Hitman Absolution will be less sandboxy, discussed by developer

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#1 Edited by squirrelnacho (329 posts) -

“One of the things that was difficult with the old games was that there was a lot of freedom, but you really had to dig it out, it wasn’t really presented to you at all. So you could start a level and there was ten doors open to you and was like, ‘well, where the hell am I supposed to go? I don’t know, I’ll just have to try the first door, oh I got killed, now I’ll try the second one.’

“That kind of freedom is not very interesting because it’s not really a choice, but you just try it and then you see if you fail and then you try something else. Now, you’re very mindful to present choices to the player that might be more binary in a way because there are physical choices, but in the level. There is also [inaudible] choices of how you want to play through it as a player, based on, ‘do you want to be a silent assassin or do you just want to get through the game and have a good storyline and experience?" Link

Key part is "binary" choices. It sounds like we wont see the large open sandboxy levels that made them so fun to replay over again. They are just giving you two choices (stealthy or action) as they funnel you along mostly linear levels point A to point B. The game is becoming like splinter cell conviction.

Sure the game isn't out yet, but every sign so far points to this game being far more restrictive in the gameplay. The demos so far have not indicated that there are any significant open level designs. Hopefully, these concerns prove to be false.

Not to mention they chose not to use the same Agent 47 voice actor from the last 4 games, and dropped the composer Jesper Kyd.

-Edit: It also looks like it will mostly take place entirely in the same setting. No more awesomely exotic and varying levels.

-Edit 2: They dropped the long running voice actor of Diana, your employer.

-More edits: The map is gone (who needs it in linear levels) and it seems Agent 47 will be involved in some sort of romantic subplot.

#2 Posted by Zimbo (875 posts) -

@squirrelnacho said:

dropped the composer Jesper Kyd.

This is probably the most disappointing thing. Jesper Kyd is awesome.

I'll be a bit disappointed if they remove a lot of the exploring. I enjoyed wandering around trying to find cool new ways to assassinate people even if it did include lots of trial and error.

#3 Posted by N7 (3572 posts) -

They did an interview a long time ago. The director said they had to remove a lot of that stuff because he found it too complicated... despite, you know, that being one of the big draws to the game. Now it's just going the Splinter Cell route of getting away from what made the game what it was in favor of being the biggest and flashiest game it can be.

#4 Posted by squirrelnacho (329 posts) -

@N7 said:

They did an interview a long time ago. The director said they had to remove a lot of that stuff because he found it too complicated... despite, you know, that being one of the big draws to the game. Now it's just going the Splinter Cell route of getting away from what made the game what it was in favor of being the biggest and flashiest game it can be.

Yes, it also seems like it will be taking place in just one city for basically the entire game. No more traveling to wildly exotic locations every level.

#5 Posted by Ghostiet (5209 posts) -
@rebgav said:

I was already at "fuck this game" so I can't do anything with this information. I'm sure that these changes will make Hitman a hugely successful action franchise just like Kane & Lynch, so gutting the gameplay will be completely worthwhile.

Exactly. Absolutely nothing that I know about Hitman Absolution makes this shit appealing.

I'm probably going to play Silent Assassin again. That game holds up very well.

#6 Posted by TeamJersey (339 posts) -

This makes me very, very sad. Taking away the voice actor, the composer and the way the game has always been played, seems like not playing a Hitman game at all. I will try to continue to be optimistic, but the developer is not giving me as much reason to be.

#7 Posted by BigChickenDinner (766 posts) -

:( Why would they ruin it?

#8 Posted by AjayRaz (12416 posts) -

i haven't played hitman before but this is starting to sound less and less appealing compared to what the other games have

#9 Posted by squirrelnacho (329 posts) -

@Ghostiet said:

I'm probably going to play Silent Assassin again. That game holds up very well.

It was one of the first games to have ragdolls, even if they had almost zero friction.

#10 Posted by deathstriker666 (1337 posts) -

Ten doors? What? Sure there were some alternate paths, but most of the levels in the past Hitman games were pretty closed off. I remember a lot locked doors and buildings you couldn't enter. A lot finding out what you could do and couldn't do in a level. If you had any doubts about the new Hitman game seems like this pretty much confirms it.

