Posted on April 11 2012, 2:30pm | Author: R* A | Filed Under: Games
Captured during the Max Payne 3 scoring sessions being conducted by Health at Woody Jackson's recording studio out in LA. Just one quick masterful take of the unmistakable Max Payne theme cue on cello.
An aging, greying gunman single-mindedly out to reclaim what was taken from him must infiltrate a building teeming with armed enemy goons – get in, reach the man in charge at the top, and get out unscathed by cannily outwitting and outmanning them all. The type of job that calls for more of a myth than a man.
Starring Lee Marvin as the mysterious, unstoppable force known only as Walker and supported by an amazing cast that includes the stunning Angie Dickinson and a pre-Archie-Bunker Caroll O’Connor - this surreal neo-noir crime film isn’t necessarily a direct inspiration of the Max Payne series or Max Payne 3 specifically, but there are many great stylistic parallels worth noting. The over-the-hill mythical hard man constantly facing impossible odds against a giant criminal organization. The haunting memories and tortured flashbacks to where it all went wrong. Even the sharp grey suit and the coincidence of a precarious helicopter-assisted cash drop orchestrated at an empty arena.
Remade in only the shallowest of plot-point respects in 1999 as the Mel Gibson vehicle “Payback”, we’d consider “Point Blank” to be the “High Plains Drifter” of Max Payne 3 Recommended films – a treat for Max fans who can appreciate a surreal take on the crime-action genre.
Today, we're proud to announce that another key contributor to the game's aural action is celebrated São Paulo rap star Emicida - one of the leaders in a movement that's helped make São Paulo a veritable hip-hop capital for Brazil. Emicida is known for his tough and raw rhymes and freestyles ('Emicida' being a fusion of the words 'emcee' and 'homicide') and for his dedication not only to aesthetics but to imparting important messages of social justice as it relates to the downtrodden of his city and country. Winner of Act of the Year in the 2011 MTV VMB Awards, Emicida's regarded as one of the biggest icons in Brazilian music today and has rocked mega festivals around the world from Rock in Rio to SWU, Sonar, Planet, Atlantis to Coachella.
We reached out to Emicida last week for his candid thoughts on what it's been like working on original music for the game:
"Antes de mais nada, sou fã de video games, como disse nas primeiras reuniões sobre o jogo, temos aqui na Laboratório Fantasma uma admiração muito grande pela Rockstar pois todos, sem excessão somos fãs de GTA, entre outros titulos lançados por eles. Ter a oportunidade de fazer parte do Jogo Max Payne 3 foi muito especial, compor para o jogo então, foi como um sonho, trabalhar com uma história tão densa, obscura onde temos uma trama que se passa na cidade de São Paulo, minha amada São Paulo, é nisso que eu quis me apegar, no inferno astral do personagem somado a paisagem caótica da maior cidade da américa latina, com seus contrastes e cenários, tensão, violência, corrupção, principalmente em um momento tão delicado da história de São Paulo, onde presenciamos uma onda de ataques politicos contra a população de menor renda... estou ansioso para o lançamento e vai ser foda!!" - Emicida
("Before anything else, I’m a huge fan of video games as I shared with you guys during our first meetings regarding the game. Here at Laboratório Fantasma (Records), we have a great admiration for Rockstar and we are, without exception, fans of GTA, among other titles that Rockstar has released. Having the opportunity to be part of the game Max Payne 3 was really special. Creating a song for the game was simply like a dream. We worked along a storyline that is dense, obscure and that takes place in the city of São Paulo, our beloved São Paulo. My intention was to hold on to this idea, that of an astrological inferno – when all the planets are aligned against you – of a character immersed in a chaotic landscape in the largest city of Latin America, with its contrasts and scenarios of tension, violence, corruption, and especially at this very delicate moment in São Paulo’s history where we witness a wave of political attacks against our low-income communities... I am eagerly awaiting the release of the game and it’s gonna be f***ing awesome!!! - Emicida)
We'll have more details including info and a first listen of the original song he created for the game soon...
Posted on February 21 2012, 12:05pm | Author: R* A | Filed Under: Games
A life of despondency and hopelessness in New York City is left behind by Max for the promise of a fresh start, a new opportunity and a brighter future in one of the world’s most burgeoning foreign markets – São Paulo, Brazil. A chance encounter with an old colleague, Raul Passos, leads to a job offer working personal security for a wealthy South American family – The Brancos – and Max follows a lead traveled by many businessmen and investors over the past decade-plus to the South American powerhouse city that twenty or more billionaires call home.
Today’s installment in our continuing series looking at the research, information and production that went into the making of Max Payne 3 examines the posh life of São Paulo – a city with wealth and power rivaled only by global metropolises of the highest order.
In a series of trips to São Paulo throughout the making of the game, Rockstar developers and Research team members studied the highs and lows of city life to help inform the characters, storyline and situations that befall Max with utmost authenticity. As Max is recruited to work for the rich and powerful Brancos, we needed to make sure the touchstones of this elite and growing segment of Paulistano society was represented appropriately and vividly. São Paulo has directly benefited from some of Brazilian president Luiz Inacio “Lula” da Silva's progressive economic policies over the past decade, with so much money now floating around (São Paulo alone represents over 12% of the entire country’s GDP), the city’s name has become somewhat synonymous with prestige and power - Brazilian TV even capitalizing on a Real-Housewives-style reality show starring four women from São Paulo. And for 2012, Forbes named São Paulo the top global city for investors after New York, London and Washington DC, in that order.
