PC Game Review: Hitman – Absolution (Hitman 5)

The bald assassin returns!
The bald assassin returns!

This one is another one of the most anticipated games of 2012. Many previews and interviews with the developers talked about the mechanisms behind the game (crowd handling mostly) as well as the top notch graphics.

Plot

Is the assignment just or are you used as a tool for nefarious ends?

The game revolves around the missions of a secret assassin that holds no name, only a numbered code: 47.

You play this chameleon-like hitman as you go around dispensing little dishes of death to the targets you’re assigned. As you work for a shadowy agency called “The Agency” (so original!), sometimes the hit choices are questionable, but you’re a professional who is not supposed to doubt the assignment. But this time, it gets personal, as you’re asked to eliminate your long time friend and handler in the Agency, and questions start to mount up as to the real reasons behind the assignment.

Game Play

Be careful not to make too much noise or be in someone’s field of view.. it’s hazardous to your health

The game is heavily reliant on stealth and skulking around. But the enemies are quite observant and you can easily get caught. To help with that, you get a sort of radar placed on the bottom left corner of the screen which shows you the enemies near by, their movements and on top of that, you get a visual indication of whether you’re observed or not, and to what degree.

You better watch those signs, because otherwise it won’t take long for you to be spotted and terminated. In addition to those aids, you have the ability to take on many different costumes from fallen enemies or dressing rooms.

And also use some objects for noisy distraction, or quiet kills of approaching enemies. The artificial intelligence of the game is pretty good, though not at the same level throughout the game.

I did encounter times where I was crouching behind a table, and a bad guy was searching for me, and looking directly at me from the side, but not noticing me. But that’s not a common occurrence.

The game saves at checkpoints where you have to stand on a glowing marker and choose to save, or after certain mission accomplishments automatically.

Graphics

Settings are detailed, with lots of shadows, lighting and colors

This game has been in the making for quite a few years, and it’s evident in the attention to details. Great usage of the graphics “Glacier 2” means that the shadows and games of lighting are all flowing smoothly, and details are all there, from dilapidated house fronts, to caves with many hiding spots and pitfalls, and also interiors which don’t skimp on eye candy. That includes both the people and the objects in the game.

 Sound

In a stealth game, keeping quiet is crucial
In a stealth game, keeping quiet is crucial

No qualms in that department. Music is spot on, sound effects are well placed and shots are resounding unless you have a silencer in place. Sound plays a big part in the game as you have to listen all the time for clues in people’s conversations as well as use noise as an aid to help you allude capture. The grand explosions also give a satisfactory feeling of mission well done.

 Stability

Happened way too often for comfort
Happened way too often for comfort

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sadly, even with all the man hours put into this elaborate game, somewhere along the way the quality control messed up. This game is not stable. It crashes sometimes at the drop of a hat, and I suspect it strains the display adapter causing the card to overheat. At first it was an issue with the installation which required a component that was missing, but didn’t bother to install it or let it be known that anything is missing. Then it just crashed mid-game. Eventually I was able to finish the game, but it made me not want to repeat the experience as I was tired of dealing with the instability.

Conclusion

In conclusion, Hitman 5 is a good, beautiful and meticulous game which offers you a better than ever experience as a trained assassin with plenty of gore and several options to go through the game (you can choose to go through it without killing anyone but your mark, but it’s pretty difficult as it is). However, the technical issues sometimes overshadow the game’s huge premise. I would recommend it, but remember that even with the latest patches, the game is not completely stable.

Enjoy!

And here are some wallpapers.

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