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Video Game Review: Hitman: Episode 3

June 2, 2016 | by Herija Green | Comments (0)
Hitman: Episode 3
Don’t let the outfit fool you, 47 can still kill you 856 different ways.

Please note that since each episode of Hitman features the same graphics engine and control setup, those elements will not be repeated in our reviews for the remaining episodes. To read our thoughts on that, refer to our review of Episode 1: Paris.

Having settled things in Sapienza, Agent 47 is off to Morocco in Episode 3: Marrakesh to take down two more targets. First up is Claus Strandberg, a Swedish-born banker that stole huge sums of money from the population but escaped custody and is now holed up in the Swiss embassy. Your other mark is General Zaydan, who engineered the escape and intends to use the chaos surrounding Strandberg to overthrow the current government.

Unlike the last mission, your targets are in two completely different areas. This has its pros and cons. On the plus side, you’ll need to plot out a unique strategy for eliminating each of them, which helps make Marrakesh feel more like two episodes.

That’s also a bit of a letdown, however, as there’s no sense of cohesion between them. The embassy and school where Zaydan is headquartered are a good distance apart, and nothing happens when one is killed — no increased security, no relocation, no heightened concern.  If you were the target of a countrywide fury and the man that helped you was killed, you’d probably skip a TV interview, no?

In terms of options, you still have plenty, whether you try to piece it together on your own or use one of the many “opportunities” to get close. The latter are generally enjoyable, even though it feels like the game is holding your hand.

It’s worth noting, however, that while the opportunities are target specific, Hitman doesn’t tell you which one it is in the description. That means you can eliminate someone and then still begin tracking an opportunity that has nothing to do with the remaining target. For example, stealing a key to the school even after Zaydan is dead.

Marrakesh makes for an interesting locale with colourful kiosks in a bustling marketplace, and yet it never feels as vibrant or alive as Sapienza did. Part of the problem is clearly the voice acting, where Moroccan and Swiss citizens speak with American accents and lingo. It really undercuts the authenticity and immersion level.

A.I. seemed spottier that usual, and reactions are disproportionate. For the former, we were disguised as someone hanging posters. After we walked in as part of a group, we snapped Zaydan’s neck on a stairwell. His body was discovered less than 30 seconds later, but no one raised an alarm or so much as batted an eye as we strolled out the front door.

As for reactions, pretty much anything can result in you getting killed, no matter how innocuous. At one point we turned off a fan, were spotted by a passer-by and then confronted by an armed guard that literally shot me to death… for turning off a fan. It’d be better if it was more of a “we’re watching you” scenario that jumping straight to killing.

OVERALL (3.5/5)

That Episode 3 is a step back for Hitman isn’t a huge surprise given how strong Sapienza was, but there seem to be more issues than normal with Marrakesh. It doesn’t help that the snippets of story we’ve been given seem largely unrelated to what we’re actually doing on these missions.

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Blu-ray Review: Zoolander 2

May 30, 2016 | by Herija Green | Comments Comments Off
Age hasn’t educated Derek or Hansel, and being dumb as rocks has its payoffs. There are several times during the movie when their stupidity elicited LOLs, which isn’t all that common when watching alone. The stuff when the two of them are trying to get their mojo back, complete with Hansel firing objects at Derek’s face, is great, and the ending scene is deliciously absurd. Oh, and the hippo.
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Video Game Review: Alienation

May 23, 2016 | by Herija Green | Comments Comments Off
Aliens have come to Earth and are kicking some serious ass. In our desperation, humans have made robotic exo-suits to help turn the tide. That’s where you come in. You’ll pick between three character types (tank, saboteur or bio-specialist), each with unique base weapons and upgradeable skills, and jump into the fray in a last desperate attempt to save humanity.
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Video Game Review: DOOM

May 20, 2016 | by Herija Green | Comments Comments Off
Awakened without context to find an area overrun by demons, our silent protagonist is quickly brought up to speed. You’re on Mars at a research facility that was harnessing power from Hell to solve the world’s energy crisis. One of the scientists, Dr. Olivia Pierce, has decided to side with the demons and opened a portal to Hell that’s allowing demons to come streaming through. You need to close it.
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Video Game Review: Battleborn

May 15, 2016 | by Herija Green | Comments Comments Off
Competitive multiplayer is spread across three game types: Capture, Meltdown and Incursion. The first one will be instantly familiar. There are three zones; capture and hold them to earn points — the more you hold the faster you score. A couple unique elements are added, such as the ability to build and upgrade turrets to assist in holding or taking an area as well as experience-rich NPCs to kill, but you should be able to hit the ground running.
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