Some Racket: Mafia 3 Trailer Explores Criminal Ecology

I’ve watched The Sopranos from start to finish four times – partly because I’m a bit sad, and partly because it’s a great TV show. Now, I know nothing about organised crime beyond what I’ve gleaned from documentaries and popular culture, but part of what draws me back to David Chase’s seminal work is that it’s believable, even if it’s otherwise sugar-coated or occasionally Hollywood-ised.

What’s struck me so far about Mafia 3 [official site] is that it too is believable, and the latest trailer gives a brief glimpse at the research that’s gone into crafting its criminal underworld, rackets and missions, and also how they all tie together.

Adam was pleased with how Mafia 3 handled itself back at Gamescom last year, and I must say I was pretty sold after seeing the last trailer – New Bordeaux looks rather stunning. The latest developer-led short explores how organised crime, missions and rackets function within its mobster sandbox. Observe:

While the likes of GTA operate a similar do-this-mission-unlock-the-next-type structure, the way in which Mafia 3 poses this format at least sounds more cohesive. From what producer Denby Grace notes up there, it sounds to me like extra missions are your reward for being inquisitive, not just as a means to keep the plot marching forward. This seems particularly true if all missions are all tied to a common, central narrative – in this instance criminal rackets.

Time will tell if Mafia 3 offers quite as much freedom and nuance as I not-so-secretly hope it will, but in any event, I’m impressed with the attention to detail 2K Czech and Hanger 13 are showing nevertheless. Here’s design director Matthias Worch on the game’s ties to real life:

“We’ve put a lot of work into actually modelling the way the mafia operates and how it kind of seeps into the foundations of the city. There are bosses who are running different parts of the city and they all have specialties, they have these big front businesses that they’re using to launder money for whatever illicit things that they need to do.”

Mafia 3 is due for release on October 7, 2016.


  1. yogibbear says:

    Mafia II had excellent shooty bits, but from memory (and it was a while) it was very… on rails? It sold itself as an “Open world” game, but then was very in your face that you had to go complete the next main mission thing. Also I remember the city being kind of brilliant, and then never really feeling free to explore on my own terms. Not sure what went wrong with that game, but it was very much a play, enjoy, and then sadly forget experience.

    • Warlokk says:

      Very true… the open-worldness was very lacking, but the gunplay and story were really very good. They tried to fix the open world with the DLCs but they were really just not very good at all compared to the main game. I’m hoping they can manage to get the two parts right this time around, so far it looks excellent.

    • Vandelay says:

      I remember enjoying the shootouts in the second game too. However, I also remember that they only had a handful of them throughout the game. Literally, you could count the number of gunfights on your hands.

      That might sound like an interesting direction to take a game, but unfortunately, there wasn’t much else for you to spend your time with besides driving characters around the city.

    • w0bbl3r says:

      That’s what made the original mafia so great. It had this huge city, but gave you no reason to wander around it.
      Because how often do you just drive or walk around your home town for no reason, just looking for things to do?
      The city in the original was an awesome backdrop for the story. It was a story-based game, and that was amazing.
      No other game has come close to that kind of “open world” storytelling since. Especially not the pretty dull sequel, and most definitely not this trashy looking copy-cat of all other open world 3rd person action games.

    • cutechao999 says:

      Was it sold as an open-world? It was there, but Mafia one had an “open world” type thing, but its just a backdrop. That’s what the Mafia series thus far has done, there’s a believable living city, but its not an open world, there’s a sense of realism to it. You do your job, you don’t go getting into car chases for the fun of it or kill random people on the street or go bowling with your cousin. I think people just got the wrong idea with mafia 2 because they’ve been spoilt by GTA

  2. Jediben says:

    I’ve played this game before: it was called Shadows of Mordor.

  3. Snids says:

    Nice to see Kieron Gillen back on the site.

  4. Turkey says:

    All I could think about while watching the video was how much that bald guy looks like Ryan Gosling.

  5. w0bbl3r says:

    What they are talking about here is just a gangster version of the (far more interesting from the look of it) orc warchief and captain system in shadow of mordor.

    The more I see and hear of this, the less interesting it looks, honestly.

    Maybe I might have given it more of a chance if it was actually, you know, the frickin’ MAFIA, as stated in the title, and as it was in the previous 2 games (even though the second was only mediocre compared to the first).

