Sep. 14, 2011 at 2:11 PM ET
After falling off the map for eight years, the famed Max Payne is back ... and, frankly, time hasn't treated him gently.
The long years have etched crevices in his face. He's packed on more than a few pounds. And by the looks of it, he's been drinking his way to oblivion during his absence. And no wonder. When we last saw Payne — in the 2003 game "Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne" — his dead wife and child still haunted him and his lady killer/love lay dying in his arms.
Now Rockstar Games has released the first trailer for "Max Payne 3," and this cinematic gem finds our haunted former-cop-turned-security-guard trying to start something that passes for a new life in the city of São Paulo, Brazil. Check it out:
Yes, from the looks of things, the series' dark, film noir narrative style is making a return. Rockstar has this to say about the story:
Still haunted by the memories of his traumatic past, Max begins a new life working private security protecting a wealthy industrialist and his family in São Paulo, Brazil. When gangs target the family under his protection, Max is forced to fight to save his clients and clear his name, in a bid to, once and for all, rid himself of the demons that have tortured him for far too long.
Rockstar says the franchise's slow motion "bullet-time" mode will make a return and promises "Max Payne 3" will include an extensive range of realistic weaponry as well as an intelligent cover system. It will also be the first entry in the series to introduce a multiplayer mode. According to Rockstar:
Max Payne 3 multiplayer delivers a compelling experience that dynamically alters maps and mode progression for all players in a match. Along with traditional multiplayer modes, Max Payne 3 will also include a deep reward and leveling system, persistent clans and multiple strategic load-out options.
"Max Payne 3" launches in March of 2012 for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC. Here are a few new screenshots to peruse while you wait.
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Winda Benedetti writes about games for msnbc.com. You can follow her tweets about games and other things here on Twitter or join her in the stream here on Google+. And be sure to check out the In-Game Facebook page here.