Rockstar still working on 'Max Payne 3'

Despite preparing for the May 2011 release of L.A. Noire, Rockstar's marketing machine wants the world to know that Max Payne 3 hasn't been forgotten, releasing two new screenshots for the work in progress.

Max Payne 1 and 2 championed the slow motion, action-packed style of Hong Kong director John Woo, and propelled Swedish studio Remedy Entertainment into the limelight.

The Max Payne 3 screenshots hint at a flashback story arc as the ex-detective's move into private security runs into trouble.

Remedy sold the Max Payne brand to Rockstar's owners in May 2002, and three months later Rockstar bought the studio now known as Rockstar Vancouver, the developer of Max Payne 3.

The game had been due for a late 2009 release, but since then Grand Theft Auto IV's extra episodes and Red Dead Redemption took priority in the Rockstar release schedule.

Rockstar's recent preference has been for late spring releases supported by downloadable content the following October.

If the pattern holds, and Rockstar regards Payne 3 as a top tier product, then L.A. Noire will be its flagship title for 2011, with extra missions arriving around the time that Batman: Arkham City hits.

Max Payne 3 would then ship in 2012 just like fellow action games Prey 2, Prototype 2 and Ninja Gaiden 3 are set to, with the rumored Grand Theft Auto V positioned for 2013.

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