Speaker: Hakan Abrak, Lead Producer at IO interactive
The demo shown at this session was the PS3 build. They have built their own engine for the game and the setting for this particular demo was in the dark and rainy Chicago night. It was also slightly different in that in this scenario Agent 47 was being the hunted one and he didn't really have any tools available to him at the start. What he has instead is his Instinct, and what this system allows is for 47 to see enemies through walls, their patrol routes and so on as a reflection of his past experience and know how to even the odds out a little bit. He also emphasised that one of the core parts of the Hitman series has been freedom of choice and that you will be able to go through these scenarios in many different ways.
The demo starts and Agent 47 is hiding out inside a derelict library where it seems every police officer in the district has shown up. He moves through the starting area slowly using his instinct to find the patrol route of an incoming officer and moves and hides out of the way. The lights in the libarary start malfunctioning a little and this draws attention to a small fusebox on the wall that can be sabotaged. By doing this he can draw some of the guards away and use this to move around them closer to the exit. Eventually however he's stuck in a bit of a corner with no way to sneak past the large group of police milling around the only exit to the building, instead he decides to take a nearby cop hostage and uses this to make his way slowly to the exit. It isn't long though before the police just decide to take him out and a firefight breaks out.
The next part doesn't look so great, mechanically it looks like a cover based shooter but some of the way that the shooting seems like and the animation seems off, but it is a pretty early build so it's likely that this will be ironed out before release. He kills a couple police and by climing up higher he evades the chasing police long enough to make it out onto the roof of the library where he's greeted by a police helicopter. After being shot at a bit, he comes across a lone copper on the roof who he promptly murders and changes into his clothes. Seeing the barcode underneath the police hat, skill kind of ridiculous.
Now safe from the helicopter he moves into a marijuana den in the next building where there is some comedy of the inhabitants trying to cover up their habit. Making his way out though he picks up a bong and then uses that to beat up two officers that are suspicious of him in that room. The melee animation looked pretty good and it essentially acted as kill button against those helpless police. After moving past the rest of the officers in the building he moves to a busy train station where there is a very impressively large and dense crowd of people where he can very easily get lost in.
The game is due for release in 2012 on 360, PS3 and PC. The game looked good I'm not going to dispute that but there was definitely something that in the age of things like Assassins Creed and Uncharted that seems missing from the game. Perhaps it was a issue with the demo and the lack of a target to hunt in creative ways but I definitely felt that there was something missing from this hitman game.