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Mafia 2 Definitive Edition Review

Moving into the WWII era of the 1940’s and the start of the 1950’s, the mafia life continues in Empire Bay through the eyes of another made man carrying out deeds for the Commission. This is our review of Mafia 2 Definitive Edition and how it differs from the 2010 original release.

Rising to the top of an Empire

empire bay

World War II is imminent in the 1940’s and by the post-war of the 1950’s, the city of Empire Bay seems to have some peace except the entire city is in a free-for-all fight for majority power between the Clemente, Vinci, and Falcone crime syndicates.

However, the rise to the top of Empire Bay is more of a power-trip as the back room deals start to boil over into the rising demands of drug dealings made between the 3 mafia families and the fourth family which are the Triads.

What the 3 crime syndicates don’t know is “the Commission” doesn’t allow drugs to be dealt since it goes against their traditional code…which means the dons of these crime syndicates could go from being the hunter to the hunted in the eyes of the Commission quickly or fight each other to determine the last man standing for the right to run Empire Bay uncontested.

The Early Legacy of Vito Scaletta

vito scaletta mafia 2

Brought over as an Italian immigrant to the United States in the 1920’s, Vito Scaletta was raised into hard times with his family while his father worked manual labor as a dockworker making only pennies on the dollar to make minimal living.

By 1943, Vito Scaletta’s life of crime began by knocking over jewelry stores and other petty theft with his best friend Joe Barbaro…all that changed after getting caught in another jewelry store heist gone bad.

Since America was at war with Germany by this time, Vito’s get out of jail free card landed him in the army where he was deployed back to his hometown of Sicily as part of the 504th Parachute Infantry to fend off Mussolini’s Italian Army behind enemy lines.

Escaping out with his life and as a “Purple-heart veteran,” Vito returns home to Empire Bay towards the end of WWII in 1945 and returned to his old ways…working under the table and pulling jobs for the Clemente family.

Again like the first time, Vito winds up in hot water again with the feds after he is busted for illegally selling and distribution gas stamps (ration stamps) to gas stations around Empire Bay…this time the book is thrown at him, serving a 10 year sentence in prison.

Despite being a convicted felon, Vito’s good fortunes put him in line with the legendary Leo Galante to be paroled early in 1951 to get a new start with the Falcone crime syndicate alongside Joe as soldiers and errand boys of the mafia.

Along the way, Vito and Joe’s attempts to make a risky big score deal on a heroin gamble with the triads to bringing an fed informant into the Falcone family lands both in debt to a city loan shark and as targets for both the Vinci and Falcone families which means fighting their way out or leaving town for good.

Vito’s legacy begins where Tommy Angelo’s legacy ends in Empire Bay…remember the ending cutscene in the original Mafia game.

Mafia 2 Definitive Edition Gameplay

mafia 2 definitive edition gameplay

Mafia 2’s gameplay has slight differences to the 1st Mafia game with the first being that the player cannot fire a weapon while driving and the second difference is the player can only recover health points by grabbing a cold one at a bar, eating at cafes, or eating that leftover sandwich at any of the safe houses instead of the old way of visiting the medical cabinet in the mission areas and gas stations.

The newest feature Mafia 2 brought was the lock picking mini-game that gives the player a chance to lock pick vehicles by correctly getting the locking pins in the correct position to successfully break into the vehicle quietly…the alternative to this would be the typical break the glass on the window to get in and hot wire the car to crank it although it would gain the attention of the people walking on the street and the police driving by wondering what Vito is doing.

driving mechanics mafia 2

There is no drive-by shooting mechanics in Mafia 2; but, the AI can assists Vito by shooting at pursing enemies.

Besides the “tommy guns” used in the game, the armory available in Mafia II Definitive Edition is all WWII-era weapons such as the German made MP40 and the Kar98k, Italian .38 SMG, and the typical American M1 Garand and M3 Grease Guns…not to mention access to carrying grenades and Molotov cocktails to throw to flush out a group of enemies taking cover.

Mafia 2 Definitive Edition’s campaign is shorter featuring only 15 chapters in comparison to 20 chapters in the 1st game with the standard game not including any side missions without counting the DLC expansion pack to play through 3 different side story campaigns totaling 89 individual side missions.

In each of the DLC side missions, the player can score points for complete the missions, getting headshots, killing enemies, making cars explode, doing stunts (jumps) while driving, drifting, and driving fast for a period of times as a way to compete against other online players.

Each of the DLC missions have a ranking system that tells how good you did based on the points and efficiency performed with the highest rank a player can get is a “S” rank with the lowest rank being a “D” rank.

With each enemy killed and each car that explodes, the more the player can multiply their points for a limited time as long as the player continues the chain.

The Betrayal of Jimmy DLC

betrayal of jimmy dlc

Meet Jimmy…a gun for hire gangster and a “clean-up” man as he describes himself who works to balance the books and manage inventory while eliminating threats to the people he works with to earn money under the table.

There are 21 main missions in this DLC that involves Jimmy working for the Gravina family and Brodie syndicates to win their wars against the Bombers and Triad gangs in Empire Bay by sabotaging their rackets, any fronts hiding the racket operations, and taking out key figures associated with the gangs that have interferred with Sal Gravina and Tam Brodie.

