The lights are on
Since last year’s E3, we’ve had our eyes peeled for any new info on IO Interactive’s upcoming stealth action title Hitman: Absolution. So when we heard the game would be at this year’s CES, we snuck through convention security to secure a front row seat at the demo.
In Absolution, Agent 47 is set loose from his contractors; he’s become a free agent and will be taking a more proactive role in steering the game’s narrative. We don’t know all of the details yet, but at some point, Agent 47 heads out to an orphanage to rescue a young girl. However, when he arrives at his destination, Agent 47 discovers that he’s not the only person interested in this girl. Agent 47 then works his way through this orphanage to rescue the girl in hopes of unraveling the mystery of the game’s (fairly mysterious) plot.
Agent 47 can approach every level in a number of ways. As a consummate professional, he can sneak through his environments, acquire disguises, crawl through air vents, use environmental objects to distract and lure guards from their posts, and hide the bodies of the men he silently kills. A few small touches help accentuate the game’s tension. We can hear Agent 47 silently “shhing” his enemies every time he silently chokes a man to the ground.
When Agent 47 takes out an enemy or hides a body, he fills up an instinct meter. This meter can be spent in a number of ways. One way is to activate Agent 47’s instinct vision, which allows the assassin to see his enemy’s shadowy outlines through walls as well as their patrol trails along the ground. The longer Agent 47 uses instinct vision, however, the more of the instinct meter he burns, so players will want to manage this resource wisely.
Agent 47 can also eschew silence for violence. While taking the Wyatt Earp approach through a level is faster, it is also a lot more dangerous. We watched Agent 47 get the drop on one opponent with an axe before throwing the hatchet across the room tomahawk style, taking out another goon. Agent 47 then withdrew two pistols from his fallen enemies and had a shootout in the middle of the orphanage. If Agent 47 has enough Instinct Meter he can initiate something called Point Shooting. While in this mode, time slows down and Agent 47 can tag the enemies and objects he’d like to shoot. We watched Agent 47 tag several enemies and a few gas canister spread across the ground, and as soon as time resumed it’s normal speed, the assassin went on a rampage, shooting up everyone one in the room and causing a few explosions that sent some of his foes flying into walls.
Hitman: Absolution looks like it’s coming along nicely, but we’re eager to get our hands on the game so we can see how the action feels when we’re directing it. We shouldn’t have to wait too much longer as the title is set to release later this year.
If you want to know more out Hitman: Absolution check out some of the game's trailers.
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Definitely looking forward to this game. Being a fan since the initial "Hitman: Codename 47," I'm glad they made some changes to the game play and are giving the player more freedom. Too bad we'll have to likely wait till the end of the year to get this.