Mafia II Hands-on

<i>Playboys</i>, shoot-outs, and car chases are all in a day's work for Vito Scaletta in the latest Mafia II demo.

We recently had a chance to play a new demo of Mafia II--an open-world action game set against the backdrop of organized crime families vying for power in the 1950s. At the beginning of the demo, we saw Vito Scaletta--the game's lead character--inside of his home just as he receives a phone call to meet up with some of his compatriots to find and eventually kill a man from a rival crime family. But before we went outdoors, we spent a few minutes looking around Vito's house when we happened upon a vintage issue of Playboy magazine. Upon picking the magazine up, it automatically opened to an actual picture from that issue--so just as a word of caution, performing this action in a public place with onlookers isn't the best of ideas.

With that little bit of not-safe-for-work tomfoolery out of the way, we made our way outdoors and headed toward the garage next to Vito's house. Once inside, it seems you can select from a few different types of cars that are faithful to the era. We selected our vehicle and headed out onto the streets, and while the temptation to wreak havoc by running over pedestrians or slamming into other cars was great, we stuck to the designated route on the map. Thus, we made our way to the meeting point--a distillery located a bit closer to the downtown area. Driving seems responsive, but the vehicle physics still feel accurate to the way the cars of the 1950s handled, so don't expect to drive at full speed and then stop on a dime or make a hairpin turn.

We steadily made our way over to the distillery and were careful not to attract attention from the police officers in the car in front of us. We finally reached our destination and took up a position in the building across the street, waiting for our target to show up. When he finally arrived, all hell broke loose as we manned a machine gun in the window and tried to take him down before he could seek safety in the building. Instead of aiming for individual hoodlums, we aimed right for the engines of the cars, which--after a few bursts of machine gun fire--exploded and took out the goons behind them. But the target still managed to get away, so we were told to give chase, run out of the building, and follow him into the distillery.

Take cover!

After a brief scuffle with an enemy who made his way into our location (who happened to meet a particularly nasty end thanks to a point-blank bullet to the face), we headed into the building where a massive firefight broke out. Thankfully, it was pretty easy to move from cover to cover--in this case, barrels and cement pillars throughout the first room--and take out a few thugs with Vito's pistol. But it's also worth noting that your AI-controlled buddies also seem to do a solid job of taking out enemies when you're in a less than optimal position to take shots. In fact, there are some spots in this building where it's generally a good idea to let your allies move in front of you (when they actually can) because you never know when you might turn that corner and have some enemy's scattershot greet your face and take you down. It's just better to let them take the damage for you.

Pick up new weapons to get the upper hand.

The firefights seemed to get more intense as we reached the upper levels of the building, where we ditched Vito's pistol for a shotgun. After taking out a duo of enemies equipped with their own shotguns, we headed into an elevator and up to the top level of the building where we found our target cowering in a corner. As Vito and his crew moved in to kill him, the rather rotund enemy managed to get one final shot off, injuring Henry Tomasino (a friend of Vito's) by shooting him in the leg. And as luck would have it, the building you're in will also come crashing down thanks to a fire started earlier, so not only do you have to escape the building, but you also have to make sure Henry and the other member of your crew gets out safely.

Naturally, this isn't as easy as it sounds because entrances that were once open are now blocked off by fire. Eventually, you'll make your way outside the building and to an awaiting escape vehicle. Just as you get in the car, the cops show up and give chase as you try to make it back to the safe house. Just as we reached the bridge, we spotted a blockade of police cars and the demo came to an end. Overall, we got a pretty good taste of the different facets of Mafia II's gameplay, but we're eager to see how the rest of the story pans out when Mafia II hits the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC on August 24.

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75 comments
Sticker704
Sticker704

@tinGgy6015 No multiplayer that I know of @sgtskywalker Don't pirate. Don't do it.

sgtskywalker
sgtskywalker

@kcproductions Lol you can play the sequel by downloading it too. The only thing is that you won't be able to play online but that's not an problem. But for the singleplayer, there is no problem, it will be the same ****ing thing than if you buy a copy, except it will be free and you will be able to use your money on more important things. It's a viable option for those who don't have the money to pay games or those who just want to save money. But then again, there will always be people who wants to support the developpers and buys the game because they are loyal or something, so don't think that everyone will start downloading things and the developpers will be out of money to release more games.

studfly
studfly

I am counting the minutes till this game comes out.....Day 1 purchase for me. Have you guys noticed the bad reviews for this so far? It is starting to make me a little nervous. Playstation Official magazine U.K only gave this game a 7.0, and Xbox Official magazine U.K gave this game a 7.0...... Which is not terrible, but those are not very good reviews..... I guess we will wait and see for ourselves

