It is a fairly reliable weapon that is most effective at close range, but is hardly accurate or quick.
The pump-action functions like many shotguns in the shooter genre. In Max Payne it is strong, packs a good punch at close range, and can be effective at medium distances with headshots. It shines the most in earlier levels, where a single shot can take out mobsters at close range, allowing Max to dispatch a group of them with ease. However, late in the game, several shots may be necessary to kill an enemy. The weapon is carried by many enemies early in the game, who, even on the easiest difficulty, can inflict a great amount of damage to Max in one shot. The pump-action shotgun fires a smaller blast than the other two shotguns (i.e., the sawed-off and the jackhammer), so aim is more important. The greatest weakness of the gun in the first game is its low rate of fire and potentially long reload times.
In Max Payne 2, the pump-action is lackluster in damage; however, it is still a fairly reliable weapon to use, albeit at a much closer range. The pump-action's shortcomings of the first game are alleviated in part by a faster fire rate, and the quick reload during bullet-time. The pump-action makes its debut early on in the game, where it is useful for heavy-duty fights unsuited for the 9mm pistol. However, it is soon outshone in terms of damage by weapons such as the Striker and Kalashnikov, and in terms of range and accuracy by the MP5 and the M4.
Behind the scenes
The pump-action shotgun is the only weapon in the series to have a serious visual makeover between games: it appears to be a Winchester Model 1300 in Max Payne and a Remington 870 (with folded stock) in Max Payne 2.