Generally favorable reviews - based on 46 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 46
  2. Negative: 2 out of 46
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  1. Dec 20, 2010
    I walked into my experience of Mafia II with no real expectations other than hearing my colleague's praise. What I walked away with after playing through the story was a sense of awe and amazement that I haven't had since Alan Wake.
  2. Mafia II is exactly the sequel Mafia fans have been waiting all these years for.
  3. 90
    This is one of the best launches of the year. It is ambitious in its presentation, the script immerses us in the life of a gangster from the very beginning, and the missions are hardly repetitive: there is always an unexpected twist or a new situation which tests our abilities.
  4. In an era when video games are moving away from relying on cinematics for storytelling, Mafia II draws on the rich mobster film history to weave a gripping drama about family, friendship, loyalty, betrayal, and pragmatism. If you're fond of quoting Don Corleone and Tony Soprano, don't miss this game.
  5. Mafia II has a good plot, rude, violent and with a wonderful narrative. But Mafia II is also a good action where the adventure and the free roaming create the perfect gameplay mix all together with the fast shooting and the realism of the driving sequence.
  6. Mafia II stands for excitement, a vibrant atmosphere and fun. The graphics are well-done and up to date, and the shooting and racing parts ensure enough variety.
  7. The wait was worth it. Mafia II delivers nice campaign of singleplayer missions with a mesmerizing story and a great bunch of characters.
  8. Mafia II's exciting action and uncompromising mob story make for an impressive and violent adventure.
  9. Mafia II follows the steps of the first one, showing that there is more than one way to use sandbox space. Others will argue that the beautifully built Empire Bay is underused as a virtual space, but one must praise the ambition of a studio willing to build such scenario to add character and background to his heavily scripted story. Mafia II's narrative shows the way for other games with similar ambitions.
  10. Mafia 2 is a great, story-driven action game which offers great cut scenes and a believable game world. Its characters, graphics, music and sound are outstanding, but it lacks good AI and side missions at the same time. After ten to twelve hours of gameplay you finish the game with no possibility to deal with the game furthermore – compared to other open-world-titles like GTA IV. Anyhow, Mafia 2 is a great old-school-action game, with few faults.
  11. Mafia II is tightly story-driven, extremely linear in execution, and designed to drive the player through a cinematic experience that is the very essence of the game. The world compliments the story, it's not designed offer much beyond the fifteen or so hours of gameplay inherent in the plot.
  12. 85
    Mafia II is a superbly told, mature and adult game that will entertain, shock and blow you away time and time again.
  13. Due to some weaknesses in terms of story (extremely disappointing ending) and gameplay (savepoints), Mafia II turned out to be a good game, but not the masterpiece we've hoped for. Most of these problems can be quite easily forgiven though, thanks to its overwhelming atmosphere and charm.
  14. Fine story-driven game about mafia and a life of crime that stumbles on lack of content - there just isn't much to do in Empire City and the story is over before you know it.
  15. Yes, it's full of clichés, I saw them coming from a mile away, but it's exactly what you need to create that feeling of respect and even appreciation for what really were (and still are) cruel murders, blood baths, territorial fights, extortion or drug traffic. But all of it elegantly done, in a tie and suit, in fancy restaurants and (stolen) luxury cars.
  16. PC Format
    Dec 20, 2010
    A well-rendered world, with a well-realised story, though without as much actual gaming as we'd hoped there'd be. [Issue#244, p.81]
  17. games(TM)
    Left us wanting more. In a game crammed with workaday wise guys, that's probably the wisest move of all. [Issue#100, p.140]
  18. AceGamez
    It's doubtful many will come away under the belief that Mafia II is in any way a better game to Mafia, but fans will find little to complain about over the efforts 2K Czech have poured in to this sequel.
  19. I had a great time, all things considered, but it would've been more satisfying to have felt like I was part of a story. [Oct 2010, p.64]
  20. Mafia II is a very entertaining game, with great atmosphere and lots of memorable moments. The story could have been more interesting, and there's a bit too much driving from A to B, but the great missions more than makes up for these flaws.
