The first details of what we can expect from Max Payne 3's new multiplayer mode have finally surfaced. As promised, the developer is keen on keeping the series' narrative focus intact. The newly-announced "Gang Wars" mode serves as the focal point for MP3 multiplayer, and will offer a series of story-connected sequences that determine each round's objective.
IGN details the mode. One round might have you collect bags of cash to safe points, a la standard capture-the-flag objectives. The twist comes when the next round creates a story based on what happened in the first. The top-scorer of the first round might have a bounty placed on his head, or you might move to a control point mode. Once you gain land with a control point, the next round could consist of defusing bombs in your territory. While a set number of modes hasn't been detailed, the preview claims that the variety makes Gang Wars permutations "virtually limitless" and keeps one team from crushing another.
Each objective is delivered by Max himself, through voice-over and motion comics, and is said to neatly tie into the timeline of the series.
The game is also getting its own persistent perks in the form of Bursts as you gain XP. They generally deal with altering a player's reality, like an ability called "Paranoia" that forces your opponents to see their own teammates as enemies. "Sneaky" makes you appear as a friendly gamertag, while "Intuition" lets you see silhouettes of enemies.
The Bursts stack on themselves up to three levels, so waiting to use them will yield greater results. Bullet Time is its own burst, and slows time for a targeted player in the line of sight of the opponent using it. And of course, you can make a leaping shot as well.
"The narrative element of Max Payne 1 and 2, and what we're doing with 3, is obviously very strong," said multiplayer lead designer Charlie Bewsher. "So when you starting thinking about the multiplayer version of Payne I think you've got to address that part of the game. But there's also a narrative unique to any multiplayer game, though - you sort of get this drama that unfolds."
Multiplayer will be the focus of much of Max Payne 3's forthcoming DLC. Collector's edition versions of the game include retro Max Payne skins. Max Payne 3 will be available on PC, PS3, and Xbox 360 in March.