As it's just a week until the game will be released, the first magazine exclusive reviews are arriving! From what I've heard, all these reviews are extremely positive about the game! I will give details on the review of the Dutch games magazine Power Unlimited, which I received today. The game got a Gold medal, which means its among the best games out now.
- The game does not have any ways of "fast travelling" like GTA IV does, as such you have to take extremely good care of your cars, as stealing cars is a dangerous and time-consuming task. You'll also have to repair your cars. In exchange, you have the ability to "pimp" your car like we saw in for example GTA San Andreas. The game features several missions where you have to drive to a certain destination without any shooting.
- The game has many references to Mafia movies such as The Godfather, GoodFellas and Pulp Fiction (ever noticed the resemblance of Vito with Micheal Corleone)?
- The game does not feature any "sandbox game activitites", and you'll mainly follow the storyline. There are barely (if any) sidequests (not sure). However, the main quest is quite long and is very deep, so you'll certainly like it.
- The game has a huge amount of detail, not only on the street (billboards, shops, people), but also in your appartment. And with the PHYSX engine, everything can be destroyed. For example, the game features a mission in which you have to destroy an entire restaurant. And believe me, everything will be destroyed, including the building itself!
- The voice acting and animations are smooth and good!
- The game is very linear, so it won't feature much exploration.
- The 50s feeling is great, even better than the 80s feeling in GTA: Great music, great cars, great clothing, great women :).
I quote (translated):
- "Mafia II is a linear game which, even though the setting is in a large city, can hardly be called a sandbox game. Luckily you'll be fascinated by the extremely detailed city, the concinving setting, with a cliché but entertaininng story with fun characters, a fine drive system and good firefights. Mafia II is like The Godfather's game version, unfortunatly enough including the crappy Part III. If the ugly screentear that bothered us in the review version is removed in the retail version, then you have to get this epic game!
Play time: 25-30 hours (excludes collecting all the Playboy magazines).