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Hitman: Contracts (2004) is the third game in the Hitman series by IO Interactive, though it's really more of a mini-episode set between Silent Assassin and Blood Money. It also served as a remake (for all intents and purposes) of some of the Codename 47 missions, now using Silent Assassin's game engine. There are many more ways to win, along with a brand-new sniper's nest in most levels.

The story finds 47 in a compromising position (shot in the gut) as he starts experiencing bizarre fever dreams. Of course when you get right down to it, his brush with the Reaper is just an excuse to don the pitch-black suit, prepare the fibre wire and reload the Ballers.

The first half of the game consists of flashbacks to past assignments: a Romanian bondage club, an illicit weapons factory in Siberia, and a countryside manor in the Agency's home turf of England. The middle chapter revisits some old locations from the first game, namely Rotterdam, Budapest, and Hong Kong. The last mission brings 47 back to the land of the living—also known as Paris, where the police are moments away from capturing him.

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For tropes shared with the original, see Hitman: Codename 47.


Tropes

  • Added Alliterative Appeal:
    • "Asylum Aftermath", "The Bjarkhov Bomb", "Rendezvous in Rotterdam", and "Hunter and Hunted".
    • "Traditions of the Trade", which is carried over from the original game.
  • Adventures in Comaland: We open on Mr. 47 in a hotel room with a bullet lodged in his liver. As he collapses, visions of his past work begin to cloud his head; this is where the majority of the game takes place.
  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: Otacon...err, Northcott will practically wet himself in fear when 47 shows up. Lucky for him, his father is paying you a small fortune to bring him home.
  • Alcohol-Induced Idiocy: Alistair and a hunting buddy are getting hammered in a 1st floor study. They don't even turn to look at the butler to see if it's him. Anyway, Alastair keeps ordering more whiskey, so at any point 47 can poison the caske, and that will snuff him out. Everyone will assume Alistair couldn't hold his whiskey, so leave the body as is.
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  • All Bikers Are Hells Angels: There's loads of amusing, biker-y stuff to do in Rotterdam. The gang itself is Dutch, as many American biker gangs have spread their membership into Europe. In "Rendezvous", you can spot a few Confederate flags on walls, and the room with the pole dancers is playing Clutch.
  • Already Done for You:
    • The opening level, "Asylum Aftermath", picks up right where the original game left off. As such, there's nothing to do in the basement but stroll past the corpses of the Mr. 48s. Also, SWAT officers have taken over the complex and will gun down any orderlies on sight, so you don't have to worry about them. (The orderlies are armed with puny stun guns, so it's not like they're a threat to begin with.)
    • The final mission deposits you back at the hotel, with the police moments away from storming the place. The only point of interest is your mission briefing: it's expired and lists two of your targets as already dead. 47 is working without a net on this one; the third hit went wrong, and his only hope is to catch a lift out of Paris. The proper mission (assassinating a pedophile opera singer and his protector) is playable in Blood Money.
  • Always Night: All of the missions in Contracts take place in the dead of night. The dark atmosphere (and the rain in particular) is meant to reflect the fact that 47's memory is distorted from being shot and drugged, so even "daytime" missions are overcast/stormy.
  • Amoral Attorney: Along with suspected murderer Campbell "Meat King" Sturrock, your client wants you to take out his lawyer, Andrei. The client's daughter was supposedly kidnapped by Sturrock but, despite overwhelming evidence in court, the lawyer got the charges dropped. As an aside, the lawyer has a silenced Silverballer, and Romania has very strict gun laws, so this can be interpreted as further evidence of his corruption.
  • An Arm and a Leg: 47 fulfills his promise to track down his client's missing daughter. Or, what's left of her.
  • Angry Guard Dog:
    • Release the hounds! Beldingford Manor is protected by a pack of hunting dogs. These dogs have been specifically bred and trained to hunt people, so don't clown around. If guards catch wind of an intruder on the premises, the dogs will be set loose.
    • Watch out for the K-9 unit in Rotterdam. Good thing it can't escape the kennel, only bark for help. A cop uniform will throw it off the scent.
