Just when we thought we'd played through enough versions of The Godfather to choke a horse (and presumably decapitate it afterward), two more were announced: The Godfather: Blackhand Edition for Wii and The Godfather: The Don's Edition for PS3. Due out in March - a full year after the last-gen versions hit - the new titles seemed like a blatant attempt to milk as much money as possible from the Godfather license.
Once we stopped rolling our eyes long enough to actually play them, however, it became clear that these aren't just hollow cash grabs. Rather than just porting their aging game onto new hardware and calling it a day, it looks like the developers are actually putting a lot of thought into these new editions.
Although Blackhand and The Don's Edition are essentially the same 1940s Grand Theft Auto clone that was released on multiple platforms last year, there's a lot that's new. Both versions feature all the bonus content that was added to the Xbox 360 version (the review of which you can read here), along with new missions, new environments, new crime-family compounds and new abilities for your fledgling mobster anti-hero. Weapons can now be picked from a quick, circular "wheel" menu. Oh, and now you can use certain weapons (bottles, baseball bats, etc.) when you've grabbed a guy for an up-close beating. That's pretty cool.
More interestingly, they also feature motion-sensitive controls. On the PS3, this seems limited to what you can do when you've grabbed someone for an up-close beatdown; you can jerk him to the side by jerking the controller, for example, or headbutt him by yanking it toward your noggin. But on the Wii, it's much more elaborate, with the main character's animations redesigned around whatever gestures came naturally to the game's testers.