This is murder! Hitman adding ‘Professional’ difficulty

The episodic Hitman [official site] wrapped up its ‘first season’ last year (read Wot Alec Thinks of the whole thing) but it’s not done and dusted. A new ‘Professional’ difficulty setting will arrive in a free update later this month, publishers Square Enix announced today, to make murder more difficult. Expect guards to be more alert and inquisitive, more trouble disguising yourself, security cameras spotting your shenanigans, only one manual save per mission, and so on.

Professional difficulty will launch in a free update on January 31st. It won’t be available instantly, mind, instead unlocking on a per-location basis when you reach Mastery Level 20 in each. Dunno why it needs to be unlocked, dunno why it’s not universal. Professional difficulty will be an option in all Story missions, bar the Prologue, and not in the ‘live content’.

Because Squeenix have some funny ideas about how to convey information, they detailed Professional difficulty on an image. Is that a ‘meme’? Does that make it a ‘meme’? Let’s say it’s a ‘meme’. I like the dancing baby but Squeenix’s picture doesn’t even move so, for your convenience, I’ve done written it all down with wordy words:

  • Security cameras can spot illegal activity and guards will be dispatched to investigate
  • Each location has been tweaked and altered
  • Separate leaderboards with a Professional modifier
  • Unique unlockable rewards
  • Guards are more thorough when searching
  • Professional Challenges and Mastery
  • Suspicious/illegal items according to current disguise
  • Increase number of security cameras (in logical places)
  • Only one manual save allowed
  • Auto-saves are disabled
  • Clean kills are required to take a disguise
  • Increased guard search radius
  • NPCs are more perceptive to footsteps, especially when running
  • Increased guard alertness
  • Fewer disguise pick-ups
  • Slower health regeneration

Yes, that indeed sounds like it’ll make murder more difficult. January 31st.


  1. Vandelay says:

    But can you execute a hit as professionally as these guys:

    link to

    I have no idea why I only discovered this video yesterday.

  2. Legion1183 says:

    I’m still waiting for the full release before I purchase this latest Hitman. Any ideas when it might eventually come out?

    • xofcitra says:

      The entire first season is already available and has been for several months, they are releasing a boxed edition next week which has all the season one content on disc. Season 2 has been announced but no date yet, there is a huge amount of content currently in the game with new contracts being added every few weeks also.

      • Legion1183 says:

        Oh sweet thanks for the info, must have missed this as I’m still getting through my backlog so haven’t been checking up on it. Good news about the boxed edition too!

  3. DelrueOfDetroit says:

    Too bad they didn’t take a cue from Dishonored and allow fully customizable difficulty. Some of those rules sound rather fun but others sound like they’d just be an annoyance (only one save? Piss off Ian Squeenix.)

    • Scott says:

      Did you forget that the hardest difficulty settings in the older Hitman games don’t allow any manual saves?

      • RichUncleSkeleton says:

        They also had an intermediate setting between regular and Professional (hardest) called Expert which allowed for a reasonable 2 saves per level. So I guess this is somewhere between Expert and Professional which they felt was a bit too Spartan for modern players. I’m just happy there will finally be a way to play without the omnipresent autosaving, which can’t be disabled at all on the basic difficulty setting for some incomprehensible reason.

      • DelrueOfDetroit says:

        Only other Hitman game I’ve played is Blood Money and only about 3 missions in because of the lack of mid mission saving. Having to repeatedly do the same tedious early mission set-up while you test the waters is not my idea of fun.

        • RichUncleSkeleton says:

          On the default difficulty, you get 7 saves in BM, which is more than enough for any experimentation with tactics. Professional is not meant for new players.

          • DelrueOfDetroit says:

            Hmmm, I must have missed that you can save or was accidentally playing on professional.