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: Winston Beldingford partakes in human hunting at his manor, along with Alistair and his elite group of friends. He also regularly fires and rehires his staff, and one maid hides poison and an escape ladder in her bedroom. The upside is, no one will think twice if they see 47 in servant's clothes.
  • Armor Is Useless: Averted. Disguising yourself as a SWAT officer will give 47 increased damage resistance.
  • Artificial Stupidity:
    • The bartender overlooking the hotel pool has no way of leaving the bar. He cannot notify guards of your presence.
    • Fritz won't react to the time bomb if you drop it next to him on the ground.
    • The bystanders in Paris don't count as NPCs, even though they respond to your movements and can be shot. They're stuck behind a barricade, so the cops just ignore them. Rien voir içi.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: The submarine has a thick hide and requires at least three bombs to sink it. The informant in the airport will point out the structural weaknesses.
  • Back-Alley Doctor: Agent 47 gets treated by one of these in cutscenes after a job goes bad, with whiskey for a disinfectant. (It's unclear if The Agency sent him.) It doesn't look pleasant, but 47 is good for one more mission an hour or so later.
  • Bad Guys Play Pool: The pool cue makes its debut as a melee weapon. You'll find one inside Beldingford Manor and the biker bar.
  • Battle Trophy: Inspector Fournier has a megaphone that 47 can pick off of his corpse. It's useless, except as a trophy.
  • Becoming the Mask: In this version of Rotterdam, 47 picks up a case from where the previous agent, Klaus Teller, couldn't continue. The client believes Teller has either been brainwashed into the gang's lifestyle, his cover has been blown, or both. Teller is covered in gang tattoos when you finally meet him.
  • Bland-Name Product:
    • The Sturrock Bros. are processing and shipping "Polio" brand meat. Yum yum.
    • Averted with Commander Bjarkov: The brand of vodka he offers you is Kalashnikov, which exists in real life.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: "Asylum Aftermath", full-stop. Though to be honest, the gore is concentrated in the first two levels only — but it's plenty enough.
  • Bondage Is Bad: Worth it just for the fun of looking like a luchador going to a wedding. The first floor of the slaughterhouse has been converted into a BDSM club, with mask-wearing VIPs, cage dancers and rave lighting.
  • Book-Ends: Apart from killing the Inspector, "Asylum Aftermath" and "Hunted and Hunted" play out much the same way: Avoid the police, jack a car, and split.
  • Bring My Brown Pants/Potty Emergency:
    • In the original, the barkeep is very chatty; he'd even let you know of another foreigner locked in the basement for trying to crack one of Hong's many safes. In the remake, he's having a diarrhea attack from stress, refuses to answer questions (Lee Hong? Never heard of him), and hands you a VIP card just to shut you up long enough for him to run back into the restroom. He also leaves behind a laxative bottle, which will be useful for getting past Tzun. Just spike the soup in the kitchen and then offer it to Hong. Hong will begin to reach for the soup when Tzun decides to taste test. Observe.
    • The easiest way to dispose of Fabian Fuchs is to spike the Borscht and follow him to the bathroom after. He'll be too busy shitting his brains out to even notice you pull a gun on him. For some reason, Yurishka keeps the laxative in the kitchen.
  • The Butcher: The Sturrock brothers run the largest meat packing plant in Romania.
  • The Butler Did It: Ahh, the temptation to steal the butler's clothes in "Beldingford Manor"... It will give you access to the entire house, but it's not really necessary seeing as the butler can unknowingly kill Alistair with the arsenic.
  • Caption Humor: In the remake, the brothel madam curses at Mei Ling and 47 under her breath, thinking he doesn't understand Mandarin.
  • Chekhov's Skill: 47's reticule disappears when he's standing close enough to an NPC. This is your cue to take out your pistol and clobber them. There's only one mission where it becomes useful, however: "Hunter and Hunted". 47 is stripped of his gear (including the sedatives), SWAT have cordoned off the entire block, and firing an unsilenced gun is a no-go. Noiselessly stealing a paramedic uniform is key to completing this sequence.
