Last weeks successful Most Wanted feature allowed us to do it again, this time another game that I am personally looking forward to as I suggest many of you should be. Hitman: Absolution, the next entry the much beloved Hitman franchise.
Previously the titles have been published by Eidos, however since their smart and unexpected acquisition by Square-Enix we have been treated to some of the most fun experiences this console generation with Just Cause 2, and of course the savvy Deus Ex: Human Revolution. The next to be targeted (pun intended) for release and brought into ‘next-gen’ is the Hitman franchise which has been long dormant since Hitman: Blood Money released in 2006. Fans have been begging IO Interactive to release a sequel and were sadly teased in 2009 but it turned out to be a sequel to their Kane & Lynch franchise titled, Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days. So now Hitman has a chance to shine his bald head after much anticipation.
I had a chance to see the game in action last January whereas other members of TGH have seen it more recently. I was shown various ways that 47 will be able to take on environments and missions with the new cover system as well as ‘instinct mode’. As a franchise fan the ‘instinct mode’ bothered me in a weird and disturbing way that would keep me up at night. I soon found out that this element of the gameplay will be turned off on higher difficulties. If this stays true, I will be one exception happy sniper…err camper. Few things are more sacred to gamers than their beloved franchises and Hitman may be mine.
The element of being able to pick up what would normally be an inatimate object in some games and smash someone over the head with it in Hitman: Absolution has my blood tingling with anticipation. The options at gameplay that this possesses is immense and it may even mean I can enter a mission with no weapons/tools at all. Also smaller details such as being able to pretend to scratch your face, yawn or otherwise cover your face as you walk past enemies is a genius element. Of course hiding bodies and being an overall Silent Assassin bad-ass is still there. The entire look and feel of all the gameplay videos shows that IO Interactive knows their audience well and knows their fans. They have created an experience that many Hitman fans will enjoy the world over.
I can only wish one thing, that in the future there will be an HD collection for consoles of the first four titles. Yes, I said four. Many fans are quick to write off the one that started it all on PC, Hitman: Codename 47, seeing as main stream did not pick up on the title until Hitman 2: Silent Assassin was released for Xbox and Playstation 2. If Crysis can be put into HD there is no reason the utter classic experience of Agent 47 escaping that facility, globetrotting for The Agency and returning to his roots to face a deadly plot twist against waves of Assassin’s, then finally confronting his Father, simply needs to be experienced by fans the world over. Until that time comes, bring on Absolution.