by Daniel Boylan
Mafia III – Family Isn’t Who You’re Born With, It’s Who You’d Die For
Warning: This article is about a game rated “18” by Pan European Game Information (PEGI). The game contains extreme violence and strong language and is not recommended for anyone under this age.
The open world “crime simulator” genre as it’s come to be known, has long been dominated by the Grand Theft Auto (GTA) series. Other games in the category such as Saints Row and Mafia simply haven’t gotten the same level of attention as their big named rival. While it may not have reached the sales numbers that GTA V hit, 2K Games’ 2010 hit Mafia II proved that it wasn’t a one horse race. With great gameplay and a gripping storyline set in the fictional city of Empire Bay, this was a franchise to be reckoned with.
Good things come to those who wait…
Well now it’s been six long years since the release of the fantastic Mafia II and it looks as though new developers Hangar 13 have been hard at work creating a game that’s even more action packed and exciting than its predecessor. Rather than 1940s-1950s era Empire Bay, Mafia III takes place in 1968, seventeen years after the finale of Mafia II in the also fictional city of New Bordeaux. This city is based on New Orleans and promises more freedom to explore this time around, something that the player wasn’t given as much control over in Mafia II.
Story and Characters
As can be expected from a game about gangsters, Mafia III’s plot is a tale filled with violence, betrayal and revenge. We’ll be treated to even more suspense and thrills than ever, with a wide variety of characters to get familiar with. Let’s take a look at some of the wise guys we’ll meet on our journey.
The Marcano Family – The leaders of Italian Mafia in New Bordeaux, the Marcanos rule the city through fear and betrayal. This time they’ve turned on a man who could be their undoing…
Lincoln Clay – Every story needs a good hero (or anti-hero as the case may be) and in this game we’ll be playing as Lincoln Clay. Orphaned as a child and raised on the streets, Lincoln turns to crime and falls in with the black mob. After returning from the Vietnam War, Lincoln and his adoptive family are betrayed by the Marcano crime family. Lincoln barely survives and must now build a new family to avenge his old one.
Vito Scaletta – Returning fans will recognise this familiar face, with Mafia II’s protagonist Vito becoming part of Lincoln’s efforts to take down the Marcanos. Vito has loyally served the Mafia for many years, despite their poor treatment of him. What has finally pushed him over the edge…?
Father James – After saving Lincoln’s life following the attack by the Marcano family, Father James looks after him during his recovery. He serves as a spiritual advisor and mentor to him throughout the course of the game.
John Donovan – A close friend from his time in the war, CIA operative Donovan assists Lincoln by providing intelligence and advanced government technology to take down the Marcanos.
Cassandra – Nicknamed “The Voodoo Queen”, the leader of the Haitian Syndicate will stop at nothing to take down the Italian mob in New Bordeaux. Forming an alliance of necessity with Lincoln Clay and his associates is a means to that end.
Thomas Burke – An Irishman with a grudge, the head of the Irish mob in New Bordeaux joins forces with Lincoln and co. to get back at the Italians. He doesn’t care if he ends up running the city, or burning it to the ground!
There are a variety of play styles in Mafia III ensuring the action is kept fresh. One minute you’ll be hurtling through the streets of New Bordeaux in a high speed car chase, and battling your enemies in brutal fist fights the next. The missions in the game will usually give you the choice to go in guns blazing, take the stealthy approach, or even call for backup. Personally, I’m a sucker for the guns blazing approach every time! All the action and set pieces have been taken up a couple of notches from last time so we can expect Hollywood quality production values in all of these shenanigans.
Sounds of the City
Music is an important part of the experience in any video game and, just as much as the visuals, it can really help transport you into the world of the game. As anyone who has played Mafia II can confirm, 2K games perfectly captured the feeling of being in the 1940s and 1950s, with popular music from the time playing through the in-game car radio. Things have been taken to the next level in Mafia III with more than 100 instantly recognisable classics to enjoy as you take to the streets to whack your rival mobsters. 1968 was a great time for music so you’ll be listening to the likes of Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley and Creedence Clearwater Rival to name but a few.
After Sales Service
With the level of content on offer in Mafia III you’ll be playing it for a long time, but it doesn’t stop at what’s on the disc. There will be three major expansions coming to the game after launch which will offer an expanded look at Lincoln Clay’s time in New Bordeaux. They can be purchased individually, or all together with a Season Pass (available through Xbox
credit). Aside from that, there will also be recurring content such as new weapons, races and outfits, made available to everyone for free, that’s right, FREE! You won’t even owe a favour to any Dons.
Already a Made Man
As if you needed any more convincing that this game is worth getting, it’s already won awards! At this year’s E3 show in Los Angeles Mafia III was the winner of more than 60 accolades, so you can rest assured this is going to be an experience to remember.
Mafia III is available on PS4, Xbox One and PC (Steam download store) from 7th October 2016