Mafia was just released the other day on gametap and it's one of the games I never played but have been meaning to for some time. I didn't play it originally due to my general dislike at the time of sandbox games like GTA. God Father Black Hand, No more Heroes and recently Far Cry 2 have changed that for me. So...I downloaded it and was completely blown away by the intro; looks to be a sandbox game with a story and a character or 2 I might actually care about.
So...anyhow....I fire up the tutorial and I'm asked to go to climb up on some stage and crouch down and pick up a weapon on a table. So I do the necessary moves and all my avatar does is get into a boxing crouch and shadow boxes the table or does nothing??? I'm now left wondering if I just completely suck at mouse+keyboard control or if the tutorial's borked. In all fairness to myself, if I don't setup my Nostromo gaming keypad I'm more or less lost in a PC game; don't know why, but keyboards have never felt natural to me for gaming despite having been typing on them over 2 decades. I'm going to push on with this a bit and try to figure it out, but if anyone can recall what's necessary to get this game mechanic to work, I'd appreciate it.
You double checked your key shortcuts, yes?
If I remember, for me, the middle mouse button had me picking things up. The controls are a little weird, especially looking back on them now, when things have been streamlined in other ways.
I would also say that Mafia is way less sandboxy than current sandbox games. IIRC, there's a freeplay mode, but I don't think I ever touched that for more than a minute. The story mode is so phenomenal, there's no need. One of these days I may even get through the last mission!