It’s fair to assume that 2016 was an impressive year for the Hitman reboot’s experimental episodic structure. What was at first considered by many to be a slight misstep for IO Interactive’s popular Hitman stealth franchise eventually turned out to be a rallying return to form which let players crack each piece of content wide open rather than immediately move on to the next.
To celebrate, we at IGCritic felt it necessary to highlight some of the very best assassination contracts in all of Hitman history, specifically the targets and locations that stayed within our minds as being prime examples of how to perfectly garrotte someone without them having an inkling. Spoiler alert, things are about to get messy – but memorable!
10. A New Life (Blood Money)
The first Hitman contract on this list tasked Agent 47 to kill Cuban crime lord Vinnie “Slugger” Sinistra within the confines of his own home, during his youngest child’s birthday party no less – Now that’s dark! A New Life is notable for being one of the few missions in Blood Money to take place on an everyday suburban street rather than the underground bunkers or high-class institutes veteran players have come to expect, presenting you with a disguised FBI van to mess with, clown costume to try on, and even a garbage truck in which to dispose of the bodies. Let your inner children’s entertainer run free!
9. Anathema (Silent Assassin)
The very first interaction with the Hitman series proper for many, being the first mission to feature in Silent Assassin (the first game to come to consoles), Anathema was a masterclass in relaying to players the “playground” concept these games have become known for. You start by being dropped off in front of a heavily guarded mansion that’s just begging to be broken into, but it’s also possible to sneak in once taking out Giuseppe Guillani’s original flower delivery man. See where we’re going? Anathema is chock full of ways to get the job done, expertly setting up the freedom of choice to come with later levels.
8. World of Tomorrow (Hitman 2016 Episode 2)
Taking place in Hitman 2016’s small coastal setting of Sapienza, World of Tomorrow made a big impression in 2016, having all the merits that a classic Hitman assassination contract should. Featuring over 25 individual disguises to play around in, multiple challenges to accomplish, and three separate targets to takeout, World of Tomorrow represents the series’ more open-endedness when compared to the assassination missions of old but the truth is no matter which location you start at, the mission is full of roles to take on, assassination methods to perform, all against the gorgeous backdrop of an Italian rural town.
7. The Bjarkhav bomb (Contracts)
“Cold” in every sense of the word, The Bjarkhov bomb is one of the few assassination contracts featured in Hitman Contracts to not be a remake of one of the franchise’s original missions (thank you flashback sequences). Whilst attempting to take out no less than two elusive targets within the remote base in wintery Siberia, Agent 47 isn’t short of approaches to take. Whether it’s by offering your hit a sketchy drink or going it old school with your trusty syringe, The Bjarkhov bomb’s final moments that sees you sink a submarine ultimately proves that cool guys don’t look at explosions.
6. Shaving Lenny (Absolution)
One of the most conventional assassination contracts to feature in the slightly more narrative-driven but underappreciated Hitman Absolution, Shaving Lenny (as the name suggests) provides Agent 47 with many opportunities in which to place target Lenny Dexter ‘close to the edge’. What makes this mission so great is the very confined, but very detailed street/shop setting that you can explore as you strive to take down not only Lenny, but his entire gang as well. It goes without saying that donning the barber get up is the swiftest method of reaching your target in time, but not before exploding a few BBQs electrocuting a few gates, or swapping out some hot sauces along the way.