Best Max Payne Quotes 2021

Max Payne is a video game series about a former police detective whose family was tragically murdered.

The hard-hitting quotes from the main character in the Max Payne games are one of its most appealing factors. We’ve compiled the best of those quotes from all three games of the series.

Best Max Payne Quotes

These are the best quotes from Max Payne throughout the game series.

1. “He was trying to buy more sand for his hourglass. I wasn’t selling any.”

– Max Payne.

2. “No Minotaur lurked in this labyrinth, but somewhere out there, on the clanking deck of his cargo freighter, the skipper of the Charon was waiting, like the ferryman of the river Styx.”

– Max Payne.

3. “They were all dead. The final gunshot was an exclamation mark to everything that had led to this point. I released my finger from the trigger. And then it was over.”

– Max Payne.

4. “I knew the appetite of ghosts intimately. They hungered for revenge.”

– Max Payne.

5. “I wanted to dig inside my skull and scrape out the pain.”

– Max Payne.

6. “The more you run, the deeper, more terrible it grows behind you, its edges yawning at your heels.”

– Max Payne.

7. “But dreams have a nasty habit of going bad when you’re not looking.”

– Max Payne.

8. “I don’t know about angels, but it’s fear that gives men wings.”

– Max Payne.

9. “The past is a gaping hole. You try to run from it, but the more you run, the deeper, more terrible it grows behind you, its edges yawning at your heels.”

– Max Payne.

10. “Your only chance is to turn around and face it. But it’s like looking down into the grave of your love, or kissing the mouth of a gun, a bullet trembling in its dark nest, ready to blow your head off.”

– Max Payne.

Max Payne 1 Quotes

Here are the best quotes from Max Payne 1.

Max Payne is a third-person shooter video-game.

11. “Vinnie Gognitti: You – you can’t just kill me in cold blood!

Max Payne: You just keep telling yourself that.”

– Max Payne 1.

12. “Nothing is a cliché when it’s happening to you.”

– Max Payne.

13. “There was nothing I could do. He was dead. I could tell by the empty accusing stare of his eyes.”

– Max Payne.

14. “Relax, Max. You’re a nice guy. I don’t kill nice guys.”

– Mona Sax.

15. “Vlad was one of those old time bad guys with honor and morals, which almost made him one of the good guys. None of us was a saint.”

– Max Payne.

16. “God. I turned out to be such a damsel in distress.”

– Mona Sax.

17. “When the darkness fell, New York City became something else, any old Sinatra song notwithstanding. Bad things happened in the night, on the streets of that other city. Noir York City.”

– Max Payne.

18. “I didn’t like the way the show started, but they had given me the best seat in the house: front row center.”

– Max Payne.

19. “The flesh of fallen angels! Come to me, all!… Astaroth, Beelzebub, Asmodeus, Baphomet, Lucifer, Loki, Satan, Cthulhu, Lilith, Hela! Blood to you all!”

– Jack Lupino.

20. “Life was good. The sun setting on a sweet summer’s day. The smell of freshly mowed lawns, the sounds of children playing. A house across the river on the Jersey side. A beautiful wife and a baby girl. The American Dream come true.”

– Max Payne.

Max Payne 2 Quotes

Here are the best quotes from Max Payne 2.

21. “One last thing left to do. I was compelled to give Vlad his gun back… one bullet at a time.”

– Max Payne.

22. “Vlad was right. There are no choices. Nothing but a straight line. The illusion comes afterwards, when you ask ‘Why me?’ and ‘What if?’ when you look back, see the branches, like a pruned bonsai tree, or a forked lightning.”

– Max Payne.

23. “If you think nothing can get to you, you’re lying to yourself.”

– Max Payne.

24. “Like all the bad things in my life, it started with the death of a woman. I couldn’t save her.”

– Max Payne.

25. “The past is a puzzle, like a broken mirror. As you piece it together, you cut yourself, your image keeps shifting. And you change with it. It could destroy you, drive you mad. It could set you free.”

– Max Payne.

26. “I want to sleep, to forget. To change the past. My wife and baby girl back.”

– Max Payne.

27. “Hypothetically, if the only choice you’ve got is to do the wrong thing, then it’s not really the wrong thing, it’s more like fate.”

– Vladimir ‘Vlad’ Lem.

28. “Without Mona’s help, I’d be a dead man. Suddenly, for the first time in I don’t know how long, I realized, I didn’t wish to be dead.”

– Max Payne.

29. “The dead had plenty to say. And once they started, they would never shut up. Their words would keep you awake at night. The bodies, all the evidence of all the murders the cleaners had done, all the answers. It would take days to dig through it.”

– Max Payne.

30. “The genius of the hole: no matter how long you spend climbing out, you can still fall back down in an instant.”

– Max Payne.

31. “Einstein was right. Time is relative to the observer. When you’re looking down the barrel of a gun time slows down, your whole life flashes by, heartbreak and scars. Stay with it, and you can live a lifetime in that split second.”

– Max Payne.

Max Payne 3 Quotes

Here are the best quotes from Max Payne 3.

32. “I needed to get to my unhappy place.”

