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Hitman: Blood Money - Review
Hitman: Blood Money
Who hasnít heard of the Hitman series? The games with the legendary Hitman: Mr. 47, the assasin clone. I got introduced to them at a friendís house. He was playing the first Hitman: Codename 47. At the time I wasnít really into this kind of game, it seemed to me like a lot of sneaking, exploring the neighbourhood. And waiting for a good time to make the kill. It just was to slow for someone that liked to play games that are fast, and contained a lot of mindless killing. Iím sure a lot of you know what I mean. Then, a couple of years later (2), Hitman 2: Silent Assasin was released. This time I was ready for it. I got the game, started playing, and loved it. It was all good. The kills, the environments (sometimes the scenery was a bit too exotic) and the size of the levels (though at times a bit too large). But, at some point in the game I got stuck, and it was really irritating, because Iíd played the level at a friends house and finished it within no time (the level was chinatown, by the way, with the restaurant). Problem: He had the silencer, a bonus which one could receive at the end of certain missions. Because I did not want to do the level ,where he got the silencer, again. This was the end of my glorious career in Hitman 2. 2 more years later, Hitman: Contracts comes out. I was planning to get it, but somehow everything always got in the way, and I kept forgetting. Then suddenly, 2 more years later, I see an ad on Hitman: Blood Money, a woman lying on a bed, with a hole in her forehead. This was a great picture, and it made a lasting impression. I decided to get this Hitman, definitely. And so I did.
As the install commenced, I wondered how this Hitman would be, would it be more of the same (which wouldnít really bother me), or would it be even better. I guessed it would be the latter, because Iíd read a lot of positive reviews. 15 minutes later, I fire up the game. First up, the menu. I have to say, I love that music. Just stay in the menu for a couple of minutes, the music is worth it! Then I started my first mission, I get an introduction movie which introduced me to a guy in a wheelchair, and a journalist. Theyíre talking about a failed assasination attempt on the president. Then the first mission started. Iím in some kind of Banana Republic, and I need to kill a couple of guys, father and son. Easy as pie, you could say. But then it hit me again, my incredible laziness for tactics. I was waiting for the action, but when I still hadnít found a chance to kill the guys, so I killed the application, frustrated. A week or so later, I still hadnít touched the game again. But I wasnít about to give up to some game that just claims to be tough, I decided to have another go at it. This time in another state of mind.
This time, I started exploring the environment some more, looking at opportunities, memorizing the patrol-routes of the guards. I got to know the level pretty well, and started to get excited. I was really beginning to think I had a chance. Only thing I hadnít found out yet, was how to get to the father. But those were worries for later, or so I thought. I still didnít completely have the hang of it. And just strolled around the level for a bit, sometimes just going crazy and randomly killing people, then starting again, and have another go. I couldíve killed the guards in front of the room where the father played cello, but I didnít do it, wanting to do it the Hitman way, stealthy, and as accident-like as possible. The fact that saves were deleted every time I exited the game, didnít help my mood either, but I would finish this level, so much was certain. So the next day, I had another go. This time with more succes, I found another way into the fatherís room, and killed him as stealthy as possible, then I had a go at the son, took me about 3 tries. I ran to the airplane, and escaped the level, pleased with the kill. Then finally I got a hunch of how this game needs to be played: calm, very observant, and often.
After that, I couldnít stop with the killing. One level after another, the game was to die for (pun intended). And then my cousin arrived. I still hadnít finished the game, but had feeling, a sad one, that the end of the game was nearing. I played through the last couple of levels with my cousin, every night from 12 to 4 AM. It took us 2 nights, but we finished it, and I was, although sad, very pleased with the end. The story was even better than I had imagined. What a great game. The credits had a very nice and subtle bonus as well (and Iím not going to give any spoilers). It truly was a great feeling.Although the gameplay and story are two very important (most important in my opinion) factors. The graphics are there too, and I must say the game was a feast. The graphics are very up to date, and almost foto-realistic. The movements are very smooth as well. And I donít really have anything bad to say about them. The game was also pretty bug-free. Every time I thought there was a bug, it turned out to be something I did wrong (but not always). The biggest bug I encountered was in one of the last levels when the walls got all colory and happy (which definitely didnít fit the scenery). But compared to what the game offers it was nothing.
There it is! My first conclusion, and itís going to be a good one. This is definitely a game you have to play if your into tactics, if you want to kill stealthy, that is. Itís still possible to burst in guns blazing, donít expect to live long though. Luckily there are upgrades, including armour, health boosts, and the likes. What I really liked was that this time, you could upgrade your items in the menu, this wasnít the case in Hitman 2. Another bonus were the accident-kills, in every level itís possible to stage an accident for your targets. They are not that hard to find, and if it works, it gives a great feeling, so get going and stage those accidents! And last but definitely not least, Graphics and Story. Both great, and heartwarming, or as heartwarming as it gets, anyway. Difinitely the costumes, theyíre really great and funny, and really slick. This is a must-play for every gamer. If youíre not into tactics, or if you are, this gameís got both. Also nice is the Money earning system, the better and stealthier you hit, the more you get paid, and the cooler your guns become, this is where the staged accidents come in handy. Now get hired and kill those targets!
Gameplay: 9 | Graphics: 9 | Story: 9 | Bugfree: 8 | Replay: 9 | Personal: 9
The personal grade means the emotional value I attach to the game. In some cases it is higher than the overall grade, and in others it is lower. It is included in the overall grade. The bugfree grade probably speaks for itself, but what the heck, it means the amount of bugs I encountered. The lower the amount, the higher the grade.
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