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Hitman: Codename 47 (PC) artwork

Hitman: Codename 47 (PC) review

"Much of Agent 47's life is shrouded in darkness. His life, limited to the day of his awakening from a deep sleep, is incomplete and mysterious. All that can be recalled is escaping from a damp hospital prison and following a cackling, crazy voice from a man he never knew--his father. "

Much of Agent 47's life is shrouded in darkness. His life, limited to the day of his awakening from a deep sleep, is incomplete and mysterious. All that can be recalled is escaping from a damp hospital prison and following a cackling, crazy voice from a man he never knew--his father.

Eventually finding himself into this world, 47 takes on the job of a true killer and becomes the Hitman. Joining a secret organization led by a group of people he has never seen in person, killing and getting out alive becomes your one and only objective.

You become the killer and mastermind behind each of your missions. Your first task brings you to Hong Kong where the Triads are dishing it out. Lee Hong, leader of the Red Dragon society, must be assassinated. However, getting to the chief won't be easy. Red Dragon guards plague most of Hong Kong and the local police are corrupt--bribed by the Triads with large sums of money. To carry out your objective, you must first put some tension in-between the two groups: the Red Dragon and the Blue Lotus. In doing so, the subsequent "gang war" (so to speak) will cover the murder of Lee Hong and throw off any police suspicion.

First things first, kill a Red Dragon representative. As the mission begins, you start off with a briefcase. To any passerby, you are just some random businessman going to and fro through the city. Little does anyone know that hidden inside the confines of the leather is a sniper rifle set. Of course, opening it right in front of a guard's face will probably draw a bad response. In doing so, the Red Dragon delegate will leave immediately and Agent 47 is left with a few bullet holes through his cranium. Instead, you'll have to find a good vantage point from a rooftop. There, 47 can set up the sniper rifle without being noticed immediately. Look down the sight, ready the trigger, and fire off a shot to the head. A burst of blood will mark your success. After running from the site back to your car, the mission is over.

With the mission complete, your reward will appear on-screen. Depending on the efficiency of your assignment, the amount of civilians killed, and any other factors that might have affected the mission outcome, the total money earned can be high or low. With whatever 47 has gained, it's placed in his bank account for use later on. The money can be spent on new weapons for the next mission, used to buy armor, or whatever else a hitman might buy. Overally mission efficiency will determine the cash you get, which in turn, determines how difficult the next mission might be.

But don't think that every mission requires Agent 47 to get on top of a roof and shoot someone. Soon enough, you'll actually have to infiltrate buildings while following targets. Immediately pulling out that Desert Eagle in front of 10 guards will fail the mission obviously. This is where some of your stealthy techniques come into play. At many points during the game, dragging bodies out of the open, hiding your weapons, or even changing clothes to avoid detection will be required to get anywhere. Luckily, 47 has a little box at the upper left-hand corner which shows you whether or not guards are on the lookout for suspicious behavior. This handy tool will also notify you when guards discover dead bodies (of your doing of course), dropped weapons, or strange sounds. It's the little details like these that make this game so difficult to get through.

You'll be surprised at all the little things Agent 47 will have to do just to get through one area. Luckily, your weapon purchases can help you out depending on what kind of arsenal 47 has at his disposal. If you bought an R93 Sniper Rifle, you can protect yourself by making kills from long-range. For stealthy kills, the pentagon knife can slit a throat painlessly while the piano wire can be utilized to choke someone from behind. While the game allows you to pick up assault weapons such as the AK-47 and M16, don't count on using them often in missions where stealth is your number one goal. It's all about making sure that no one knows your objective. Whether it be dressing up as a bellhop in a hotel, throwing dead bodies down a sewer, or hiding your Shotgun in the bathroom, your actions will decide your fate and the outcome of the mission.

Hitman: Codename 47 is without a doubt, a thinking man's game.

You won't be taking on most of those missions in small, confined spaces. Even in the city combat of Hong Kong, finding your way around can be somewhat difficult. The streets are clear and quiet while dumpsters lay idle on the sides. In the background, downtown Hong Kong can be seen with the sky in a blue overcast. While fighting in Columbia (going after a drug lord), you'll see the vast jungles of South America. Vines hang from the canopy and move as you walk through them.

But the scenery won't matter to you as enemy guards slowly move in. Luckily, you have your twin Desert Eagles armed and ready. And for that one moment in time that you gun down 10 guards within 10 seconds, a feeling arises in the pit of your stomach. The feeling of self-satisfaction and the lust for more. That is the true reward.

Eventually, Agent 47 will go back to the place he remembers so vividly. The hospital prison looms above him as he slowly steps in. For the outcome to that, I'll leave it up to you.

Hitman: Codename 47 is all you can want in a stealth-based shooter. Between the intricately mysterious storyline and the killing sprees, you will engulfed by its style and lost in the firefights. Whether you like pacing through detailed environments throughout the world, using stealth to get through stage after stage, or simply gunning your enemies down, you'll love everything that Hitman: Codename 47 has to offer.

Now where's that sequel?

masterzero99's avatar
Community review by masterzero99 (May 16, 2005)

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