Review: Mafia III

Sequels of a series are generally quite a tricky thing to make. You need to make sure that they’re enough like the previous games to entice the veterans and appease the fans of the previous games, whilst also innovating and improving if not outright changing certain parts.

I can’t say whether Mafia 3’s design team managed the above or not as I never played any of the previous installments of this game.

What I can say with certainty though is that if the two previous titles in the series are anything like this one, there’s a very good chance I won’t play them.

We’ve seen an increase in the amount of glitchy, unfinished game releases recently and i can’t help but wonder if these game developers are taking us for a ride or just don’t care anymore.

The amount of times that a game has needed to be patched at launch this year has been too frequent to chalk it up to bad luck or a development glitch. Mafia 3 was buggy as all hell from day one. The 1.7gig patch that followed a week later was too little too late to do anything but appease those that decided, even after reading all the early reviews, to get the game.

But, in the spirit of being as impartial as possible and giving the benefit of the doubt to the developers, i’m going to continue this review with as little reference to the above as possible as I understand that glitches can be fixed, problems can be solved and most people that read this review will not have played the game during the initial release period.

So, what did I think of Mafia 3.

Simply put, it wasn’t very good.

It was slow, monotonous and repetitive. It was probably developed so as to be played as one would watch a tv series or movie. I can understand and appreciate that, but when you’re trying to tell a story in this way you need to either have a gorgeous game where watching the characters interact with each other is an experience of its own, or you need a fast paced, action filled experience that pulls the players in by making them want to kick ass and take names.

Mafia 3 didn’t have either of the above.

It wasn’t good looking. It wasn’t action packed, and it wasn’t an experience I found memorable. I’m a huge fan of story driven games, but I think we’ve reached a saturation point where all the game companies are doing right now are copying and pasting a generic core game and changing a couple textures, maybe adding one or two slightly different features, and releasing it under a different name.

It felt like i had played this game before, like it was an old game instead of a newly released A list title.

I guess, if i have to be lenient, it’s not the worst game I’ve ever played. If you haven’t played this genre of game before then you may enjoy it more than I have. But honestly, for all those that have enjoyed this style of game before, I can’t recommend it. It’s just not worth the price tag or the time it takes to get through it.

Apart from the already mentioned lack of originality and slow paced game play, the game just doesn’t draw you in at any point. They obviously tried very hard to get the player to connect with all major characters by including back stories and cut scenes, but a lot of the time those cut scenes and character interactions were more cringeworthy than anything else.

The mixture of half decent voice acting and generic gangster characters is not an eclectic mix that I found endearing and the overall attempt at immersing you in the post war return to society setting wasn’t successful enough to really get you into the game. It felt disjointed from the start.

There aren’t any parting remarks that need to be said that I haven’t already covered. The overall feel of the game was one of “generic shoot em up”. It didn’t stand out. It didn’t amaze. It just went through the motions. The only people i would recommend it to are those that aren’t familiar with this genre as they might experience something they haven’t before. For everyone else though, maybe consider an older, cheaper title as you’ll probably save some money and have the same experience either way.

Mafia III Rating: 5/10

Check out the Mafia III website: Mafia III

Xavier Bezuidenhoudt – Our resident Frenchman; we discovered Xavier in the back streets of Paris selling bootleg Mighty Mouse action figures. His Parisian occupation paired with his checkered past as a mime in the Moulin Rouge gave him the necessary skill required to become an excellent PC games reviewer. We immediately offered him a job. Take away from the fast paced world of action figure bootlegging, Xavier settled in Johannesburg, living on a diet of Merlot, Foie Gras and your tears when he owns you at Starcraft
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Author: xavier

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