Diehard Hitman fans will be ecstatic over Absolution, writes Faizul Azim Saiful
AGENT 47 has been in hiding for seven years after completing his missions in Blood Money. The bald, barcoded head has been sighted again in Absolution, and though he might seem jaded, this hitman is still someone to be feared.
There have been changes in the make-up of an assassin since he last appeared, and while other stealthy killers are freely running around the world, climbing buildings and towers, garroting and quietly killing their enemies, Hitman still considers himself the man for the job.
Hardcore fans of the stealth take-down approach will be happy and those who are not patient enough and want to go in with guns blazing would also find Absolution very satisfying. The environment allows various methods for a stealthy approach and once you’re close enough there are various weapons you can choose from to finish the job.
Going the gung-ho way needs a good cover system and it works well here, which is fortunate because there are many well-trained thugs who know how to use cover and the multi-pathed levels to flank you.
Stealth as the signature part of the Hitman series is actually about how to go about the game and this is evident in one of the missions where you are tasked to take out a drug dealer who is in the middle of a bustling market in Chinatown.
With police and bodyguards everywhere, there is no chance for a close-up kill, but upon closer inspection of the area, you’ll notice a sniper’s nest for a shot to the head kill after which you can slip into the shadows. You can also see the path he walks and plant a remote explosive for a more flamboyant assassination.
But up-close and personal is always more satisfying, so you can also follow the drug dealer, using the crowd as cover and corner him to garrote him. There are myriad ways to take down your target, and it’s all up to you.
This also gives Absolution a lot of replay value. There’s always another way to take out your target. And you are rewarded for it.
There’s even an instance where a target is at a barbecue and you substitute the hot sauce for lighter fluid.
Other than the storyline, there are other modes for you to practise your skills. In Contracts you replay any level, without a defined target, your choice of weapons and disguise. The great thing about this mode is that the game records how you play: How stealthy you were, how you killed the target, what clothes you wore and so on.
The game has a lot of detail, so going through each level looking for alternative ways to hit your man is enjoyable. Then seeing the different ways your target falls through the methods on offer is so gratifying.
Every sound in the game is very realistic. The coolest feature is hearing enemies or civilians carrying on a conversation, which gives the game a very immersive feel. It is interesting to hear some of the things they have to say. Also, when navigating through a crowd, the sound makes the player feel like they are watching a movie.
Diehard Hitman fans should not miss this game. With so many assassination techniques at the gamers’ disposal, Hitman: Absolution provides high replay value which is worth your money
Games are available at Playtime Electronics in Bangsar Shopping Centre (03-2283 3018) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.