PC Game -- Hitman: Blood Money

As if to outdo the opening scene of Hitman: Contracts, which had Agent 47 staggering into a seedy hotel to have bullets removed by a backstreet doctor, Blood Money starts with our favourite bald assassin's funeral - though this isn't made apparent until later on.

The latest episode of the successful stealth franchise sees Agent 47 returning to what he does best - sneaking up behind people and killing them. Of course, the storyline makes sure that all of his targets are morally destitute paedophiles or arms dealers so you don't feel too bad about being a soulless, heartless killer, albeit a sharply dressed one.

The first thing you'll notice about Blood Money is that the graphics engine has been completely overhauled, and looks far more impressive now. Character models, textures, details and lighting have all been updated, though 47 hasn't lost his purposeful stride. Something you'll particularly notice in later levels is how populous some of the areas can be - the New Orleans carnival and nightclub scenes, in particular, have you pushing your way through crowds of people on the tail of your quarry.

As before, tactics and timing are key and, while you get a wide variety of weapons to play with, most levels can be successfully cleared with your trusty fibrewire and undetectable close-quarters weaponry. The less disruption you create in the pursuit of your objectives, the higher your rating and the more money you earn for each contract, which can then be spent on weapon upgrades and special equipment - or making sure witnesses don't talk and buying a new identity if things get too hot.

The skill level now includes a notoriety value, which makes guards and targets more suspicious of heavily-set bald guys creeping around the place. Harder settings restrict the number of saves you can make during a game (or disabling the save option entirely), and you can post your times online.

It must be said, however, that the AI still isn't particularly smart: guards will chase you into a room only to lose interest because you're now wearing a different outfit, or insist on scanning you for weapons when you're only walking past the room they're minding.

While the graphics have changed, the underlying engine has not, so garrotting victims is still a little problematic at times, and you'll probably spot familiar character animations that have been recycled from previous titles. That said, the plotline is intriguing, and the last level brings a unique twist to the proceedings.

It's disappointing that most of the changes to Blood Money are largely cosmetic, but I guess if it ain't broke, then fans of the series will get as much out of this one as they have out of its predecessors.

Click here to view screenshot 1, and here to view screenshot 2.

Verdict: A complex and intelligent combination of stealth and tactics that fans will love. The gameplay hasn't changed significantly and there are still rough edges to the engine, but the backstory strings the chapters together well.
Score: 4/5
Publisher: Eidos
URL: www.hitman.com
Price: $79.95 (PC), $79.95-$109.95 (console)

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Laurence Grayson

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?