Hitman: Contracts – interview

More than a year ago the well-known assassin 47 attacked our PCs and console systems for the second time. Hitman: Silent Assassin became one of the best games of his day so we weren´t surprise when IO Interactive have officially announced the third sequel. And few weeks after this announcement we bring you an exclusive interview with Jacob Andersen, the game director.
Hitman: Contracts – interview

Doupe: First of all, could you please introduce yourself to our readers, tell us how long have you been working at IO Interactive and what´s your current role in the development of Hitman: Contracts?

Jacob Andersen: My name is Jacob Andersen, I’m one of the founders of IO and I’m currently Game Director of Hitman: Contracts.

Doupe: Your last project Freedom Fighters was very succesful but I think most of players know IO Interactive as the development team behind Hitman series. After the first and second chapter of Hitman´s adventures, do you think you still have enough motivation and new ideas for the third sequel?

Jacob Andersen: I guess it would be alot harder if Hitman was’nt a success, but still its very rewarding to get to go back and correct all the things you did’nt have time to fix in the 2 first games. People here at IO have alot of cool new ideas for the game so I don’t think we will run out soon.

Doupe: When did you finally decide to make Hitman: Contracts? After Hitman: Codename 47 and Hitman 2: Silent Assasin do you think players will still be eager playing another game of the series?

Jacob Andersen: We started collecting ideas even before Silent Assassin was finished. There’s always alot of good ideas comming up during production-time but at some point you have to start wrapping up the game, so from that point on the ideas gets put into the “we’ll put that in the next game” category.

Doupe: Is Hitman: Contracts going to be the typical sequel of Hitman series or do you plan to create a completely new „mutation“ of 47´s adventures? Could we expect to see the classic third-person view in the third game? Will there be any changes in the character’s control system?

Jacob Andersen: We have been looking alot at what people liked about Silent Assassin and what they liked about the first Hitman. I’ts not really a mutation, just focusing on the things the games seem to like. The basics of  the game will be the same though.


Doupe: I think the main part of Hitman: Contracts will definitely be a new story. So what can you tell us about the main plot of your game? How much time has elapsed between the second and third chapter of the game?

Jacob Andersen: We have actually jumped several years, but the actual time in which the game-story unfolds is less than an hour. Most of this game is played in the dark and twisted memories of mr.47.

Doupe: What about the main character 47 (alias Hitman or Tobias Rieper)? Could you please introduce this man a little? And also, how did he change compared to 47 from the first and second game?

Jacob Andersen: 47 have begun to take matters into his own hands, he’s not easily tricked like he used to, but he’s still trying to figure out what kind of a person he really is.

Doupe: In both Hitman games you have prepared charming enviroments and I always enjoyed to explore the new locations. What new countries and places can we expect to visit in Hitman: Contracts?

Jacob Andersen: At this point all I can reveal is that part of the game will go on in Paris.

Doupe: You also plan to increase arsenal of firearms and close-combat weapons – what exactly does it mean for players? What kind of new weapons will there be in the game? And can you give us some example?

Jacob Andersen: We are always looking to match the weapons with the characters in the game, which means that this time around you’ll see some new ones together with the old ones. We have also included a couple of the REALLY old ones but those have to be unlocked during the game.

Doupe: A lot of people felt Hitman 2 was more action-oriented than the original game. But the first Hitman: Contracts trailer brought us a great stealth show (almost the same we have seen in other games like Splinter Cell). So, will Hitman: Contracts include more ways to complete the task than its predecessor?

Jacob Andersen: We are concentrating on fewer, bigger missions, which ofcourse means more ways of completing each mission.

Doupe: There have been some information about new tutorial system that will ensure the game will be accessible to all aspiring players – in your opinion, what other changes and inovations will help your title to grip the players?

Jacob Andersen: We have been looking to adjust the difficulty setting (in both ends of the scale) to make the game easier for newcomers but still challenging for the regular players (and harder for the really die-hard fans ;-)


Doupe: Graphic engine of the original Hitman was really great and I think there was the same feeling in the case of Hitman 2. Hitman: Contracts is going to be based on a brand new engine – what could you tell us about it?

Jacob Andersen: Our engine went through a great deal of re-writing to be able to handle the great amount of on-screen characters demanded by FreedomFigthers, that combined with better physics, mirrors and a bunch of new render effects (like Depth Blur, Gloom and realtime colorcorrection) this will be the technologically most advanced game ever released by IO Interactive.

Doupe: A lot of players demanded a game editor and multiplayer for the original Hitman and his second sequel. Do you think we will see any of these features in the third chapter?

Jacob Andersen: We have been talking alot internally about making Hitman a multiplayer game, but we still conclude that such a game should be a standalone title.

Doupe: You have announced that spring 2004 is Hitman: Contract´s release date – can we expect to see all the versions of this game in stores together or do you prefer to release them progressively?

Jacob Andersen: We prefer to have all the platforms released simultaneous, it makes the marketing so much stronger.

Doupe: Few months ago there were some information about Hitman movie. What´s the current situation regarding the possibility of making film based on Hitman´s adventures? Have you made any deal with Hollywood or other producers?

Jacob Andersen: I’m afraid I can’t say anything about that at this time.

Doupe: Thank you for your time. Is there anything else you would like to tell our readers?

Jacob Andersen: No problem, and yes, keep the very useful critique comming, we do actually read it. ;-)

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