Io Interactive is cooking up some extremely good stuff for Hitman 3 Year Two right now, and I don’t want to have a go at the developer. The fact is, it mostly nailed Hitman 3 in its first year. I suspect the things we all didn’t enjoy that much were already planned and in place so that the first year of support and post-launch content could be lined up. After all, you can’t develop that sort of stuff very quickly, so you need a decent lead time on it if you’re going to make it great. In fairness, everything that we got is well polished, it’s just not that fun to play in places. However, I’ve found a fix for Escalations that will make them much more enjoyable next year.
The one thing that Io Interactive should do with Escalations is make them random. I thought this was a thing in Hitman 2016 but I suspect it was a dream. The idea is to have a set of at least two objectives for an Escalation. This will give you something to work through and learn from. However, that final objective, for the last level of the Escalation, is randomized. It could be anything, from a time limit, to new cameras, or maybe even a restriction on not being able to subdue anyone.
The key here is for that final random objective to completely change the way you need to play the Escalation. In those first two levels, you’ll have developed a strategy, and before you hit the final one, you’re already planning your route. Adding something completely random in that players can’t predict will make Escalaltions much more challenging, and, in my eyes, better. This is what I thought happened in Hitman 2016, but now I think I must be making it up, because that mechanic would be in Hitman 3 if it had already been used. I think this will stop everyone moaning about the predictability of Escalations, and give something to the game that you can’t work around no matter how much prep you do. It’s the ultimate spanner in the works, and if anyone can work with that, it’s Hitman 3 players.