14 Best Mafia Games for Xbox Series X / S

Image credit: 2K Games / Microsoft Store

Games have long been one of the main mediums where people can experience the dark side of human life. They are rather good at it too, as players get to control what actions they can undertake while having the kind of freedom that they do not have in real life.

When it comes to Mafia games, they broadly fall under two categories. The first one allows you to be a criminal. The chief aim here is to get away with as much as you can without being caught by the police.

The second is where you get to play the role of police or a task force. Here, it is up to you to stop the bad guys from all the mischief that they could be getting up to. In some cases, the role of the police is replaced by a vigilante.

Whichever one of the two categories you prefer, the fact is that mafia games are extremely fun to play. They were some of the first to embrace the concept of an open world, something that has been adopted by a lot of the other genres. Based on the concept of freedom, the entire genre is one of the biggest in the industry.

Here, we have listed the 14 best mafia games on Xbox Series X / S.

Mafia II

We begin our list with Mafia II. While there has been a Mafia III (and it makes our list), Mafia II is considered by most to be the best Mafia game of all time.

Once you play the game, you realize why that is. On the surface, it is just an open-world game where you get to be a part of the Mafia. While not as expansive as GTA in the freedom that it provides, there is a vast open-world coupled with lots of interesting characters.

What sets the game apart is its story. Set in the golden age of the Mafia, you get to be Vito Scaletta, a man who joins the mob in order to pay his debts. You will need to climb the family ladder by completing missions and work your way to the top.

Considered by many to be one of the best stories ever in a video game, think of Mafia II as the Godfather game that we never got on Series X.

In 2020, the game was remastered with updated visuals and all DLCs. This removed the one complaint that we could have had with the game: The visuals. As far as Mafia games go, this is as good and as authentic as it gets.

Grand Theft Auto V

GTA V may very well be the game that is the most common entry on lists like these. This is because the game truly defies the concept of a genre. For example, it was on our list of the best open-world games for Xbox.

While the game is not based around the Mafia itself, it does revolve around an imaginary crime family. The main aspect of the game that fans should expect to enjoy is the single-player campaign.

Apart from that, you can also roam around and basically do anything you want. There is also an online component where the game can be played in co-op mode. It is also possible to take part in various mini-games and compete against your friends.

Whether you are looking to evade the police or have a race in rocky terrain, GTA V has got your back. As one of the most complete games out there, there is a huge chance that you will not want to play anything else for a while once you start playing GTA V.

This is the Police

This is the Police is a very unique game that puts you in extremely difficult positions. You play the role of a police chief. Nearing retirement, it is up to you not only to make sure that the department runs smoothly but also that you survive until you retire.

The game has everything from your average robber to the Mafia staging complex heists. You need to respond to emergencies, hire new personnel, and make sure that the neighborhood is as free of crime as it can be.

There will be times when you will need to make moral decisions. For example, there may be problems that you face that have racial undertones. Taking the moral high ground would obviously be the better option, but it will come at a personal cost.

With the Mafia bosses basically running the underworld, This is the Police provides a fascinating yet horrifyingly realistic look at what policework was like just a few decades ago.

L.A. Noire

L.A. Noire is another game that has you play as a police officer. However, you get to play as a lonesome detective this time.

You need to investigate every single crime that you are assigned. During this, you will need to look for clues, interrogate suspects, and shoot criminals. While the game does not directly deal with the Mafia, it does have similar overtones.

If you are looking for a mystery game but also want it to have a fair bit of action. L.A. Noire is probably the best option. This is why it also made our list of the best detective games for Xbox.

Watch Dogs 2

The next game on our list of the best Mafia games for Xbox is Watch Dogs 2. Watch Dogs 2 is different from most of the other games on this list. In the game, you get to play the role of a vigilante hacker.

As someone who hates the criminal underworld (which has basically overtaken the city), you decide to do something about it. Joining another group of hackers known as the Dedsec, you engage in a bid to take down ctOS 2.0, an operating system that criminals use for control and manipulation.

You can basically hack into everything. However, you cannot take the criminal organization head-on. You will need to utilize your skills and make sure that you are not caught while you slowly dismantle their organization.

Lastly, there is both a co-op and an adversarial multiplayer mode. The adversarial multiplayer mode is quite unique, and definitely worth a try if you want to experience a brand-new type of multiplayer combat.

Mafia III

Mafia III had a bit of a controversial release. The fans of the older games did not like some of the directions taken by the developers, many of which were with the intention to make the game appeal to a wider audience.

That said, there is a lot to love here. For one, the story is still quite imaginative. It follows Lincoln Clay, a Vietnam war veteran who is out for revenge after his surrogate family is wiped out by the Italian mafia.

There are a lot of options in how you choose to proceed with the story. Many missions can be performed stealthily and with tactfulness. On the other hand, you always have the option of simply shooting everything you see.

