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Hitman: Absolution shows us why too much story can be a bad thing

This post has been edited by the GamesBeat staff. Opinions by GamesBeat community writers do not necessarily reflect those of the staff.

Something is quite alluring about Hitman protagonist Agent 47. Is it the iconic red tie and black suit? Those lovely Baller Pistols of his? Or is it just his shiny bald head?

No. If anything, it's his attitude. He is a man of very few words but who can inflict incredible damage with whatever tool is at his disposal. He can infiltrate an area with nothing but a fiber wire and lock pick and take out a target with nobody noticing. Yes, Hitman: Absoultion still maintains Agent 47's legacy of being a badass assassin.

But the biggest change to Hitman has to be the fact that it's a lot more story-driven this time around, which literally reshapes the level design.

 

Many stages have become stealth heavy with few options to do anything other then go down the straight path. I'm not saying the game is more linear; no, it still has a lot of open areas with many different options for you. You still get your Hitman levels where you can explore and figure out the best way to take down your target. Yet now because the game is so story heavy, some levels have you trying to escape or find something.

I don't know why the developers at IO Interactive felt the need to do this to Hitman, as if they are trying to make it another mindless action-adventure stealth game. Which Hitman has never been — ask any fan, and he will tell you what he likes most is that this series has always awarded players who think before they act.

Sure, story elements were in the pervious games, but they weren't shoved down your throat like it is in this one. The narrative isn't horrible here; it does take you to interesting places, and you do meet some over-the-top characters. But I do have a problem with the fact that you don't really get to kill the two of the main antagonists in the game. Instead, you see a cutscene of 47 doing it for you.

Hitman: Absolution still manages to be a great game but only when it takes the linear-story leash off you. When it's just you in an open level with many choices at your disposal to take down your target, the game's amazing.

I really hope IO Interactive listens to player feedback and goes back to basics for the next game.


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