#11 Posted by squirrelnacho (329 posts) -

@deathstriker666 said:

Ten doors? What? Sure there were some alternate paths, but most of the levels in the past Hitman games were pretty closed off. I remember a lot locked doors and buildings you couldn't enter. A lot finding out what you could do and couldn't do in a level. If you had any doubts about the new Hitman game seems like this pretty much confirms it.

You could open almost every door. For example, in hotel levels, you could enter every room, even if nothing was in there.

#12 Edited by Cloudenvy (5891 posts) -

@Zimbo said:

@squirrelnacho said:

dropped the composer Jesper Kyd.

This is probably the most disappointing thing. Jesper Kyd is awesome.

Honestly, I'd rather have him work on Assassin's Creed than this.

#13 Posted by Still_I_Cry (2494 posts) -

One word..

Fuck.

#14 Edited by glyn (382 posts) -

Didn't people ever look at the map..../ It pretty much told you what to do

#15 Posted by Chop (1992 posts) -

*Cuddles Blood Money disk*

Don't worry, baby. No matter what they do to your new brother, they can NEVER take you away from me <3

#16 Posted by ThePhantomStranger (353 posts) -

What? I might be on board with this if it was them talking about how they were trying to figure out more streamlined ways of presenting the "ten doors" but this just seems like they're taking the route of modernization = binary decisions plus the occasional interrupt

I was mildly interested in this game as I've been wanting to try a hitman game, I'll still be sporting and wait for the quicklook but it sounds more and more likely I should just get Blood Money...

#17 Edited by squirrelnacho (329 posts) -

@ThePhantomStranger said:

What? I might be on board with this if it was them talking about how they were trying to figure out more streamlined ways of presenting the "ten doors" but this just seems like they're taking the route of modernization = binary decisions plus the occasional interrupt

I was mildly interested in this game as I've been wanting to try a hitman game, I'll still be sporting and wait for the quicklook but it sounds more and more likely I should just get Blood Money...

Have you never played a Hitman game? Try one of the other game's first.

And all the possible routes were never a problem, that was part of the fun. You always had a map that would tell you if enemies or friendlies were in rooms (depending on the difficulty setting).

#18 Posted by lavaman77 (566 posts) -

Thank you developers for selling out and screwing your fans. What made Hitman fun was the choices and how you can approach a situation in so many ways, take that away and you kill the essence of Hitman. I knew that they were going to dumb down this game for Casuals. It was just too good to be true.

#19 Posted by Roger778 (953 posts) -

This is really nerve-wracking news.

I'm really hoping that the game will be at least slightly non-linear, in that it's a linear game, but you still get the chance to do a little exploring. Right now, it doesn't sound like that will happen.

#20 Posted by Rittsy (77 posts) -

...wait until the game comes out. Read reviews, browse forums then if you like what you read buy the game. If you don't, play something else.

@lavaman77 said:

Thank you developers for selling out and screwing your fans.

Good one internet hipster.

#21 Edited by lavaman77 (566 posts) -

@Rittsy said:

...wait until the game comes out. Read reviews, browse forums then if you like what you read buy the game. If you don't, play something else.

@lavaman77 said:

Thank you developers for selling out and screwing your fans.

Good one internet hipster.

Yes I am very good at capturing the disappointment vibe from the fan base. And pissing off internet knights in white armor.

#22 Posted by zeekthegeek (381 posts) -

Sounds like Jesper Kyd can smell a sinking ship.

#23 Posted by TheHT (10810 posts) -

@Cloudenvy said:

@Zimbo said:

@squirrelnacho said:

dropped the composer Jesper Kyd.

This is probably the most disappointing thing. Jesper Kyd is awesome.

Honestly, I'd rather have him work on Assassin's Creed than this.

every Hitman OST > every Assassin's Creed OST

#24 Edited by lavaman77 (566 posts) -

@zeekthegeek said:

Sounds like Jesper Kyd can smell a sinking ship.

More like the Assassin's Creed series is more comfortable and profitable to him at the moment. If the series wasn't on hiatus for 6 years he would probably still produce music for it.

#25 Posted by Viking_Funeral (1727 posts) -

That helps explain the new trailer. A bit.

#26 Posted by adam1808 (1359 posts) -

As a ignoramus on this subject of Hitman, can someone explain this anger to me?

