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Games are rarely perfect and even for a game as amazing as “Hitman: Absolution”, there are a few things that the game doesn’t do well. When playing a game like this, it’s important to remember that dying a few times is part of the process and that getting frustrated is pointless. Treat the game, and the mistakes you make playing, as a learning experience and it will be a lot smoother sailing.
Speaking of mistakes, each one here teaches a valuable lesson for the current mission and the next mission after that, by filling in little tidbits of new features that get integrated into the game early on in the beginning. The training that a budding assassin goes through at the start helps to brush up old skills from past games as well as hone new ones to succeed in this game. This perspective makes each mission a powerful teaching tool that is a joy to earn rather than a frustrating list of events to go through on a chart. Hitman games require a delicate hand to execute well and certainly rewards creativity. It means that for “Hitman: Absolution”, replay value is high and allows you to kill the same target in a dozen different ways over and over again.
The few knocks against it? Either the enemies are really blindly gullible or part bloodhound. When using a disguise you can be discovered because it doesn’t matter if you’re a cop or a thug, someone will pick you out in crowd of hundreds of others dressed just like you. This is true every single time with no middle ground in between. It makes sense that a kingpin would recognize if you’re not one of his guys but knowing every cop in a major city seems pretty improbable.
Another issue is that you can’t drop weapons that you’ve used, you must take it with you and that wouldn’t be a bad thing, but it does get in the way of one important gameplay mechanic. Imagine you’ve subdued a body and naturally you need to hide them so no one else is alerted to your presence. This makes sense, but there’s an item next to the drop site that interferes with your ability to hide a body. So in this case, instead of hiding the body, you inadvertently pick up a weapon and there isn’t a way to drop that weapon at all. You end up cycling weapons instead of being able to dump the body. This happens occasionally, and is a frustration for those who want to earn maximum points when hiding a body.
The game otherwise lives and breathes the hunt, allowing you to spring out from behind cover to snap a targets neck or take them hostage as a meat shield. The character interactions are real world accurate and as you would in real life; even faking a surrender is possible here. If surrendering doesn’t appeal to your sense of survival, then shooting a target from cover or in slow motion using the targeting system called Point Shot, might be just move for you. Point Shot allows you to tag targets, in slow motion using your Instinct skills to take them out immediately during a small Hollywood action style cut scene. Regardless of which play style you choose, the game moves with purpose and as the main player, so do you.
After a 6 year hiatus from the world of video games, this is the best gaming reintroduction in a long time. “Hitman: Absolution” is an intuitive assassin style game that draws players deep into the story and mindset of Agent 47. Graphics and texture are as rich as ever and add a gritty depth to an already dark profession. Gameplay mechanics will be familiar to veteran players, while new features entice new players to join in the hunt for that perfect kill. Agent 47 is on the run, sometimes not alone and he wants answers. IO Interactive set out to renew his story and this time, it’s personal.
Rated: 4.5/5 for an excellent reintroduction into the story and skill set of Agent 47. Enhanced storyline presence and great gameplay mechanics for the modern consoles gives this game great versatility and endless replay value.