Hitman has always been a series for promoting multiple playthroughs. The element of choice and various options in the way you take out your targets has been among the series’ main strengths.
Speaking about the next instalment in the series, Hitman: Absolution, the game’s director Tore Blystad said: “The general player will probably never even finish the game, which is very sad. Or they might only play through it once, but the game is built for the people who want to go back through every single level and get all the stuff out of it. It’s built to last, rather than be a one-off experience.”
Blystad accredits the problem to gamers unwilling to commit to one particular game, a problem for all developers and publishers.
“I guess people can’t commit to taking all those hours to finish one product, they get tired of it. It’s not just for this game, it’s for any game,” he said.
“Knowing that 20% of the players will see the last level of the game. It’s horrible to know. It makes the people working on it really really sad.”
The game’s director also said that a solution to remedy the common problem would be to shift the more interesting segments of the game into earlier parts, although, this is particularly difficult because Hitman: Absolution runs on a strict narrative framework.
“It’s very difficult when something is constructed to fit into a larger story to move things too much around. I think in some of the previous Hitman games that that might have been the case – that some levels were moved earlier, because they were more catchy or interesting. For us it hasn’t really been that easy, because the story is really tying all the levels together, so they’re still coming in the same order, more or less, that they were designed.”
The development team over at IO Interactive are aware of this and have therefore crafted the game in a way to promote players completing all their hits right until the end.
“In the user tests we have they actually tell us that the replayability factor in itself, it’s the situation or the humour that’s the reason people actually go back through the levels, they want to see more, they want to find these things, which makes us very happy, because it takes a lot of time and effort to get these things in.”
The untalkative assassin will return on 20 November 2012, so expect some sharp-dressing and silent violence heading into the holiday season. If you pre-order the game, you’ll get access to the sharpshooting precursor game, which you can read about in MyGaming’s review of Hitman Sniper Challenge.