After the mess that went down Bangkok or more importantly the mess that went down after Bangkok they had assigned me to this backwater operation. It seems the ICA were starting to take this ‘shadow client’ more and more seriously. I like that. It’s been too long since I was challenged by something and this individual held all the cards, not a situation I am used to but it’s something that fills me with a deep sense of excitement… a thrill I haven’t felt in a long time. But a familiar thrill. In my mind it takes me back to that place, to Romania but why can’t I remember what happened there, why was I there? What did they do to me? Does this man have answers to my questions? I guess there is only one conclusive way to find out.
Here goes, the penultimate episode of the series and it’s the grand old US of A! Colorado seemed a bit of a stinker location to be honest when I started this one. I mean, what exactly is 47 going to do in a farm in the middle of nowhere? After Bangkok, I needed a bit of an adrenaline shot for this as the Thailand adventure had been a bit tame for my tastes. Branching into September with the release for this episode from IO Interactive so this is at least going to be piece written in the same year time frame the game got released (I know right, shocker compared to most of the recent stuff) but here goes the harrowing tale of my battles in the Colorado farmland.
Episode 5 traded the highbrow establishments of Bangkok for a more low key setting of a Colorado farm but I mean where exactly in the hustle and bustle where you going to hide a paramilitary group in the USA if not the middle of nowhere? With the exposing of a shadow client in the last mission to the ICA board of director’s agent 47 has now been tasked to bring him in for questioning or if need be to eliminate the threat to the agency. Through the hacking and surveillance of brilliant hacktivist Olivia Hall who seems to have been aiding the shadow client the agency has come to clean up the ruffians at the data end. This mission changed the game a little right from the start with a massive increase to four targets who all operated individually from each other, now this is what I wanted, what I needed! That incrementally difficulty that makes HITMAN rewarding! Targets for this mission are varied in their backgrounds for a change, but are all linked as the leaders of the terrorist group hiding out in the farm grounds. Firstly, you’ll have Sean Rose. Sean is the leader of the terrorists and is a seasoned environmental terrorist and bomb disposal expert. He’s also the ONLY person with access to the basement bunker that you need access to (but we will come to that later), after Sean you have Maya Parvatti, a former Assassin and gun runner for the Tamil Tigers from Sri lanka, she’s a strange one though as the only target in the series to date that seems to be disabled. If you pay close attention to her character model then she is missing her left arm from the elbow down which I felt was cool having a character so feared yet having a disability. Not something often seen when you’re writing for a world feared assassin. Next target is Ezra Berg, Ezra is a former Mossad interrogator and all around unlikable piece of trash (side note: dudes got a weird obsession with being Jason Voorhees with that mask and shirt getup, no joke) after the Horror movie fan we have the strangest addition to Rose’s crew. A former Interpol anti-terror investigator and analyst named Penelope graves. Graves just struck me as a wildcard addition and it’s not really explained in the episode why she’s there or how she got to be part of Rose’s crew?!
The increase to four targets also offers us an increase in challenge and opportunities in this episode. Each target operates individually from each other but the first two can be taken out at the same time if you have the patience to pull it off. So, we will start off with the first two targets which are Sean Rose and Maya Parvatti, two well-seasoned operators who will spot you so fast if you aren’t careful around them. Sean is also the only guy who has access to the tornado bunker in the basement so you can’t keep that princess from kicking about for too long. Now the map for this mission is substantial, I mean it’s a PMC so of course they’re not going to be running some out of a trailer operation but they have a huge area of farmland well under their control. To start with this one, you’ll need to haul it across a chunk of map and into the barracks for the soldiers. This is the easiest way and from what I learned the only way to get at both targets at the same time. There will be a guard that comes in and triggers the point man opportunity and you will need his suit and weapon so once you have that there’s a lot less sneaking involved and you can get a good look at the compound. Primarily comprised of the farmhouse, barn, and several small outbuildings as you wander around a bit before you advance you’ll notice that the area is heavily guarded and all the guards have automatic weapons and body armour (in a moment of ‘this will be funny’ I tried to Rambo the mission with the assault rifle and got wrecked so hard it made the learning curve in league of legends look tame) so I would strongly advise itchy trigger fingers are not a great thing to have on this outing at all! Got to admit though that if you have the patience to pull off the point man opportunity it’s so rewarding. So, once you bag the guards gear and have finished taking in the beautiful scenery on offer you can stroll over to the barn and stand right in front of Parvatti and talk to her. A fun little moment for me as I love seeing 47 come face to face with a target and them not know I’m about to end their sad little lives. You’ll have to sit through a briefing on the mission the guard was training for and then run a training op that lets you get some time in with the assault rifle that won’t see half of the map want to give you brain surgery. At this point the main target Sean comes into play as he’s also in the barn and looking over something. After the training op you’ll get your chance to bag them both though as they lean in to inspect the damage the ramming press did you’ll be able to turn them both into terrorist pate in a rather enjoyable sequence