  21. Mafia II hits a few snags, be it due to an overly linear campaign, a seemingly empty world, or a handful of technical issues. However, what it lacks in those areas, it almost makes up for in character and a great story that you'll want to see through to the end.
  22. PC PowerPlay
    A game with real soul. The gut impact is huge, but it may leave some with a faint appetite for just a little more. [Nov 2010, p.56]
  23. Mafia II is certainly an enigma among mob drama games, eliciting both an intense satisfaction with story and place while accruing simultaneous disappointment at the limitation of its focus.
  24. The game does deserve some respect because, admittedly, despite its shortcomings players are likely to be compelled enough to finish it. The fun that the game does deliver when it decides to is nail-bitingly entertaining and, as stated above, the storyline is fantastic.
  25. For fans of mobster movies, Mafia II is the ultimate toybox. It has period clothes, music, and architecture that perfectly evoke pre and post-war Americana, and a gritty script to boot.
  26. The game isn't particularly long, and the lack of substantial side-missions hurts this game's replay ability overall. Still, the story mode experience is good enough that the time you do spend with Mafia II is well-spent.
  27. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Technically flawless and a lively world with attention to every detail cannot cover the fact some elements have been wasted. Still, it's a great game but with a much bigger potential. [Issue#195]
  28. Mafia II maintains the high standards of its predecessor but it lacks in giving a real sensation of freedom. Driving sections are good and graphics are among the best around, but they don't help the game to reach the top of its genre. Yet, it's still an offer we suggest you to accept.
  29. While that may be one thousand words of criticism, overall I would recommend Mafia II. It's hard to deeply explain the positives because I'd hate to give away some of the more jaw-dropping ain't-that-cool aspects to the game.
  30. In ten hours of criminality, 2K Czech have made the perfect elegy to the mafia movie. Could have been more of a game, though.
  31. 75
    When the strength of the game lies solely on the shoulders of an inconsistent narrative in a limited yet gorgeous environment, I can't help but feel robbed of an experience that should be greater than the sum of its parts.
  32. Flaws and linear nature taken into account, Mafia II is a beautiful, gripping, engaging game-and where it doesn't allow you to go is more than made up for by where it does.
  33. Bottom line, if you're looking to get sucked into a game and feel like you are a part of its world, this one is not going to cut it.
  34. Jan 12, 2011
    The combination of the ancient control mechanics, odd pacing and lack of real world entertainment drag the game down and seriously decreased my enjoyment of Mafia II. Still, it's worth a playthrough if you just adore mafia games and have a solid PC build to take it on.
  35. 70
    Mafia II is an interesting mobster tale with some great voice acting and cool cutscenes; if you have a "made man" itch, feel free to scratch it here, but be prepared for a pretty standard third-person shooter in the gameplay department. The "take cover, kill everyone, do it again" mechanic didn't wow me, but it didn't let me down either.
  36. Mafia 2 feels like a game that could have been great. Clunky controls are hardly game-breaking, and some might argue part and parcel with the open-world genre, but without the features associated with open-world games Mafia 2 is more easily compared to Uncharted and Gears of War - and in that circle it's simply not action-packed enough.
  37. All things considered, Mafia 2 is a good game. The problem is, it only takes a little over ten hours to complete the story, and once you're done that... that's it.
  38. Folks who love a decent mafia tale -- one of family ties, betrayal, and revenge -- will want to experience the world of Mafia II. Its competent game mechanics and absorbing narrative are enough to warrant a playthrough. But in the end, the repetitive nature of the game's sometimes mind-blowingly boring missions and lack of content will leave most gamers wanting more.
  39. I'm a sucker for a good mob story, but Mafia II's is merely decent.
  40. Edge Magazine
    Though 2K Czech's operation doesn't run entirely smoothly, there's a definite spark of potential and the roots of an abandoned attempt to engineer something more than throwaway entertainment. [Oct 2010, p.90]
  41. Mafia 2 doesn't even try to be interesting, even though an action game with a linear 10-hour campaign should be going for broke in order to entertain players. Vito Scaletta's misadventures are jam-packed with everyday trivialities, pre-historic clichés, and tiresome moralisms.
