Review by Oni Chikara

Reviewed: 10/04/07

The Godfather take on a Grand Theft Auto Engine

Introduction – This is for the game The Godfather for XBOX 360. A game where the player plays a character that is thrown into the academy award winning story of New York during the time of the mobs

Gameplay – The gameplay is pretty good. There is a really nice targeting system for using guns. You can target with one button and then move the reticle without having to move the character, making getting headshots a lot easier. This is a game that grinding can really work to the player’s advantage. Part of the game is taking over businesses and taking over rackets. A business is a butcher, or a baker shop, or a barbershop, or a tailor’s shop and so on. The way to take over these businesses is talking with the owners which are indicated by a hand holding puppet strings over the non-playable character’s head. If you have no respect levels you will need to convince or intimidate the owner to giving their business to the Corleones. You can hit them, strangle them, destroy their shop, or threaten them and customers. Place their heads at the edge of ovens is a fun scare tactic. If your respect level is high enough depending on the business, you can just go and talk to the owner and they will be glad to pay the Corleones for protection. The same goes for rackets. The rackets include casinos, night clubs, liquor shipping and distribution, or prostitution, the big businesses for a mob family. You can just buy the owners of the rackets and get that racket or you can intimidate them and try and get more money out of them. There is also the concept of blowing up a building, you can blow up a rival business, or warehouse, or compound with explosives and dynamite, and yes if you do not get away quick enough you can get blown up and die. However, just like GTA you can be revived at the hospital and move on with your life for a small fee, and a couple hundred dollars for immortality is not a hard price to pay. Every time you gain a respect level you can boost your abilities, such as shooting, fighting, running, streetwise information, and so on. Unlike most games like this, it is worth it to max out all of the stats. For example if you max out streetwise skill you can steal cars without worrying about anyone coming after you, that comes in very handy, especially if the cops are on your tail. You can rob banks too, however, like anything with marginal AI, you can pay off the cops and rob a bank and get back to your hideout Scot free. You can’t jump but you can sprint and hide around obstacles for a gun fight cover, which is good. One achievement is to blow up one rival family business, pretty easy especially later in the game. However, if you do that the chances of getting the other achievements of taking over every front and racket are very very slim if not impossible. That is a very large hole in the game. Nevertheless it is an enjoyable game.

Story – You play a young man who is taken in by the Corleone family after your father is murdered by another mob family boss. It is a good way to introduce a character into an already existing plotline. You go through the movies and help the Corleones take over New York during the era that the mobs were prevalent in the big cities, while at the same time rising through the ranks in hopes of one day becoming a Don yourself. But don’t be fooled, your character or a character similar is not in the actual movies.

Graphics/Sound – The graphics were of average quality, nothing spectacular. They look just like a smoother version of every other GTA game. They ran well, the load time was minimal, there were very few glitches or chops if any depending on what you are doing. The sound is average quality too, it is kind of fun to hear the Godfather theme every time you take over a business of any kind.

Play time/Replayability – Playtime is about thirteen plus hours if you do most things and progress through the story. It takes about sixteen plus hours to do just about everything. These times fluctuate depending on if a player has played the game before, or is really good, or looks up exactly what to do. Replayability is almost none, the only reason that I played it again is the achievements on the 360.

Final Recommendation – I recommend this game for renting, or if you can find it for really cheap buy it. Don’t buy it new, don’t buy it at normal used prices, it’s not worth it. The five dollars to rent it for a week is more worth it than owning the game. However, if a player is one of those gamers that likes to go back and do different things on a game like this over and over, find it used for cheap.

Rating:   3.0 - Fair

Product Release: The Godfather (US, 09/19/06)

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