Suggestion for "Suspicious" state

Hey guys. So I stumbled across @Agent_17 old post “Why Hitman 2 is the best game in the series” and I was thinking about tension in two recent “Hitman” games. So right now, when enforcer spots you, all you have to do is simply run away. I mean, sure, it ruins your SA rating, so there is some tension, but once you get into “Suspicious” state, nearly always you can just run, and be fine.

My idea is to sort of combine it with tension meter from old games. So when NPC suspects you, the meter starts filing.

  • They have you in their sight from close - it fills very quicky.

  • You’re running away, while they see you - it fills quickly

  • You’re in some distance from them, and just normally walking away - it fills slowly.

  • You get out of sight - it stops filling and “Suspicious” state dissaperas after while

There doesn’t need to be a visual meter for this, however it would be pretty cool. They main point is that running away after being spotted by enforcer, should make you more suspicious.
I’m not sure about this, but thought it might be cool to share with you guys. Any opinions?
EDIT: Just realized I spelled “suspicious” wrong lol

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IMHO, you are trying to fix what is not broken. Paranoid guards from Hitman 2: Silent Assassin are not something to be proud of, to be honest. I understand that they want to fix the absurdity of Codename 47, where the 47th disguise is not suspicious at all. But in the second part, the soldiers could open fire on the disguised 47th simply because he was running at a military base. “Double time, MARCH”? Shot him!

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@Light_of_War Yea, AI in Hitman 2:Silent Assassin was very frustrating at times. I just thought that maybe making “Suspicious” a bit less forgiving would make the game more intense. But you’re right, it might be step in the wrong direction. Thanks for opinion.
Edit: Spelling

I believe that the loss of SA is sufficient punishment for suspicion.

8 Likes

While there was a REAL tension in Blood Money, watching that meter slowly fill and flicker, I don’t feel like we need it back.

On thinking about this though, I feel like a different sound than the static we hear when being spotted would be more appropriate; maybe some type of horn or string instrument rising in volume/intensity right up until the moment you’re busted. This probably wouldn’t fit in with the WoA music and/or atmosphere in general though, so, I can live without it.

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So what you’re saying is, unless you happen to be really far away from the enforcer who spotted you and take your sweet precious time to walk away “normally” while they’re running straight towards you, doing literally anything will make you more suspicious.

I see the “realistic approach” to this, but no. It makes for terrible gameplay because anything you do will get you in more trouble.

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The general idea was to make running more suspicious, but yea, it would be difficult to balance it well. I actually didn’t thought about enforces running to you when spotted. Escaping would be almost impossible.

I think this could be happily included in a “hyper-realism” mode, where it’s ridiculously unforgiving. That way, those who want that level of challenge can play to their hearts’ content, but those who are saying it would ruin gameplay never have to touch it. :slight_smile:

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That’s the problem with most suggestions though: people forget to think about the gameplay first.
The old suspicion systems were … not great. Far from it to be honest.

But this suggestion is actually one of the better ones that could be added in another game mode as @EBEZA posted.

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In contrast to a lot of other answers, I like your proposals. Especially the idea that running makes you more suspicious.

In H2:SA and to a certain degree in H:Contracts, the suspicion-mechanics made the gameplay a very thrilling experience. Say you play these old games on the hardest difficulty and cannot save. You have almost completed a map and maybe even killed your target. Then, a guard becomes mistrustful and the only things you can do: Move away slowly. Try to be as unobtrusive as possible. Be patient. These situations occured quite often and they scared the crap out of me. And if you succeed in a such a situation, you just feel badass.

This atmosphere and tension is almost not present in the newer entries. In H2016 or H2 for example, if you become suspicious, you just should run away quickly. Otherwise, it will quickly ruin your SA-rating. On master difficulty, it is even a matter of seconds. Thrilling situations as in the older games cannot occur anymore.

So, I agree with you and would love to see a rework of the suspicion-mechanics.

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Yeah, I kinda miss that tension. It would be cool if they somehow experimented with bringing it back. However, as others said, it could also easily be broken, so IOI would have to balance it really well.

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Jokes aside I think Contracts perfected the suspicious meter. Silent Assassin was all over the place. In some levels (Japan) guards would spot you from a kilometer away while in the next level you could walk right past them. It also felt very random because sometimes you managed to walk past a guard and sometimes he would start shooting.

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Contracts was very well balanced in this regard. Silent Assassin on the other hand… YAME! YAME!

I have a lot of thoughts on all these mechanics. I’m super sleepy right now but I’ll try to run down the bullet points.

  • For me, the unpredictable nature of the AI in Silent Assassin and Contracts was very satisfying because it felt realistic and suspenseful. The name of the game was keeping your distance from enemies as much as possible, which probably is what you would do if you were a big guy with a barcode stamped on the back of your head, moving in disguise in hostile territory. There were some points where being close to enemies was unavoidable but you’d probably be okay if you kept your stride and prayed a little.
  • The reason people today are so frustrated by the old “paranoid AI” is because that kind of mechanic is only really useful for role-playing (which is how I’ve always appreciated the games) and not to all the “gamey” stuff people care more about today (contracts, speedruns, killing people with crazy weapons, etc.) especially if they’re newer to the franchise because that stuff is definitely more encouraged by the game itself now.
  • Today, Hitman is always a game. Everyone who plays it is always 100% aware of the mechanics of the game and exploiting very predictable AI rules. You throw the soda can, you know exactly which guard is going to respond and how.
  • Some of us started whining about the gradual erosion of suspense (and more importantly, consequence) starting in Blood Money, but IOI heard it as “more difficulty please, we want to be so hardcore!” and starting with Absolution added a bunch of features that made the game harder but in kind of an arbitrary way. The harder difficulties of Absolution were tough but in a way that even made it feel more like a game.
  • Hitman today has found a niche and has a very unique gameplay experience that a lot of people enjoy, so I can’t say IOI is doing anything “wrong,” but for me it’s just not the way I like to play games. Especially compared to something like RDR2 which attempts to really immerse you in an unpredictable living world where the gameplay mechanics/strings are pretty well hidden.
  • Absolution really did something right with the disguise/suspicion system but didn’t go all the way with it. It would be great if you could easily predict which NPCs can see through your disguise but not exactly how sensitive/paranoid they are. Instead of this stupid “enforcer” system we have today, where every NPC is a blind dumbass except for the ones marked with a white dot on the HUD… which is, again, very gamey.
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Sorry for late reply. That’s right, the old disguise system had more tension. Walking slowly, next to the guard watching you, knowing that you can be spotted at any time. However, I think that in Hitman 2 Silent Assassin it was a litlle bit broken at times. Contracts balanced it well. About lack of realism: IMHO Hitman never was very realistic. I think that predictabilty is actually cool, since it allows you to plan your hit precisely. New games have much more possiblites thanks to that. However, it would be cool if some of old systems made a comeback, maybe as an seperate, experimental game/difficulty mode (as @EBEZA suggested) to not break the game.

1 Like