Hitman has lots of gameplay behaviors that are unintended by the developers. When these arise, the devs must make a choice. Are these glitchy exploits that should be patched? Or are they gameplay strategies that, although unintended, are emergent and valid and cool?
Sometimes the devs patch out things that many players see as valid and fun. Some of the more contentious instances of these were Flying Fire Extinguishers, Lancer Wallbanging, and Legshots Preserving SA. (The latter was partly changed back.)
On the other hand, sometimes the community recognizes that an unintended behavior is a glitch, and there’s not much complaint when it is patched out. The Dropdown Bugs are good examples of this. You used to be able to clip onto Silvio’s roof and then quickly fall to the ground, or fall from the Paris rafters to the catwalk, or from the second floor to the Paris lobby. These were useful shortcuts, but most players seemed to understand why IOI got rid of these.
I don’t want to relitigate the above. What I want to do is get the community’s temperature on the gameplay properties below. They’re all used and exploited in advanced play. But they all fall into the grey zone for me. I don’t know what others think. Are these glitches that should be fixed, or are they emergent gameplay strats that should not be patched out?
(If you can think of other things that fall into the grey zone between exploit and strat, please post them below. But try to avoid the usual suspects that have been discussed to death.)
1. Deafened NPCs
This is the one that I think will probably be most recognized as a bug that should be patched, even though it’s currently a valuable strat. Panicking a guard with silenced gunshots will deafen all NPCs in the level, letting you shoot loud ballistics without anyone noticing.
2. The Fetch Trick
This is the biggest problem case for me and the one I most want to hear from others about.
On one hand, I hate it. It looks ridiculous and unrelaistic when you toss a coin over a ledge and make someone go down three flights of stairs to go fetch it. It’s incredibly overpowered, letting you place any NPC wherever you want. It’s ubiquitous: if you watch a video by a halfway good player, there’s a pretty good chance you’ll see it deployed. And it’s much easier to do on PC than on console, exacerbating the differences between the platforms.
On the other hand, the reason that it’s so ubiquitous is that players love being able to place NPCs wherever they want. It opens up a lot of interesting possibilities, both for speed purposes and for making cool videos (e.g. of Elusive Targets being killed in unusual places). And if it didn’t exist, players could still lure targets anywhere they wanted, just much slower and more unreliably, so there’s a sense in which it’s a quality-of-life feature. I’m torn.
3. Blind Panicked NPCs (report to guard version)
If a civilian sees a crime but doesn’t know it’s you who committed it, they need to report it to a guard. While they are in this state, you can do whatever you want in front of the NPC, and you won’t lose SA unless they are able to make it to the guard. I’m inclined to think this should be patched out or changed in some way.
4. Blind Panicked NPCs (mass panic version)
Detonating a bomb or setting off a fire alarm to make civilians panic renders them blind to illegal disguises and trespassing status. This can be narratively justified and it makes for cool gameplay, so I’m inclined to think it should stay.
5. Hidden Crouch During Animations
Certain animations make 47 stand up… but only in appearance. Whether he can be seen by other NPCs during the animation depends on whether or not he was crouchng before the animation started. For example if 47 is crouching before he poisons a drink and this crouch made him stay out of a witness’s sight (~19 seconds into the run above), then the witness will not see him poison the drink, even though he stands up right in front of the witness’s eyes. This also applies to dragging a body. If you drag a body past a window, whether or not you are seen by a guard looking out can depend on whether you were crouching or standing before hitting the button to drag the body.
6. The Amnesia Trick
Dropping a coin makes NPCs forget you just dropped a weapon in front of their eyes.
7. Fast Throw
Standing up during a throw speeds up the throw animation.
TL;DR: Which in the list above should stay and which should go?