#27 Posted by Rittsy (77 posts) -

@adam1808: Things are changing again...maybe...we're not sure. But dammit, the world will know how mad we are!

#28 Posted by allworkandlowpay (874 posts) -

@TheHT said:

every Hitman OST > every Assassin's Creed OST

Well that's just like, your opinion, man.

#29 Posted by invadernick (260 posts) -

Very dissapointed with this news, why do they even bother calling it hitman if they just want to make a stealth game? Not that there's anything wrong with that. Hitman is just a very unique kind of game they should't change the formula too much especially if it means taking away the freedom we had in past games. I'll look foeward to e3 demos before I lose all hope though.

#30 Posted by jackanderson (18 posts) -

Can't IO just admit that they don't want to make a Hitman game and get out whilst they can still save some face (hey, one half of an eye socket is still better than nothing)?

And

Her character's developed a very poor plot-based case of deadness in the first mission.

Between this and the new trailer, I have lost all hope in Absolution. Between this, Mini Ninjas and Kane & Lynch; I've lost all hope in IO ever making a great game again. I don't want a Freedom Fighters sequel anymore.

#31 Posted by Baillie (4025 posts) -

I hope it's like Conviction. I fucking love that game. Hitman is great, but Conviction was better.

Online
#32 Edited by Tennmuerti (7957 posts) -

That ... sucks.

On of the most entertaining things about previous Hitman games was trying to figure shit out for yourself. And even when you succeeded reading up completely different strategies and ways of going about the objective.

I remember one time I went through a mission in this totally super smooth way by saving a shitload of time and effort by simply shooting out a door lock on a door with a silenced sniper rifle from the bushes some distance away and entering the premises in seconds without anyone noticing or jumping through other hoops, only do discover this method was not mentioned in any FAQs, because normally you couldn't bust/lockpick/shoot that door since there is a kissing couple nearby. (even tho i was playing 1-2 years after release) Made me feel totally badass.

#33 Posted by altairre (1114 posts) -

@squirrelnacho said:

it seems Agent 47 will be involved in some sort of romantic subplot.

What?

#34 Edited by Tennmuerti (7957 posts) -

@adam1808 said:

As a ignoramus on this subject of Hitman, can someone explain this anger to me?

Because Hitman games are a kind of unique series in a genre stealth/puzzle that when the rest of the genre has recently simply moved to stealth/action. So the new entry looks like a departure from why people loved the series for in the first place and it looks from the information and videos shown that it is just blindly trying to appeal to a dumbed down mass market with less choice, more linear gameplay, more focus on action over flexing your grey matter a bit, etc. At least so it comes off from the trailers and dev comments.

@Baillie said:

I hope it's like Conviction. I fucking love that game. Hitman is great, but Conviction was better.

I'd rather have diversity and a choice of entirely different games rather then just playing more of the same. This is besides the point of what game is better, just to do with keeping different styles of game rather then only having 1 style.

I liked Conviction too, but I'd rather wait for another game in that series from that developer, not bastardize a different franchise with it's own uniqueness into a a different type of game.

#35 Posted by J12088 (434 posts) -

Yeah I'll save my money and skip this. Vote with your wallet if it sells like crap they should learn.

#36 Edited by Tennmuerti (7957 posts) -

@altairre said:

@squirrelnacho said:

it seems Agent 47 will be involved in some sort of romantic subplot.

What?

Ah c'mon Hitman always had hot's for Diana anyway :p

In his own passive unfeeling way sure, but you gotta admit he got feelings involved and let his guard down a few times around her. And she definitely did go above and beyond for him. Their handler/agent relationship left a mark over time. Pretty evident in the end of Bloodmoney. And now in the new game he supposedly offs her at the start and it's called "Absolution"

I wouldn't call it just a subplot tho when it's in the name of the game.

Unless the above poster is talking about some other additional romantic involvement.

#37 Posted by zaglis (909 posts) -
@Baillie said:

I hope it's like Conviction. I fucking love that game. Hitman is great, but Conviction was better.

Troll bait is strong with this one.
#38 Posted by Winternet (8002 posts) -

Seriously, can this thread be more negative? Where are the good news?

