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After the 2002 release of the original iteration, Mafia, fans have needed to wait eight years to see a sequel in Mafia II on the PC, Xbox 360 and PS3. Was it worth the wait?
In Mafia II, players take on the role of Vito Scaletta, befriending a local criminal who helps him get out of WWII military duty due to his Mafia connections. Unfortunately, Vito isn't met with much comfort once he finds out his late father has left him with an incredible debt to pay off; now it looks like Joe's connections are the only way out.
Those who remember the prequel remember the PC version being superior with the PlayStation 2 version being considerably worse, and the same holds true for the 2010 sequel; once again, the PC and Xbox 360 versions stay superior while the PlayStation 3 version gets left in the dust.
The primary thing that really sets it apart—in a negative way—is the absence of pooling blood, realistic cloth and 3D grass; while one or two of these would not be bad, so many missing features just shows a significant lack of care and/or development skill for the PlayStation version yet again. 2K attempted to make up the difference by adding in more content, but it seemed like a bare amount of extra missions to really compensate PlayStation gamers. At the end of the day, the PS3 version should simply be passed on.
The graphics were done very well on the PC, though players would need a graphics card that supports PhysX to get the true experience. The sound, while also decent, did not quite meet the same delivery as the graphics.
As for the core game itself, Mafia II had a solid story, but there were still deep flaws scattered throughout the world, some of which may have gone unnoticed had 2K not boasted about historical accuracy. For example, players can find various Playboy magazines throughout the world, but the magazine was founded in 1953: 3 to 13 years after the events of Mafia II.
The other major flaw is that, as exciting and adrenaline-inducing Vito's hardship can be, it's all just an experience that gamers get to watch; all the best action occurs during cutscenes and the general storyline, leaving much to be wanted for all the times in between. That isn't to say that Mafia II is bad; it just might have made a better movie.