Before the events of Sly 3, Murray left the gang and took up Dreamtime training with the Guru, who sent him to Venice to make the "black water run pure." In "An Opera of Fear," Sly Cooper and Bentley discovered that Murray was in Venice. The two of them went there to track down their friend and convince him to return to the gang.
Sly's first job was to break into the police headquarters to find any leads on Murray's whereabouts. Inside, he encountered former Klaww Gang member Dimitri Lousteau. They decided to put aside their past differences and work together to find Murray.
During their operation in Venice, the gang encountered a local mob boss and celebrity opera singer known as Don Octavio. After losing his popularity to rock music, the Don joined a mob that took him into "the business." Determined to attract his opera fans, Octavio began pulling off a tar-pumping scheme for the Carnival season, which also involved sinking buildings into the canals via a detonation switch during his comeback recital.
Venice suffered significant damage due to Octavio's schemes. It was up to the gang to put an end to this destruction and help Murray fulfill his task of making the "black water run pure." Octavio, who grew irritated with Bentley, ruthlessly injured him, causing Murray to lose his temper and engage in a fight with the Don to save his friend. Murray defeated Octavio and escaped Venice with Sly and Bentley.
Afterwards, Carmelita Fox hauled the Don and his mob off to jail, while Murray returned to the gang. Octavio received a thirty-year sentence for the destruction he caused. Thanks to the Cooper Gang, Venice was now safe from Octavio's destructive schemes. Meanwhile, Octavio would ironically find success as an opera singer in jail, as the rest of the mob was arrested as well.
Venice is a large city, featuring many buildings, rooftops, bridges, pathways and canals. There are also many gondolas and boats flowing in the water, suitable for hitching a ride through town. Also in the water are several poles made perfect for Sly Cooper's Ninja Spire Jump. There are also two types of traps around town players can use to defeat guards - such as gondolas suspended from cranks, and trapdoors above a watery grave.
Around town are also many small breakable tables and chairs, which can be destroyed for coins. Awnings that players can use to bounce to higher locations appear attached to buildings and some indestructible tables. In some areas, there are also some stationary gondolas, which can also be used for bouncing on.
Another important environmental feature was Octavio's giant blue Ferris Wheel, located east of the safe house. Octavio used it to speed up the tar pumping process, but it was destroyed by Sly and Bentley.
Octavio main security force patrolling the Venetian streets consisted of Cane Corsos serving as flashlight guards, and pigeons and cats serving as rooftop guards. Carmelita Fox was also seen patrolling an area near the police station, and would take out any guards that happen to appear in her sight.
There are two notable landmarks in Venice, which are Rialto Bridge and a large tower. Rialto Bridge was mentioned by Dimitri Lousteau at the beginning of "An Opera of Fear." It was where he told Sly to meet Murray. The tower is the tallest building in Venice. It is located in a large open area near Police Headquarters. It towers high above one of the coffee houses. At the top of the building was Octavio's sign, which was destroyed by Sly.
The police headquarters was used by Carmelita and her mercenaries while they were in Venice trying to apprehend Octavio. The police station is located north of the safe house and sits across from one of Octavio's coffee houses within a large open area, with a very wide canal beside it. It has police sirens placed on the roof, a police star symbol shown above the front door and on the inside, a jail cell, which Dimitri was placed in. Its most noticeable feature is the large glass dome on top, which is made of glazed tile, making it impossible to climb.
On the inside are several tables which Carmelita's mercenaries sat down at when she gave her presentation on Octavio's schemes. Carmelita's office is found on the side of the room opposite the location of the jail cell, and unlike her office from the first game, it is not entirely enclosed, being located inside a glass wall, several of which are seen around the room. It was there that Sly found the key to unlock Dimitri's cell. The ceiling lights are also known to flicker on and off on occasion. Carmelita also has a guard standing watch over the front entrance.
Octavio's opera house
Octavio's opera house served as the main base of operations for Octavio. It is a large building that sports a glass dome at the top, similar to the police headquarters, but more oval-shaped. It has two different entrances, which are the front door and the hatch on the right side of the building, inside a fenced-in garden.
On the inside are several security doors, staircases and hallways. There is also a large room filled with water, with several canoes and crates floating in it. There is also a pump room, which was being protected by Octavio's men, as he did not want any part of his operation sabotaged down there.
The gang's safe house was located near a large bridge on the southeastern corner of town. It was in an upstairs apartment. Sly's first job took place just near the safe house.
Octavio's stage was located just across from his opera house. It sits within an area with several tables surrounding it, and it was here that Octavio held his opera recital. It featured a chandelier in the middle supported by multiple ropes. The stage was destroyed during the gang's heist, due to an unfortunate boat incident involving Octavio and his goon.
Octavio's coffee houses
Octavio also owned three legit coffee houses located throughout town. These coffee house were important to the gang's operation in Venice, as each one concealed a blueprint to Octavio's tar pumping station.
- During the game's development, the sky in Venice had no stars at nighttime. This can be seen in some of the slideshow images and some official screenshots.
- In the Sly 3 demo, the Venice background was used as the background of the 'Job Complete' screens.
- While Sly 3 refers to the Carnival of Venice as Carnivale, the actual Italian translation for Carnival is Carnevale.