Everything you need to know about Mafia 3
The successor to the acclaimed Mafia 2 is finally going to be released this year, and it looks like it's going to be an even better game than its predecessor. Mafia 3 is being developed by Hangar 13 and published by 2K Games, for XBox One, PlayStation 4, PC and Mac.
Release date, pricing and pre-order
With no official release date yet available, the only thing we know is to expect a 2016 release. However, considering 2K Gaming's release pattern, a fall release is very likely.
When it gets to pricing though, things get slightly complicated. 2K is offering the physical pre-order for Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC at $59.99. Amazon.com also offers the game at the same price.
However, the 2K European store offers the Xbox One and PS4 versions at €69.99, and the PC version at €49,99, which is quite a bit cheaper. Amazon UK also offers the console version at £43.99, and the PC version at £28.00 - with Prime delivery. Other digital stores have similar offers for the physical pre-order. (Don't forget certain retailers have extra shipping costs)
As for digital pre-orders, Steam has a page for Mafia 3, which should mean they would also offer a pre-order or at the very least a digital purchase when the release date is available.
The background story
Mafia 3 continues in the footsteps of its predecessor, as a third-person action open world game. The game is based on New Orleans in 1968, and follows Lincoln Clay, a Vietnam war veteran who is looking to take revenge on the Italian Mob. As an orphan, Clay never knew a family until he joined the Armed Forces. Following the war, he rejoins the "Black Mob", but after their brutal slaughter by the Italian Mob, he forms his own organization with only one goal in mind; the destruction of the Italian Mafia in New Orleans
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An amazing aspect for veteran Mafia fans, is the return of Vito Scaletta - Mafia 2's protagonist - as one of Clay's lieutenants. Likely upset about the fate of his friend Joe, he will certainly play a great part in the game, and add quite a bit of immersion between the Mafia 2 and 3.
image courtesy of SliderV2
Something Hangar 13 have taken pride in, is their new realistic combat system. According to the creative director, Haden Blackman, they put extra thought on ensuring Clay looks, walks and talks like a soldier. This includes anything from his posture and shooting stances, to the fact that he can shoot with both hands or has exceptional hand-to-hand combat skills.
A feature that seems to have gotten a great deal of love, is the cover function; it looks like a big improvement from the combat style of Mafia 2, adding different avenues of approach to each firefight. You also get the ability to fire out of cover without exposing yourself, which is a welcome addition.
Body shots are also fully effective in this game; instead of simply spraying your targets with bullets, you could cripple them by shooting their legs, and go in for an execution style takedown.
Mafia 3 also offers some amazing looking takedowns and kill combos, which you unlock as you progress within the game. These range from repeatedly stabbing a mobster out of nowhere, to Assassin Creed style stealth kills from cover or behind objects. Or if you're more of a brute force badass, you can just hammer someone to death with your shotgun.
Finally, driving combat (that is apparently an actual thing) is very much evident in Mafia 3; you can shoot in every direction whilst driving (even behind you - I know, amazing!!), destroy cars by using the PIT maneuver, and even jump out of your car right before it smashes into other cars or even people!
While on the topic of driving, the game allows for some serious driving, whilst providing cool features like ramps to jump off of, Police chases and even some roadblocks, giving it a real Need for Speed vibe at times.
Truly an open world game
There are other interesting features, like eavesdropping on dynamic conversations between criminals, interrogating targets by stealing their car and 'driving like a madman', and being able to find secret hideouts and mob bases by gathering this information, all within the open world environment and at your choosing.
It also has some resemblances to Godfather 2, in the sense that you can destroy mob hideouts, steal things to fund your organization, or simply take over rackets and add to your criminal empire's reach.
While the exact PC visual specifications are available yet, the game still looks very crisp, and certainly fits the open world feel the developers are going for.
Immerse yourself in a vast, diverse and seedy open world ruled by the mob and corrupt officials and richly detailed with the sights, sounds and emotionally charged social atmosphere of one of the most turbulent years in American history.
This game is all about choice
One of the most interesting changes to the franchise is the level of choice you will get with each mission. Rather than simply spraying hordes of enemies with your arsenal of weapons, you now also have the option for stealthier methods.
Choose your own personal play-style, from brute force and blazing guns to stalk-and-kill tactics as you use Lincoln’s military training and gathered intel to tear down the Mafia.
These changes give you the choice to lurk in the shadows and await your prey;
Or take a more 'direct' approach (basically shooting everyone in the face) :
Clay's lieutenants also seem to play an important role in the story, with each likely supporting a different form of gameplay and playstyle. Currently, you can assign them the rackets and hideouts you take over, with each decision influencing your gameplay and their relationship with you in a different way.
Rebuild a new criminal empire in your own unique way by deciding which of your lieutenants you reward, and which you betray…
Added to this, is the fact that the game offers multiple endings. While it isn't exactly clear how different these may actually be, it certainly adds to the level of choice the game provides, while offering a good reason for multiple play-throughs.
As for guns, you'll be glad to hear that you can still pick guns up from dead enemies, which certainly adds an interesting edge to your fighting style. There are also some cool looking grenades and explosives in the game, although the extent of their availability isn't very clear. Along those lines, you can use grenade launchers to explode cars!
Revenge is a dish best served cold hard
With Clay's vendetta playing an integral role in the story of Mafia 3, it is no surprise that the game's teaser is based on him brutally murdering someone.
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Other bonuses and not-so-bonuses
A pretty big bonus is the game's full language support for English, French, Italian, German and Spanish, as well as limited support for a variety of other languages including Russian, Chinese, Korean and Polish.
Not just another politically correct game
A cool fact some of you might know, is the fact that Mafia 2 was the record-holder for the highest use of profanity in a video game, even being ranked as such on the Guinness Book of World Records. While it is unclear if Mafia 3 attempted to regain that title, they do certainly feature quite a bit of swearing.
While on the topic, since Clay is actually mixed race, you also get some interesting racial interactions with different individuals, especially cops. It's always good to see developers not shying away from reality in a video game.
Sadly, the game doesn't offer any form of multiplayer - not even a co-op mode. Now, while this was likely not a surprise for most, it is still somewhat disappointing to see, especially considering the game's hefty selling price. While on that topic, the game will likely follow in the footsteps of Mafia 2, and provide some cool DLCs (likely for free) to add to your experience.
So what do you think? Are you excited about the game? Are you willing to buy it as soon as it comes out, or wait to make sure its a great game before forking over the hefty asking price? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.