Before He Fought Dominatrix Nuns, Agent 47 Took On Mardi Gras

Purposefully vulgar marketing isn't the only thing controversial about the new Hitman game Hitman: Absolution; plenty of folks are worried that the game itself will be a big departure from the slow-paced, careful gameplay of the first games. The Splinter Cell: Conviction to Blood Money's Chaos Theory, if you will.

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Reading Stephen's hands-on preview from the game (and then watching the game in action), I feel reassured. Donning costumes, tackling a semi-open sandbox level and trying to come up with the sneakiest way to kill someone? Wearing a chef outfit and poisoning food? Knifing someone in a dark alley? Sounds like Hitman to me.

In his preview, Stephen says that the game copies a lot of Assassin's Creed, but to me, the level sounds like a more advanced version of something Hitman fans have already seen: "Murder of Crows," the Mardi Gras level in Hitman: Blood Money.

That level had a similar scenario to the one Stephen describes in Absolution—it was right after the release of the Xbox 360, so the technology hadn't gotten to the point where it is now, but all the same—huge crowd full of people, sneaking through and disguising yourself, taking out targets in creative ways… I could see that formula taking the technological advances illustrated by Assassin's Creed to make something even more reactive and remarkable.

As you can see from the walkthrough above, most of the "Murder of Crows" level lacks depth—the player has learned the ins and outs of the level to a point where he/she can manipulate it completely. But in a more advanced game, this kind of could well wind up being the exact kind of thing I think of when I think of a "current-gen Hitman game."

I haven't played Blood Money in a while, but I recall that this level was A) Really cool and showed a lot of promise and B) Kind of flawed and frustrating in practice. Either way, this has got me wanting to go back and play the game again, particularly with that rumor of the HD collection. (Though then again, I have all of these games on PC, where I play them in HD already.)

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DISCUSSION

michael22642146
MichaelDean

In Silent Assassin, Contracts and Blood Money I strive to kill only the target. I have been replaying Codename 47 and realized that some missions mostly feel like you have to go out guns blazing in order to get through a level. You are at least forced to kill many non-target enemies in some levels. It feels less like a Hitman game than the past three, even though it's the original.

I don't get the concern of people who see some shooting in Absolution videos and get scared that it's going to be pure action and killing, I guess like Conviction got turned into on the SC side. What I especially don't get, though, is those same things can be done on previous Hitman games. Most of those people claim to be diehard Hitman fans but they've apparently forgotten in the past games the inclusion of M60s and miniguns. Blood Money allows a drum magazine on your assault rifle for you to better go around killing the crap out of everyone on every level. You also got cool names on BM for killing people certain ways, such as 'Slugger' in which you have to kill *everyone* with a baseball bat. That includes killing a dog. There's also 'Berserker' which requires you get caught on camera with a gun.

The only difference between games, from what I've seen, is that Absolution is getting trailers and videos put out there by the publisher/developer that aren't completely stealth. For some reason people see that as the game being pure action even though they've shown us - and told us - that stealth is still fully there. Yes, you can go through killing people and complete a mission. Or you can go through eliminating only your target and receive the top rating. It's completely your choice.

I've completed every Hitman game with a Silent Assassin rating on the hardest difficulty. I love that the game is stealthy like it is and even I can admit that I do enjoy the occasional murder run through. I actually enjoy these types of trailers. They don't fit my gameplay but it does the job, it gets people interested in the game who may not otherwise be.

Now excuse me, I must get back to my games. I recently re-found my collection of the first three games and must continue my playthrough of SA.