Mafia III Developers Explain Why They Cut the Game’s Original “Shocking” Opening Sequence

The development team of Mafia III shed a bit more insight into the game's original opening sequence that was seen as too potentially controversial.

on July 12, 2018 2:59 PM

Originally released in 2016, the open-world action-adventure game Mafia III garnered praise for its action-packed story that also addressed some hard-hitting themes of racism and social inequality in America during the 1960s, while the game’s creative team revealed that it had a much more shocking opening to kick off the game in mind.

In a report from EurogamerMafia III game director Haden Blackman and executive producer Andrew Wilson gave some more insight into the development of the game, and specifically addressed that its developer, Hanger 13, had originally intended for the game to have a much darker opening sequence.

Speaking at the Develop Conference in Brighton, Wilson explained that the studio had originally planned for the game to include a cold-open sequence that would explain why the game’s protagonist, Lincoln Clay, had left the country to head to war in Vietnam, with the opening sequence ultimately revealing that Clay had killed a police officer in response to himself and his friends being “ambushed by the mob,” leading him to “resort to violence to escape.”

While the team had intended to include the sequence as a way of revealing the tragic backstory of Lincoln’s character, the game’s director, Haden Blackman, ultimately addressed that the sequence ended up feeling “tacked on” compared to the rest of the game, especially in the limited instances where Lincoln and the other characters addressed the circumstances. Ultimately, Blackman explained that the sequence felt “exploitative” and was cut from the game before release, with the team even going as far as removing all files and instances of the sequence from the developer’s servers, as it “would have looked terrible” seeing the sequence out of context from the rest of the game and “even more shocking.”

Mafia III is available now on PS4, Xbox One, and PC.

 /  Features Editor
Ryan is the Features Editor at DualShockers, with over five years' experience in the world of video games culture and writing. He holds a BA in English & Cinema from Binghamton University, and lives in New York City.