– Max Payne.

33. “I ain’t slipping, man. I’m slipped.”

– Max Payne.

34. “Say what you want about Americans but we understand capitalism. You buy yourself a product and you get what you pay for, and these chumps had paid for some angry gringo without the sensibilities to know right from wrong.”

– Max Payne.

35. “I didn’t think there was anything left of him to fill a grave.”

– Max Payne.

36. “I needed something to improve my game.”

– Max Payne.

37. “The way I see it there’s two types of people, those who spend their lives trying to build a future and those who spend their lives trying to rebuild the past.”

– Max Payne.

38. “Time was a luxury I couldn’t afford.”

– Max Payne.

Max Payne Quotes

10 “But When Was I Ever About Smart Moves. I’m A Dumb Move Guy.” (Max Payne 3)

Max Payne 3 shoot dodge killing enemy

If smart moves were always so obvious and easy, everybody would be making the best and most intelligent decisions on a daily basis. Unfortunately, people are prone to do what is the most appealing at the time based on their wants and emotions, rather than what is actually good for them. While this is unfortunate, it makes most players immediately relate to the former detective.

“But Dreams Have A Nasty Habit Of Going Bad When You’re Not Looking.” (Max Payne)

Max Payne first cutscene

Max delivers this line in the introduction to his first game. For him, his dream was soured by the murder of his wife and child. Most have not fallen into such an extreme tragedy, but usually something bad has happened to everyone when they least expect it. Always appreciate the good things in life; you never know when they could be taken away.

“The More You Run, The Deeper, More Terrible It Grows Behind You, Its Edges Yawning At Your Heels.” (Max Payne 2)

Max Payne 2 intro cinematic

A lot of people have problems in their lives, some of which are deeper than others. Much like Max, some have taken to running from their issues, only to learn this is a useless endeavor. We cannot flee from issues; we have to turn around, kick them in the shins and eliminate them. Until issues are confronted immediately, they will only gnaw at someone more incessantly.

“A Bad Caricature Of A Better Man.” (Max Payne 3)

Max Payne Chapter 12

The character is never in a good state throughout the series, but Max Payne 3 sees Max falling into alcoholism and failing at every turn. He mutters this in his internal monologue in Chapter Eleven while realizing how far he has let himself go in the years since Max Payne 2.


We all go through some personal crises in our lives. What really matters is how fast one realizes it and works to bring themselves out of it.

“I Wanted To Dig Inside My Skull And Scrape Out The Pain.” (Max Payne 2)

Max payne 2 max

When Max says this, he is both referring to emotional scars and the literal pain within him from all the damage he takes during the course of Max Payne 2, which most hopefully played on PC or Xbox, because the PS2 port is a disaster. Seriously, the hero gets shot up, beat up, and at one point literally shot in the head. When players feel this way it is still tragic — perhaps referring to the pain of a breakup or losing a loved one — but at least it is not also talking about physical wounds.

“The Feeling Hit Me Like A Point Blank Shot Straight In The Face.” (Max Payne)

Max Payne screenshot

Max feels two emotions throughout the whole trilogy: deep sadness and boiling rage. However, these feelings run deep and the way he expresses them is perfectly described by this above quote. Getting hit with anything directly in the face is unpleasant, even intangible feelings. We’ve all received shocking news in our lives at some point. Even if it is not a big deal, the abruptness can sometimes make it so much worse.

“The Cartoon Moment When Gravity Waits For The Coyote To Realize His Mistake Before The Plunge.” (Max Payne 2)

Max Payne 2 max surrendering

Sometimes people make bad decisions they did not realize were mistakes until long afterwards. However, this quote relates to moments when one can see the immediate consequence of their mistake in slow motion.

Max makes a string of bad moves in the second game, and has to live with these for the rest of his life. If only the consequences were as funny as the Road Runner cartoons.

“It Ain’t Often You Get Nostalgic For Getting Your [Butt] Kicked By Six Sailors On Shore Leave.” (Max Payne 3)

Max Payne shooting

Max utters this in the first flashback level of Max Payne 3 when he first meets Passos. Hopefully, no reader can relate to the exact situation, but some of us have gotten so down we start longing for days when life was only slightly less miserable. When things start getting too bad, it is always possible to look at Max Payne’s life and feel better about one’s own situation.

“I Knew The Appetite Of Ghosts Intimately. They Hungered For Revenge.” (Max Payne)

Mona Max Payne One

Is it really the ghosts in Max’s life hungering for revenge or simply Max himself wishing to avenge his family’s brutal slaying? Granted, if we were murdered after being wrapped up in a criminal conspiracy, we’d want someone to take revenge on our behalf. Most have felt the pull of vengeance at least once in their life.

“I Ain’t Slipping Man. I’m Slipped.” (Max Payne 3)

Max Payne 3. hapture 3

Max Payne 3 follows an older Max battling the demon alcohol. After failing to protect the woman he was hired to guard several times, he lets out this sad remark. Gamers are a lot older than they were in 2001 and have aged like the protagonist of this trilogy. However, It is always possible to retain one’s youth and learn new things even at an older age.

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