  • Clumsy Copyright Censorship: The band Clutch got very defensive over the use of their song "Immortal", and thus delayed its release on Steam. This is also why there are no licensed tracks in Absolution.
  • Curse Cut Short: In the game trailer (later used as an opening cinematic), one of 47's targets dives into his limo, then gets a close glance at the chauffeur's head. "OH SHI—"
  • Darker and Edgier: 47's mind does not look like your clichéd Little House on the Prairie “will he snuff it or won't he” episode.
    • This one may be a hair too dark for the more Indiana Jones-level of violence in Hitman '16, but Contracts is by far the stand out in terms of depicting just how far down the rabbit hole of exploring humankind's depravity that 47 has had to go for his job. The first target kidnapped and murdered your client's daughter. The third target kidnapped your client's son...to literally hunt him down in the forest, as a hobby. Your fourth target isn't even evil, he might even be a good guy - just a gumshoe who got in over his head.
    • The Latin chorus and trombones are out; no longer do we hear sweeping music in the background as Hitman mows down a diplomat. It's actually more in line with Kyd's earlier work on Freedom Fighters, mixing ambient and industrial techno. We open with "Slaughterhouse", which slowly builds as Hitman falls deeper into his delirium, and end on "SWAT Team", which is a little action-packed for a Hitman game.
  • Dashingly Dapper Derby: The reporter in Rotterdam definitely sticks out: A pinstriped suit, bowler hat, and bright red corsage. It looks comically out-of-place in a biker bar. But his hat will get you an audience with Rutgert.
  • Dead Man Switch: Boris goes nuts (as usual) once he's surrounded and arms his nuclear device. Once the SWAT teams mop up the freighter, the voice on the radio will "initiate phase two", at which point Boris will shoot the skipper [!] and make his threat: he's going to blow up the harbor unless he's allowed safe passage off the ship and a helicopter. The SWATs won't dare shoot him because they know what a detonator does. There are several ways to spoil his plan: either kill Boris before the SWAT arrive, or defuse the bomb in the holds and then kill him, or steal the dead man's switch from his body (quickly, before the ship explodes) and hop in the extraction chopper yourself!
  • Death's Hourglass: If you look carefully, the grandfather clock in Alistair's study is actually counting down.
  • Delayed Explosion: "Beldingford Manor". For the pyromaniacs out there, there's a jug of petrol sitting by the jeep as well as another in the servant's quarters. It can be made to explode when placed near a flame—a chimney, perhaps? Alistair and his guest won't know what hit them.
  • Desecrating the Dead:
    • "Asylum Aftermath." As has already been mentioned, it's got this weird horror atmosphere going on: you've got patients wandering the lab, clones lying against walls that are smeared in blood, a patient monotonously chopping away at the body of a clone with a kitchen knife, etc.
    • Malcolm doesn't join in the fun at the BDSM party; instead he spends all his time lurking on the mezzanine, dancing eerily in front of the dismembered body of his victim.
    • 47 can also kill the slaughterhouse NPCs and hang their bodies on an overheard conveyor belt. Bon appetit.
  • Despite the Plan: 47 successfully eliminated both the tenor and the ambassador in the opera house. As he was leaving the scene, Albert Fournier, a friend of both D'Alvade and Delahunt, shot him, thus triggering the events of Hitman: Contracts.
  • Developer's Room: In the lab adjacent to Ort-Meyer's organ farm (i.e. 47's "fathers"), there's another set of pods with the IO producers' names engraved on them.
  • Dirty Old Man: Lord Winston Beldingford. Directly below the master bedroom is a bathroom. Just past the shower is a large mirror which is actually a door leading to the voyeur's secret room. You can also overhear the butler complaining about his master's predication for servant sex.
  • Distressed Dude: Giles, a nobleman who's being held captive by the Beldingfords. When all's said and done, the kid will run back home without incident, so there isn't any need to protect him from gunfire.
