- "Well, that was fun - in a fuckin' terrible, sick, not-at-all-fun way."
- ―Vincent Gognitti to Max Payne, after escaping Vladimir Lem's men
Much of his early life is unknown, other than the fact that he is a big fan of The Adventures of Captain BaseBallBat-Boy series. At some point he joined the Punchinellos, becoming a Capo for the family by 2001.
He serves as Jack Lupino's right-hand man, helping him to run out his drug dealing business, as well serving as an acting-boss, due to Lupino's mental status.
In 2001, He is chased by the NYPD detctive Max Payne, who set off a revenge quest, believing Lupino was behind his family's death. Vinnie is injured by the detective and flees from his apartment, letting his men to deal with Payne, who chases him down on the rooftops.
He is eventually caught by Payne, and after being beaten up a bit and threatened with death, he tells Payne about Lupino's wherabouts.
After 2001, he becomes the Underboss of the crime family, and begins a gang war against the Russian Mob and its leader, Vladimir Lem, his mortal enemy. Vinnie and his men attack Vodka, Lem's restaurant, vowing to finish off the Russian Mobster, but fails due to Payne's involvement, leading him to escape the scene.
He is believed by Payne to be the main person behind a group of hitmen known as the Squeaky Cleaning Company, but it is revealed to be false, and Lem being the real mastermind. Due to his reckless ways, Vinnie loses his boss's support, leaving him with no men, no weapons, and no protection.
Vinnie finally finds himself at a trap set off by Lem, inside a Captain BaseBallBat-Boy suit wired with a bomb, a 'Trojan Horrse' that ironically uses Vinnie's affection to the franchise. Payne and Vinnie become briefly allies, being both tricked by Lem, and Payne set to help Vinnie to deactive the bomb. The two are caught by Lem at a funhouse, who activates the bomb inside the suit, killing Vinnie.
Vinnie's background is fairly unknown. It is known that Vinnie is a very big fan of The Adventures of Captain BaseBallBat-Boy, having many collector items of the franchise in his apartment. Other information of his life before the Punchinellos is unknown.
Right-hand man of Lupino
At some point, Gognitti joined the Punchinello crime family, eventually becoming a Capo of the family, as well the right hand man of the family's underboss, Jack Lupino.
As of the beginning of 2001, he is a financial manager for the Mafia and their V dealings, but also oversees contracts with hired killers, keeps an eye on his boss Lupino, and other activities. Lupino's psychopathic attitude often frighten Vinnie. He also began to giving orders to the Finito brothers, though they disliked him.
- Main article: Shootout at Lupino's hotel
In 2001, Vinnie works for the Punchinello crime family. He is an underling to the V trafficker Jack Lupino, and helps organize the mob's dealings.
The same year, detective Max Payne decides to hunt down Lupino, believing that Lupino was responsible for his family's death. Payne's first stop is Lupino's Hotel, but he does not find Lupino, instead he finds the Finitos guarding the hotel, but are killed by him. Vinnie sends the Finitos a letter telling that hitman Rico Muerte arrives to the hotel, ordering them to follow Muerte's wishes. Muerte himself is later killed by the detective.
A dying soldier of the family later informs Vinnie on phone that Payne has attacked the hotel, leading Gognitti to yell at the (now-deceased) soldier, angrily ordering him to eliminate Payne. Payne himself overhears the phone call, and set to find Gognitti.
Sometime before the attack, Vinnie sends a letter, saying that the Russians have no courage to attack the Punchinellos. This is later revealed to be incorrect, as the Russians destroy Lupino's hotel.
Chased by Payne
- "Payne! I'll kill you, ya lousy frickin' cop!"
- ―Vinnie yelling at Payne.
After leaving the hotel, Payne arrives to Gognitti's apartment, much to the latter's shock, who begins to yell at the detective, only to be shot shortly afterwards. Vinnie then orders his men to finish off Payne while he escapes from the apartment.
Max hunts for him in his quest to find Lupino and ended up wounding Vinnie then chasing him through numerous rooftops, even chasing him on the roof of a train.
When he catches up to Vinnie, Max fights about seven guards. After Max finishes off the guards, he proceeds to have a gun fight with Vinnie, but Vinnie loses. Max then interrogates Vinnie by threatening to try to kill him with his gun, which scares Vinnie into telling Max everything. After interrogating Vinnie, Max leaves him lying bleeding in an alleyway to look for Lupino.
