Ian Hitman's current trilogy of sandbox stealth-o-murder games wraps up today with Hitman 3, which launched just a few minutes ago. As he fights a vast conspiracy, he'll do murders in new levels everywhere from England to Dubai, and get into a few of his trademark daft situations. One mission is just a murder mystery potentially starring Ian, an actual murderer, as the detective. Unfortunately, the promised ability for owners of the previous two games to connect and play them inside 3 is delayed.
"As a final act, Hitman 3 is as capable and pleasing as its trilogy-siblings," Brendy said in our Hitman 3 review. "As a trilogy, it is one of the most fun-loving games of the previous decade. It is like Ian himself – reliable, dry-humoured, uniformed. The best murderer money can buy."
Sounds like a good game in itself, and a good part of the trilogy. Shame the way it connects with the rest of the trilogy is hindered by mysterious issues.
Hitman 2 had the ability to hook with the first game on Steam, merging them into one big murdergame, and that was supposed to happen with 3 too. Io had said in August that "locations from 1 and 2 can be imported at no additional cost for existing owners," but on Friday posted a launch guide saying nothing of the sort for PC. Instead, it said people who pre-ordered Hitman 3 or bought it within the first ten days would get Hitman 1's content free, and could buy Hitman 2's at a discount. Not great. Come Sunday, Io were saying, "We guarantee that players will NOT need to repurchase these games". The fix might take a while, as Io said they will "roll that out in the coming weeks." The game's launch today hasn't brought new information about it, not yet at least.
It's not clear what went wrong wrong or changed where and with who, but it might be relevant that the trilogy started on Steam before Epic Games lured Hitman 3 over to their own store (presumably by throwing coins to distract Io from their patrol route). Controversy over Epic paying for exclusives had been somewhat fading into background noise, then along comes this mess. Even if the issue turns out to be unconnected to Epixclusivity, with only vague statements from Io and Epic about the problem, that certainly has become the public perception of it.
Hitman 3 is available now from the Epic Games Store for £50. Uh, as a stopgap, you can still get that Hitman 1 Access Pass to play those murders before it's all fixed. The game's also on PlayStations, Xboxes, Stadia, and, curiously, Nintendo Switch through cloud gaming. The PC version is exclusive to Epic for 12 months, so we might expect to see it on Steam in January 2022.