The thought of The Godfather as a video game initially scared the bejeezus out of me. Too often games are based on movies, and they SUCK. I’ve played too many shitty Spider-Man games, along with The Da Vinci Code (which is the WORST game I’ve ever played) and I’ve always felt conned. They got me interested so easily, by basing a game on a character or storyline I could have expectations for. And they always let me down. Not so with The Godfather.
What they do with The Godfather is take the rough outline of the story you’re familiar with, then change it up to better suit the gaming experience. You get to create your avatar, and develop it into someone the Corleone family can trust and rely on. And it’s quite fun to work your way up the ranks. You start off as some street punk eager to make a name for yourself, and then you end up doing jobs with Sonny, working with Michael, really cementing yourself within the Corleone family.
Without giving away major plot points for those unfamiliar, the game does contain a lot of the more iconic moments from the films. The graphic work is impressive, and seeing Al Pacino, James Caan, Robert Duvall, and Abe Vigoda all on screen (oh, and some Brando guy) adds a novelty to the game that other original titles lack.
The game basically plays like a Grand Theft Auto game, except it’s more old school Mafia themed. It’s quite fun, simple enough, and the controls are never too complex to wrap your head around. Everything is as it should be. The voice acting is very well done, and isn’t as distracting and potty mouthed as some titles like to be. It’s pretty vulgar at times, but it’s never that way just for the sake of it.
As for the gameplay, it consistently gains difficulty, and the progression of your character is enjoyable. Again, high marks for the game never trying to have too much going on in terms of side jobs and other extracurricular activities. They keep you on track in the main story, and it works quite well.
Simply put, the game is exactly what you’d expect. It’s a quality effort, and there are a lot of hours to put into a game this fun and engrossing. The novelty factor clinches it for me, as I very much enjoy playing along in a story I’m familiar with and characters I know. The graphics are pretty solid, voice acting terrific, and overall you’re left with a pretty great game to play.
Score: 8.5/10 (Great)