Vinnie survives his encounter with Payne, and by 2003, after the deaths of many of the major Punchinello members, Vinnie is promoted to the Underboss, while a person known only as the Godfather takes control over the crime family. By 2003, Vinnie becomes much more hostile towards the Russian mobster Lem, hosting gangs wars against him.
2003:The Cleaner case
- Main article: Cleaner Case
Shootout at Vodka
- Main article: Shootout at Vodka
- Die Russian! Fuckin' die already!
- You're not even trying!
- Vinnie and Vlad engage in a gunfight at Vodka.
In 2003, Vinnie conducts another mob war against Vladimir Lem after getting help from a mysterious third party (hinted to be another Italian mob) in order to wipe out competition for the gun market.
Vinnie and his men attack Lem's business, a restaurant called "Vodka", and killing most of his men save for Mike. Lucky for Lem, Payne arrives and help the Russian. Vinnie sends his men to kill Payne, but they fails. Due to the police's arrival, Vinnie runs away from Vodka, but threating Lem that he will pay.
Suspect of the cleaner case
- "According to Vladimir Lem, the Mob captain Vinnie Gognitti is behind the hits."
- ―Max Payne to Jim Bravura.
Vlad uses Vinnie as a scapegoat, telling Payne that the cleaners were Vinnie's men in order to mislead Max. Within a day, Vinnie starts losing in his struggle with Vlad and is forced to fight on his own turf. For the most of Payne's case with the cleaner, Vinnie remains the main suspect.
His affiliate mob boss, "The Godfather", informs him that he will no longer send Vinnie help or will supoort him in the Mob war, stating that Vinnie going against to the Mob Boss' ideas. Vinnie eventually loses all his men to Lem's cleaners. Lem eventually decides to finish off Vinnie; knowning Gognitti's affection to Captain BaseBallBatBoy, he designs a suit based on the show, set with a bomb.
- "Poor guy...poor basterd."
- ―Mona, upon finding Vinnie's remains.
With all of his men are dead, Vinnie gets trapped inside the Captain BaseballBatBoy suit wired to a bomb and teams up with Max, who only helps him to complicate Vlad's plans, to find help for disarming the bomb.
After being escorted and protected by Max, the duo is caught by Vlad in Mona's funhouse. Vlad forces Max to drop his gun by threatening to detonate the bomb. Later after dealing with Payne, Vlad detonates the bomb, killing Vinnie (in Max's dream, Vlad forces Vinnie to play a Captain BaseballBatBoy trivia game and promises to let him go if he wins. Vinnie gets the first question correct but unfortunately fails the second through a misunderstanding of the question. Vlad then murders Vinnie with the press of a button).
Mona Sax rushes to the scene and discovers what the remains of Vinnie, and, in a rare moment of sympathy, murmurs about Vinnie's bad luck.
- "Vinnie Gognitti - I didn't think there was enough of him to fill a grave, the poor son of a bitch. His antics had brought the once great house of Punchinello to its knees, and they were still struggling to stand up."
- ―Payne, after he finds Gognitti's gravestone.
After his death, his remains are recovered and buried in the Golgotha Cemetery, in which other certain people from Payne's life are buried as well. On his grave it was written: "His flame burned brightly to the end."
In 2012, Payne was involved in gunfight at the cemetery, and passed by Vinnie's grave, commenting that he did not think that his remains were enough to fill his grave, as well saying that Gognitti's actions brought the fall of the Punchinellos, who by 2012 still recovering from their fall from 2003.
Personality and traits
Vinnie is somewhat childish for his age despite his position in the Punchinello crime family.
He is fairly clever, but also cowardly; Max comments that Vinnie "...was a high-strung whiner..." who always seemed ready to have a nervous breakdown, and "...had the brains to run the business [the Mafia] but he lacked the balls, always falling short..."
Vinnie is very hot-tempered and foul-mouthed person, often yelling and cursing when he is angry. Vinnie was known for taking his frustration out on underaged addicts and call girls.
Vinnie is shown to be not very capable with firearms, missing Payne in 2001 while shooting his powerful handgun, and not managing to hit not Lem nor Payne, even when he had a good chance.
Vinnie Gognitti is a medium-sized man with a golden brown hair and hazel-coloured eyes. He has a pale-coloured skin tone.
