Hitman 2 is out this November, bigger, bolder, murderier

Hitman 2

Much like Agent 47, Hitman 2‘s approach wasn’t nearly as stealthy as it hoped to be, but the end results aren’t to be sniffed at. Eagle-eyed internet people spotted its logo a few days back, but today Io Interactive officially announced the sequel to 2016’s episodic murder-sandbox. Unlike the previous game, this one will be released all in one go (with plans for later expansions) and is available for pre-order, with the deal sweetened by immediate access to the Sniper Assassin co-op mode.

Not to be confused with that other Hitman 2, this new one looks to be more of the same compelling and replayable puzzle-box gameplay that the previous game nearly perfected. Big complex environments filled with moving pieces and accidents just waiting to happen, and you set loose with a naughty-list of targets and a box of toys. Io say maps will be even larger this time to facilitate more sniping fun and you’ll be able to smuggle in heavier gear using 47’s stylish little briefcase, which was missing from the previous game.

There will be a little more focus on story this time round, with forces closing in on Agent 47 and his handler, Diana. Io say that they’ll also take a look into 47’s past and origin story a little, which is something that the pre-reboot games explored and concluded quite thoroughly. Io also joked that for the first time they left enough characters alive to justify a full sequel, as previous games did tend to end in a festival of violence that tied up most potential plot threads.

Nearly all of Hitman 2016’s features are confirmed present and correct, including elusive targets, contract missions, escalations, and apparently some new game-modes coming as well. One entirely new feature is the Sniper Assassin mode, where two players control two new characters, and solve all their problems through high-calibre bullets deployed from extreme range. It kinda reminds me of the old arcade game Silent Scope, and while you can’t move around (it’s a pure sniping challenge) there’s still a bit of Hitman’s easter-egg heavy, multiple-solution style here.

The debut stream also showed off one of the main missions from the game. Set in Miami, 47 will be infiltrating a high-profile endurance touring car race event, which means big roads, big buildings, and huge crowds. Among the many possible disguises are a pair of flamingo mascot suits, one of which you can see above, and I cannot wait to dress the grumpy bald murder-man in that. Your target there will be a pair of high-ranking folks working for an evil tech company – I do appreciate that Hitman has made steps towards addressing its karmic balance.

My only concern is the pricing of the game. It’s not surprising that the basic version of the game costs £45/$60, but there are also Silver and Gold editions costing £60/$80 and £70/$100 respectively. Silver promises one expansion, Gold promises two, but the wording chosen may betray their scale; Silver adds a ‘new location’ and Gold adds ‘new locations’. Only one new map per pack? I’d be glad to be wrong, but I’m the cynical sort when it comes to major publishers, and Io Interactive have partnered with mega-studio Warner Bros for this one.

Hitman 2 will be arriving on November 13th, and you can wishlist or pre-order it over on Steam here.

26 Comments

  1. dangermouse76 says:

    Sniper mode sounds cool but it’s limited to a dual sniper mode only. Shame. Cant wait to see where they take this though.

  2. Premium User Badge

    Frog says:

    Looks like a lot of fun. But USD $99 for the gold edition with two extra “locations” seems pretty stiff. I might wait a while.

    • Peksisarvinen says:

      Calling 99$ for a video game “pretty stiff” is like saying a plate full of horse manure is sub-optimal as a breakfast.

  3. Madcat_Zam says:

    I’m a bit wary about the announcement ever since I heard that Warner Bros. is the publisher. They are one of the more egregious publishers when it comes to locked off DLC, microtransactions, different tiered editions, etc.

    • Dominic Tarason says:

      Yeah, I honestly found that the episodic structure of Hitman 2016 suited the game perfectly. It really gave you time to explore each map as a flexible game-space, and whenever they added new missions to old maps, it was exciting.

      A return to a traditional structure isn’t really a problem though, but a $100 price-tag makes me wary.

      • Shinard says:

        Agreed, on both counts, but I’ll wait til I see how much content is in the base game. I mean, Patient Zero was technically £7 for no new maps, so I guess it’s not new – though Patient Zero added a lot of new stuff, and DLC after a year feels very different to DLC planned from launch. Hell, maps were ~$10 per at launch for last Hitman – but buying all of them was $60, not $100.

        Still, I’ve been hearing alarm bells ever since I heard Warner Bros. was involved. Wouldn’t be the first time they took a surprisingly great original game and whacked a ton of micro transactions on for the sequel.

