With its winning mix of action, strategy and stealth, Hitman Contracts
marks a successful third entry in the franchise, and has some neat new tricks up its sleeve. That said, the core of the game is still fundamentally the same as before. You take the role of a genetically modified hitman who from the off finds himself in deep trouble, holed up in a tight spot surrounded by people who want him dead. The reasons why become clear as you play your way through a series of flashbacks, some of which draw heavily from the previous games in the series. Fortunately, the similarities also stretch to the gameplay, which is by turns taut, tense and violent. The game gives you plenty of freedom in choosing how to tackle the various missions you're presented with, and particularly in the early stages it's tremendously good fun working out the best way to achieve an objective.
There are a couple of drawbacks: the game is a little shorter than might be expected, and it is more of an evolution from previous adventures than a independent sequel. But these are minor niggles, especially when you consider that this is the best game to date in the Hitman franchise. It's going to be interesting to see how creators Io Interactive develop the series, but for now they've given us a healthy dose of what's gone before, and made it a little better. --Simon Brew
delivers more action-packed and suspense-filled missions, with a greater variety of ways to make the perfect kill and an increased arsenal of firearms and close-combat weapons. A new graphics engine showcases your "work" in brutal detail and brings the new locations to life. An improved control system and more gradual learning curve will ensure that the game is accessible to all aspiring hitmen.
Hitman: Contracts takes you into the mind of Agent 47, the most ruthlessly efficient contract killer in history. The game begins in Paris as Agent 47 finds himself wounded and trapped in what is a dangerous situation, even for him. Hitman: Contracts explores the dark psychology of killing for a living and promises to be the most disturbing episode in the series.