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Max Payne Mobile

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Killing time

Product: Max Payne Mobile | Publisher: Rockstar Games | Format: Android | Genre: Action, Shooter | Players: 1 | File size: 1.11GB | Version: Europe
 
Max Payne Mobile Android, thumbnail 1
Max Payne was always a bit of a show-off. For our ex-cop antihero, a gunfight meant diving headfirst through a doorway, pirouetting in midair, and busting three slack-jawed goons without taking a single hit.

On iOS, Payne is rarely that stylish. Firefights often result in an awkward fumble of thumbs, ending up with poor-old Max in a crumpled heap on the floor and half of his targets still breathing. Moments of actual showboating are sadly few and far between.

It's not really his fault, though. The iOS controls are adequate - especially with a little tweaking in the options - but no touchscreen buttons could quite give the fidelity needed to pull off Payne's best tricks.

Dead On Arrival

To compensate, the game is pitifully easy. The default option offers up the world's most generous auto-aim and, as on the PC version, you're locked to the cake-walk 'Fugitive' difficulty on your first play-through.

On this mode, enemies are such pushovers, you get so many painkillers, and there's so much ammo that it's nearly impossible to die. In fact, the only times I've conked out (so far) have been at the hands of a nuisance subway train and an accidental belly flop off a fourth-story balcony.

Thankfully, there's a little more to Max Payne Mobile than just an endless series of slowed-down showdowns. We get a comically over-written noir story with hints of Eisner and Ellroy, told in graphic novel vignettes and laced with enough similes and metaphors to fill a rap anthology.

New York Minute

It's also got plenty of humour peppered throughout. One enemy gets caught with his pants down, and so you chase him through the level with his trousers around his ankles. If you sneak up on thugs before you whack them you can eavesdrop on their comedic banter.

In 11 years, Payne hasn't aged all that gracefully. At the dizzying height of Matrix-mania, his bullet-dodging combat was quite possibly the coolest thing ever committed to a compact disc. Nowadays, the constant dives just get a little repetitive.

With the fumbly controls, it makes it a doubly hard sell to anyone who doesn't fondly remember the fugitive with a permanent grimace and a penchant for time-manipulation. But if you're nostalgic for slow-motion gunplay, Rockstar's iOS port will just about satisfy.

 
Max Payne Mobile
Reviewer photo
Mark Brown | 13 April 2012
Max Payne Mobile's repetitive gameplay and irksome controls definitely won't impress newcomers. But for gamers who enjoyed the original, this iOS edition is a strong enough port to bring back good memories
 
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