can play BF3, Metro 2033 and Crysis 2 at high

badstyle
badstyle

I've really enjoyed Max Payne 1 and 2 on the PC in the past and I look forward to indulgining in some quality gunplay with this incarnation. One of my lasting impressions of the Max Payne series has been the decent storyline that doesn't overwhelm the fun of blasting your way through each stage. What really added a cool twist were the trippy scenes from MP2, I hope they expand on these emotive gameplay experiences in this version.

Peter23CU
Peter23CU

This is why I love my Gaming PC and this game shows why. Just can't wait for the release, counting down the days :D

Caldrin
Caldrin

Awesome news :) hopefully more dev companies will follow :)

Kickable
Kickable

cool maybe with this game DX11 features will actually be something to brag about and buy new hardware for, unlike every single other game boasting about DX11. yea probably not. everything else looks pretty impressive though IMO

spikepigeo
spikepigeo

In light of recent betrayals by company's like id and Crytek in their movement to gain more profit by selling out to the console market, Rockstar pulls through. I love you Rockstar. Keep being smart.

justjean
justjean

I have played Max 1 and 2 for years!! love the man! Eagerly awaiting 3 kick ass game!!!! I hope!

Danzerakki
Danzerakki

Eagerly waiting to kick this game's ass

Armyboy5
Armyboy5

So Gamespot can use the A word and we can't? *jackie chan meme*

Psycold
Psycold

@ DITHRICH haha! I am a left handed PC gamer too, we are far and few between. Do you have the Razer Deathadder left handed edition?

Psycold
Psycold

WOW. Don't get me wrong, I love Rockstar and all of their games but the fact this game will have Dx11 features makes me think this will be the first PC game Rockstar has made in many years that will NOT be buggy on launch. Every PC game they released starting with GTA3 had porting issues and needed major patching. This gives me hope that they are spending extra attention on the PC version this time around. GTAIV was a mess on release, I don't know if that was Rockstar Toronto's fault or not.

vishisluv7
vishisluv7

There is physics etc. I tried repeatedly to paste the details here, but this comments system is utterly broken.

flashn00b
flashn00b

Despite this support, it will be a sad thing to know that this is likely to be Rockstar's last PC title.

sbdb
sbdb

There we go again, nobody played this game yet, but they read about the great graphics and suddenly it's "This game will be great", "This game will rock", "will gonna be kick ass", etc...do those little kids never learn....sigh

pidow
pidow

This game will be great.

ferygame
ferygame

I hope it wont be lazy on pc like gta iv but thats clear that it needs a very powerful system for pc.

burgeg
burgeg

I can write a shorter but just as informative article. Here it is. Why Max Payne 3 will kick ass on all platforms. Because Rockstar.

483paul
483paul

@iiIsSueZ Get a job, make some money, buy a computer, play happy

vishisluv7
vishisluv7

My children could never be as important as my PC! What nerve!

TruSake
TruSake

@iiIsSueZ - that's what a console lover would say

iiIsSueZ
iiIsSueZ

God you PC people sound nerdy when you talk about your PC's like they're your children...

hsmgaye
hsmgaye

max payne 3 will gonna be kick ass in june 1

vishisluv7
vishisluv7

I'm one of those that likes to play games on a controller (other than FPS obviously), so I'm really looking forward to cranking this puppy as high as I can on my PC, but still get to sit back in my easy chair and chill while playing. PC4me!

Logic_Crocodile
Logic_Crocodile

GTX 480's SLI checking in! This is great to hear, should be sweet.

laser00
laser00

man..wish i had a beefy hardware in my PC to support this game to it's highest setting...

Chris_53
Chris_53

my GTX570 says Bring It On!!

SPYDER0416
SPYDER0416

Hopefully my OC GTX 460 can get at least around 60 frames on normal to high settings. This announcement alone made me switch my pre order from PS3 to PC version, so here's hoping the extra wait is worth it.

Kain192007
Kain192007

My 560 Ti should do the trick :)

billlabowski
billlabowski

 @onewithtoenail7 You're not a PC gamer. You're a console gamer posing as a PC gamer. Typical PC gamers aren't "graphics whores". We just like good graphics and gameplay. See, PC gamers don't run around screaming GRAPHICS!!! It's typically console gamers doing that because they're upset that PC gamers get the best. I'm sorry, but if you're that pathetic as to write such crap because you're jealous, you have more problems than not being able to afford a decent gaming rig.

Kryptonbornson
Kryptonbornson

 @onewithtoenail7 I'm getting tired of these falsehoods about keyboards and mouse control. Controllers have been used on PCs for ages. My first PC game back in 1997 or 1998 was Nocturne, we purchased it from Best Buy and it had controller support. Keyboard and mouse control for alot of games was just a default, but not always was a game designed or plays better with keyboard and mouse controls. Microsoft made gamepads and joysticks for games that best supported them. Max Payne does work with a keyboard and mouse, that's how I first played it, I hated the PS2's controls, but it's obvious with a xbox style dual stick and rumble, it's superior to kb/m. Period. I play Rage with a controller mainly because or rumble. I'd rather the additional immersion or accuracy if it ever matters. In fact, games like CoD where the auto-aim is so strong, I don't see why people preten kb/m is better. Might as well use a controller...and my PC cost less than $400 and there is hardly any game I can't max except the poorly optimized ones. I game on PC out of choice and versatility, not superiority. I knew aside from certain genres like MMOs and RTSes consoles lead and always have led. This gen was the first that devs considered making PC versions of console games widespread because the tech was powerful and cheap enough. Last gen there was some crossover, but not nearly as much as this gen. This gen, alot of people felt they could skip Xbox and just play the same games on PC.

catabuza
catabuza

@Kryptonbornson oh, come on.. you cannot deny the superiority of kb/m in Shooter games and be taken seriously. I play with a controller too, but on action games like Assassin's Creed or Spiderman etc