Hitman GO from Square Enix Montreal was a mobile adaptation of one of the most elaborate free-form puzzle game series, boiled down to its core concepts. Distracting mindful guards, donning meticulous disguises, and studying the movements of escorts were all strategies used in learning how to finish a level and achieve accolades. Now, almost two years later, the claimed definitive edition comes to the Playstation 4 and Vita respectively, putting one of the most refreshing puzzle games on Sony’s current home console, and under-appreciated handheld.
The aesthetic of Hitman GO: Definitive edition is minimalist, that of a board game. The character models look life-like, almost as if they would be something that one could pick up and move around, attributing to their incarnation as game pieces. Each level consists of a new physical board, like-wise presenting a new puzzle for the player. Each chapter has a different atmosphere in terms of colors, and everything blooms with cleanliness.
A slow evolution of how you should think while deconstructing puzzles has multiple factors. One of which is color based, as guards of diverse colors act different (uniform colors, I’m not racist). Some charge at you when they see you a space away, some will capture you from two lateral sides, and others patrol the board just waiting to have their movements memorized. Likewise, features like trap-doors and weaponry such as Agent 47’s trademark dual Silver Baller Pistols will serve to eliminate opposition from inaccessible areas of the board, allowing you to traverse through a newly opened area in the puzzle, allowing you to think with more possibilities.
One thing that keeps this away from being a great game as one in the Hitman franchise (as it’s a great puzzle game in general), is the lack of freeform puzzle-solving. In Hitman, you have a variety of ways to assassinate your target. And in Hitman GO: Definitive Edition, there is a strict path to take in order to finish the level with it’s accolades required for the platinum trophy. As a result, the game can become increasingly frustrating when your mind is constricted from possible opportunities to finish a level while grabbing the briefcase (optional collectible) with a minute amount of moves.
Let’s talk about the Vita and PS4 ports of the game. Perfectly priced at $7.99 (you can grab PSN money here) the mobile version is $4.99, it includes all the DLC that was seperate from the mobile game (including some awesome levels, that are an ode Hitman: Blood Money and Hitman 2). A variety of control options are seamlessly available as well. You can play with either the Dualshock 4’s face buttons and directional pads, or on the touch interface that are built into the control (this is similar to the Vita controls as well). Cross-play, cross-save, and cross-buy are all present here with a platinum trophy as the cherry on top, and while the game-play is all emblematic of Agent 47’s other outings, the game is worth a try just to experience how unique and creative the clever puzzle game is.