#39 Posted by BaconGames (3280 posts) -

I attempted and failed to get through the first two Hitman games because of the exact problems the dev described. I still want them to solve the issue of mixing choices without overwhelming the player but if they can nail the Hitman feel without needless trial and error, great. If not, I could less of a shit about this franchise. Maybe Blood Money is the way to do it, I haven't played it, but I'm willing to listen if they are attempting to address why I never got into this series.

#40 Posted by Tennmuerti (7957 posts) -

@BaconGames: Yea the earlier games are a bit rough, Bloodmoney is indeed the best place to start ironically being the last game, it's one thing Patrick had right during the bombcast.

#41 Posted by Baillie (4025 posts) -

@zaglis said:

@Baillie said:

I hope it's like Conviction. I fucking love that game. Hitman is great, but Conviction was better.

Troll bait is strong with this one.

You may think so, but it's really not. I love all the Hitman games and all the Splinter Cell games. I'd like to see a melding of the two, imagine it. I know this game won't be what I hope for...

Online
#42 Edited by WilltheMagicAsian (1544 posts) -

I had a feeling it was going to go this route when they announced it was going to have that, "mark x amount of dudes and we'll kill them for you" mechanic.

#43 Posted by Baal_Sagoth (1224 posts) -

Damn, first time I hear all this stuff. Well, I'm going to remain skeptic since the game isn't out yet and Hitman doesn't show well in a short demo or to the majority of clueless people who never cared about the games in the first place. Some of this doesn't sound good at all though (Jesper Kyd is practically a god, I never like change of voice actors, Hitman shouldn't become another mediocre action "stealth" game etc.). That being said I have played two and a half outstanding core Hitman games (Silent Assassin plus its glorified expansion Contracts and Blood Money, Agent 47 was still a weird but interesting experiment) and can go for an installment that shakes things up in a smart way. I'm not too sure this is going to be it though.

Then again, I played every IO game except Kane & Lynch 2 (yes, including Mini Ninjas) and liked them all so there's a good chance I find something to enjoy here.

#44 Posted by AhmadMetallic (18955 posts) -
@squirrelnacho said:

“One of the things that was difficult with the old games was that there was a lot of freedom, but you really had to dig it out, it wasn’t really presented to you at all. So you could start a level and there was ten doors open to you and was like, ‘well, where the hell am I supposed to go? I don’t know, I’ll just have to try the first door, oh I got killed, now I’ll try the second one.’

“That kind of freedom is not very interesting because it’s not really a choice, but you just try it and then you see if you fail and then you try something else. Now, you’re very mindful to present choices to the player that might be more binary in a way because there are physical choices, but in the level. There is also [inaudible] choices of how you want to play through it as a player, based on, ‘do you want to be a silent assassin or do you just want to get through the game and have a good storyline and experience?" Link

Key part is "binary" choices. It sounds like we wont see the large open sandboxy levels that made them so fun to replay over again. They are just giving you two choices (stealthy or action) as they funnel you along mostly linear levels point A to point B. The game is becoming like splinter cell conviction.

Sure the game isn't out yet, but every sign so far points to this game being far more restrictive in the gameplay. The demos so far have not indicated that there are any significant open level designs. Hopefully, these concerns prove to be false.

Not to mention they chose not to use the same Agent 47 voice actor from the last 4 games, and dropped the composer Jesper Kyd.

-Edit: It also looks like it will mostly take place entirely in the same setting. No more awesomely exotic and varying levels.

-Edit 2: They dropped the long running voice actor of Diana, your employer.

-More edits: The map is gone (who needs it in linear levels) and it seems Agent 47 will be involved in some sort of romantic subplot.

Haha. Wow. Reading that felt like watching a plane go down into a mountain.  
Rofl. 
 
 
@Chop said:

*Cuddles Blood Money disk*

Don't worry, baby. No matter what they do to your new brother, they can NEVER take you away from me <3

awww :(
#45 Posted by TheDudeOfGaming (6078 posts) -

I had some hopes for this. I'll still probably pick it up, but I'll go in with expectations of seeing Dragon Age 2 all over again, it ought to increase my enjoyment of the game.

#46 Posted by AhmadMetallic (18955 posts) -
@Rittsy said:

...wait until the game comes out. Read reviews, browse forums then if you like what you read buy the game. If you don't, play something else.