after dealing with these two you can move to the other two targets (trust me the solo elimination of the first two is far more bloody fiddly than you want to endure) next on my to murder list is Ezra, former Mossad interrogator and as I said before blatant horror movie fan, he spend the whole mission with a face mask on and some white gloves and the whole getup just throws me back to the first time I ever saw a Halloween film, it’s kind of corny. He’s easy to eliminate once you’ve gotten a disguise of one of the house guards as trying to get close to the farmhouse as the point man will only result in summary execution because we had clearance to go murder people but not to go inside? Anyway, once you have the disguise you can garrotte Ezra and dump his ass in the same container you put the guard in for the house uniform. After Ezra comes the weirdest of the targets and even after playing the mission a few times I still don’t understand why she’s on this team? What is she doing here as an anti-terror analyst? Brushing that aside though her assassination isn’t exactly ground-breaking but it like the first one requires a bit of timing and a little bit of self-exposing as I didn’t have a coin with me at the time. So, if you run around a bit while she’s looking at you she will get suspicious and come out of the room she’s in downstairs in the house where you will have about a second to kill her and stuff her away before the guard comes back around! It’s a nail biting moment that turns a bit of a boring assassination into a tense scene that’s really enjoyable! After snagging the target all that’s left to do here is to get your hands on the basement access which you can do with a 3D printer upstairs that allows you to create a mould of Seans face (this is why we needed him, He had a laptop earlier with his facial data on it) with the laptop data you can use the printer to get into the basement bunker and find out what in ruddy hell has been going on at this farm.
With all that over with and the targets dispatched we get to the juicy stuff, the real reason I just did all that and it’s the end mission scene! Oh mama, been waiting for this. So, after breaking into the tornado bunker and learning that we have in fact been the real subject of the Shadow Clients attention and that he has been following us for some time now from the darkness and that itself is some achievement. To one up the single greatest living assassin in the world that leaves absolutely no trace he was ever at the scene! The room and its contents all showcased this to be true! The room also showcased and with some dialogue what I must admit is the single worst plot point in any Hitman to date… Providence… now this has to be the most cliché trope I know of and for me personally it’s a total cop out garbage one too… Provident are ‘the hands that run the world from the shadows’ … they’re the god damn illuminati and I know it doesn’t call them that but they damn well are … it was bad enough when Deus Ex pulled this copout move it’s for me nothing but lazy! A hundred other things that could have worked here, a rival agency, a secret international government task group. But no, the illuminati. Brushing the issues with that aside though we also get some great exposition on our mystery man and agent 47. We are informed through the narration that the mystery man does come from the same place as 47 and they do know each other (or at least 47 did before the memory loss) it’s a scene that dumps a lot of stuff on us in a very short window of time but I like it as scenes from before didn’t really offer much despite being very nice to watch.
Looking at the overall package that’s on offer in this episode it’s hard to argue that another instalment before this has offered more for your money, it’s got more targets, more map, more opportunities and way more story to it than before with some juicy bits about 47s past thrown in there. Colorado has been really good and I love the setting too. I can’t help but feel it did have its own faults though in that with more targets we didn’t get a lengthier mission. Penelope Graves felt really out of place in her bac story to this group and the master explosive expert and seasoned terrorist Sean getting taken out by something like that hydraulic ram seems a bit off for me. Visually the mission impresses and the story advancement is very strong here. Really excited to see how the final segment of the game plays out in the land of the rising sun, 47 is going all Japanese in our next adventure. Until then let me know what you think about this episode! Was it good or did you find it didn’t quite have what the previous instalments offered. Definitely less of a blood money feel here but I forgave that for the story aspect. Thanks again guys 😊 See you in Japan !