Bombcast: Mafia 2 is a bad game?

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Baillie

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#1  Edited By Baillie

When did this become the standard notion for this game? I loved it, everyone who I have talked to have really enjoyed it too. Fantastic story, great setting, great gameplay, really enjoyed it. Wasn't going in expecting too much and I loved it, am I alone on this? Would you have been disappointed if you received this game as a gift?

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pr1mus

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#2  Edited By pr1mus

It's a perfectly alright game. Not a masterpiece but not hot garbage either.

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dekkadekkadekka

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#3  Edited By dekkadekkadekka

I found it more of a disappointment than a bad game.

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evanbower

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#4  Edited By evanbower

* the opinions expressed by Patrick Klepek during improv shows do not necessarily reflect those of Giant Bomb (© 2012 CBS Interactive Inc. All rights reserved.) or the "standard notion" of the video game media at large.

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Humanity

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#5  Edited By Humanity

@Pr1mus said:

It's a perfectly alright game. Not a masterpiece but not hot garbage either.

I agree. I loved Mafia 1 and while Mafia 2 was a bit disappointing I feel as if everyone slams it for all the wrong reasons. The most common complaint is that it's an open world game with nothing to do. I think thats unfair because in all honesty it's NOT an open world game. Mafia 2 just happens to have an open world map and a few shops, but it's still meant as a linear story driven title. Slamming it as a piece of shit because you couldn't do taxi jobs in between missions is pretty silly - and thats what I hear most people complain about anyway.

For me the major disappointment was the story which started off well and then didn't go anywhere. In the original you rose through the ranks and finally were a made man, respected, the right hand man of the family don. In Mafia 2 you always feel like a cheap lackey that never amounts to anything and that ending.. man that was a bad ending.

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CaLe

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#6  Edited By CaLe

It was forgettable but it wasn't a bad game. Patrick's story was too long and had no payoff. He's no Jeff, that's for sure. When Jeff starts a story you know there's gonna be a payoff. You can feel it in your bones, coming down the turnpike.

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Ben_H

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#7  Edited By Ben_H

It was a great game for what it was. Most who said otherwise didn't know what it was supposed to be (Of course I am talking about the gameplay itself. Not the story. I also found the story lacking compared to the original). The original Mafia wasn't an open world game even though it took place in an entire city. Mafia 2 is the same way. There just happens to be a city. It isn't actually open world. The people complaining about the lack of side quests and stuff like that didn't know what those games actually were.

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Milkman

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#8  Edited By Milkman

I was kind of taken back by this too. Not that Mafia II is a great (or even good, really) but it's definitely not terrible.

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BlackLagoon

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#9  Edited By BlackLagoon

I enjoyed it, the city looked beautiful and the story had solid protagonist and some nice twists. The DLC was garbage though - next to no plot or new areas, just combat missions using existing assets.

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Humanity

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#10  Edited By Humanity

Well it's definitely no Japanese text novel game with math puzzles that you have to beat 20 times to get the best ending thats for sure.

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ShaggE

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#11  Edited By ShaggE

That threw me. I never heard anything bad about Mafia 2 other than the open-world complaints, which is something I didn't think would bother Patrick. I hope he goes into more detail about that some day, because now I'm curious... that's the kind of game I figured he'd revere.

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myniceicelife

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#12  Edited By myniceicelife

I enjoyed the game. Was it great? No, but it was fun enough that I played through the whole thing and had no regrets on playing it.

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MariachiMacabre

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#13  Edited By MariachiMacabre  Online

I really disliked the game. The open world looked good but it felt completely empty and soulless without any side quests.

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Getz

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#14  Edited By Getz

Boilerplate standard TPS with generic mob story and some decent trench-coat tech. It wasn't awful but it's still kind of a shitty gift.

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bacongames

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#15  Edited By bacongames

Personally I thought the game was enjoyable most of the way through as I had fun with the crisp shooting, the cars and cops, and watching the two main characters interact. Everything else is give or take, especially the plot, so I think it's accurate to say "it's alright" covers the bases. Besides a lot of the stuff I just mentioned were straight up not something people liked so it's hard to just recommend but easily suggest trying it.

I was snooping into this last night and from the Metacritic page for the game I gather that it's definitely in the "mixed" review category. Ignoring a lot of the smaller and lesser known sites, these are the scores given to the game:

  • Eurogamer: 40
  • Giant Bomb: 60 (3/5)
  • Edge: 60
  • Destructoid: 65
  • GamePro: 70
  • Joystiq: 70
  • IGN: 70
  • 1UP: 75
  • GameTrailers: 77
  • The Escapist: 80
  • OXM: 80
  • GamesRadar: 80
  • GameSpot: 85
  • Game Informer: 90

This is of course not taking into account who wrote the reviews etc. but in general the reviews run the gamut and all seem to have different faults. It's not hard to enjoy it but it's easy to find things to not like about it either, making it mixed/divisive. Personally I'm okay with that.