  42. Mafia II is enjoyable and polished, but we could expect way more from 2K Czech.
  43. With its strict linear nature there is next to no replay value, unless you want to collect Playboy bunny pictures. The sad part of all of this is that there is a good game lost inside the driving, the save checkpoints, and the silly time wasting missions.
  44. Here's how to sum up Mafia II : 12 hours of repetitive, linear missions, with but a few gameplay mechanics. Shoot, drive, punch, a tiny little bit of stealth, that's it. There's nothing more to be done than to follow the unfolding of the plot, which is clearly sub-par, especially when considering how easy it is to watch a rerun of The Godfather or a season of the Sopranos instead. Replay value is nil, there's no multiplayer. You can't even roam freely in the city after the ending (what for anyway, one may ask). Combat is way to easy, cars don't provide much thrill. In the end, Mafia II is a very pretty box, but an empty one. 80% of what has been developed doesn't serve any real purpose. The rest isn't enough to make a great game. If you're a die hard fan of the 50's atmosphere (nicely rendered), and the Mafia genre, you might still enjoy it. Otherwise...
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 2343 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Aug 25, 2010
    The game's plot like is basically a mixture of the Godfather, and Goodfellas, you're a war hero, come back from the war and fall into a lifeThe game's plot like is basically a mixture of the Godfather, and Goodfellas, you're a war hero, come back from the war and fall into a life of crime with your friend. The open world nature of this game is not the same as GTA, which to me is a good thing, there aren't a million half-assed mini-games to play. Each section of the city feels different, China-town feels different than Little Italy. I'm not going to list any spoilers but I do feel like this plot is decent, the voice acting is pretty good for the most part, the in-car conversations are pretty humorous a lot of the time. The driving is a HUGE improvement over the first game, the cars feel like real cars would from the 40s that is spongey suspension and sluggish acceleration, this is not bad design, it's how the actual cars behaved back then. The map is actually displayed in the radar instead of the lame "map" that's in the first game.

    The guns are all fun, though the pistols pretty much all seem the same power, even the magnum (and the magnum sound a little goofy, like a cartoon gun). There is an actual cover system in the game, and overall the fights are much improved over the first game. This is a great game, it's heavy on graphics card, so I recommend looking into mods on how to disable the physics of the clothing in the game.

    Overall I've really enjoyed this game and don't understand why people are criticizing it for NOT being just a GTA clone, it's a game I honestly find more fun than GTA.
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  2. Aug 27, 2010
    Short. Played conservatively it only took a total of 8 hours to beat. And after that, there's just nothing to do. And I mean nothing as in theShort. Played conservatively it only took a total of 8 hours to beat. And after that, there's just nothing to do. And I mean nothing as in the game ends. No free roaming the city. No conquering of territory. No wooing young ladies. Nothing. Just the "thanks for playing credits". What a let down. I was looking forward to this one. Sadly, I'll have to pass on their next game release because now I feel sort of robbed.

    On a side note, the graphics are nice and the gameplay mechanics are decent. I just wish there were more to it. I paid $50 but I think the game is only worth about $30 (and that's being generous).
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  3. Sep 1, 2010
    If you enjoy the following: Lots of long winded driving sections, race against time missions, basic fight mechanics of a 1980's arcade game,If you enjoy the following: Lots of long winded driving sections, race against time missions, basic fight mechanics of a 1980's arcade game, cars which handle like shopping trolleys with all the weight at the front, answering the telephone, a predictable story, a sandbox setting which is actually on rails, driving every where at 40kmh, a beautifully rendered city completely squandered, being ripped off... then get this game.

    I thought gaming was slowly progressing beyond style over substance, Mafia II makes me think otherwise. I wish they could have made Mafia II the movie, because it would have saved me the depressing interaction.
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