EA Games makes an offer it hopes fans of Mafioso mythology cannot refuse, in this video game translation of the award-winning 1972 Francis Ford Coppola film. Players take the role of a small-time thug, newly inducted into the Corleone family and looking to make it big. By running missions for the family in the game's rendition of 1940s New York City, players can earn the respect of the family and be promoted to positions of power and influence in the organization. The game is designed to track the player's decisions and interactions throughout the criminal career, such that NPCs will remember how they were treated in the past and react appropriately in future dealings. In order to encourage players to truly take on the role of their own Corleone henchman, EA Games' The Godfather offers a "MobFace" custom character creator which allows for adjustment of physique, facial features, and attire. All other major characters featured in the game are voiced by the actors who played them in the movie, including Marlon Brando (posthumously) as Don Vito Corleone, James Caan as Sonny Corleone, and Robert Duvall as consigliore Tom Hagen.
The Wii version of the game features a few upgrades in terms of environment and gameplay. Gamers direct the actions of their onscreen character with the Nunchuk and the Wii Remote; using a variety of hand gestures to accomplish such tasks as fighting back, strangling someone, using a shotgun, driving, and pushing people out of the way. Players now have a choice of professions, and they may walk the path of an Enforcer or direct from the shadows as an Operator. Each career comes with a unique skill tree where players can learn new abilities and gain greater control over character upgrades. As they journey through the game, players will find themselves in a variety of environments including rooftops, a shipyard, and a train station. Gamers may take over the transportation hubs to earn a little loot with the help of a paid police force or a Corleone hit squad. Additionally, players may wire cars with bombs and watch their enemies go up in a giant ball of fire.