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The Godfather II Review

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An ambitious and meditative take on its hallowed source

★★★★

For a movie tie-in – normally the most despised and unpredictable of genres – Godfather II is an ambitious and meditative take on its hallowed source.

Like its predecessor the game is all about using violence and intimidation to drive your Mafioso career, players being challenged to use restraint when beating on enemies to get the best results and always keep a wary eye on rival families to avoid being gunned down before their empire takes root. But while the original Godfather was driven by a rigid plot, the sequel features a much sharper strategic edge, offering players a detailed map of the city which they can use to plan attacks and watch their empire grow, enforcing the notion that your crimes are part of a bigger picture and helping you plot a path from lowly thug to feared Don.

A greater focus on assembling a team of skilled henchmen also does a fine job of evolving the series – and the clever multiplayer mode is a great way to develop characters – but the chunky 1950s vehicles, familiar crime game clichés and liberties taken with the Godfather licence are sure to incense some players.