For decades, organized crime dramas have been a staple in the film and TV industry, ranging from critically acclaimed classics such as Reservoir Dogs, Goodfellas, The Godfather, and Scarface to modern hits such as The Sopranos, The Irishman and Gentleman.
It’s no surprise that this genre has transferred over to the video game industry as well, with many games based off of said films along with original stories.
Mafia, which was released in 2002 for the PC and later in 2004 for the Playstation 2 and Xbox and was developed by Illusion Softworks, is an example of a story driven crime drama that has become a cult classic over time, with two sequels being released over the years as well.
The first game in the series would once again receive recognition almost 18 years later with Mafia: Definitive Edition, a complete remake of the original and published by 2K Games and developed by Hangar 13, who previously developed Mafia III.
The game released on September 25 this year for the PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
The story of the game is told from the perspective of Tommy Angelo, former cab driver turned gangster, who confesses his time of being in the Saleri Crime Family during the Great Depression to a police detective named Norman.
During the early 1930’s, Tommy was a taxi driver in Lost Heaven, a fictional city in Illinois.
One night while Tommy was checking his cab after work, two gangsters of the Saleri Family, Paulie and Sam, force Tommy to help drive them away from rival gang members going after them.
After successfully escaping the gangsters, the group retreated to Saleri’s Bar, which was the hideout for the family.
Don Saleri, whose business practice for the family is selling alcohol illegally during prohibition, rewards Tommy for helping his men and is willing to help Tommy whenever the latter needs it.
One day during Tommy’s shift, he was attacked by two gangsters of the Mob Family who were after them the previous night, known as the Morello Family.
After escaping the attack and getting back at the attackers with the help and protection of the Saleri Family, Tommy was welcomed into the family and found solace in his newfound life of crime.
Over the years as Tommy supported the family and did jobs, he started to see the darker side of the business and questioned whether his actions were in the right and wondered when it would eventually lead to his breaking point.
The story of Mafia is one of suspense and drama in showcasing the darker side of organized crime, with tales of betrayal, loyalty and actions that will leave players one the edge of their seat.
When it comes to gameplay, unlike open world crime games such as Grand Theft Auto, Mafia is a linear story with a different arc in each chapter.
The player has access to the games many weapons and vehicles reminiscent of the time the story takes place in, giving the player the feel of a 1930’s mobster.
Many of the game’s vehicles can be driven and unlocked for the player to choose during each mission, with some unique vehicles being unlocked at certain points of the game.
The Definitive Edition of the game is also the first Mafia game in the series to introduce motorcycles.
The combat of the Definitive Edition is also an improvement of the original, as the mechanics are the same as that of Mafia III’s which gives the game a more familiar feel for newcomers of the series; however despite these improvements the combat is rather dated for a game of the current generation.
Mafia is the game for those looking for a groundbreaking story reminiscent of that of classic mobster films, with surprising twists, likeable characters and realizations of the dangers of the mobster business reminiscent of that of Capone’s era.
In addition, due to being a remake, the game not only has graphical and gameplay improvements from the original, but events from the story have also been altered yet still honors the original games story, giving it a unique experience even for those who have played the original.
Mafia: Definitive Edition is now available as a standalone game for PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, and is also available in the Mafia Trilogy bundle which includes Definitive Editions of Mafia II and Mafia III as well, with all of it’s downloadable content included.