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14 out of 14 people found the following review useful:

Superb!

Author: Morfeus Ivanovich from Riga, Latvia
29 November 2004

I'm not an avid game fan, but this one surprised me and captured my attention. It is extremely stylish,(Hit-man himself and especially Hit-man dialogues are marvelous) has a good plot line, with all elements of a very good thriller movie, lots of gore and blood, tons of realistic guns, enemies, locations, et cetera. This is a MUST PLAY experience,which lets you experience a life of a professional assassin, I suggest you enjoy it. Speaking of technical side, for 2000 it had very good graphics with motion capture,quite realistic weapon effects and huge tactical opportunities. Great game - 10/10.

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8 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Stylish and original, but unfortunately flawed

Author: GlowstickChick (glowstickchick@startrekmail.com) from Bay Area, CA
9 November 2002

Here we have a perfect example of a good game that, with a few minor adjustments, could have been so much better. It's one of those games that feels like it should have been great, but when you've finished with it, you've still got that annoying feeling that something's missing.

I don't mean to say that HITMAN isn't any good, because it is. Once you get into it, it's a really engaging experience, darkly atmospheric and full of style. As the nameless contract killer you play, your missions are interesting and varied, and although you'll have to accomplish all goals to get through the game, the way you execute them (no pun intended of course) is usually up to you. Stealth is key, and one of the coolest features in HITMAN is the ability to don the clothes of anyone you kill, allowing you the fun experience of using disguises to get closer to your targets.

Despite being quite an interesting and unique experience, HITMAN is not without its flaws. By far the most annoying is the fact that you can't save your game. Ever. The only time your progress is saved is when you finish a level successfully, which means that if you make even one mistake at the very end of a mission, well, it's all the way back to the beginning with you. Programmers, are you listening? This is not okay. It leads to a lot of resentment and frustration, especially if you're having trouble getting used to HITMAN's awkward and complicated interface. The game tries to make up for it with an odd system of reincarnation, but even that's not very helpful, and only seems out place. The point is, you're going to need a lot of patience to enjoy this game. And you probably shouldn't keep your computer anywhere near the window.

HITMAN's plot is sketchy at best, and comes dangerously close to the whole cliched mad-scientist thing near the end, but does manage to save itself and stay interesting. The writing is quite clever at times, the music is well done, and even the voice acting isn't *too* bad. As for graphics, they're about on par with the standards at the time it was released, and although they're technically nothing special, the game's programmers did a great job turning them into some genuinely beautiful environments, such as jungles and ornate hotels. In fact, when HITMAN makes use of those massive maps and gorgeous surroundings, that's when it's at its best.

My advice? Give it a chance -- but play the sequel first. HITMAN 2: SILENT ASSASSIN has all the style of the original and almost none of the problems, and playing it first will make its predecessor a lot easier to deal with.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Fantastic, and not just for a debut

