Review: Mafia II

Been a while since I’ve reviewed anything for you guys! Got Mafia II a few weeks back, completed it about two weeks prior to writing this, and, when I completed it, I said on Twitter (Follow me if you want, I’m @iPwnCake) I’d write up a review for TGD. So, here it is! Enjoy!

Story:
The game opens with the protagonist narrating about his past life, whilst looking through his family’s photo album. It then jumps to a new cut scene, which see’s Vito (The protagonist) and his buddy Joe robbing a jewellery store. (Times are hard. It’s like 1943, so give ’em a break!) Vito gets caught, whilst Joe escapes. It’s either prison, or serving in the army. Vito decides to opt for the army, and soon ships out to Sicily, his home country. So, this starts up the first level. Blah blah blah. Point is, Vito ends up getting shot. He spends a bit of time in the hospital, then gets a month of leave. He meets up with Joe, who sets him up with some forged papers, and Vito’s saved from going back to the army. He goes home, see’s his mother and sister, and the next morning, finds out his father left them with a $2000 debt when he died. So Vito now needs a way to get $2000 fast. As the title suggests, the work’s got something to do with the Mafia. Blah blah blah. Point is, he makes the money. He then serves some time in jail, for selling stolen gas stamps. Blah. Blah. Blah. Six years later, in 1951, he’s back on the scene. Aside from one scene, which really made me feel quite shocked and upset (It’s got something to do with Henry, you’ll know if you’ve played the game or if you’re following me on Twitter), there was nothing THAT good about the story. Pretty average, if I’m honest. Nevertheless, the story was decent enough to hold the game together. The characters…. Hmmm. There’s absolutely zero character development. Honestly. Nothing.

Graphics:
The graphics in this game are decent enough. Interestingly, the cut scenes are created by the games engine, instead of being pre-rendered. So for example, if your car was damaged, it would appear damaged in the cut scene. This sometimes makes the game suffer, as they can look a bit choppy, and are really hard on the eyes. It’s a bit like Weapons of Fate, in a way. Okay, the normal cut scenes aren’t THAT awful, but in comparison to the few stunning ones, then… Well, yeah. The PS3 version has received much controversy, in the fact that it’s missing some graphical details, such as pools of blood forming around dead enemies, three dimensional grass and realistic cloth physics. Aside from that, there really isn’t much to say about the graphics. Wow, is this review short so far, or what? Hopefully the Gameplay vs. Content section should make up for it.

Gameplay vs. Content:
Okay, I’ve got a fair bit to cover here, so let’s start with the weapon system. More specifically, the guns. Okay, they’re the only weapons you can use, but whatever. The guns and how you handle them are… Interesting. First, let me tell you what weapons are available to use. You’ve got
the Thompson machine gun, the MP40, a Greaser gun, a Colt 1911, a Revolver, and a true and classic gangster weapon, the Tommy gun. There are more, but it would be pointless listing them all. They handle pretty well, with there being a little amount of recoil on the pistols and so on. Despite the guns being fun to use, the weapon system lets them down. It’s hard to describe, but as best as I can tell you, it feels clunky. It’s slow, and thus the action, which heavily relies on the guns, feels slow and strange. Since this is the Mafia, you’d think things would be a bit more high octane and action packed. Meh, oh well. The driving mechanics also bring the game down. They feel unnecessary and really aren’t needed. One cool thing though, is all the cars have speed limiters. Just tap A and you’ll slow to about 40MPH, depending upon what car you’re in. This helps a lot, as the police will really come down hard on you for speeding etc. It’s quite realistic in the way of the police. They’ll chase you down for speeding, and fine you. If you fire a gun, you’ll have to bribe the cop. If you kill a lot of civilians or something, they’ll shoot you on site. This adds a bit of fun to the game, but not much. Now, onto the music in the game. It’s really, really awesome. Classic music, such as Let It Snow plays in the first half of the game, during the Winter. You’ll be driving around, listening to one of the three radio stations available, and a track will start playing and you’ll think “Ah, I know that one!” I think that about does it for Gameplay vs. Content.

Verdict:
All in all, Mafia II is a decent enough game. It has its flaws, don’t get me wrong, but it isn’t as bad as some reviewers claim it is. I won’t name names. If you’re a fan of the shoot ’em up genre, you’ll probably enjoy this game. Whereas if you’re a casual player, this really isn’t for you. I’d say rent this game, unless you’re a die-hard Mafia fan.

Pros:
It’s a decent Mafia game, with some fun to be had
Excellent selection of music, ranging from rock, to blues
Robbing shops is as fun as hell.

Cons:
Storyline is a bit boring
Absolutely no character development
Gun system feels clunky.

Final Verdict:
RENT.

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About Tom Williams (@iPwnCake)
Hello there! I'm Tom. I love gaming and Sonic plus I'm a furry! ^^ I'm a massive gamer, so expect full game and DLC reviews from me, as well as the odd XBLA game review. I own an Xbox 360, PS3 and a Wii so feel free to add me on Xbox Live or PSN (don't play my Wii much). I will most likely be reviewing older seventh gen games, say from 2008 or 2009 and so on. Thanks, and I hope ya enjoy my work! XBL GT: Pro ToM 10 PSN ID: thecandy117 Twitter: iPwnCake

2 Responses to Review: Mafia II

  1. td90uk says:

    Good review, I’ll say that for a start.

    Seems like a 1930’s/1940’s era GTA to me.

  2. Tom Williams says:

    @td90uk It is, just not as good as GTA. Still worth a rent. Easy gamerscore too.

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