How Square Enix plans to make Hitman: Absolution accessible to all

How do you appeal to a wide audience AND keep your dedicated brand loyalists happy?

It’s a tough juggling act, and one that the vocal internet masses would probably argue that Capcom tried and failed to execute with Resident Evil 6. But Square Enix seems to have conjured what appears to be a very sensible attempt at the feat in its upcoming action outing Hitman: Absolution.

Kotaku has word of five difficulty setting available to players of the game. The first basically powers up Agent 47 (and, conversely, powers down the enemy) to the extent that he’s basically a walking powerhouse, free to sneak his way to success or slaughter all that stand in his way.

At the other end of the spectrum, players will also be able to eradicate all help – HUD included – leaving them with only a crosshair and their cunning to see them through.

This system cleverly allows Square Enix to keep the fundamentals of the design intact, while keeping the door open to newbies.

Here are the difficulty level details in full:

Enhanced: Easy
Supreme training and a physique enhanced beyond ordinary human capacity mean that your enemies are no match for you. By cunning or by brute force, you are unstoppable.

  • Players can activate additional checkpoints
  • Instinct regenerates
  • Instinct will provide hints
  • Enemies react more slowly than normal

Enhanced: Medium
You can rely on Agent 47’s superior training and instinct. Remaining completely unnoticed can be a challenge, but you can always rely on your guns to get you out of trouble.

  • Players can activate additional checkpoints
  • Instinct does not regenerate
  • Instinct will provide hints
  • Normal enemy presence with normal reaction times

Professional: Hard
You like a challenge and your enemies will provide you with just that. They will be more numerous and with faster reactions. Evading your enemies will be difficult and you must strike with flawless timing.

  • Players can activate additional checkpoints
  • Instinct depletes when used and does not regenerate
  • No instinct hints
  • Additional enemies with improved reaction time

Professional: Expert
You fight for every inch of progress, often without firing a single bullet. You don’t rely on any help and accept trying many times before reaching your target…and perfection.

  • No player-activated checkpoints
  • Instinct depletes when used and does not regenerate
  • No instinct hints
  • Maximum number of enemies with fastest reaction

Professional: Purist
This is a challenge for a true perfectionist. You know every rule, every detail, and all environments by heart. Even then you will die trying.

  • No Help
  • No guides
  • No Interface
  • Only a crosshair

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