What an experience. What a Journey. What a fantastic, fascinating game.
After 8 years, Mafia II finally arrived to the hands of what once was an innocent 13 year old boy that saw the birth of classy, movie-like gaming. Today, 21, I feel like a thirteen-year old again.
This so anticipated sequel got me once again trapped in front of the screen, unable to look away even for the most necessary tasks. It captivated and toyed with my imaginations in ways only its predecessor had done in the past. It turned out to be just, and even more than what I had ever expected.
Once again, I felt like part of this fictitious world, crafted with such delicacy and detail that I feel almost too guilty about not exploring it fully, but I blame the story-writing, the fantastic, captivating story-writing.
I followed the life of Vito Scaletta like it was my own, *****ing and moaning when I smelled something was going wrong and getting excited every time something good came his way.
Just like in the first game, I was astonished from beginning to end by seeing one of the most compelling gaming experiences I've had on the PC, unfolding before my eyes. Everything, from the gun shops to the prison was just unbelievable, and I gotta say I wasn't ready, but in the good way.
This game shone in every aspect it meant to, from the shooting to the fighting, to the stealth, to the driving and the story telling. It's a technical wonder that is most likely not to be appreciated for it's limit in nature, but that is there, regardless of whether people see it or not.
I want to thank the people who made this game possible, even if they never read this, because things like this must be noticed and encouraged.
You have achieved a game that is not only entertaining, but that also carries with it a very strong and convincing message, something I hadn't really felt since Bioshock. You have once again managed to make one of the most compelling sandbox-like experiences without making it sandbox, in fact, making it heavily story-driven.
You have made a game that, to me, tops its predecessor today in 2010, but also doesn't, simply because Mafia I will always be the number one in my memory and in my heart.
I don't want to make this a lengthy review that focuses on graphics, gameplay, etc, because I think that from what I've stated, it all turned out to be superb to me. I simply wanted to thank everyone involved in this game for making me once again feel like an excited 13-year old boy that, for a good couple of hours, cared for nothing except for what was in front of him in the screen.
Oh, and the title was supposed to be "Holy sh*t", but that was too generic, and this game deserved more class.