For so many people, the difference between generations is typically viewed as better visuals. Part of this is due to, well, massive improvements in visual performance between generations. However, one of the biggest changes is so subtle people miss it. More details, new mechanics, additional bodies, intricate locations, and countless other things that increase immersion. This has helped the latest version of the Hitman franchise, ultimately concluding in Hitman 3. With the power of next-generation consoles, improved graphics, and strong attention to detail, is it a flawless assassination or did they bungle the job? Here’s our Hitman 3 review.
Hitman 3 starts by being very upfront with this being the conclusion of the World of Assassination arc. At this point, Agent 47 has ultimately teamed up with his friend Lucas Grey and wants to end the group known as Providence. What makes the story nice is that there is a good balance between having a reason to carry out these assassinations, without so much story that you forget what this franchise is all about. It ultimately leads to a conclusion that is quite fitting and will likely make a number of fans happy.
But, the main draw isn’t a cathartic journey to eliminate those in power that shouldn’t have it, but the sheer number of options given to carry out your task. Just wondering around two things typically occur. The first is noticing all the subtle ways you can complete your task and optional tasks that can be used to ultimately lead to the same conclusion. Even if there is an ‘ideal’ way to carry out every kill, creativity comes from thinking outside of the box.
Part of what makes Hitman 3 interesting is ultimately this trial and error. It’s easy to pick up some coins, flick them to the side and think you’re the master of stealth when everyone goes to them, though that isn’t always the case. A number of AI, usually in more critical locations, won’t fall for such obvious tricks if you’re not really subtle about it. A number of guards will not only ignore your tricks but call attention to them, making the experience far more dynamic than you might think.
Another fun part is figuring out how all the pieces come together. In the first stage, you might find a poison that can be used on a target’s dinner or steal training paperwork to get close to another target, to just listening to a guy give you a keycode to get a card that makes it easier to escape. These are all both important and unimportant to your ultimate goal. Yeah, it makes for a cooler kill and something to work on later attempts, while also giving additional playthroughs some merit.
Ultimately, what makes Hitman 3 and the franchise as a whole interesting is how you go about completing your tasks. One run I might poison the guy, another run I blow him up, maybe even on one I just open fire and hope it works out. The latter rarely works out in your favor, although I’ve managed a successful run getting a bit trigger happy, it just relies heavily on having an exit plan.
All of these options are conveyed in interesting locations that are fairly large and have a lot to see and hear. It isn’t about just noticing the right thing, some options or tricks are actually said and you need to pay attention to them. As a result, it feels like a more natural experience and plays to the series strengths. Though keep in mind this means the average stage, despite being a fairly simple task, will often take a while. Especially for anyone trying to do it perfectly. Hitman 3 tries to make it easier by offering multiple save points, so if you screw up at one point you’re not stuck there, a nice touch to say the least.
Since we did review this on PlayStation 5, the performance was pretty good and graphics made a difference. Where it fell short is honestly the implementation of the triggers. There is an incredible amount of resistance applied to them when you’re using any item that honestly feels needless. I could see giving a heavier item more weight but if I want to flick a coin, it shouldn’t feel like my trigger is locked in place and I am snapping it back in place. But, otherwise, it’s fine.
Hitman 3 Review – Verdict
Needless to say, Hitman 3 manages to stick to landing. The story concludes in an interesting and fun way, while holding true to what made the franchise so great. The additional options are welcome, as is the attention to detail, though those who couldn’t get into the previous titles will likely dislike it. Toss in a lot of fun and alternate ways to complete a mission and it makes for a methodically fun time.
[Editor’s Note: Hitman 3 was reviewed on the PlayStation 5 and a review copy was provided to us.]