Eidos has officially unveiled one of its "pillar titles" for financial year 2004, the third instalment in Io Interactive's Hitman series, set to appear on PS2, Xbox and PC in spring 2004.
Now without the "3", Hitman: Contracts promises a greater variety of killing tools - both projectile and close-quarters - and killing methods, an improved control system and a new graphics engine to showcase the player's work in brutal detail.
Players will once again step into the shoes of balding hitman Agent 47, with the game beginning in Paris as 47 finds himself wounded and trapped in a dangerous situation. Through the narrative, Io plans to explore the dark psychology of a professional killer in disturbing detail.
In the words of Io managing director Janos Flösser, "Hitman: Contracts will reveal a new side to Hitman. The game will be epic, highly disturbing, but most importantly an enjoyable experience. The technology we are employing will make it one of the most advanced games on the market."
Io also hopes to open the game up to a wider audience, building in what's described as a more gradual learning curve to make it accessible to all but the most ham-fisted of aspiring hitmen.
There are no screenshots at this stage, but you can see an intensely shot trailer of the game at the www.hitmancontracts.com website, which shows a pudgy, asthmatic businessman racing down a stairwell towards his car interspersed with footage of 47 readying himself to strike. It's well worth the 13MB download, and showcases Io's obvious talent for dramatic cut sequences.
It also introduces us to the game's strapline: No Terms, One Condition.
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