No one can say that that the Hitman developers do not work hard on creating possible situations and ways that can give the players a unique play through, and at this point, we wouldn’t expect anything less. Unfortunately, when a particular action doesn’t prove to work in a way that changes the script, it can be extremely frustrating when it impedes on completion of the level.
The town of Sapienza, a beautiful, yet fictional town, is wonderfully realized. So beautiful in fact, that it seems that it should be a crime that all of the objectives in the campaign are located in the mansion across the street. It’s a great mansion; well developed, a lot of detail in everything except for the NPC’s, which is something that can’t be helped at this point and was talked about in the review of the first episode, which you can find HERE.
There are plenty of ways to complete a campaign, as is expected with a Hitman title. However, during my initial play through, I ran into strange circumstances. First and foremost was an option to poison a drink. This is not a new concept in the franchise, but when an option like that becomes available to you, when executed, one would expect it have some of repercussion that makes getting to your objective easier, but in this case, it did nothing.
Just to give an example; one of the targets has two bodyguards around them, so in order to have a chance to eliminate your target without being spotted, logic would dictate that if you poison one of them, they would get sick or die. At first when I did this, that was the result. After I infiltrated the room where the target goes to eventually, I waited in a container to take her and the remaining guard out. They came back into the room, and turned their backs so I could get the kill. However, the second guard came back from the bathroom and made it impossible to get a clean kill. So the question is, “What was the point in even having the option to poison the bodyguard?”
Another glitch came into play where Agent 47 had to destroy a virus in a lab underneath the mansion. Everything was going pretty smoothly, and the virus was destroyed, but the objective list was never updated saying I did so, which in turn, made it to where I did not have an option to escape to end the level. Talk about frustrating.
One of the first things I noticed was some of the strange audio happening when it comes to character dialogue. For instance, if you are hiding in a container there seems to be a disconnect with being able to hear conversation. Understandably, if you are in something, hiding, from an enemy, the sound would be dulled down, but in a game there needs to be a way to listen to their dialogue. At least the subtitles were on and I could keep up with what kind of personality one of my targets had. Other than that, the music cues hit when they needed to, even if they come in abruptly at some points.
I may have just happened to pick rare options concurrently, which made my game experience pretty bad. Having stated these faults that I have found, I now understand why Square-Enix decided to break down the games into parts. Originally, this game was supposed to be released in December of 2015 with six missions originally on the disc, named the Sarajevo Six, and then having content released after. From the glitches and issues I encountered through my play through, I am under the opinion that if the game had released on its initial date, we may have had a broken and extremely glitchy game.
It was smart to give each episode more time, but regardless of if it’s an episode, or a full game, a buggy game is a buggy game. I am not an analyst for game companies, nor I will pretend to be, but simply delaying the game as a whole would probably have done wonders, but it wasn’t, and that is probably due to wanting to meet company projections.
Overall, Hitman’s second episode was a bit lackluster. The vastness of the map, the detail of Sapineza as a town, the multi floored mansion, and the multiple ways to take out your targets (like most Hitman areas) are great. Unfortunately, it is bogged down my long load times, glitches that actually rendered finishing the level impossible, and strange audio decisions make it where revisiting the area to try other methods of assassination seem more like a chore.