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How Mafia 3 reinvents the mob mentalityMafia 3 is something of a departure for the series. With a new city, a new protagonist, and a new set of sensitive social issues to tackle, how well will Mafia 3 handle this shift in tone?
Peter Band, 2002 Mafia the city of lost heaven comes out. 2010, Mafia 2 comes out and then Empire Bay put us out of our misery. It's 2015, Mafia 3 has been announced, where is it set. New Orleans. Okay, that's a real place. It is, 2K and Hanger 13 the developer are referring to it as the reimagined version of New Orleans for now. And the game started linking Clay, a black man who was raised as an orphan and he spent his entire life trying to find a family. He did this in the church, he did this by going to the Army in the Vietnam War, and that's really relevant to the time period, which is 19 1968, and that was a pretty big era for America, right? Murder of Martin Luther King, murder of Robert F. Kennedy. And being set in New Orleans you have a lot of mix of this sort of racial tension and political tension that's going on with that. That's an interesting character, cuz Mafia is in the title. We've been used to playing your sort of normal Italian-American mafioso dudes. This gentleman sounds like he's not maybe in the same And scalpers those guys. Maybe not the same scalps but you know he goes down to New Orleans after the war he gets some of the black mob who outsized the Italian mob. The Italian mob betrays him and so he is left to sort of pick up the pieces and then take down the Italian mob to basically revenge his family more or less. and part of his crew which includes Cassandra, Burke and then Dino From the second. Mafia 2. Yeah. Which was interesting because Mafia 1 and 2 it wasn't like a progression form the first one but there was a little bit of a crossover so they're kind of doing it again having that character in there. So with these other three characters. Berk the Irishman. How can they help your protagonist in this game. Or they just like tagging along with you. Do you send them on missions. So you never actually got a chance to play in them. Okay. But what you can do is, based on the mission I saw, you go to a front for the Italian mob. A storefront they're using, and it's sort of like in the basement is where all their secret mob activity goes on. And essentially as Lincoln, you go in there, and you can go many different ways. You can go underground, you can go the back entrance, the front entrance. Anyway, you get down there, you sort of go through this gun fight, right? Lots of cover shooting. That's pretty much The core of the action but then once you take over the place you can assign any lieutenant to then run that area. Okay. So essentially what you're doing is taking over parts of New Orleans from the mob and then giving them to your crew as you're sort of building up your presence in the city. Interesting, kind of a bit like Assassin's Creed Brotherhood or something. I wonder at later stages in the game then will you have difficulty stretching your resources around that world. What about that open world? One of the things that might be. I criticized, I remember, in Kevin's review back in 2010, was that it wasn't a game that really adopted the open-world aspect; it was really just kind of a little bit of a playpen and then the missions kind of happened in there. Did you get any idea of how Mafia 3 felt in that respect? We really only saw two areas. We saw the bayou, the swamp, and then we saw sort of the French right and speaking to the executive producer in the game [UNKNOWN] it sounds like there's going to be a lot of different areas to explore but I didn't really get a great sense of how they're connected and how that's going to play out. But you know, New Orleans itself was turning interesting, it has a lot of things that you'd expect from the time, you know, lots of jazz clubs and things like that And there's a lot of things that are you know touch on sensitive subjects like race issues. Cops, you know white cops accosting black mean on the street. You see lots of like peace signs like wage peace instead of like wage war. Yeah There's a lot of anti-war sentiment going on. And do you think they're actually diving into that? Because it's sort of a topic that you either- Yeah. Sort of stay away from or sort of do it due diligence. Yeah, you can't just bring it up and use it as a set dress thing. And this is the question I asked them. They assured me that the writer in the game has a background of handling very sensitive issues. And I told them are you ready to be scrutinized for whether you handle this incorrectly or not. And he said we are doing our best to make sure we are doing this right. And, you know, time will obviously tell but I can't imagine given everything that has happened over the past few years in games they are going to do this without making sure that they are actually handling the topic with respect. For sure. One of the most fantastic parts of this series is that they always did a really good job of painting these ten, these areas Everything from the radio stations to, like the cars you would drive. And I love how in previous Mafia games, car driving was so much different to modern games like Grand Theft Auto because the cars were kind of crappy. Is driving cars and car chases gonna be a big part of Mafia 3 as well? Yeah, car chases are back. But the thing that's different that they highlighted during the presentation is that Everything is based on physics now right. One of the things you can do is target individual tires on cars. And it leads to a lot of explosions. Pretty much every single car that I saw that you ran or blew a tire out of it was flip over and explode. So that was a little over the top if I'm honest. But driving is a big part of it. And their new engine seems to be bringing something new to that aspect of th game. The cover shooting aspect of this. Mafia one was a game that was kind of a bunch of different genres together driving game, shooting game, kind of adventure game. Mafia two they definitely refined this, I guess the cover shooter game in 2010 was a bit more of a staple you could sort of play. Yep. How did this feel, did it feel like Mafia 2, did it feel like you were mowing down lots of people? I didn't get a chance to actually play it but the action and the gun play, it was pretty much, you're always caught like, leaning out of the corner to shoot somebody. And I have to wonder if that's actually what it's gonna be like all the time or if that is sort of the way that it's best to play the game. Cuz to me it seemed to be sort of a one note pony when it came to the action. Gotcha. Everything they were doing was based on cover. we'll have to see, we only saw a couple minutes of the game and when you go these events for the first time they're often showing you something that is perhaps the most bombastic aspect of the game oh sure you know so maybe it's a game that has its downtime moments, the older games in the series is. What were your sort of final impressions of it, what did you feel made this game come in a way, were you excited [UNKNOWN] the narrative the time, the era, the character they're using or Does it feel like another third-person action game? I'd say the themes, and the settings, and the aura are all very intriguing. I think, you know, based on the music and everything you see around the city and the topics that are being addressed, I'm very interested in how they're going to handle that story and what they're actually going to say about Lincoln because you know he's searching for a family but When I asked is he actually going to find that family. They were like well we really don't want to talk about how the game ends. And that makes a lot sense. But it really makes you want to know is this a character who will be able to redeem himself and find the thing he's always been searching for. Or will this be the thing he searches for the rest of his life. All right I guess we're going have to wait until 2016 to see more about that bad boy. But for more on all the games here at GameCom in Cologne Beautiful Cologne. And stay tune to gamespot.com. [BLANK_AUDIO]