Parents' Guide to

Max Payne 3

By Marc Saltzman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 18+

Gritty action game overflows with gore, sex, and profanity.

Max Payne 3 Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

Community Reviews

age 14+

Based on 12 parent reviews

age 13+

Suitability of Max Payne 3 (2012)

Max Payne 3 is indisputably one of my son's favorite games. He talks about it constantly and in a positive manner. I bought the game for him when he was 13 and I watched him play through the game in its entirety, much to his irritation. The game itself features quite realistic and, at times, brutal violence, but if your teen and yourself as a parent are okay with violence, this isn't too much of an issue. Sexual content is featured in this title, however, no full nudity is presented to the player, and a large number of the encounters in cut-scenes have the option to be skipped. For example, when the main protagonist, Max, meets a friend at a brothel, and sexual acts are present in the background. My son is, in my opinion mature for his age and handles these topics well. It really depends on how your child will react to this game, but anywhere from 13 above is suitable.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models
age 17+
A mature teen would have a very good time playing this. Since there is nudity and lots of cussing, it is not appropriate for younger audiences.

This title has:

Easy to play/use
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (12):
Kids say (19):

Yes, the game is good -- but Max Payne 3 is not recommended for players under 17 years of age for its mature themes and graphic imagery and language. The lengthy single-player campaign -- penned by Dan Houser of Grand Theft Auto fame -- is very well written, has memorable characters and locations, and intense action that requires you to shoot, take cover, and think your way out of situations, too. Max Payne 3 also offers a thrilling multiplayer experience for all three versions of the game, as well as additional modes (like Score Attack and New York Minute) that extend the gameplay further. There is also downloadable content coming soon, too. While not for kids, tweens, or teens, this gritty "film noir"-like game is highly entertaining, beautifully designed, and delivers a lot of bang for the buck.

Game Details

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.

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