It is still a action packed bullet time shooter like its predecessor although be prepared for a few surprises

User Rating: 8 | Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne PC
It was clear from the start of the game that Remedy were trying to scrape whatever they could to make a Max Payne sequel. In the process of doing so, Max Payne 2 also removed what created the game's ludicrously popular fan base in the first place. The gritty feeling and dark storyline from the original game simply is a no go, Max did what he had to do in the original game and it stirred up the whole revenge and plot twisted storyline at the same time. Max Payne 2 however can only try it's very best to emulate this and it still fails to do so.

As expected, Max Payne 2 has a nice cosmetic look throughout the game. This applies to both the graphic novel and the gameplay itself (which seem better link this time). The visuals are bold and vivid although yet still noir like the first game. The effects of the game itself are also still good, the action feels fantastic. Bullet time made popular from the previous Max Payne is still available to use in Max Payne 2 and feels a little faster also, which is just fine as far as I'm concerned, if a little repetitive.

There is a clean emphasis on screen effects in Max Payne 2 and work well thanks to fantastic presentation during the game also. Players will find it hard not to sit back and gaze into the wonders of the graphical engine in the game itself because so much has been improved in this game. Remedy have even gone as far as to including the famous Havok physics engine to accompany the fantastic visuals with realistic death animations which should make you almost seal the deal straight away.

Although there's still more. Max Payne 2 has excellent voice acting, some of the best I've heard in a game for quite some time. The voice cast is mainly different to the original game although you'll find it impossible not to agree that the new voice actors are far better in this game. Main character Max, Mona and Vlad all have authentic voices and are very convincing in their use of accents are potrayal of the characters themselves. Even the mobsters, which are simple side-characters have their own slice of personality that the players will like and/or relate to throughout the game.

Perhaps the only let-down in the sound effects department comes from the music which sounds odd, although Max Payne 1 wasn't dependant on this either. Also perhaps some some of the voices and screenplay are a little off putting too, although this is very occasional since the game's script is quite witty and psychological

So the gameplay, as you might expect from a Max Payne game again, it's pretty good. See, while Max Payne plays like a run of the mill shooter, the use of bullet time, made famous in the Matrix, effects everything. Max Payne 2 more or less extends on this. The array of weapons has been increased, there are more diverse objectives to this game compared to the original and it's a lot more fun to toy around and re-create your favourite scenes from movies with the renowned bullet time features.

The developers, Remedy, have even introduced another playable character in the form of Mona Sax, which makes for a nice change. So overall, the gameplay is something of a highlight in Max Payne 2. Mona plays much the same to Max except she peforms a few different moves that he couldn't normally do, as well as progressing the game's story.

Although there is one issue that hasn't been solved in Max Payne 2; the length of the game itself. This a bit of a disappointment, since Max Payne has cinematic values written all over it, but gamers will honestly want more. Also the story of Max Payne 2 seems to be outrageous compared to the original game. With once likeable characters turning into an annoyance, regardless of the voice acting and their skill.

You could go into detail just how much the story has shot players down from really experiencing the game at its best. But cut short, we were expecting a gritty tale of vengeance similar to, say Kill Bill, rather than a love story like Romeo And Juliet. This greatly effects the perception of the game considering the original punky Matrix themes we saw in the beginning.

So that's all there is to know about Max Payne 2. It is still a action packed bullet time shooter like its predecessor, although be prepared for a few surprises and raising eyebrows throughout the game. The game picks up the series atmosphere a lot differently this time around.