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Leviticus128

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#16  Edited By Leviticus128

It was okay, i think the main gripe they all had with the game was that it was an open world game where you only had one mission so it was kind of pointless

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Jimbo

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#17  Edited By Jimbo

It's fine, but some people think that because most open-world games are sandboxes, that all open-world games should be sandboxes. In this case the open-world setting is only there to ground the (good but not great) story and to give it context, which is a perfectly acceptable use of an open-world.

Would it add to the experience if you were encouraged to go on a Kill Frenzy or go bowling between story missions? Not really, because that's not what they're going for here. The game has a serious tone and they commit to it.

Would it detract from the game if they just linked the shooting sections together in a standard / linear Gears arrangement? I think probably it would, but I can see how others would prefer that depending on taste. I do think if they'd done that we wouldn't be talking about the game at all, because it would have been instantly forgettable.

The first Mafia uses its open-world setting in almost exactly the same way, and that game is a masterpiece. It's not a lack of dumb open-world mini-games which prevented Mafia 2 from reaching the same heights.

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CaptainTightPants

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It was a serviceable shooter in my opinion, but I thought the story kind of got worse as you went along.

It really wasn't terrible, and I wouldn't mind getting it as a gift.

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slax

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#19  Edited By slax

As I am currently catching up on all podcasts (just hit E3 2011) there reception of it when it came out was pretty negative. They made a lot of fun of it, especially on the Nolan North talking to himself front, and it seemed like they were pretty down on it. So it isn't to surprising to hear this.

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dabe

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#20  Edited By dabe

When the main character's motivation boils down to his lust or want for "things", then I'm out. The world & city they built was impressive, the story was a comical pastiche of other peoples ideas.

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Yuri69

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#21  Edited By Yuri69

it was a fine game

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glyn

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#22  Edited By glyn

@dekkadekkadekka said:

I found it more of a disappointment than a bad game.

It was an awful game but it absolutely blew my mind

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WinterSnowblind

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#23  Edited By WinterSnowblind

I really enjoyed the story, the mechanics and the style and detail of the world, even if the open-world aspect of it was a little unnecessary.

So yeah, I thought it was a great game. I only paid £5 for it though and never had any interest in the original.

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Ben_H

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#24  Edited By Ben_H
@MariachiMacabre said:
I really disliked the game. The open world looked good but it felt completely empty and soulless without any side quests.
@Leviticus128 said:

It was okay, i think the main gripe they all had with the game was that it was an open world game where you only had one mission so it was kind of pointless

The open world means nothing when it comes to Mafia games other than as a setting to tell the story in. The Mafia games are linear action games that just happen to be set in one giant area rather than a bunch of small areas. Anyone who has played Mafia (the original one) knows this. The city is there just to add to the atmosphere of the main story. The argument that it had no sidequests and that was a detractor simply does not work because there weren't supposed to be sidequests in the first place.
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Phatmac

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#25  Edited By Phatmac

It's alright. It can be called shit too.

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Beb

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#26  Edited By Beb

I never played it, but his comment that it was a shitty gift tracks with what I remember of the 'buzz' around the game when it came out. Basically, that it was a fake open world, with pointless driving between missions, and dumb 'oh look playboy, titties in my gamez!' pandering.

Again, I never played it, so maybe it was great. Just wanted to chime in that maybe Patrick isn't crazy.

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Manhattan_Project

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It was an average, forgettable game.

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Leviticus128

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#28  Edited By Leviticus128

@Ben_H: I dunno man, having to drive for 10-15 minutes sometimes to get to the next mission was a bit lame

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Bourbon_Warrior

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#29  Edited By Bourbon_Warrior

I really loved that game, the changing seasons and years really set it apart.

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Subbeh

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#30  Edited By Subbeh

I thought it was pretty good for the most part, except for the open world. I don't think I've ever seen another open world game with so little to do in it, felt absolutely pointless.

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buft

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#31  Edited By buft

I agree, the game wasn't garbage to be fair but it was a major disappointment and I didnt enjoy the combat or how the story ended.

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Mikey2D

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#32  Edited By Mikey2D

I really enjoyed Mafia 2. I found it to be a better open world game than LA Noire which was a sandbox full of nothing. And some of the conversations as you were driving around were great. Like when you had the drunks in the back of your car and they sing - classic moment.

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Ghostiet

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#33  Edited By Ghostiet

In my opinion, yeah. It was a flaccid game with a lot of cut content, a mediocre story and completely unlikable characters.

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Ramone

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#34  Edited By Ramone

I think that was just Patrick telling a sort of terrible anecdote.

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Wampa1

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#35  Edited By Wampa1

@Jimbo: But the open world was used to make you drive for 30 minutes for a mission that was 20. That was my issue. I spent most of that game driving from one mission to another, it made the open world feel forced and linear rather than open. Just a big straight line from one mission to the next, except the line was curved and went in confusion directions over dozens of roads.

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UitDeToekomst

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#36  Edited By UitDeToekomst

I've never played it, but the fact that Patrick called it bad really makes me want to give it a shot.

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BlastProcessing

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#37  Edited By BlastProcessing

Mafia II was a totally fine game. It just felt unfinished.

