Firstly I need to confess that this is the first Hitman game I’ve played. That may shock and disgust some of our readers, but for some reason I’ve just never had to urge to pick up and play it. I guess in terms of stealth approach games I’ve always been more entertained with Splinter Cell or Metal Gear (although they are miles apart from Hitman).
Well some time after launch I got Hitman Absolution for Christmas. I added it to my list based off glowing recommendations from Will and other sites saying it was one of the better games from the franchise.
Now to start with, doing the prologue shower assassination, again I have to admit, I didn’t really find myself all that gripped or excited with it. The first thing that was brought to my attention was the high score that one of my friends on my friendlist had set. So already that’s made me think too much about how to better that score. Despite it being an introduction level to get used to the mechanics and features I did it numerous times if I felt I messed something up, or got spotted or something stupid like that.
Also I didn’t really like the level on a whole when I got to the mansion as it seemed to be completely flooded with guards with somewhat no where to hide, and I couldn’t really fathom out the best way to do it. In the end I just went with the flow, and got the level out of the way to progress to the actual first mission.
This is when I started to change my mind on the game. “The King of China Town”. As I’ve mentioned in a few articles I’m a bit of an achievement hunter / booster, And like most games I scoped out the achievements before started the game and noticed a good chunk could be done fairly simply on this level. I didn’t actually spoil the mission as I did it first time round without any boosting, just going about it the best way I thought, And I really enjoyed it. If you haven’t played it gloss over this next paragraph…
I opted with getting the poison fish and dropping it in some food that the king would eventually walk to and eat. I did this without changing costume, but did pick up a menu to “hide” right next to the victim.
With that out of the way I set on doing this level a few more times to earn maximum achievements possible. In the end I did rather well with the score. I enjoyed the numerous approaches to doing this. Balls out guns blazing, a wardrobe of costumes, a number of places to hide bodies if needed and different methods of poisoning were awesome. To have this much fun on this level, I had no idea how much bigger the levels get and how much more freedom you have approaching your targets. I also decided to ignore the highscores set by friends. I found that once I ignored them and went about completing the levels how I wanted regardless if they were lower scoring than other people It was more enjoyable. Sure it wasn’t always the stealthiest or smartest approach, but I got the job done and enjoyed the approach to do it.
Another positive Is that none of the levels ever felt the same, You were put in many different scenarios and locations to make your way to your target.
My particular favourite level was “Streets of Hope”. I replayed this mission a couple of times not looking to boost achievements, but purely for the sake of the fun of it and trying different methods of taking out the 3 targets. And each attempt I made took me one heck of a long time to complete the level, but again I wasn’t bothered with this, I was just enjoying it. Changing into a costume and practically walking past your target knowing that In the next couple of minutes you’d be either pushing him into a pool, or creeping up behind him and choking him. Sadistic but fun…
One particular kill that I completed was when a guy went to take a leak, ended up electrocuting himself in an ‘unfortunate accident’ where he pee’d onto a live electric box that was previously dead.
There were some rather ludicrous moments such as the introduction of the ‘Saints’ and the sheer size of Sanchez and the ease in which you do dispatch of him. But it all added to the fun of this game. I really enjoyed picking the saints off one by one and eventually ending up in a cornfield hiding and removing guards and remaining saints members.
So I don’t know if the other Hitman games in the franchise were this much fun, or If I lucked out in picking to play this one first and experiencing the best of the series? Either way I’m certainly glad that I finally got round to playing this game, And I’m happy to have dipped into this franchise. There’s news floating around that another game is in the works, So will be making sure to follow this and look to get it a little closer to when it launches, rather than waiting 2 years to play it.