There are interrelated problems that plague São Paulo however, forcing wealthy residents to live cautiously and adapt. One is a persistently high crime rate (despite encouraging recent gains) deterring many from feeling too free to stroll the streets in certain areas of the city. Reminders of this are a part of daily life in the city, as more than one cabbie informed us that the fear of carjacking leads many drivers to treat red lights more like stop signs after midnight – and the conspicuous presence of extra beefed-up security is a common sight at entry points to virtually all prestigious points-of-interest from hotels to nightclubs to high-end shops.
The other is the notorious traffic that chokes the city at street level – with traffic jams that can extend for well over 100 miles, and where a five-mile drive can take an hour or two. And sometimes the two problems combine with dangerous consequences – the threat of armed, motorbike-riding thieves and kidnappers weaving in and out of traffic (which has inspired not only a spike in bulletproof windows but a proposed law banning moto-passengers) helped fuel the need for an alternative fast and safe means of short-distance transportation for rich Paulistanos. As a result, the elite take to the skies with helicopters – a trend that’s given São Paulo the distinction of having more helicopters than any other city in the world, and has dotted the city’s skyscraper rooftops with helipads galore.
Snapped during an aerial tour of the city and surrounding areas taken by Max Payne 3 developers, helipads are a common sight dotting the tops of city skyscrapers.
Max and helicopter pilot Passos take to the São Paulo skies in Max Payne 3.
That's just part of a way of life for Paulistano elites that you’ll see come into play in the game as Max works armed private security for the Brancos alongside Passos, who also serves as their personal helicopter pilot. Whether helping family patriarch and industrialist Rodrigo Branco make it to his day-to-day appointments on time by eliminating the variable of street traffic – or for when socialite trophy wife, Fabiana Branco, feels the whim to spend the night drinking and dancing away at one of the city’s hottest nightspots and must arrive in style – Max and Passos are relied on to ensure safe transport by heli.
Fabiana Branco and her sister Giovanna skip the line and arrive in style via helicopter to the exclusive Club Moderno for a night of drinking and dancing, escorted by Max and Passos.
On the outskirts of town, the city’s millionaires and billionaires live in sprawling mansion estates.
Fancy VIP nightclubs like the fictionalized Club Moderno that Fabiana and her sister Giovanna attend in the game serve as nocturnal playgrounds for São Paulo’s rich – with bottle service, layout and décor inspired by continental and international nightclubs and ultra-lounges. While our firsthand research excursions to São Paulo were serious work (really!), developers did get a small taste of the city’s lavish nightlife – from finagling entry to private designer parties at Avenue Morumbi mansions to attending the exclusive rooftop lounge scene at the chic Hotel Unique – which all helped to inform the vibe of the Brancos' lifestyle. When not partying, or shopping down the upscale Avenida Paulista or Rua Oscar Freire (known as the ‘5th Avenue’ of São Paulo), the super-rich retire to swank multi-million dollar luxury condos in city areas like Jardins, Alto de Pinheiros and Cidade Jardim – or to sprawling mansions located in the suburban outskirts of São Paulo state as seen in some of the aerial photos above we snapped while surveying local views by helicopter.
Stay tuned for our next edition in the Rockstar Research series that looks into the making of the game, where we’ll reveal some of the local casting done in São Paulo to create many of the friends and foes you’ll meet in Max Payne 3…
Certainly, Max as a character owes a debt to the great tradition of moviedom's brooding and softly-spoken action-heroes who walk softly and wield a big stick with uncanny precision. At its best, the experience of playing any Max Payne game, but especially this new and evolved entry in the franchise, is meant to take that passively vicarious thrill of seeing a cool and unflappable hero dispense justice and revenge – and turn it into an adrenaline-pumping first-hand sensation of action. Imagine the ante being upped with the prospective of going online to face off against a lopsided army of assailants in a multiplayer mode like Payne Killer, and you'll have a pretty good sense of how we're aiming to take inspiration from these sorts of classic shootouts and faceoffs into an epic videogame experience.
Hit the jump to see over a dozen of our favorites, culled from over 50 years of movie history…
Posted on February 7 2012, 12:00pm | Author: R* A | Filed Under: Rockstar
We recently highlighted John Woo’s “The Killer” as a particularly inspirational gem from the world of Hong Kong action cinema – today, we present the yang to that yin, some of our favorite guilty pleasures from the realm of ‘Bruceploitation’. In 1973 when the legendary Bruce Lee passed, an entire industry of martial arts filmmaking coalesced around the void left by his untimely death, attempting to capitalize on the style and substance of the great artist - invariably failing miserably but producing a very surreal genre of opportunistic cult films and helping to reinforce that there was truly only one Bruce. Check out this selection of trailers from just a few of the unbelievable imposter films that confused and often infuriated a generation of Bruce fans.
Posted on February 3 2012, 3:18pm | Author: R* A | Filed Under: Games
Arigato to Japanese artist SHOHEI aka @hakuchitare - one of the cast members selected in our worldwide #MaxPayne3 multiplayer gang casting event held on Twitter recently - for whipping up this nice sketch to celebrate the occasion. In it, SHOHEI appears as a marked man desperately trying to get away from a pistol-toting Max Payne while exclaiming "HELP HELP!!!". Of course in his in-game multiplayer gang member appearance, SHOHEI's likeness will be just as likely to be the one wielding the weaponry and inflicting fear in would-be online assailants.
Stay tuned as we will be revealing what the #MaxPayne3 gang looks like in-game sometime this March.
For Max Payne 3 to Grand Theft Auto V and beyond, Crews are groups of Social Club members who form persistent teams to compete and earn rewards in-game and on the Social Club website. Create a Crew or join one now - here are some Crews we've featured in the Crew Cut here at the Newswire:
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