Hitman’s fifth episode will be released tomorrow, sending Agent 47 to the US state of Colorado; home to legal marijuana and libertarians. It’s unclear whether our bald assassin friend will be partaking in either of those things, but he will be called upon to infiltrate a compound and ‘hit’ four members of a dubious militia.
Since it’s a new episode, Colorado will come with Hitman’s usual selection of new Opportunities, gear unlocks and so-forth (including a Tac-4 silenced assault rifle if you reach a mastery level of 20 on this level). Interestingly, the accompanying update will bring some pretty significant additions to Contracts mode, making it more in line with how it worked in Absolution. Don’t panic, that’s actually a good thing.
First of all you’ll be able to do a free-text search for Contracts by title or description, which should make specific challenges a fair bit easier to find. More importantly, specific kill conditions are coming to the do-it-yourself assassination creator. There will be “16 different kill types and 7 different accident kill types” recognised by the game, allowing you to put together a hit that will “require that the target is killed with the same item and method that the creator used”.
Kill conditions will form part of the overall score for any given Contracts level and, while they’ll be optional, failing to match them will have a major impact on your final total. IO note that there will be a distinction between dropping people into the sea (which count as ‘Accident (Fall)’) and murdering people with toilet-power (‘Accident (Drown)’).
Hitman’s Contracts will also be getting some tags, denoting things like “missions, amount of targets (up to 5) and kill conditions”. As well as the free-text method noted above, you’ll be able to search by tags too.
IO include some news that may be a little less welcome; the Hitman leaderboards will be getting reset after a bug with the Jaeger 7 Lancer Sniper Rifle (which allowed bullets to go through level geometry in some cases) was ‘fixed’. This is kind of a shame, as there were some ultra-creative uses of the ‘bugged’ rifle. Leaderboards for “all Story missions, Escalation Contracts and Featured Contracts” will be reset tomorrow.
Here are further fixes and changes coming with Episode 5.
Episode 5 – Misc. Improvements
- Simplified the in-game text for downloading new content. “Get access” is now displayed for all content that is not installed. A pop-up message will inform you what content you need to (re)download or purchase to get access.
- The ‘Game Status Indicator’ (aka the small bar that says “Loading” or “Saving etc.) has been unified in terms of placement and design.
- Challenges and Mastery are now only shown for a destination if you own the relevant episode / content.
- The required Mastery Level to unlock a Starting Location or Pickup Location is now shown on the relevant tiles on the Loadout page.
- The Challenge page has been updated so that Challenge Packs are now shown under the relevant destination, rather than having their own category. Elusive Targets still have their own category.
- Updated the Menu UI to be more consistent with colours (red/black and white) when showing what content has been completed.
- The outline of a selected menu item will now ‘pulse’ to make it easier to see what is selected.
- When browsing the Mastery Level unlocks, the Weapon Perks icons will now be displayed.
- The “Replan Mission” option when playing an Elusive Target has been updated with an accurate description.
- Sarajevo 6 missions will now display a spoiler warning if the previous missions have not been completed (PlayStation 4 only)
- Item and Weapon information in the Loadout and Career pages now use the detailed view, showing all perks and descriptions.
- Images of 47’s selected suit in the Loadout and Career pages now use a portrait tile, to show more of the suit (and gloves!)
- Fixed an issue where a mission would sometimes not load after restarting.
- The Elusive Target clock now always references the game’s server time to avoid conflicts with incorrect system clocks.
- Improved error-handling and detection of server disconnects to make for a smoother experience overall.
- Fixed a rare issue that would require some players to restart the game to recognise newly installed content.
- Fixed an issue that prevented the score calculation from being shown at the end of a mission.
- Fixed an issue in the “Club 27” mission where 47 could not re-open the doors to rooms 203 and 204.
- Fixed an issue where NPCs would react to running footsteps, while trespassing.
- Rewrote the Game Launcher into native code to improve compatibility and stability. As a result, HITMAN no longer needs the .NET framework.
- Fixed an issue with missing runtime DLLs from the Visual Studio 2015 redistributable.
- Fixed an issue that would lock the game’s refresh rate, even though the monitor is capable of more.
- Fixed an issue where disconnecting headphones during a cutscene could result in it pausing.
- The default graphics settings within the game are now determined by the monitor resolution and hardware properties.
Episode 5 – Known Issues
- Inconsistent objectives behaviour on “The Audition” opportunity in Colorado, depending on player actions.
- After taking a 2-handed weapon from an Agency Pickup, the weapon may be lost when swapped with a dropped weapon from another NPC.
- Some small bushes are missing collision and may cause 47 to get stuck.