In 2001, Vinnie wears a greyish-blue suit with a sickly-yellow shirt. He also wears round sunglasses during that time.
In 2003, Vinnie sports a much more casual outfit, consisting of a blue tracksuit with a red torso and thick white "rings" on the sleeves. He wears a white T-shirt and a pair of white sneakers. He has three gold necklaces in different sizes.
During his last moments, Vinnie wears a costume of based on the character of Captain Baseball Bat Boy; containing a huge head of the character, which has an open mouth from where Vinnie can see. It contains white T-shirt and gloves, as well blue pants and ridiculously big red All-Stars shoes.
- Desert Eagle - a powerful semi-automatic handgun. This is Vinnie's weapon of choise in 2001, and he uses it against Payne while the latter chases him.
- Winchester Model 1300 - a pump-action shotgun. Vinnie uses this shotgun while he is chased by Payne.
- Ingram - a common machine pistol, often used by the Mafia. This is Vinnie's weapon of choice in 2003, and he uses it during his attack on Vodka. He tries to shoot Lem with it, and shoot at Payne and Mike as he escapes.
- Red Baseball bat - a big red bat modeled after the bat used by Captain BaseBallBatBoy. Vinnie holds it while he wears the costume.
Behind the scenes
- Vinnie Gognitti's real name is Vincent, his real name can be heard in his answering machine in his house in Dearest of All My Friends in Max Payne 2.
- Although Vinnie is a hardcore fan of Captain BaseBallBat-Boy in Max Payne 2, he showed no such adoration in the first game.
- Vinnie got stuck inside a cartoon character suit by being tricked by Vladimir Lem's "Trojan Horse."
- After Max gets shot in the head by Vlad, Max has a dream in which a TV show shows that Vlad played a trivia game with Vinnie. Vinnie lost and died.
- In Max Payne 3, Vinnie's tombstone can be seen at the Golgotha Cemetery.
In the 2001 Max Payne, Vinnie was voiced by Joe Dallo. In the 2003 Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne, Vinnie was voiced by Fred Berman. He is mo-capped by Olli Tukiainen in the first game, and by Stephen Gregory in the second game.
Role as an Antagonist
Vinnie has some traits unique to himself among the antagonists of the Max Payne series:
- He is the only antagonist that survives events of the game, suriving the events of the original game. This is not counting Vladimir Lem, who acts as an ally in the original game, and only turns into an antagonist in the second game.
- Among the Punchinello crime family antagonists, Vinnie is the only one to appear in person more than one level, as well the only one who survived the events of the first game.
- In the second game, Vinnie is the only antagonist who does not act as an ally to Vladimir Lem, acting as an enemy to him instead.
- Vinnie is the only character who acts as an ally to Max Payne as a known antagonist; "helping" during the level "Dearest of All My Friends".
- Vinnie is the second antagonist to be killed by another antagonist; the first is Angelo Punchinello, killed by Nicole Horne's men, and the third is Arthur Fischer, killed by Serrano.
Max Payne boss fight strategy
When fighting Gognitti in Max Payne, he wields a Desert Eagle and has poor aim. He has the most guards guarding him which makes him hard to reach. With around nine guards he can be tricky to reach. Kill the nine guards atop the staircase. It is possible that they will come up and fight you. Once his guards are taken care of, Vinnie can be easily taken down with just three shotgun shots.
Max Payne 3
Vinnie Gognitti is one of the eight character models from previous games that appear in the muliplayer of the 2012 Max Payne 3. His multiplayer avatar is a part of the pre-order Classic Character Pack bonus. He is voiced by his Max Payne 2 voice actor, Fred Berman, and appears to be modeled after his Max Payne 1 appearance.
- Max Payne
- Max Payne 2
- Max Payne 3 (Mentioned only)
- Ain't No Reprievement Gonna Be Found (Gravestone only)
- Max Payne 3 multiplayer (Classic Character Pack)
|Max Payne • Alex Balder • B.B. • Jim Bravura • Vincent Gognitti • Nicole Horne • Mona Sax • Vladimir Lem • Jack Lupino • Michelle Payne • Angelo Punchinello • Alfred Woden
|Max Payne • Mona Sax • Jim Bravura • Vincent Gognitti • Kaufman • Vladimir Lem • Mike • Valerie Winterson • Alfred Woden