The Hitman series does some really cool things from time to time, but often the frustration experienced while trying to reach those cool things can be maddening. With some polish, this series could really shine, but the latest installment — Blood Money — is not without its rough edges.
Camera control/consistency is one of the biggest problems I had with the game. Switching from first- to third-person perspective sometimes randomly points the camera in some direction other than where you were looking.
The crosshairs aren't absolute, either, meaning that if you're aiming right at something in one view, switching to the other will point your weapon somewhere else entirely. Irritating.
One thing all the games in this series have in common are those really cool moments you will often unearth by accident along the way through a mission. Figuring out which outfits will grant you access to necessary parts of each level is a challenge itself, but sometimes you score a random one that seems like a skeleton key. For instance, in one level you can snag a Santa suit at a Christmas party that lets you wander into almost any area of the house.
Changing costumes also modifies how average people in the game react to you. In the black three-piece, the girls at the party flirt with Agent 47, proving yet again that the ladies do go crazy for a sharp-dressed man. In the same suit, the bartender will slip you some needed aphrodisiacs for one of your objectives. If you swap to the Santa outfit, he'll berate you for staggering around like a lush and point you to the spare port in the kitchen, based off how the actual drunken Santa was behaving just moments earlier. Little touches like that bring the world to life.
The orchestral score is wonderful, another series tradition. Music ramps up when your tension meter starts to fill, and quells to a peep when the action dies down. The fanfare between levels is nice, too.
The objectives are pretty typical for a game named Hitman. Get in, kill someone(s), and get out unnoticed. Leave as little evidence as possible, don't be seen, and cover your tracks. It's not as rigidly bound to an over-arching plot or linear level progression like you might find in the Splinter Cell or Metal Gear Solid games. There are several ways to accomplish your objectives, from going all stealthy to kicking in doors with guns blazing. Do whatever you like, but be prepared to deal with the consequences.