The Godfather Mob Wars

By on October 14, 2006

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First Impressions
My reaction is

EA has brought us one of the greatest films of all time on the PSP in the shape of a game that’s not so great. The Godfather on the PSP is essentially two games rolled into one package. On the one hand you have the game that we have seen on the home consoles. The big difference here is that there is no free roaming. On the other hand we have ‘Mob Wars’. This mode is a strategic game where you, i.e. the Corleone family owns a certain area, and then have to do small missions in order to increase you coverage, ultimately becoming the Don of New York.

The games starts off in almost the same way as the console version, where your character is

introduced as someone whose father was killed whilst serving Don Corleone. Never forgetting those who’ve worked with him, Don Corleone decides to help us when we get in a little trouble, nine years later. This is how we enter the Corleone family, and the rest is history. Well, not quite. We start off with small missions, mostly looking at cut scenes and following orders. Here we are dumped straight into action, with most of our targets nearby. So the missions are not only straight forward, but get painfully linear later on. Although, things do start to get exciting when you finish a mission and have to escape in a car. You reach the car at the end of mission anticipating a good chase sequence, only to find out the next cut scene after your travel! The free-roaming would have been forgiven but having no driving missions at all is really disappointing.

The setup for each mission is really well done. You feel like taking part in the movies, although this feeling is limited to the cut-scenes only. Actual missions are poorly executed no thanks at all to the extremely bad camera angles. Its gets to the point of pure frustration, where a mission that could have been easily finished, ends with us being ‘iced’, since we couldn’t see the mobster on the side who popped us with a Magnum.

This aside the game looks decent on the PSP. The graphics look nice from far but the textures are all too bland. The music, straight from the film, gives a genuine feeling of the movies and sets the dark mood up nicely. Voice acting is top-notch, with the drama unfolding at a nice pace.

Once you end the initial missions, you unlock the ‘Mob Wars’. This strategic game feels sort of

like side quests, but it’s important since you can take over other Families’ areas and become the Don of NY. This status can also be achieved via the normal story mode as well should you feel inclined to do so. Moving along, in this mode you get to play cards, kinda like poker. These cards are of special significance since these can affect your gameplay, in how you take over the areas. For instance bribe a police officer to lower the ‘heat level’ in one of your own areas. It feels good as a portable game and you really start to enjoy it. Sadly this part of the game is also marred by the poor camera angles. You can only undertake a single type of mission in each turn, and once again failing the mission due to bad camera angles forces you to restart the entire event again, going through menus and all. You’ll feel like throwing your PSP when you die of the same stupid camera angles again after not seeing the fifth guy who was attacking you from the sidelines!

Here we have yet another example of a game that could have been great, but isn’t because the developers didn’t think all the way through. Still as a portable Godfather experience this is a commendable effort from the EA guys. As a fan of the films you will want to come back to the game again and again, after being frustrated for a while. As a fan of a free roaming gangster game, you have a way better option out there.

The Scorecard
Poor camera angles detract from a great experience.
The city looks nice but you can’t explore it all, up close the textures look average at best.
Themes from the movie coupled with great voice acting give a pleasant audio experience.
The story mode plus the Mob Wars increase the longevity a little.
In the end you won’t ever really get into the game and prefer it on the consoles.
A good try but one wishes if the developer had put in a little more effort.


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