Revenge is always a wonderfully simple basis for a game. And soon we’ll have another to the mix as Mafia 3 releases tomorrow with vengeance as the premise. One that so many great games have used. God of War, Max Payne, Dishonored (and the upcoming Dishonored 2 potentially) and many more amazing titles have all used it to create some top gaming experiences.

This is just one thing that has me thinking Mafia 3 could be a Game of the Year (GOTY) contender if all the parts of this game really work together well.

Here are some of the parts of the game that really stand out to me as what could make this something special. But, with reviews not likely to be completed until days after release, due to no advanced copies going out, I look at a few concerns too.

If you’re excited for the game let me know what you think in the Disqus or Facebook comments below too.

Lincoln Clay Is Someone I Want To Play As

You do sometimes get open world games where you wonder what the developers were thinking with the lead character (Watchdogs anyone?). If you are going to get invested in an open world game (more on that next) that may well keep you going for 30 hours or more if you want to do everything. The guy or girl you play has to be interesting, right?

The king of these games, GTA, regardless of your favourite game or lead characters, no-one can say that any of them were uninteresting or downright dull. Especially not the 3 in GTA V which was just the work of genius.

In Mafia 3 I can really see myself enjoying the lead character. The fact he’s from the Vietnam War, not to mention that really beastly looking scar on his head. All give him a bit of intrigue to find out more about this man. His motivations too, “Family isn’t who you’re born with, it’s who you die for” just strikes me as someone I want to see more of and find out as much as I can.

Let’s not forget the setting here too, in relation to his character. Lincoln is a mixed race, black male in 1968 so it’s not exactly a race tolerant time. His story includes being an orphan too, so I don’t expect this guy to be nice. He’s damaged and will be an anti-hero at best.

Just perfect for a game like this.

The plot around that, as mentioned before, based on revenge is going to be something brutal too. As someone who’s been to Vietnam he’s going to be used to seeing and doing some awful things. I expect the plot to be one of the darkest we’ve seen in a Mafia game. The latest gameplay (below) certainly has hinted this could be the case.

Choices with Meaning and Impact

The game has so far promised to deliver a high number of player choices. As a gamer in most games for the story, I like this if it’s done right and, most importantly: meaningfully.

Sure, picking my clothes is nice or the detail on my car etc. It’s a soft choice but has little consequence. I’m wanting a game where I can kill someone or let them live and deal with what happens because of it.

Hopefully this is what Mafia 3 delivers as it places a choice high on its lost of features.

One thing that’s been revealed is how you have lieutenants which you have meetings with. “Sit Downs” as they are referred too. Choices here will affect the relationships of the people working for you. Your actions may leave you with different people left at the table later in the game. Apparently, it may be possible to end with an empty table.

I guess it’s best not to call anyone a “funny guy… “

I’m most intrigued by this element of the game and, mix this with a great main character, plot and supporting NPCs. You can see the quality building on this title.

A 1968 New Bordeaux to Play In

While there are some outstanding open world environments out there, there are only a few that are really memorable. Personally, my favourites tend to be ones set in an iconic time period, one of which is LA Noir. A really great game set in a beautiful city.

New Bordeaux looks just as beautiful. And being on the new consoles it really could be one of the most stunning cities we’ve seen created in an open world gaming. If they get it right of course.

But there has to be things to do as well and here we have the turf feature as you web of organised crime expands. It seems that the entire city can change based on who you give power to. And that then impacts on the previously discussed relationships with your lieutenants.

One of the most impressive systems I have seen in gaming in recent years was the nemesis system that was created in Shadow of Mordor. A game where the enemy that killed you became more powerful as a result and if they continued to vanquish you they would get stronger, and stronger.

Maybe there is a similar power system in play here that balances out the world and who you give the power to. Vito, the lead in Mafia 2 is back for this one and maybe if you favour him and his power goes up it reduces the power of others. Continue to favour him and it may increases their hostility. Meaning you are creating your own power struggle and mob politics.

It all sounds great. But the missions around that need to be something I want to keep doing.

Assassin’s Creed Syndicate made fighting for turf interesting throughout the game and while on the repetitive side – although what game isn’t repetitive in some way? – had enough diversity to keep it fun. I really hope it doesn’t being The Division and it’s overly samey missions that just get plain dull.

Can Deck 13 Deliver The Full Package?

There are a few worries for me here, and the first one is that we genuinely won’t know from reviewers what the game is like overall. Reported a while back, 2K are not letting the game out early even to the big boys. Presumably to avoid spoilers getting out there on the plot.

It’s a concern however that there will be little on day one other than some first-hand impressions at best.

Mafia 3 ReleasesMy other concern is pulling together the elements of the game correctly. Much of a single player game in balance and getting the moments of story right in line with gameplay and undertaking missions. It’s much harder to deliver this in an open world setting and takes some serious play testing.

But saying that, there is more than enough ingredients to make it one of the best of the year. Ingredients are subjective though since the same ones for making a cake in Mary Berry’s hands are probably going to make a better cake than I’m going to make with the same ones…

Let’s hope Hanger 13 are good game bakers!

Are you looking forward to Mafia 3? Let me know what you expect from this game in the comments below. Don’t got get to Tweet us too.

I’m be releasing early Mafia impressions over the weekend. Until then gamers enjoy a few additional details on Mafia 3 below.

Game On

Mafia 3 Details

It’s 1968 and the rules have changed.

After years of combat in Vietnam, Lincoln Clay knows this truth: family isn’t who you’re born with, it’s who you die for. Now back home in New Bordeaux, Lincoln is set on escaping a criminal past. But when his surrogate family, the black mob, is betrayed and wiped out by the Italian Mafia, Lincoln builds a new family on the ashes of the old and blazes a path of military-grade revenge through those responsible. Intense gun fights, visceral hand-to-hand combat, white knuckle driving and street smarts will all be needed. But with the right crew, tough decisions and some dirty hands, it’s possible to make it to the top of the city’s underworld.

New Bordeaux – A Reimagined 1968 New Orleans

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 the era.

An Unintended and Lethal Anti-Hero

Be Lincoln Clay, an orphan and Vietnam veteran hell bent on revenge against the Italian Mafia for the brutal slaughter of the black mob, the closest thing to family he’s ever had.

Revenge Your Way

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 Italian Mafia.

A New Family on the Ashes of the Old

Build a new criminal empire in your own unique way by deciding which of your lieutenants you reward and which you betray…

Key Mafia 3 Trailers

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