The Godfather 2 Hands-on PreviewPlatforms: Xbox 360
, PlayStation 3, PC
Publisher: Electronic Arts
February 27, 2009
It’s either a little known or little admitted fact that bit-tech
’s motherboard specialist Richard Swinburne comes from Wales, but it’s true. I know this because I met some of his more unsavoury associates the other day, who were heavily involved in organised crime.
Calling themselves the taffia, or Welsh mafia, they made me an offer I couldn’t understand.
I hope you liked that joke by the way, because that’s pretty much all the humour you can expect in this hands-on preview of Electronic Arts’ The Godfather II
. While the subject matter may be ripe for the punnery and we could easily give horse-head jokes until we died, the game itself is trying it’s best to rise above such things.
Organised crime is a serious business, after all – this is a serious preview!
Like the film it’s based on then, Godfather 2
starts out with a Cuban rebellion that sends the various American crime dons scurrying, their meeting of crime syndicates being singed by brush with the flame of chaos. Certain, pivotal characters get killed by that fire, dropping out of the plot and leaving a gap in the family – a gap for you to step into.
Unlike the first game then, which was all about rising from the ranks of a lowly button man to the role of omniscient kingpin, Godfather 2
doesn’t dilly-dally around. There are no pointless side missions or trying to curry favour with your superiors. You are
the top of the food chain; you are the Godfather.
Well, you are after a brief training mission anyway. Set amid the Cuban uprising, your job is to run around protecting Al Pacino and Co. as you make your way to the airfield. It’s here you learn some of the essential skills a Godfather will need – like being able to lock on to your enemies knees and hands to cripple them.
With the uprising behind you, Al Pacino’s Michael announces that he’s moving the family to LA to make a third and grossly disappointing film in a well respected franchise. He’ll be trusting you to handle things while he’s gone, asking you to start your own mafia family and take control of the city from the other syndicates. It’s with that request that the gameplay proper starts off and you’re faced with the task of conquering a city singlehandedly. Your advisers tell you it can’t be done, and you believe them – it’s time to hire in the type of outside help that may get given your job in the sequel.
It’s this business management facet that Electronic Arts is hoping to make pivotal to the new Godfather
game as, where the first title was really just a Grand Theft Auto
clone plain and simple, The Godfather 2
brings a dash of Syndicate
to the mix. You’ll have to hire and fire, plan and adapt and slowly creep your black hand out to cover the entire of the city by using your men to crush the other families.
Does this strategy gameplay sit well with the original formula of running, gunning and prostitute punching though? Read on to see what we think.