      • Raoul Duke says:

        I don’t really get this thinking.

        If you want to take your time on a given map just… take your time on that map. Why do you need the publisher to hold the rest of the game in escrow while you do it?

        I.e., this sounds like it’s about self-control as much as anything. I often take my time in a given part of a game, especially open world stuff, even though I know there’s loads more in other areas that I will eventually enjoy.

    • SaintAn says:

      I’ve never played a Hitman game and was thinking of trying the last one, but if they have loot boxes (Hitboxes!) in this one I won’t bother.

    • grimdanfango says:

      Argh! Didn’t realise it was Warner that picked them up. These poor sods just can’t catch a break with publishers.

      • Dominic Tarason says:

        I think it’s just a publishing deal, rather than an ownership one, thankfully. They’re still an indepdendent studio and if Hitman 2 sells well, they may have a good enough war-chest to actually do Hitman 3 by themselves.

        • grimdanfango says:

          Still, being Warners’ money on the line, let’s hope they don’t “pull a Warners” and force them to release it months before it’s finished and hopelessly broken.

  4. dangermouse76 says:

    Ok that’s Sean Bean isn’t it ? If there isn’t a mission where his character dies I will stamp my feet.

  5. caff says:

    Glad this is coming out.

  6. bacon seeker says:

    Nice! I wasn’t a fan of the episodic format, but the last game certainly bounced back from that god awful mess of Hitman Absolution. Although… I could have sworn I played Hitman 2 sixteen years go.

  7. DatonKallandor says:

    They lost me when they said they’re brining elusive targets back. The whole limited time crap is exactly what ruined the last one.

    • Raoul Duke says:

      This stopped me buying the last one too. I don’t have a life that allows me to schedule things around when a publisher decides I’m allowed to play a video game.

      Hence I will consider buying this cheap if and when they release the whole game with no time restricted content in due course.

      • grimdanfango says:

        Not sure why this would stop anyone buying the game. That isn’t the sum total of the game.
        I played a big bunch of hours, and never bothered to even see what Elusive Targets was… the base maps were absolutely packed full of great content that will last me longer than I’ll likely ever bother playing anyway.

    • Just Endless says:

      It took me literally 70 hours to exhaust the non-time-limited content, so like, cmon.

      I know every nook and cranny of the game, i feel as if i completed it entirely, and then i did one of those and kinda shrugged

  8. grimdanfango says:

    The single most important thing I hope they address is having a more diverse and thematically-appropriate voice acting cast. I don’t think there’s much that needs improving on over Hitman 2016 – it was fantastic fun, but my suspension of disbelief was repeatedly shattered every time an Italian cleaner or Moroccan street-market vendor would chat away or hawk their wares in a thick US accent. Made most levels feel like I was visiting a theme park rather than the real place.

    I presume they simply had limited budget to work with the first time round. Hoping the situation will be a little improved this time, given that they’ve proven a sizable market still exists for these marvellous games :-)

    • faircall says:

      Yeah I really liked most of the game, but the homogeneous voice acting really broke the immersion for me as well! Hopefully they haven’t blown all their voice budget this time getting Sean Bean. The other minor thing that irritated me was the lack of a briefcase, so it’s good to see that returning this time.

      The bigger issue I hope they improve upon is to have a more flexible opportunities system. I didn’t like the overly signposted, linear, rigid series of objectives that were required for them. Turning them off didn’t help because they seemed to be designed on the assumption of the hint system, much as levels in games with objective markers are designed for that particular design crutch.

    • whalemilk9000 says:

      “You wanna buy a lamp?”

  9. poliovaccine says:

    Ah, it comes out on my birthday. There’s my excuse to treat myself haha.

  10. Camilitus says:

    i will consider it if every map isn’t populated by Americans on spring break.

  11. Wormerine says:

    Any news if it still has always online DRM?

  12. Marclev says:

    “There will be a little more focus on story this time round”

    Oh, that sounds worrying. Does anybody really play Hitman games for the story?

    The thing that made Bloodmoney and the new one so much fun was that each location was a completely standalone sandbox.

    Talk about story and origins makes me worry that they still don’t understand that.

  13. Peksisarvinen says:

    Why bother using numbers in sequels if those numbers don’t actually mean anything?

    Not that I care about this game or the previous one. I already own a Hitman 2 that’s perfectly playable, and likely superior in many ways to this one.

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