It is the late 60’s America, and a certain uneasiness hangs in the air after returning from the battlefields of Vietnam.
The city of New Bordeaux, I fictional New Orleans, a solid week away from the famous Mardi Gras festival, is about to get a rough shake-up as Lincoln Clay returns home.
Let us dive in a bit deeper into the Definitive experience of Mafia III.
SWEET HOME NEW-BORDEAUX
When starting this new adventure, as I didn’t get into the game when originally came out, I didn’t get that…Mafia feel I did from the previous entry. However, I was enjoying what it put on offer. A few hits, a few misses, and all that in between.
The playing field of New-Bordeaux is fairly sized with different areas, showing off the variety of scenery, from the city centre, swamp wetlands, country-side, etc. While each area is somewhat lively with activity, (it is still weird seeing a lady NPC walking around the swamplands dressed for the club), making them stand out with character, as it doesn’t feel like the population brings much to the atmosphere.
The actual map may not be as big as we are now so used to, but when you have to drive everywhere, you quickly learn to love what is around you due to an absence of a fast-travel system. Strangely enough, I didn’t mind the constant driving. Seen the city go through the day and night cycle, with some weather effects, I think. I do recall rain, a lot of rain, whether that be a Friday afternoon shower or a storm, couldn’t tell you the difference.
Another blessing, for me anyway, is the addition of old school cars and old school music, these two things helped a great deal when driving around, and the scenery transition from one area to another is a smoother experience than when the beetroot salad mixed unknowingly into my grilled chicken. The larger structures like bridges and office buildings really scale things just right, making it more like a real-world setting you are part of.
Now, the cars are where another good chunk of fun is stashed. The differences between the car types soon have you know what car is needed to get out of whatever you got yourself into, and what cars are just a Wonder Car, making you wonder why you haven’t changed cars yet. However, I still make mistakes and plough nose-first into other cars because “there was a gap”, but personally I blame The Rolling Stones’ Paint it, Black on the radio. Majority if not all of the songs are all classics, and in typical fashion, I either drove like a normal person or just a little bit longer until the song is finished. Others I couldn’t change the channel quick enough.
ON YOUR FEET, SOLDIER!
By now it is obvious Lincoln just came back from Vietnam, barely sets his feet down and already he is knee-deep in butt-fudge, and a show to match.
The first quarter of the game is beautifully scripted with fun and bold actions, but after that, it feels like it barely trickles into the rest of it. The main goal is to take over the Rackets and then hand over the district to one of your 3 Captains. Each presents a set of upgrades and items to pursue, but best advised to spread districts evenly amongst the captains to avoid one them going against you.
The taking over Rackets is a fairly basic structure of taking out or recruiting the boss man, destroying contrabands, straight up killing the top boss man. For me it was mainly going in stealth as much as possible, however, a few times the situation became a shooting range.
Worthy of mention, Mafia III does the slow-motion of shooting and driving enough justice to not feel too latched on. Also makes you feel like a total badass when pulling of 5 headshots. The selection of weapons is varied but mostly function the same. I ended up using a suppressed pistol most of the time and luring rather thick enemies away for silent kills.
Of course, what is taking over Rackets can be taken over by force calling in hit squads to join the fun. Gunfights turn the action into a cover-based shooter as you as tender meat like your enemies. A few times I was treated to Lincoln’s many methods of taking a nap in slow motion, so cover is important!
Mafia III boasts have the best body-hiding technology, just toss it into the river, and one of the many alligators will enjoy the tasty treat.
This being the Definitive Edition, the additional story DLC fits in well with the rest of the game, all with different pacing and storytelling. The base game alone has quite a lot going on, the DLC is like a smaller second helping.
Graphics-wise, I can’t really tell if the game aged well, but general character models look detailed enough with somewhat believable facial animation, cars, on the other hand, have this strange muddy texture to them. Even the scenery sometimes has this shine when the sun is low, but the environments look good and are worth exploring.
The supporting cast stands relatively out from one another, but only a few outshine them. Lincoln, Donavon, a returning face Vito Scaletta, Sal Marcano and mainly because you can hear him on the radio about the French Ward, and a few other, for me stood out the most with their unique character traits.
There are also collectables, and the more adult form of nostalgia, Playboy Magazine, drawings of…ladies, albums and some subscription Donavon took up.
I haven’t finished the game yet, because there is just so much to do, even if you leave the DLC for last. I have put at the least 40 of hours into Mafia III, and I am sure there will be more hours before I see the end. This was all doing something towards a goal other than just screwing around.
I am also going to do a second playthrough just to see what happens when you favour one of the captains too much.
If you are yet to experience Mafia III, the Definitive Edition is the complete package. If you can look past the somewhat repetitive mission structures, the enemies with Microwaved Potato-salad for brains, and the occasional glitch, you got yourself a fine game.