Max Payne 3 has risen from the ashes like a glorious, hyper-violent phoenix via video game magazine Edge’s latest preview. Rockstar’s upcoming third person shooter had been on a bit of a sabbatical after being announced in 2009, especially after their vision of Payne came under some serious scrutiny from the game’s rabid fan base. Since then Rockstar quietly retreated into their labs working on something that would impress even the most jaded of gamers. We’ve combed through Edge’s preview with a fine tooth comb and since it’s illegal to just post scans, we’ve summarized ten reasons why you really should look forward to Max Payne’s third iteration.

1) The game will take place 8 years after the events of the second game. Payne has moved out of NYC and is currently killing time (and a lot of people) somewhere in Brazil as a “private contractor”. It turns out he didn’t leave NYC on his own accord though; certain prominent people made sure he was forced out of the Big Apple.

2) Rockstar moved the action out of NYC because they felt Brazil is a country teeming with “diverse environments” that would obviously factor into gameplay.  Plus the huge disparity between the rich and the poor would add in some emotional flavour to the plot.

3) The game's art style is more Michael Mann than John Woo so expect more fast paced kinetic action than slow mo, pigeons flying all over the place kinda action.

Shadow man

Shadow man

4) The story will not be told through graphic novel-esque cut-scenes; instead Rockstar will assault players with an “animated collage of action footage” which Edge compared to Kiefer Sutherland’s show, 24. They also plan on transitioning seamlessly between cut-scenes and gameplay making sure players are immersed in the action at all times. And the icing on the cake is that James McCaffrey, the voice actor who voiced Payne in the first two games will be back for his third outing as well.

5) Health will be displayed via an icon on the lower right hand side of the screen. As in the older games, you'll up it by “popping pills”.

6) In one of the screenshots Payne is seen wielding a silenced pistol which makes us hopeful that there will be certain stealth segments through the game.

7) In the preview Payne stumbled upon two rival gangs killing each other multiple times which is another way of making players feel thoroughly immersed in a world where there's danger lurking around every corner. At the same time this takes away the empowerment most action games tend to bestow upon players where they are one man armies single handedly saving the world.

8) Environments will be fully destructible so expect highly visceral and kinetic shoot outs.

Whatcha looking at punk?

Whatcha looking at punk?

9) Diving is back and as players jump around the place to avoid incoming fire, Payne's body will react to this very naturally thrusting an arm or a shoulder to soften impact. At the same time enemies will react to bullets differently, especially when they get shot. This is all thanks to Rockstar’s Natural Motion physics engine that has significantly been worked on since Red Dead Redemption.

10) The game will employ a wheel based system for weapon management allowing Payne to carry three weapons at a time.

And finally, the game will ship with online multiplayer, the details of which are under wraps. Expect more at E3 2011.

Well that's about it for this deluge of Max Payne 3 information. While I head over to the rest room and change my pants, feel free to share your thoughts on Payne's resurrection in the comments below.

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