I had been eagerly anticipating the release of the game Mafia II, and the day it finally came out was almost like Christmas had come early. I sat out on the porch, just waiting for the friendly neighborhood UPS man to come pulling up in his giant brown truck. Then, when he pulled up, I ran out to meet him, and grabbed the package out of his hand and practically started ripping into it right there.
No, I am not a fan of the Mafia game franchise. In fact, the original Mafia game I completely despised. The sequel though? It called out to me, and despite my dislike for the original, I had to get it.
So, enough about waiting on the game right? I am going to skip past the bit where I run in, stick the game into my console and all that. I am going to get right to the meat of this post. The Review of the game.
When I began playing Mafia II, I found the controls fairly confusing, however by the time I finished the tutorial level I was quite intimate with the controls. In fact, it felt to me like I had mastered it. In this regard, the games tutorial did exactly what it’s intended to do. In fact, it excels at tutoring you on the games basics. Most games give you a quick rundown, and then throw you into some crazy situation and expect you to be an expert and the control system. Not so with Mafia II! In fact, you have plenty of time even after the tutorial to get into the swing of things, and by the time you find yourself in the thick of things, you will be more than capable of handling the situation.
The thing I found most impressive, even more impressive than the tutorial was the graphics! The graphics were astounding! Combine those graphics with the level of detail in the game? What do you have? If you answered a masterpiece, I will accept that! However, what I was going for was a Lifelike experience. The city you play in is like a living, breathing city! The songs match the time period, and realistic physics add to the realism!
On top of all that, the game has plenty of boobage! You can collect vintage girlie magazines hidden throughout the game, and when you find one, you can take a look at the centerfold. Remember, this game is Mature! Obviously it shouldn’t be played by the young uns. It obviously wasn’t intended to be played by them, so you shouldn’t be getting it for your kid.
I won’t lie to you, while I found this game thrilling, gorgeous and an exceptional game, it wasn’t perfect. In fact, it was heavily flawed! You have heard the Pro’s, Now hear the Cons.
One of the things I like about games, especially Xbox 360 games, is the online playability. Games like Grand Theft Auto IV and Red Dead Redemption both provide fun online gaming distractions. So, I assumed that Mafia II would provide a similar online gaming experience. I however was disappointed. Was the online experience equal to the other previously mentioned games? No! Not only was it not equal, it was in fact non-existent! This bothered me, since in this day and age of gaming, online playability is pretty much a given! All game releases pretty much have some for of online playability, even if it’s poorly done.
So, there was that! The Con’s do continue as well.
The game is short. I mean really short! Insanely short. I finished the game in 2 days, and I wasn’t even playing it non-stop. I firmly believe that If I put my usual gaming time into this game, I would have finished it in one day. I am sorry, but that is just not acceptable! Maybe back in the day of the PS2 and the original Xbox, but now a days? That isn’t going to fly! As gamers we expect longer, enjoyable games. We realise games were shorter in the past. However, games have grown longer this generation, and it’s become expected! So, when a game like Mafia II provides a game this short, it’s a disappointment!
Lastly, the game has been advertising upcoming DLC even before the game was released. Hell, on the PS3, the game had DLC out and available on the day of release. This pisses me off! Why? Because, the game was insanely short, I feel that in terms of game content, I was ripped off! The lack of content wasn’t due to the fact that they simply had run out of ideas and story to take the game. It seems to me, that they were making the DLC while they were making the game. If that’s the case, then they clearly had a direction they could have taken the game. Instead, they decide to make the game tiny, and sell fans of the game more content. Milk their fans out of as much money as possible to fill their pockets.
So what’s the bottom line on Mafia II? Rent it. Sure, the games great! It’s a blast to play, but with their being no online play, the replayability pretty much doesn’t exist. To top it off, it’s so short you will probably finish it in your rental period. So, rent it, and if you did like it as much as I did, wait a few months and buy it used, or wait for it to hit the bargain bin.