We cannot say that you should play Mafia III over the remastered version of Mafia II. However, those who enjoyed the concepts and the basic gameplay of the previous iteration will find a lot to love in Mafia III as well.

Hitman Series

The entire Hitman series is great. However, those who are looking for the most freedom and the best graphics should opt for Hitman 3.

With Hitman 3, you now have a lot of ways to kill your target. You can try to be as fast as possible and discover interesting shortcuts in the levels. On the other hand, you can aim to be creative. While brute-forcing your way through the levels is possible in some cases, stealth is usually preferred.

With some of the best stealth mechanics of any game, Hitman 3 was on our list of the best stealth games for Xbox.

Once you have played through Hitman 3, you may want to try some of the other games in the series. While not as big on graphical detail, they do provide similar gameplay. On top of that, they also tend to focus a bit more on the story compared to the third iteration.

Sleeping Dogs

The next game on our list of the best mafia games for Xbox Series X and S is Sleeping Dogs. The game was originally an Xbox 360 title but has been reworked to be played on subsequent generations.

The story is based on the Triads, which you can think of as the Hong Kong version of the Mafia. As an undercover cop, you need to prove your worth and rise up in the family. Only when you are powerful enough will you be able to take them down.

Despite the remaster, the visuals are quite obviously outdated. However, you do get to play the game at a higher frame rate on the Series X and S. On top of that, the Definitive Edition of the game comes with 36 DLCs that were available with the original version of the game.

Saints Row IV

Saints Row IV is perhaps the game that relates in the least to Mafia games on this list. However, it has many themes that are in the games of the genre. This includes a lot of violence and an open world.

The main thing that those who have not played the series need to understand is that there are no rules in the world of Saints Row. Anything and everything can happen, and it does not need to be realistic in the slightest.

Whether you want to develop superpowers or use a dubstep gun, you can. All that matters is that you manage to repel the alien invasion and prevent the world from entering slavery.

Yakuza Like a Dragon

If you are looking for a game that has a humorous aspect to it but isn’t as crazy as Saints Row, you should check out the Yakuza series.

Like a Dragon is generally thought to be the best game in the series available on the newer generation of consoles. It has kept the same basic formula but made a lot of changes, most of which are for the better. The biggest one is a revamped combat system, which functions more like an RPG than a fighting game.

This makes Yakuza unique in its genre. The combat system is surprisingly well-developed, and leveling up your character plays an important part in the story.

Yakuza 0

Another Yakuza game that you should definitely try out is Yakuza 0. Featuring combat and themes more consistent with that of the Yakuza clan in Japan, the game is set in the 1980s.

It follows the story of two individuals who have become embroiled in a scheme that threatens to take their life. Yakuza 0 plays quite similarly to the average GTA game. You can pursue the missions and fight your way to the end. You can also go visit the various clubs and arcades and play mini-games.

The combat here is dynamic in the sense that you can make complete use of your environment. Your arms and legs are supplemented by everything from weapons to chairs and signposts. Basically, everything is a weapon if you know how to use it.

Outriders

Outriders is an RPG set in a dark and crime-ridden world where you and your party set out in search of a signal. Featuring a lot of dystopian themes, Outriders is primarily a shooting game.

The main reason for us including it on our list of the best mafia Xbox games is due to its co-op mode. Most of the games on our list so far have been single-player only, and Outriders presents a welcome change from all of that.

Players should remember though that mafia themes are not explored in the game directly. You do enter a world where it’s every man for himself and all sorts of criminals are out to get you. Still, those looking for a pure mobster experience should probably stay away.

Lastly, remember that the game must be played online as there are no offline modes.

Milanoir

Milanoir is one of the most fascinating games on this list. It is set in the city of Milan in the 1970s. As someone who has recently been released from jail, it is your job to find and exact your revenge on the man who framed you.

Based on Italian films from the 1970s, everything from the soundtrack to the art style is classically Italian. This may be a turn-off for some, but the gameplay is extremely intricate. Just like some of the other titles on this list, you have various options for how you want to complete a specific mission.

Lastly, there is both a co-op mode and an arena mode in Milanoir. The co-op mode has you and one other player completing the story. The arena mode, on the other hand, makes you survive for as long as possible against a barrage of enemies that never ends.

GTA Trilogy

We end our list of the best mafia games for Xbox Series X / S with the three games that were a part of the GTA III. The Trilogy also has San Andreas and Vice City, the three independent stories are pretty much the definition of the entire crime genre.

There is no reason to go into the details here. The games play in a similar manner but have different storylines and worlds. The graphics have been upgraded to a certain extent, but the games still look quite outdated by modern standards.

Long-time fans of the genre will almost certainly have played these games at some point, so they might be perfect for a hit of nostalgia. Those who haven’t may find the games to be lacking when compared to titles like GTA V and Yakuza Like a Dragon, but they are still great games all the same.

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