@lavaman77 said:

Thank you developers for selling out and screwing your fans.

Good one internet hipster.

@Rittsy said:

@adam1808: Things are changing again...maybe...we're not sure. But dammit, the world will know how mad we are!

 
Go troll somewhere else. Now.
#47 Posted by Rittsy (77 posts) -

@AhmadMetallic: I'm not trolling. I've just heard it all before. People were saying the same things before Blood Money was out when the news broke that being discovered didn't mean instant failure. The forums were covered in people complaining about how they ruined the franchise by making it "easy" and by moving certain sections of it to the US.

This happens every time a sequel comes out. Go look at the Starcraft 2 forums, Max Payne 3, Diablo 3 etc. Before any of these games are released people start making a fuss about the whole franchise is ruined based on a quote by a developer or a screenshot. People need to stop freaking out about video games. Wait until they're released before making a final judgement. If you're not sure about a game wait a while, read up on it post-release, then decide. Don't like it, don't buy it. Write a forum post or email on why you didn't buy it. That's the best way to send a message to a developer/publisher.

There's nothing wrong with saying "I'm not sure I like where they're going with so-and-so", but this went from "They've made some changes to the gameplay" to "F*CKING DEVELOPERS DON'T EVEN CARE! WHAT ABOUT THE FANS?! SOMETHING SOMETHING MAINSTREAM SHOOTER!"

#48 Posted by SJSchmidt93 (4882 posts) -

@squirrelnacho said:

So you could start a level and there was ten doors open to you and was like, ‘well, where the hell am I supposed to go? I don’t know, I’ll just have to try the first door, oh I got killed, now I’ll try the second one.’

“That kind of freedom is not very interesting because it’s not really a choice, but you just try it and then you see if you fail and then you try something else. Now, you’re very mindful to present choices to the player that might be more binary in a way because there are physical choices, but in the level.

Really? Cause it's one of the most interesting and unique gaming franchises I've ever played.

#49 Posted by AhmadMetallic (18955 posts) -
@Rittsy said:

@AhmadMetallic: I've just heard it all before. 

This happens every time a sequel comes out.

"SOMETHING SOMETHING MAINSTREAM SHOOTER!"

Do people overdo it? Sure. But does it have merit? You bet your ass it does, buddy.  
When games began appealing to more than just the 1-2 million 'hardcore' gamers (those willing to read text, learn new difficult mechanics, THINK after being confused by the game rather than shutting it down) and went on to easily sell 4 and 5 million copies if not more, appealing to those who are the opposite of what I just described, like my cousins, and my work colleagues, game development DID get "dumbed down" and focus more on the wow effect of cinematics, cool chase sequences and graphics rather than substance.  
 
Just because sometimes people are wrong with their negative speculations (i.e. Starcraft 2 like you said), does NOT mean you should always wait and see. Because a lot of times people are right about their predictions, examples being Battlefield 3, Conviction, Crysis 2, Dragon Age 2, GR Future Soldier and many, many more games.  
And people especially have the right to be worried and to object when there are so many indications of the game going the mainstream way, like all the details listed in the OP of this thread. Hence the consensus you see before you here.
 
I like that you want to be optimistic and not automatically scream and shout against changes before experiencing them, but going around throwing the "You're a whiner" stereotype in people's faces as an automated response for anyone who worries about a sequel getting dumbed down, is trolling.  
And if you're saying you don't believe in the concept of dumbing down to begin with, and that all changes are innovation and "evolution", well, Lol.
#50 Posted by squirrelnacho (329 posts) -

@BaconGames said:

I attempted and failed to get through the first two Hitman games because of the exact problems the dev described. I still want them to solve the issue of mixing choices without overwhelming the player but if they can nail the Hitman feel without needless trial and error, great. If not, I could less of a shit about this franchise. Maybe Blood Money is the way to do it, I haven't played it, but I'm willing to listen if they are attempting to address why I never got into this series.

Play Hitman Blood Money, it's the most accessible by far (although it doesn't have some of the cool settings of the earlier games). The series shouldn't be called trial and error. If you are paying attention to what you are doing with the map, and not playing it like call of duty, it's really not that hard. Do people seriously want to be hand held through the entire game? The map (depending on the difficulty level) always let you see the layout and who was in which rooms.

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