Game: Gangland
Platform: PC
Studio: Whiptail
Rating: 6/10

Game Company’s Description: SINGLEPLAYER STORY: There were five brothers Romano, Angelo, Sonny, Chico and Mario. As kids they were inseparable as they grew up on Sicily with their grandparents. As they grew older three of the brothers became more and more unsatisfied with the quiet life in the Mediterranean and one day they killed their own brother Chico in a fight whereafter they fled to the land of opportunity where they began each their own criminal career.

That made grandpa very upset… He sent his fourth grandchild to America to track down and kill his malicious brothers and avenge the murder. First thing Mario should do when he arrives is to look up his uncle Vincente…
MULTIPLAYER STORY: You take on the role of one of the four Italian brothers, Mario, Angelo, Romano or Sonny. Born into Sicilian mafia, you must work your way up within the family and compete with other mobs and gangsters for supremacy in Paradise City.

Look: The graphics aren’t where Gangland goes wrong. The models are rendered in 3D right down to the map. There is a good amount of detail right down to the day turning into night. There is an issue with trying to figure out who everyone is. Some character models look very similar which can cause some issues when you are as nervous as I was being a gangster.

Feel: You’re going to have to drive so get used to the controls as much as you can. It’s not easy either as the controls leave a lot to be desired and when you smash up your ride well like trying to find another.

The street will remind you of high noon where it seems everyone are out to cap you. It may save your life on occasion, but the AI is bad. Not only do your henchmen have no brains, but the enemy doesn’t either. Henchmen seem to fire their guns at will attracting all kinds of attention, usually the police.

Shooting is no day at the park. It’s hard to kill anyone when you can’t hit anything. Worse yet your henchmen are the worst kind of shots. Didn’t anyone practice shooting? And then if your enemies weren’t pain enough you get the cops involved and then citizens open fire and you are in the middle of hell. And why is it that you pay off the cops only to find them trying to fill you full of lead?

Hear: Very little in the way of background sounds. It’s a city, so where are the sounds of the day? The dialogue is sufficient.

Frankly: There are issues with saving and a new patch has apparently fixed that—if they hadn’t fixed it this game would be completely worthless. Personally the whole mob genre is fascinating just as GTA was and sparked such fandom. Gangland really misses the boat and it’s unfortunate. It only had to be fun to work and with the rough controls often it’s not even that.

+ Ralphie Wright

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