Friday, January 08, 2021
Aside from stuffing our faces with Christmas turkey, over the break, we’ve been hilariously dressing up in random outfits and throwing cans at people we see in the street. Oh, and we’ve also playing a ton of Hitman 3’s opening two levels, ahead of its full release in a matter of weeks. Joy! To tide you over until the game’s release, we thought we’d bring your attention to seven really cool things we noticed during our hands-on with the upcoming Hitman 3. Let's get stuck in!
Agent 00-47 – IO Interactive is making a James Bond game – you heard that, right? Well, it’s clear the Danish developer is testing the waters a little with the new Hitman, throwing in some scenes straight out of 007's sixty-year history. From skydiving onto a Dubai skyscraper and going through a curtain to change outfits, Agent 47 seems to be infinitely more stylish in Hitman 3. And it’s a bloody good job too, as the settings seem like something out of a Bond film – you know, swanky art galleries, glamorous parties, all at the top of one of the world’s tallest skyscrapers with opulent gold interiors. It literally is like something out of a Bond movie.
Smile! You're on Candid Camera! – While the rest of the world has had a camera in their pockets for going on two decades now, Agent 47 always seemed to have been left behind. Not anymore! Agent 47 doesn’t have an iPhone, oh no, but he does finally have a camera, which he can use to stalk people, open electronic windows like the ones in Dubai’s Burj Al-Ghazali, AKA The Sceptre, and you can even use it to scan various objects as well. The camera features heavily in the game’s second mission in Dartmoor, England (more on which shortly). Say cheese!
Persistent Shortcuts – This is something that’s really new and actually kind of cool for Hitman players, who, like me, love to do repeat playthroughs on the same level, in a bid to achieve mastery level 20. I mean, Hitman is all about repeat playthroughs, after all. With the addition of persistent shortcuts – as in, shortcuts you unlock in one playthrough and are then unlocked for the next – you can get around much more efficiently, making it the perfect addition for repeat offenders. This means that instead of doing the same thing on every run to get past a certain checkpoint, for instance, this could save you a ton of time and effort, and more importantly, cuts down on repetitive sections and tasks, which is a bloody godsend! Huzzah!
Sound the Inception Horn! – IO Interactive seems to be trying out a few new things with Hitman 3. Firstly there’s the more cinematic intros, the camera, and the persistent shortcuts. But hey, how about evolving the in-game events and stories by taking them to a new level? Check. The first of these, we got to experience in Dubai, when trying to get some serious alone time (not like that) with one of the target’s Carl Ingham, who just happens to be surrounded by a ton of bodyguards. By disguising ourselves as Zana Kazem AKA The Vulture, we managed to get a meeting with Ingham, who then tasks us with taking out a journalist who’s doing the rounds at the Burj Al-Ghazali. So yes, we’re doing a Hitman hit, within a Hitman level. It’s basically what Inception was about. Kind of. Not really.
It’s Bloody Beautiful – Let’s be honest – this is nothing new, but we wanted to say it anyway. Hitman 3 looks more gorgeous than ever. You know when someone has perfected their craft so much that everything they do just looks stunning: that’s IO Interactive in a nutshell. 2016’s Hitman looked stunning; Hitman 2 in 2018 was a stunner; and now Hitman 3 in 2021 is quite possibly even prettier. You’ve only got to look at Dubai and Dartmoor as an example of that. On the one hand we have Dubai with its gold pillars, vertigo-inducing views, shiny surfaces, and gorgeously lit-art installations; then on the other hand, there's the quiet idyllic mansion in Dartmoor, with its varnished floors, its 18th century art, and more antiquated architecture. It’s not just the lighting or the reflections or whatever, it’s the handcrafted-nature of the levels that just goes to show how ahead of the game IO Interactive really is. And that’s before we’ve even started to talk about Berlin or Chongqing as well. Oh, and REDACTED and REACTED too! We’re excited to check them out closer to launch!
Get Ya’ Knives Out – In a similar vein to the Hitman mission within the Hitman mission we mentioned earlier on, in Hitman 3’s second mission, set within the English countryside of Dartmoor, you'll visit a large mansion in the middle of nowhere. Within its creaking walls, you'll discover an actual frickin’ murder mystery. Yes, another in-game event, except this time, it's infinitely more detailed! We can’t really talk too much about it pre-launch, what with spoilers and what not, but you basically get thrown into a wacky murder mystery, much like the movie, Knives Out. As 47, you fulfil the role of expert detective, exploring the mansion, uncovering clues, and ultimately figuring out who killed Zachary Carlisle. I mean, you don’t have to do any of this as part of the critical path, but why the hell wouldn’t you want to?!
Variety Is Still The Spice of Life – Hitman games are all about variety, right? The weird and wonderful ways that you can kill your targets and all that. Sure, you can push targets over edges, set traps, simply shoot them in the head, or spear them with a screwdriver hurled across a room, but Hitman 3 continues IO's pedigree in concocting a bevy of weird and wonderful kills. We won’t spoil all of them – half of the fun is finding out in Hitman games, after all – but in Dubai we were big fans of electrocuting one of the targets by heading behind the scenes of an elaborate light-based art exhibit, and sabotaging it so that 1,000 volts shot up his ass whenever he got close. Shocking stuff. To be fair, kicking someone off the summit of a skyscraper is pretty damn memorable, especially after fooling a target into thinking we were a trustworthy bodyguard as well!
And there we have it, folks – seven cool new things we discovered during our recent hands-on with Hitman 3, which is shaping up to be yet more wonderful World of Assassination content. 20th January can’t come soon enough!