8/10
Author: abgkasjlkasjla from Denmark
11 October 2008

While certainly a breakthrough in their own right, for bringing another dimension into the world of VGs, for some years after FPS's came to, not very much was done with it. Touch-ups. Change of setting. Overall, it stayed the same, in particular once the climbing/jumping was settled. Then 3rd person view was introduced. And then this. From the get-go, you can tell that this is different. Stealth, which thus far had mostly been a possibility in certain titles, now became an integral part. Not only is shooting everything in sight not encouraged, it's just about invariably punished. This took a realistic and stylistic approach that I've not seen in any release predating it. I do not know why this seems so widely disregarded. What there isn't in this that's in the later in the series usually exists here at least as an idea, and this oozes the awesomeness and need of planning(yes, the later ones got bigger than this, but that would not have happened without a start-off point) that the franchise is so loved for. This begins with a concise and marvelous training portion, which can be returned to at any time, and that ranks rather far up on the list of the best introductions to a game, both as an opening and as a course in the basics. The camera in this is cool(and affords reasonable control to the player), throughout the entirety of this, with the known over-the-shoulders angle being the main one, outside of the atmospheric, well-done cut-scenes(some animated, most are well-scripted, in-engine ones) and an alternative to it, that I consider an experiment that perhaps didn't work out as hoped(mind you, you're never forced to use it). There are arguably a handful of unlikely things in this, but they're easy to ignore. The cinematic feel of this is omnipresent. The controls are simple whilst allowing plenty of freedom(and for my money, this has bar none the greatest, as far as quality goes, action interface and weapon choosing setup of the bunch). This is more limited in the amount of approaches that can be taken to the tasks than its sequels. The missions are diverse, interesting and well-done, and no two are completely alike. They're well-crafted with gorgeous visuals, as well. The locations that they take place at span the globe. You'll get to eliminate targets in a variety of ways, covering the full range of the professional killer's preferred choices. The guns are excellent, well-selected(there aren't many, if really any, neither as far as kinds nor as specific picks, that leave anything to be desired) and lots of fun to fire. Included are side-arms, assault rifles, snipers, SMGs, to name a couple. The depiction of them is fairly credible, as well, with ROF, recoil and aim vs where the bullets actually wind up. You also cannot carry all that you might want to, nor conceal(!) all. You can, however, wield two pistols at the same time, and they don't even have to be the same type. Yes, that does in fact mean that you can have a Desert Eagle in each hand, a Beretta, a Hardballer, or any mix of those. Granted, it can be slightly glitchy, but it's so darn fulfilling to do, and it does work. The bugs are few in number, and even less in the scale of their impairment. The difficulty is relatively high, for all of the three levels. This doesn't let you get away with mowing down everything in your path, and it is the last of the Hit-man efforts to enforce that, at the time of me writing this, out of four. The length depends on how skillful one is. It can be as little as five hours or so. That is when you know what to do, and nothing slowing you down apart from failed attempts. The save system... is that every completion is stored, and nothing else. Between starting and finishing the separate hits, you're on your own. Well, almost. There is an admittedly awkward "resurrection" feature for several of them. The audio(and music!) is top-notch, everything sounds the way it ought to. The voice acting is a mixed bag, and a lot of it ranges between passable and "not quite". Bateson, however... why was this man not cast in the film? He brings the lead to life impeccably well. The writing can be clever, and the overarching plot is well-thought out and unfolds well. It, and the tone of this, is dark before it is funny. You do need to pay attention, and piece together what happened, but it does all come together and make sense. And if you intend to figure out what goes on in the others, as well, you might as well get used to it... it sure is not going to get less complicated, and if you only count this, there shouldn't be numerous theories that contradict each other. ... but I digress. The graphics are near-perfect, with well-designed characters all-round. This contains a rendering method that can handle vast, full areas that are revealed as you come closer to the unseen. It is utterly devoid of lag, and it is well-achieved. The game-play is entertaining, for those who like the concept and genre, and challenging, for all, if the good people at IO Interactive did their job right. I'd say so, definite confirm, in a heartbeat. Before you remove the person you've been paid to, you have to scope out the surroundings, pick what you'll use to instill the untimely demise, the exact time and place. There is a bit of sexual material in this, but little of it is gratuitous. It's about the only stuff to avoid or take note of in this as far as such goes, provided the violence, which is by no means gruesome or brutal(in spite of the plentiful death found in this), doesn't bother you... there's no language that I can think of. I recommend this to any individual whom all this appeals to. 8/10

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Silence is key

9/10
Author: fullylicensed from United Kingdom
14 June 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

***VERY MINOR PLOT SPOILERS***

The amount of times I have replayed this game dumbfounds me. I've often tossed aside half-life 2 to step into the deadly world of the hit-man. I have loved this game from the moment I heard about it a good 6 years ago.

From the moment you slip the CD in the disk-drive, you know you're going to have a good few hours hiding in closets (ooh, get her!), creeping up behind, and silently dispatching the mark; before sneaking off to the extraction point.

You take on the role of agent 47; a genetically engineered clone 'born' in 1964, and trained in all aspects of contract killing. You are essentially a prisoner in an underground lab/complex where you reside in a cell. After a solid 40 or so years of training you escape with apparently effortless ease. But it is shown to the player you have been allowed to escape. The scientist who cloned you has a master plan ... which I'll not give away here.

We next see 47 three years after his escape, in Hong Kong. Your ultimate goal is to eliminate Lee Hong; a powerful triad leader with a tight grip over the area (including law enforcement) and steal a priceless yet tacky, ornament for your client. Several assassination missions and sabotage bombings are required before you can get close enough to Lee Hong; and even then he is extremely well guarded. My personal favourite mission was tradition's of the trade. Capping that fat guy in the shower and drowning Herr Fuchs in the pool made me laugh manically every time. I won't spoil the game by divulging any more.

