Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne
By Jeremy Gieske,
Common Sense Media Reviewer
Common Sense Media Reviewers
Shooter's intriguing story is for adults only.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Corrupt political/social system, you vs. everyone gameplay. Humor typically involves violence or mockery of those who are concerned about violence in video games.
Violence & Scariness
Glorified "slow-motion" shooting, assassinations, explosions. Violence, gangs, death, torture.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Ads for sex phone lines, porn movies, character sexual interaction.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Frequent profanity, including the "F" word.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Health is restored via "Painkillers", drug/alcohol references.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that an intriguing storyline may make this game more appealing than some first-person shooter games; however, it still glorifies violence, makes ample use of profanity, and contains significant mature sexual content, making this a game for adults only. Parents should be aware that there are multiple scenes of close-up assassination-style killings: direct gun-to-face, close-range shooting. Blood is everywhere as are flying and burning bodies, grenades, Molotov cocktails, and conveniently placed explosives.
Where to Play
Based on 6 parent reviews
Report this review
Report this review
What’s It About?
MAX PAYNE 2 bills itself as a \"film noir love story.\" Twisted by a world of corruption, Max is a cop who doesn't really have anyone to trust, even himself. Max finds himself in a hospital, badly wounded and hallucinating about things of the recent past --primarily fixated on his obsession with Mona, the femme fatale of the game. Much of the plot is revealed in comic-book style cut scenes with voiceovers narrating the text.
Even with some attention to a storyline, much of the game is about the fancy shooting. Max Payne 2, along with a multitude of recent games, offers a slow-motion option, which puts you at an advantage against your foes, and makes for some \"cool\" looking shooting moves.
Is It Any Good?
Although definitely not for kids, Max Payne 2 is a step above most first-person shooting games. The story is dark and intriguing, almost like a novel, with a richer plot than most first-person shooters. Nonetheless, with a wide collection of guns, and the now almost ubiquitous slow-motion shooting, the game is a shooter at heart.
Other considerations include the mature sexual themes and the level of strong language. There isn't any nudity, but several audio segments sound like they are lifted from a porn movie. In a new twist on "media integration," some of the ads and shows on fake TVs are linked to elements within the game, including some ads for a phone sex line and a "late-night" porn show. The glorification of violence, sexual content and profanity provides little chance for kids to compare and contrast "morality," but does offer yet another chance to "empty another clip."
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the film noir aspect of this game. Is Max a good guy? Is he a moral person? Why or why not? What makes someone a "good guy" vs. a "bad guy"?
- Platforms: Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox
- Available online?: Not available online
- Publisher: Rockstar Games
- Release date: June 24, 2003
- Genre: First-Person Shooter
- ESRB rating: M
- Last updated: November 4, 2015
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.
Suggest an Update
Where to Play
Our Editors Recommend
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.See how we rate