    They know what fans of the original wanted, they know where they went wrong with what fans wanted in the last game, and what do they do? They go even further into making it a standard action game with elements taken from other (better) action games, moving it further and further away from what made mafia truly great.

    I can still play the original today (although it takes some doing) and enjoy it, and still see how no other game has utilised an “open world” in the same clever and amazing way. Because who just wanders around the streets pulling people out of cars, speeding around and running red lights? Nobody, especially not gangsters who are trying to avoid police attention.
    It just worked so well, and with each sequel they are moving further away from that greatness.

    They should have just made this a new title and left mafia to die. Sick of games riding on the name of great titles in the series, but have nothing to do with that series past the name, and are nowhere near as original or fun.

  6. NephilimNexus says:

    I just want someone to remake the original Gangsters and stop trying to sell me their scripted story. I want to make my own story. That’s what a sandbox is supposed to be about.

  7. Flavour Beans says:

    …did he snipe that guy in the butt?

  8. Jackablade says:

    Did Mafia 2 have the silly post game missions like the original game did with rocket cars and such like?

  9. Hanban says:

    The first Mafia game to this day holds the accolade of “most frustrating part in a video game”. I can’t look at old-timey race cars without being reminded of that goddamned race.

  10. Laini says:

    Yay, I’ve found the one part of the internet where people aren’t complaining that the main character is black ¬_¬

    Is that bald guy a real person? I think I recognise them, but I can’t work out who they are.
    Or maybe it’s just a character and I’m crazy.

    • Distec says:

      “Yay, I’ve found the one part of the internet where people aren’t complaining that the main character is black ¬_¬”

      I think you’re making up a story.

      • supercakman says:

        Nah, unfortunately, I kind of have to back that up. While I’m not saying that the game is gonna be good, there are A LOT of people who are really pissed off at the main character being black, and I pretty much see people get angry about it in every article I’ve seen.

        Hoping it turns out good! It’d shut ’em up.

        • socrate says:

          i think you would still see the same thing if you would call the game yakuza renamed to mafia,there is a reason criminal organisation are categorised and named differently..they tend to vary extremely from one another on tons of different point and also race…i love how people tend extremely brainwashed on the racism thing toward black and yet somehow they think mafia are general white people…ffs…you guys didin’t even notice there was a generic black haired tendency in mafia movie and game for a reason?…but no white are white right no difference between all white just like there is no difference between asian which are still insanely underrepresented in society yet are the most numerous and indu the second most numerous on earth…

          But people like you are the kind of people that were brainwashed by a dumb white guilt society that seem so present in the united state and yet do nothing toward other race that are indeed underrepresented and will praise black for anything and not realise that doing so is still racist since you are praising someone for their race and not their accomplishment.

          Anyway on the topic of that game,the first mafia is still overhyped today and is to me still a really boring game with horrible driving mechanic that were often more frustrating then fun and the story was really average at best and then with mafia 2 it ended up being another open world but with more thing in common with gta style of game and yet still a linear story that was still bad but imo the gameplay was a bit better then before but still…why play that when there was at the time much much more fun gta style game at your disposal.

          Now we get another title from a franchise that quite frankly ended up doing ok only because of the movie itself lets say it like it is…but now its stripped of everything relating it to that and offer wierd stuff that seems to apparently been taken from Shadow of mordor(which is a nice system)…frankly im not sure i like anything about that game overall…this game seems to be stuck still in the past that even then it never got right in the first place,what killed it really is how they paid some popular youtuber(seems to be a going trend nowaday…youtuber as corrupted as old gaming website and such…fun time)with opinion obviously biased on the “exclusive gameplay” they got access to.

          So yeah thing don’t seem like they changed much and the gameplay look as dull if not worst then mafia 2,the fact that the youtuber in question pointed out the strongest point as being the shooting in the game(which obviously look horrible) and the fact that it had a “weapon wheel” and a “perk wheel” as something apparently revolutionary…at that point i was cheking left and right in a dazed state wondering if i wasn’t dead and in hell or if i wasn’t dreaming.

  11. Veles says:

    Until I see and hear more, this sounds like it could end up being very shallow and formulaic.

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