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Jimbo

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#38  Edited By Jimbo

@Wampa1 said:

@Jimbo: But the open world was used to make you drive for 30 minutes for a mission that was 20. That was my issue. I spent most of that game driving from one mission to another, it made the open world feel forced and linear rather than open. Just a big straight line from one mission to the next, except the line was curved and went in confusion directions over dozens of roads.

I suspect your issue is somewhat exaggerated, but I take your point and I can see why you -and plenty of others- didn't like it because of that.

To me it wasn't about making the open world feel like anything; the open world exists almost exclusively to give the story a sense of place. It's the canvas, not the painting (and unlike a lot of similar games, you are not expected to start throwing paint all over the place). It achieved what they wanted it to as far as I'm concerned.

I think a lot of this just comes down to the mindset you approach a game in. If you go into a game wanting to get through it (which let's face it, most reviewers and a lot of players do), you are never going to be anything but frustrated with Mafia 2. If you go into a game wanting to experience it, and are prepared to let it take its time, then I think there's quite a bit to like. I don't think the things it is accused of getting 'wrong' are actually wrong per se, they're just not right for everybody. It's divisive rather than bad.

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Sooty

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#39  Edited By Sooty

I liked the flow of the story a lot, the changing seasons was nice.

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Wampa1

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#40  Edited By Wampa1

@Jimbo: Yeah I was getting a bit hyperbolic. I get what you mean, the Canvas analogy works well but then it has to be a truly beautiful one. For me Mafia II's open world didn't strike me that way, I didn't want to wander in it just for the sake of doing so or to soak in the mood. The mood was: Generic gangster story. The open world of the original achieved what you are talking about far better (In my opinion)

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tourgen

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#41  Edited By tourgen

@Humanity said:

Well it's definitely no Japanese text novel game with math puzzles that you have to beat 20 times to get the best ending thats for sure.

boom

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commonoutlier

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#42  Edited By commonoutlier

There were certainly aspects of the game I enjoyed (e.g., the 1940s music), but I know when I finished the game I was quite disappointed with the game...the main reason was the beginning sequence was so lively, particularly because so much was happening that didn't really have anything to do with the main character! It was like the NPCs had lives and were busily going about them as you were just walking by...and then for the rest of the game, the city was pretty dead.  Of course its asking a lot probably to have that sort of level of detail in such a large setting...but I wanted it sooo bad. I loved the veeery beginning of that game soo much, that it made the rest of the game seem so much less, for me.

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ArtisanBreads

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#43  Edited By ArtisanBreads

The game is pretty good. It's in no way bad.

The Duders exaggerate how bad games are all the time though, this is nothing new. It slides off me at this point. If a game isn't to their tastes they will say it's awful a lot of times, especially Jeff.

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envane

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#44  Edited By envane

the first mafia had random crap to do in between levels , finding hidden cars and stuff , etc .. there was at least one extra optional thing to do in between each mission ..not that i did all of them , but it helped give me a purpose in the open world , mafia 2 does nooothing , sometimes in these kind of games you just want SOMETHING to do to relax between the main missions .. even i ended up skipping them i would at least feel there was a purpose to the open world , its atmoshpheric sure .. but at least give us the option to have the ai drive for us if they're just going to force us into a car so they can cram extra dialogue in the game without having to animate faces etc..

while i enjoyed the GAME parts, the open world was a complete waste of resources and my time. plus the deluge of random dlc didnt help ... last thing i wanted was to spend more time with those 2 dimensional characters.

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jsnyder82

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#45  Edited By jsnyder82

The game is not bad by any means. It looks good, controls good, the story is nothing special, but not terrible. The action is very satisfying, too. But I just do not understand the point of an open world if you can't do anything in it.

I feel the same way about Crysis. I mean, sure, you can run around in a huge open world if you want to, but what's the point if the game isn't going to give you anything else to do besides the primary mission?

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Sooperspy

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#46  Edited By Sooperspy

It's good.

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cornbredx

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#47  Edited By cornbredx

Mafia 1 was awful. Ya they tried to be realistic but so much so it was to its down fall. Playing that game (for me, relax) was like scraping a chalk board with a rake. It was painful. 
 
Mafia 2 was disappointing as well. Similar problems but a little improved (tiny bit more fun to play) and it didn't really utilize it's open world at all. It also had a lot of Nolan North which in and of itself was funny and nolan north is a cool dude but it was to obvious. 
 
I would've said the same thing if someone asked me my opinion on that and forced me to be for reals.

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laserbolts

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#48  Edited By laserbolts

@Leviticus128 said:

@Ben_H: I dunno man, having to drive for 10-15 minutes sometimes to get to the next mission was a bit lame

Were you in reverse or something?

I thought it was a pretty decent game and I can remember having some fun with it. Definetly not terrible.

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iceman228433

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#49  Edited By iceman228433

From what I played of it I did not think it was a bad game there are much worse out there.

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wjb

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#50  Edited By wjb

I thought it was okay, but it was an open world game with nothing to do.

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