The Godfather II

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Xbox 360 vs PS3 Face-Off: Round 19

Xbox 360 vs PS3 Face-Off: Round 19

HAWX, Fiddy, Wheelman, Wanted, Red Alert 3, Godfather II, Battle Fantasia.

While our most recent Chronicles of Riddick face-off once again saw Xbox 360 emerge victorious in our ongoing comparison features, this more comprehensive roundup of recent releases suggests that maybe, just maybe, the balance of quality is starting to shift three years into the lifespan of the current-generation consoles. Taken as a whole, neither machine can claim victory over the other in this collection of games, probably the first time this has happened since our coverage began over two years ago. A sign of things to come, or just a factor of the specific games chosen? Only time will tell.

As is the norm, for the more interesting games you'll find embedded comparison videos. The combination of insane-level h264 encoding combined with slowing the video down to 50 per cent speed all but eliminates macroblocking, making for streaming vids that do actually show the difference. Couple that with our usual 24-bit RGB screenshot comparison galleries and you're all set with the very best possible assets to back up the critical comment.

Onto the line-up then, a seven-strong collection featuring the best of the most recent cross-platform releases.

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The Godfather II

The Godfather II

Don go breaking my heart.

Back in the dark days when every other publisher was frantically jumping on the openworld bandwagon, we ended up with the core of a sometimes-quite-good Godfather game. You could rough up the working class, have fun smashing people's heads into inanimate objects and throw crooks off rooftops. Imagine The Punisher in a classic Mafioso setting with kill.switch cover mechanics. It had potential.

But this being mid-decade, it was inevitably ruined by some of the worst excesses of cut-and-paste sandbox design: incessant, brain-numbing repetition, needless padding and tedious map-spanning driving. Just to make the feeling of missed-opportunity all the more intense, EA also committed the cardinal sin of completely wasting the contributions of Hollywood legends like Marlon Brando and Robert Duval. As mindlessly enjoyable as certain elements of the game were, 6/10 was charitable given how good it could have been.

Making a better sequel shouldn't have been that difficult for a studio with the resources and experience of EA Redwood Shores. All it really needed was a tighter structure and more memorable and more challenging missions. But while the follow-up undoubtedly has a far better structure, the feeling that you're essentially playing a series of disconnected side-quests persists. It's a game strangely lacking in soul, and consistently fails to make you care about what you're doing and why. From start to finish you'll play on autopilot, shooting all the nasty men unquestioningly in what amounts to the ultimate pissing contest.

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Don Control multiplayer for Godfather II

RTS-style mode will be a free launch patch.

Electronic Arts has announced that it will add an extra multiplayer mode to The Godfather II in a free update when the game launches on April 10th.

Electronic Arts has announced that The Godfather II will be released for PS3, Xbox 360 and PC on 10th April in Europe, three days after it goes on sale in the States.

The Godfather II

Don? Moi?

Of all the games at EA's Winter Showcase in Guildford this week, there wasn't much that bruised any expectations. We always knew that a salvo of spin-offs and expansions would inflate the Spore franchise into something infinitely more disturbing and vulgar than a creature with bell-ends for eyes. And it comes as no surprise that Dragon Age is shaping up to be another fantastic BioWare story, and a game that'll bring a furious itching disease to the entire skin of anyone with a hint of ADHD.

Godfather II date nailed down

Mobster-themed sequel arriving in February.

EA has narrowed down its previous prediction of February for Godfather II's arrival, confirming it'll be released in Europe on the 27th. US gamers will get it three days earlier.

FeatureThe Godfather II

Fun for all the family.

Mafia dons are a funny bunch, spending their days in armchairs listening to other people's frantic begging. As jobs go, it's a bit like being Father Christmas, really, but a Father Christmas with fewer qualms about kneecapping. What mafia dons tend not to do is take orders. They don't get sent out on underwhelming missions, ducking bullets and hassling local tea boys. They have minions who do that for them.

EA delivers more detail on Godfather II

Uncovers classes, perks, and sting cards.

EA has dealt out more detail on Godfather II, the movie-licensed crime sequel due in 2009, and so far only talked about in hushed voices at the back of seedy bars.

EA boss talks Godfather II game

"GTA-style" with RTS elements.

Silver haired Electronic Arts boss John Riccitiello has been chattering away about the company's plans for a sequel to The Godfather game.