The Godfather The Don’s Edition – PS3 – Preview

When the
all-too-familiar strains of The Godfather theme (a Henry Mancini composition)
fill the speakers, there are certain expectations from the game about to be
played.

Ok, if you’ve
read the review for the 360 version of the game, you have the basic gist of the
latest release of The Godfather. EA has put out a new edition titled The
Godfather The Don’s Edition.

At its core,
this is the same game as the one reviewed back in
September of 2006.
Hmm, you are wondering, so why should I buy a copy for the PS3? One reason would
be the graphics. They are stunning. Not only do the game characters look and
sound like the actors that portrayed them on the big screen, but the whole
graphical upgrade to the PS3’s 1080 resolution makes the game a much stronger
bit of eye candy. There are times when you will stop and stare.

Take, for
example, character customization. A person could get lost in this mode, just
creating the young Italian recruited into the Corleone family.


The Godfather The Don's Edition screenshots

But let’s
backstep and set up the basic game storyline.

The game
essentially takes place in New York between 1945 and 1955. The initial scene
takes place earlier with an “acquaintance” of Don Corleone paying his respects
to the Don, reminding someone that they need to remember to be grateful to the
Don, and then getting blown away by machine guns in an alley. His young son sees
the aftermath, and is not only heartbroken, but rather angry. The Don shows up
and comforts the boy, telling him that this is not the time for revenge, but that
the time will come.

Fast forward to
the wedding of Connie Corleone. Luca Brasi is outside the house while inside,
the mother of that once boy is pleading with the Don to look after her son. He
has taken up with those street thugs and is heading for trouble. The Don agrees
and sends Brasi to find the kid.

It is at that point that
Brasi (bearing the likeness of the movie actor Lenny Montana) takes the kid
(played by the gamer) under his wing … well, Ok, it is a short wing span. Luca
is killed by Virgil “The Turk” Sollozzo and you strike back violently, then have
a driving mission to cross town – with the clock ticking – to a safe house.

But that is
getting a little ahead of ourselves. More things are happening on the screen, in
the background, and there are other side elements that enhance the overall
experience of the game itself. As you gain notoriety, photographers may try to
snag a picture of you going about “family” business. If you don’t react, you
will find that the overall heat on you increases – which is not a good thing.
Bribing is a bigger part of this scenario. You need to work to convince the
photographer to NOT publish the images.


The Godfather The Don's Edition screenshots

Mob couriers
can be hit, either by you or by your rivals on your couriers. Prostitutes act as
go-betweens in dealings with police, and may even have information on certain
police officials that will enable you to coerce them into siding with you.

The PS3 version
also enables different styles of play, as opposed to the run ‘n gun linear
mission pacing. New skill sets are the Enforcer or the Negotiator – two styles
of gameplay that are pretty much what one would expect from the names. You can
arm yourself with the weapon of your choice much easier now, thanks to the
weapon wheel – a popup armory.


The Godfather The Don's Edition screenshots

Combat, which
was a bit of hit or miss on the 360,  has been upgraded and the SIXAXIS
controller does play a minor role. Grappling is as easy as moving the controller
side to side, as opposed to using the analog sticks. Overall, the combat feels a
bit tighter than the 360 version.

While the game
does have a very strong mission path, players can freelance a bit more thanks to
the game’s ability to interact with the citizens of New York. Yes, this tracks
the same path as the 360, but with the photographers, mob couriers and
prostitutes involved, the whole city seems more alive with opportunity.

Slated for
release in mid-March, The Don’s Edition takes a strong next-gen foundation and
certainly builds on it. There is a lot of violence and profanity, but that is
just part of the Godfather’s world.