Jimmy also can take part in some “grand theft auto” hustles boosting cars while working for Sal and Tam with their dirty work to earn some extra money that would help pay for ammo and weapons buys.

There are 9 vehicle theft missions to make up the majority of the missions in the Betrayal of Jimmy DLC bringing the individual missions total to 30.

Jimmy’s Vendetta DLC

Picking up where the Betrayal of Jimmy campaign left off, Jimmy seeks revenge after being sentenced to 15 years in Prison after being busted in a drug sting setup by both Sal Gravina and Tam Brodie.

Jimmy must tie off his own loose ends by breaking out of prison and hunt down not only Sal and Tam; but, the “Big Boss” that controls the Empire Bay Police Department, court system, and the gangs including Sal and Tam’s gangs.

Just like the The Betrayal of Jimmy DLC, Jimmy’s Vendetta DLC has vehicle theft side missions tied in with the main campaign. There are 34 missions total with 22 missions making up the main campaign with the remaining 12 missions being vehicle theft missions.

Joe’s Adventures DLC

joe barbaro mafia 2

Joe’s Adventures is the final DLC expansion in the remastered version of Mafia 2 that puts the player in separate story during the main campaign opposite of Vito in Joe Barbaro’s shoes.

First witnessing Vito’s arrest by the feds in 1945 for his gas stamp fraud bust, Joe uncovers the witnesses in Vito’s trial while Joe faces the consequences of having a price put on his own head by the Clement Family.

Having no choice but to leave town, Joe leaves Empire Bay and doesn’t come back until 1950 (1 year before Vito’s release from prison) to rebuild his life while taking on jobs for friends and the Falcone Family to get back at the Clemente Family for stabbing him and Vito in the back.

There are only 25 campaign missions in this DLC with no side missions as seen in Jimmy’s Vendetta and the Betrayal of Jimmy DLC content.

Mafia 2 Definitive Edition Collectibles

The collectibles are much different and much more “kinky” in a way for Mafia 2…there are a total of 239 collectibles found throughout Empire Bay in the game between Playboy magazine editions to wanted posters.

In addition to the Playboy magazines and wanted posters, there are unlockable collectibles that are awarded upon completing each chapter and the whole game which includes artwork, game posters…and the Family Album that lists the characters and their background story in the game.

Fantasizing over Playboy Magazines…

playboy magazines mafia 2

Get in on the cat calls Vito and Joe do as they find their long lost Playboy magazine collection while do the grunt work in each mission.

There are 31 Playboy magazines found in the main campaign missions of the game with each chapter having between 3-5 magazines to be found (except for Chapter that only has 2 magazine collectibles).

In Joe’s Adventure DLC, 19 exclusive Playboy magazines can be found in some of the missions while some can be found during free roam…bringing the total of 50 magazines in the whole game.

One piece of advice don’t let the young kids see the magazines since most of the covers contain nude women…even we can’t show a cover of a playboy magazine on this blog because of the explicit content.

Finding the Most Wanted of Empire Bay

wanted poster mafia 2

Making up for a majority of the collectibles in Mafia 2’s Definitive Edition, there are a 189 wanted posters plastered all over Empire Bay and can be found during free roam in the main campaign that describe the names of the 2K Games crew, programmers, developers, producers, artists, etc. that made this game possible.

The original Mafia 2 game had 139 wanted posters; but, the Definitive Edition of the game added 50 more wanted posters to up the challenge of getting that 100% completion in the game.

Personal Views about Mafia 2 Definitive Edition

For my personal points, Mafia 2 Definitive Edition kept the smooth transition from the original Mafia game ending the legacy of Tommy Angelo that only one could describe was a tragedy and the past catching up to someone from a gamer’s view in 2002 without knowing that Mafia 2’s protagonist characters killed off the first game’s protagonist…I would still describe it as shocking if I wound the clock backwards to 2010 if playing the original Mafia 2 game.

On the gameplay side, Mafia 2 Definitive Edition is not challenging to complete since there is no classic/extreme difficulty setting in the game and the DLC content of the game was annoying to me because of the ranking/points system not making sense for the missions in game…it’s like if you take your time to complete all objectives while racking up on points but get back to the safe house/save point by the skin of your teeth then you may get a “D” ranking versus if you rush through the mission without getting much points then you might get a “S” ranking.

This ranking system reminds me of playing Metal Gear Solid 5 where you can’t waste no time to complete objectives…if you don’t complete the objectives in the “perfect” amount of time then you may not get the “S” ranking as seen in that game.

Bottom line to the ranking and points system in any game and that includes Mafia 2 Definitive Edition…game developers need to leave out the ranking/points system in any solo gameplay (especially open world games) unless it is for co-op/multiplayer play otherwise it is “pointless” and most of the time a ranking/points system is broken unless the developers actually know how to code/configure it to work within the gameplay objective criteria’s.

For performance, Mafia 2 Definitive Edition faired well with optimization on the PC/Steam platform but didn’t make the cut when it came to audio optimization since some of the character dialogue was out of sync or buggy that made it another annoyance and the background audio was not configured on the PC/Steam platform that made it look as if the game wasn’t fully complete.

When I disabled the music in game (what I do to prevent copyright issues on YouTube), it seems it may have disabled the background music as well even though I left master audio enabled which tells me it could be a bug that 2k Games didn’t fix before release.

Mafia 2 Definitive Edition Photo Gallery

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