Hitman: The Complete First Season PlayStation 4 Review

Hitman: The Complete First Season is a fully packaged adventure that promotes original thinking and provides endless opportunity to showcase your ability to craft the perfect assassination

By Grayshadow, Posted 13 Feb 2017

When Hitman was announced as an episodic tale many were unsure how this approach would work. Telltale Games found success with their various narrative focus games but for a Hitman game, this was new. Fortunately, each of the six chapters felt like a brand new experience, teeming with replayable content that encouraged creative thinking and challenged me to become the greatest assassin. Now that the entire game is available in one package there's no reason to dismiss Hitman. Hitman: The Complete First Season is a fully packaged adventure that promotes original thinking and provides endless opportunity to showcase your ability to craft the perfect assassination.

After completing the game I can now see why IO Interactive decided to release the game episodically. Each mission was jammed with content that trained the player slowly by giving them access to different settings that required distinct tactics. Each new setting provided unique circumstances for the player to exploit.

You aren't travelling to these various sites for the culture and food, you have a job and that requires killing a high-valued target. You'll infiltrate a high-class Paris fashion show, sneak around a villa on the Italian coast, witness Moroccan mobs rioting in the streets, follow a rock star at a luxurious 5-star hotel in Thailand, take on the leaders of a militia on a compound in Colorado, and venture to Japan to explore a private hospital on top of a mountain. Each level is intricately detailed with local NPCs who serve as avenues to extract information about the area and your target and tools to infiltrate the area unnoticed. While the voice-acting is excellently done it was strange to see that everyone around the world spoke in an American accent.

Hitman,Season One,NoobFeed,IO Interactive,Square Enix,

The campaign can be completed in around 7 hours, depending on your skill much quicker. However, once finished I had to replay each mission to see the many options available. Certain opportunities are only available for a specific amount of time, making timing that more important in Hitman. Mixing and matching different routes, options, and executions ensure that the player can maximize their score and lead the leaderboards. Plus it's very entertaining to see the large assortment of options IO Interactive has placed in the game.

The biggest draw of Hitman is the options available to the play. If you want to leave a trail of bodies, the option is available, but Hitman generally shines when a planned attack goes without issues. Hitman offers a lot of different options to kill your target, like a funhouse of death and destruction. Poisoning, dropping chandeliers, downing people in toilets, snapping necks, and so much more are given for the player to use as they see fit. Completing mission challenges provide new toys such as disguises, starting locations, and weapons which open up new ways to kill your target. 

Hitman does a wonderful job of training the player. In the beginning, you're taught the basic concepts of the game before being introduced to more complicated techniques. Best of all Hitman encourages you to take what is taught to seek out unique ways to tackle each mission. Instead of using a disguise to get near your target use that option to poison their food and watch from a distance or unexpectedly shove them off a tower. This is what Hitman is about, testing and trying options you didn't think were possible multiple times to prove that you're the best.

Hitman,Season One,NoobFeed,IO Interactive,Square Enix,

Hitman provides Exclusive Targets for players during certain periods. These special events only have one chance of success and failure means the target is lost forever. IO Interactive releases these potential victims for a limited time before they're gone forever, giving seasoned players more reason to come back. Escalation adds to the difficulty by providing more targets to eliminate

For players looking to make their own custom creations Contract is available. Here players can share their creation and offer specific NPCs to kill, set requirements, and other handicaps. Already the community has crafted a series of elaborate missions for other players to undertake.

PlayStation 4 owners have access to a series of exclusive missions called the Sarajevo Six. These sideline assignments follow Agent 47 around the world tracking down 6 war criminals who've been wanted since the Siege of Sarajevo 20 years ago. It's a good story but doesn't offer much variation compared to the rest of the game, but if you have a choice the PS4 version is definitely worth investing into.

Hitman,Season One,NoobFeed,IO Interactive,Square Enix,

Hitman can be played in 2 ways, a normal setting where Opportunities are highlighted and in a complete sandbox experience. The first option allows for those just entering the franchise a guiding hand by providing paramount information to set up assassinations without feeling overwhelmed by everything around you. Instinct allows you to better track targets and maintain awareness of your surrounding NPCs by providing a colored outline based on who they are and what state they're in and their level of importance. 

That other option shuts all down and provides the player very little information. Like L.A. Noire once the training wheels came off the game became far more difficult, requiring the player to remain aware of everything happening around them. If you want to prove yourself as the best Hitman player the game provides more than enough options to showcase your skill, such as Professional mode. This mode adds another layer of difficulty for only the most dedicated Hitman players, adding handicaps such as diminished rating score for being seen, cameras recording illegal activities, and the inability to use disguises from NPCs who've been killed in a bloody manner. Hitman provides excellent approaches for newcomers and veterans seeking a challenge.

Despite everything that Hitman excels at certain faults did hamper the experience. The biggest issue was the need for an online connection, which when disconnected, which removes scoring, progression, and challenge completion. Inconsistent AI, another upsetting issue, can lead to vexing moments, for example, during the Paris mission I was immediately spotted by the security despite wearing a disguise and in another instance, an NPC was unable to notice me while I was trespassing without any cover. However, the game makes up for this with a smooth framerate during gameplay. You can save anywhere, which is great, but load times are notably long. It can take up to 1 minute 30 seconds for a single mission to load regardless of whether you're starting a new mission or loading a previous save.

Hitman,Season One,NoobFeed,IO Interactive,Square Enix,

Despite your stance on the episodic release of Hitman, the full package is a fantastic game. As someone new to the franchise I was able to quickly grasp the mechanics and gameplay that veterans have become familiar with. The long load times and unpredictable AI can lead to moments of infuriated burst but Hitman offers a multitude of reasons to come back. Trying new ways to improve my score, trying new Opportunities, and simply attempting creative tactics of my own design were too alluring to pass up. Whether you're new to the franchise or a veteran fan, Hitman: The Complete First Season will have you planning, replaying missions, and coming back countless times simply to satisfy the perfectionist in you.

Adam Siddiqui, NoobFeed
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General Information

Hitman

88/100

Platform(s): Xbox One, PS4, PC
Publisher(s): Square Enix
Developer(s): IO Interactive
Genres: Action, Adventure
Themes: Third-Person Action
Release Date: 2017-01-31

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