PSA: Mafia III is broken

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Some luck I am having lately. Not only did our coverage of Doom end on the disappointing note that Doom 2016 was boring me so bad I called it quits, but now Mafia III is just not working at all.

Getting this game to run was already somewhat of a challenge. While Doom ran absolutely splendid, Mafia III was kicking my gaming rig into overdrive. Even on 30fps, 720p and with low settings, I could feel the heat blasting off my machine, which certainly didn’t improve when I upped the graphical fidelity to the bare minimum of 60fps/1080p. Even then the game wasn’t looking anywhere close enough to be this demanding on my system.

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A whole different problem is that cutscenes don’t work. I played about an hour of the game during which every cutscene froze up entirely, forcing me to skip it and miss out on the story. I soon figured out that this is a bug that happens when anything happens that makes the game not be the active window for any amount of time. So alt-tabbing is out of the question, but so are any pop-ups you might get such as low battery warnings or messages from virus scanners, both of which triggered this problem for me a few times. Even if those aren’t an issue, I would have appreciated being able to listen to a podcast while I drive around collecting all the optional pick-ups in the game.

So after I restarted the game an hour in so I could actually follow the story, things went well and smoothly for a while. At the very least, I can say that Mafia III is a decent-enough game, even if it’s not as unique as either of its predecessors or many of its contemporaries. Then I got to a point where I had another bug, which completely prevented me from progressing.

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On a mission where you have to take over a smack operation, you are tasked with doing a set amount of financial damage to the property. I destroyed everything available and stole every bit of cash, but that isn’t enough to cover the actual amount you need. The game advises you to kill two enforcers, but after taking them down the game didn’t register my actions; it still said I had killed 0/2 dudes and needed close to $4000 in damages to progress.

Googling around, I found more people having this issue and no official explanation as to what is causing it. People recommend reinstalling the game and replaying all of it, which apparently fixes the bug… sometimes. I could do that, but frankly, any game that glitches out 5 hours in with the only solution being replaying the whole thing is not going to be recommended. To be honest, I wouldn’t even say that makes it fit for sale.

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