You have probably read Dawid’s review of Mafia 3 already, so I am not going to spend extra time going over the game’s good story getting bogged behind tedious busywork. Instead let us look at how it runs on PC. Welcome to New Bored though!
The first issue was the game being locked at 30 fps on PC. A patch was released that removed the limit, allowing for more control over the graphics of the game, meaning the physics wasn’t tied to frame rate or any of the other reasons normally used for why a PC game gets locked to 30 fps.
It took a lot of tweaking to get to 60 fps and even then it wasn’t ever a stable 60 fps. Driving around at a good speed, or during heavy action the frame rate jumps around, hopping between 30-50 fps for long periods until the scene calms down again. The game was tested on a GTX 960 2GB card at 2,560 x 1,080 and the small amount of VRAM is really starting to hurt. That said, reports of anything less than a GTX 1080 running at max graphics at 1080p will drop below 60 fps at times. This would be easier to swallow if the game looked better. Even at higher resolutions and the highest settings the game looks hazy with muddy textures. Night time or during the rain seems to be the least flattering.
The Xbox One version of Mafia 3 suffers from some bad visual pop-in, and the same happens in the PC version, especially when driving around on roads or boats at high speeds. Considering the relatively low density of traffic and people gathered on the roadside, I can only guess that this is being caused by loading in the environment and buildings. The rear-view mirror seems to suffer the worst, sometimes loading just buildings and no ground to compensate at high speeds. It is unfortunate, because some of the locations look amazing, like a nestled away quarry or the inside areas of large buildings, like the Federal Reserve bank or the mansions towards the end of the game.
21:9 The game supports 21:9 resolutions, but while the game seems to run it well enough, there are many issues in the menus. Text off the side of the screen, and loading splash screens at the start are cut off randomly. The game’s various cinematics run in the middle of the screen at original resolution with no problems.
Considering how often I hear people complain about the console versions of the game crashing, I only had one crash in 24 hours of playing Mafia III. It may be under-optimised for PC, but at least it is stable.
Mafia 3 is a tough game to recommend to people. It plays a lot like an open-world game of a few years ago, with busywork and bad AI bogging the game down. That said the game’s story and its documentary-styled delivery is worth experiencing even if a lot of the game is mindless repetition of tasks and a stock story of revenge. Just the experience of a game portraying the unfair, illogical and rampant racism of society in a solid way is enough to make you think about who you are and how you interact with others.