Title: Hitman 2
Format: PS4, Xbox One
Publisher: Warner Bros.
Developer: IO Interactive
ESRB Rating: M (Mature)
The Grade: A -
Hitman 2 Haiku Review
You are a Hitman
Blending in is what you do
And deft killing too
What is it? The sequel to 2016’s “Hitman,” although somewhat ironically this is the second game in the series to go by the title, “Hitman 2.” In this latest game players will once again reprise the role of Agent 47. The bald headed assassin has new targets to take out and the story of who is trying to eliminate the ICA (no, not the CIA) continues.
Highs: One of the most enjoyable things about the “Hitman” series is that Agent 47 is much more than a trained killer. Agent 47 isn’t an infallible anti-hero. He can easily be caught, is just as vulnerable to witnesses as any criminal and can be killed. His ability to fail and fail often, surprisingly, is what makes this game so addictive.
By saving often in “Hitman 2,” I feel like Nicolas Cage in the rewatchable, yet slightly absurd, movie, “Next.” In the film, Cage plays a Las Vegas magician who can see two minutes into the future so he can try multiple ways of doing something until he succeeds. “Hitman” plays exactly like that, letting you try multiple ideas until you find what works. When your plan does pay off, not only is it incredibly rewarding but you can try the level again and again using a completely different plans. Levels will get to feel familiar but never redundant because theres’s so many ways to accomplish your goal.
The tried and true “Hitman” gameplay is as strong as ever, but this new iteration offers several upgrades that fans of the series are sure to appreciate. A new picture-in-picture feature gives you a heads up on the actions you’ve set in motion, which allows for you to better react to your surroundings. Agent 47 now does a better job of blending in with crowds and can hide in foliage. This allows for many more approaches to approach targets.
The new multiplayer modes are well crafted. Sniper Assassin, which can be played solo or co-op, gives players 15 minutes to complete a challenging sniper mission. Ghost Mode, which is currently in beta, is a competitive, 1vs1 multiplayer mode where gamers to see who’s the best Agent 47. Both modes are a blast to play.
There’s just so much to do in this game! Throw in a number of new tools/weapons, a stunning visual and audio presentation and the return of enjoyable free content such as Elusive Targets and “Hitman 2” is a game that grabs your attention.
Lows: The controls in “Hitman 2” work fine but they’re beginning to show their age. The control layout can lead to some unwanted movements or even worse, the death of people you don’t intend to assassinate. There are no other settings, you have to take what developer IO Interactive gives you. Slightly more troublesome is that “Hitman 2” requires you to have an online connection. If your internet goes down, you’re out of luck.
The Grade: I spent an hour on one mission, painstakingly figuring out the best way to take out two different targets in a thoughtful and elegant way. I could have blasted my way through and finished in half the time but there’s no fun in that, not in this title. “Hitman 2” is a game that rewards your patience, strategic thinking and creativity, which is why you should absolutely give it a shot.
Gazette Media Columnist Terry Terrones is a veteran video game journalist. He has written for numerous publications including GamePro, GamesBeat, PC World, GameZone, and Official Xbox Magazine. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/terryterrones.