Sushiglutton
Sushiglutton

Mafia 1 is one of my favourite games. Excellent story and awesome, unforgiving, vehicle controls is what I remember best. There were some extremely difficult car-challenges after you beat the game and one tough race in the game, if I recall correctly. Actually I think they released a patch that allowed u to decrease the difficulty of the race because people struggled (may be what Master_cheat is reffering to?). Having played the demo for M2 (PS3) there were some things I really liked: First I think the gunplay works great. I really like how you can move from cover still aiming(or not). The cover system works smoothly and no auto-aiming thank god! Objects breaks nicely. Try shooting some of the windows to see what I mean. The guns feel powerful and authentic. Secondly the vehicles seems to react as stiff as they did in the first game which IMO is awesome. Thirdly I love the atmosphere: cars, music, the diners, clothes etc. A small worry I have is that the main character seems a bit dull. Obv we know very, very little at this point but he seems less interesting than say Niko Bellic.

kcproductions
kcproductions

@sgtskywalker Because you want to play a sequel ..

velsper
velsper

Reading about Mafia 2 made me interested in the first one, funny I never heard about it 'til now.

sgtskywalker
sgtskywalker

@Sticker704 lol buy list XD For me, this is certainly on my torrent download list :) Why pay when you can get it for free

tinGgy6015
tinGgy6015

any news about MP for this game?

Sticker704
Sticker704

This game is certainly on my buy list. It almost looks like a Mafia type movie. @freaknizzle It's called realism. I don't think a real life person could hold a pistol, a shotgun, an SMG, an assault rifle, and 50 grenades along with all the ammo, in his top pocket :-)

Arcine281
Arcine281

sounds like a fun time to me. love how cinematic even the action sequences sound as if you were really there

drkleyd
drkleyd

I almost had a heart attack every time it was delayed... I expect it will be one of the greatest games ever - history, graphics, gameplay... aug 24th... come quickly!

isshiah
isshiah

less than 2 months now...can't wait!

freaknizzle
freaknizzle

wait, so can you only have one gun at a time?

vandaman123
vandaman123

This game will kick ass, is supposed to out shine batman for dedicated physx setup, cant wait to c the skirts blows up on the woman as i mob down the street Physx kicks ass

ediehunter
ediehunter

anybody know how big the city is im sure it wont be GTA 4 liberty city big but will it be about more than half the size or half the size of GTA 4 liberty city?

HHamdan81
HHamdan81

Missed to play some real mafia games with a solid storyline. Mafia 1 was great .. hope Mafia 2 will rockkk .

Chronologo
Chronologo

I never finished the first game, tough I still have my savegame in a backup, but I'll get this one it looks awesome

davonas
davonas

Premak I now catch my sefl what kind of comuter you have

Premak
Premak

Glitch in Mafia 1 ? That stable bugfree juvel never needed any patch. That is rare, unfortunately. I have played the pc version several times, no problems. Try again. The game deserves it. Mafia 2 is one of the few games that I will upgrade the pc for.

Master_cheat001
Master_cheat001

Well I never complete Mafia 1 because of some god damn glitch. Gezz. Hope this game worths its ads.

davonas
davonas

I gonna buy this game to but I'm to young my mom wont let me buy it damn it.

Underworldy69
Underworldy69

@johny300 I cant see how you made a comparison from Mafia 2 to RDR.

evlnix
evlnix

its all good but this game doesnt stand out. gotta see more awesome stuff,otherwise theres nothing new in it.

akkisha
akkisha

Release is 08/24/2010? really?

zany1367
zany1367

Yes. playing Mafia II and then die. fantastic

Litchie
Litchie

This game shall be mine.

gamimgGT
gamimgGT

needs to see more videos and gameplay clips please. I may considering to buy it.

dutchy_bruz
dutchy_bruz

Not too long now. Mafia is back but this time on steroids. From the screenshots the shooting and driving mechanics look really good and also the vehicle variety is great.

KoRniTo
KoRniTo

August 24th, august 24th, august 24th, august 24th, august 24th, august 24th... :D

bumbum1991
bumbum1991

Wow, that was fantastic! So Mafia 2 is coming up next year - 2011?

Jabran_Baloch88
Jabran_Baloch88

This Game Is The best Game.In past MGS4 GTA 4 AND NOW MAFIIIIIIIIAAAAA 2222........!

Jabran_Baloch88
Jabran_Baloch88

I am Buying this game for pc and ps3 really awesome my all time favorite game mafia And Now Time to Play Mafia 2.....!Can't wait..!

polak123456
polak123456

Im buying this for PC the second it comes out

evildog51
evildog51

This is gonna be awsome been waitin ages for this

killing_spree20
killing_spree20

Hells yeah. Cannot wait to get this installed on my PC. I'm going to be missing for a few days.

Moloch121
Moloch121

3D on the PC...I cant wait for more 3D games

DrEvilKoala
DrEvilKoala

Perhaps in the future, eons away from now, we'll get a mobster video game with a main character that's not called Vito. In all seriousness, it's still looking great. The first Mafia game was a truly great game, and I'm confident this one will be too.

keren_man
keren_man

I can't wait it anymore!! I want to play Mafia 2!!

SkidRow18
SkidRow18

yes, it is going to release on my birthday :P

PSX-man
PSX-man

Is there anywhere I can download this demo? The wait is killing me!

wis3boi
wis3boi

Sadly this will bea hit no one will notice. I guess good taste is rare :) Can't wait to get my hands on a nice 40s convertible and a pinstripe suit lol