The script for this game is fantastic. No rubbish voice acting here. Everything looks and feels well-polished; and you can tell a lot of time; effort and love went into making this game.

The variety of ways to pull off a kill are astounding and ensure endless replay value. From poisoning right through to lead poisoning; and a few one-off signature moves. The weapons arsenal is not huge, but it's relatively what I expected a hit-man would go for. Piano wire, knives, pistols, SMG's, and a few full automatics. Level design is for the most part brilliant with a few minor glitches.

I cannot stress how effortlessly everything in this game meshes together to create a thoroughly immersing experience; where the only two things that matter are the mark and stealth. Although a lot of patience is required while you're surveying the area/patrol routes/etc it all pays off when everything goes to plan.

47 is a fantastic character to get into. As he has been bred to be a stone-cold killer; I relished slipping into the agent's shoes and becoming the ultimate bad-ass. Play it as if you were actually 47 himself and you'll get a lot more satisfaction than just mindlessly blasting through levels with a submachine gun. Although at times; it is necessary to release all that pent up aggression from failing a mission over and over again.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Awesome premise and a flawed, but still good, execution (no pun intended).

8/10
Author: BroadswordCallinDannyBoy from Boston, MA
21 November 2007

Over the years computer games have just kept getting better and better. In fact it is hard to call some of them "games" anymore. "Pong" and "Tetris" are games. You press buttons in a patterns and with each beep you watch your score go up. Sure it's fun and "Tetris" is a great classic, but all that seems to be gone now. Games have no score and many are ditching the "powerup picking up" gimmick. You pick up realistic looking guns, sneak around realistic looking locations, with increasingly realistic, but still fun consequences. These games are simply becoming bent on realism. Or at least a fun version of something that we call "game realism." As much as I played and enjoyed "Tetris" my pulse never quite raced as much as it did when I was infiltrating a powerful mob boss's headquarters, getting passed his body guards, and finally doing him in. "Doom" was somewhat like this and it is too a classic, but in retrospect, "Doom" is hardly real. It's a horror action game. "Hit-man: Codename 47" actually makes you feel that you are in Kowloon and tracking targets that are just as lethal as you.

In short, it's nothing short of thrilling. The selection of guns and equipment allows you many approaches to each mission. The John Woo/Chow Yun-Fat approach may be a good (and FUN!) idea, but so might be the sticking to the shadows and armed with a knife strategy. The beauty is that you decide. You get the report at the beginning of your assignment and you decide how to handle it. You might have strict guidelines so you might not be able to cause fireworks right away, but sometimes you can literally wage a one man Rambo style war on a camp of soldiers. Whatever you do, it's a blast.

However, there are some faults that need to be mentioned. First, you can't save mid-level. With some of these levels getting pretty big and teeming with bad-guys all packing lots of firepower could result one false move being your last. That adds to the tension, but also the frustration and could tends to encourage calmer approaches to game especially if it's your first time through. Also, the lack of info become increasingly frustrating. Some missions, especially towards the end are sure to give you some major surprises that you didn't see coming. Frustration will inevitably accompany these since there are hardly any clues to you figuring your situation out. But hey, I guess the life of a Hit-man ain't easy...

... and in the end this is a great game with an awesome premise. Both a smart game requiring strategy and calculation and a good action game with many possibilities for intense shootouts. --- 8/10

Rated MATURE for violence

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4 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

A unique game that, despite quite a few bugs, is still quite fun.

8/10
Author: Lev Szczesniak (blackfire) from Canada
23 August 2001

Definitely an original game that puts the player in the shoes of a hitman. At first the game has you killing Hong Kong Triad members and drug lords, but that all eventually leads to the awesome conclusion of your origin. Despite the lack of in game saves and A.I. problems, the atmosphere and tension in this game are second to none.

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7 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Takes first person shooters to a whole new level

10/10
Author: overdrive_maniac from Ontario Canada
20 April 2002

What a great game! So often, games are just easy shoot 'em ups, with no challenge; just walk in and blow everyone away. Hitman however, is a complex game that requires thinking, strategy and precision. Despite a couple of small glitches, graphics are good, gameplay is sweet and the game itself cannot be beat. Highly addictive, this game will put you behind the scope... so pull the trigger.

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