Earlier this month, Square Enix released a brand new Hitman mobile game on both iOS and Android compatible devices. Hitman: Sniper is best described as an intriguing first-person shooter that has a ton of potential, but ultimately falls short of being great. Here are a few more reasons why this title may or may not be worth you time and the $4.99 price tag attached to it.
The core concept behind Hitman: Sniper comes from Square Enix’s desire to create a much more traditional first-person shooter for mobile phones and tablets. With Square Enix Montreal at the helm of this project, players are thrust headfirst into the shoes of Agent 47 and able to snipe various targets while being conveniently positioned on a snowy, Montenegro hilltop. Beyond this, there is no narrative to build from and therefore gameplay becomes the main focal point of the overall experience.
First and foremost, the gameplay controls are highly responsive and are easily the most engaging aspect about this title. Players are able to tap on their smartphone or tablet screen to scope, pinch to zoom in and out on targets, and tap again to shoot those same targets after properly aligning them in the crosshairs. Experiencing this firsthand for yourself really is the only way to do this explanation justice as it truly is the perfect way to make a game like this work on a mobile device.
In most Hitman games, kills have to be carefully thought out beforehand to achieve the best results. Agent 47 usually has to wear a disguise and then go through a series of objectives just to successfully fulfill the contract. In Sniper, most of that process can be avoided altogether and you can freely execute the target at any time. Optional objectives such as head shots and multiple guard kills are still put in place and can increase your payout after the contract kill has been completed.
If you do decide to take a much more patient approach, then you’ll ultimately get the most out of what this title has to offer. The increased funds received from completing objectives allow you to unlock perks, gain abilities, and upgrade weapons. One ability that definitely comes in handy is the Iron lung ability which allows you to take a deep breath in before firing off a shot. This helps greatly with precision and allows you to improve in missions over time.
Hitman: Sniper features a total of 10 high profile targets and several guards over roughly 100 missions that progress in difficulty over time. While this may sound great, the truth of the matter is that the entire game takes place in the exact same environment. I can understand the need to keep resources limited for a mobile game, but some type of level design variation definitely would have been welcomed.
Another letdown for this game lies in the fact that the number of high risk targets is only set to 10 while the insane amount of missions easily outweighs everything else. Had this game only been 10 missions and they each coincided with a target, then I feel the game would feel more condensed and complete. The way it is currently set up now guarantees repetition in pretty much every way imaginable and that’s not necessarily a good thing.
Despite this complaints, Hitman: Sniper is still a promising title depending upon what you are expecting from a mobile game of this caliber.
This review was based on a purchased copy of Hitman: Sniper for iOS.