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Thoughts on Mafia 2's Rape Scene

Posted on 30th Aug 2010 at 10:14 by Joe Martin with 39 comments

Joe Martin
It happens in the prison showers, when Vito is told to do some cleaning and is left alone with some nasty men who express a desire to do nasty things to him. Vito wants none of this, which is consistent with his character, so he puts up a fight. Five or six punches later, it fades to black and Vito moves calmly on to the next scene.

There’s nothing terribly wrong with the event when it happens that way; it’s a little flat, perhaps, but that’s it. What bothers me more though is what happens if you don’t manage to fight the bullies off. Namely, nothing; you get a game over sequence and then have to restart the fight. Vito doesn’t actually get raped, no matter what you do.

To be clear, I don’t want Vito to get raped, but I do think that if you’re going to have a rape scene like that in your game then you should provide for all outcomes. Especially since Mafia 2 often lets you fail missions without consequence. You might be told to deliver X parcels in Y minutes, ending in a cutscene where you’re teased for poor driving if you don’t manage it. There’s no game over if you fail to impress the Don, so why should there be one if you’re defending against rapists?

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