  • Dragon Lady: The brothel madam won't take kindly to 47 skipping out on his bill.
  • Drone of Dread: The theme music to "Asylum Aftermath." The screams are the asylum inmates' dialog slowed-down.
  • Early Game Hell: The Hong Kong and Budapest missions were the only ones you could really perform cleanly, which unfortunately means very little has changed since then. They're way too simple for a game with such labyrinthine early levels. Things heat up again in "Hunter and Hunted."
  • Electric Torture: Before the Rotterdam mission even starts, Teller is caught and chained up in the basement of the biker bar, where is he is being subjected to electroshock torture. One of the mission objectives is to eliminate him, as he knows too much about the client's sordid affairs. This might be the cleanest hit in the Hitman series. There's no shortage of sharp implements in Teller's room, and you can always just leave the electricity on and leave.
  • Escort Mission: Subverted on two occasions. In "The Meat King's Party", 47 is tasked with rescuing or recovering his client's daughter. She's dead by the time he gets to her, so he has to bring back enough of her for a positive identification. In "Beldingford Manor", the man he's sent to rescue is a champion track runner, so all 47 needs to do is free him from his makeshift prison.
  • Everyone Hates Mimes: Behind one of the barricades in Paris, there is a mime artist. If you kill him, he will appear alive on the map, regardless of many times you shoot him.
  • Evil Lawyer Joke: In case you didn't get the hint, Andrei the lawyer is wearing a devil costume at the "Not Guilty" Party.
  • Extremely Short Timespan: 47's vision quest happened in the span of an hour or two. It's still dark when he flees the hotel, and — assuming he boards a flight that same night — the epilogue with Diana occurs in the early morning. ("I barely got out of Paris myself.") Don't forget to factor in the botched hit at the Opera House. What is this, the longest day of Jack Bauer's life?
  • Final-Exam Boss: Unusual for a Hitman title, the final mission plays out like any other hit, albeit an extraordinarily hard one. But a hit nonetheless, with one target and a rating.
  • The Fourth Wall Will Not Protect You: As the story begins we see a television screen with a ballistics expert named Donna Davis explaining the operation of a standard handgun in a demonstration. As the bullet in the cutscene leaves the gun there is a sharp BANG and a woman screaming as the television screen goes static.
  • Gambit Pileup: Just like in C47, Boris has set up a purchase with a biker syndicate you've already encountered. The bikers are making a pit stop at a bar (The Dirty Rabbit, which appears in both games) before they deliver the warhead to Boris in a car. The problem is that the Rotterdam police are fully aware of Boris' plans and are about to seize his freighter. The client (Ort-Meyer) can't allow this to happen, so you'll have to kill Boris before the police slap cuffs on him. Making your job harder are the police blockades: the workers have all gone home early and the harbor is under lockdown. As a result, most outfits are useless in the SWAT-occupied areas. Also, Boris is in possession of a nuclear explosive. Shortly after they storm the freighter, he arms the bomb to force them to comply with his demands. What's interesting about this mission is that 47 can influence how it all plays out.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: If you swipe the photos from the safe before the journalist meets with the Rutgert, and Rutgert has not been killed, the photos will spawn back into the journalist's possession when their meeting takes place; retrieving them at that point will be impossible and the mission will fail by default.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation:
    • Don't worry if your car mows down a SWAT officer in the Asylum Aftermath cutscene — it won't affect your score.
    • In Deadly Cargo, Boris will eventually activate a dead-man's switch for the nuke, at which point if he dies, the entire city dies with him. You can't shoot him at this point without him dropping it and setting off the nuke... but you can use the fiber-wire on him and pick it up afterwards, because for some reason that doesn't count.
    • In-story, a single bullet to the gut disables 47 and necessitates an emergency operation. In gameplay, he can be shot through the leg, the heart and the skull and be fine as long as his health bar isn't empty.
  • Gang Initiation Fight: There's a bunch of bikers and a whore lying dead in the Flamin' Rotterdam cellar, which suggests a gang initiation gone wrong. Anyway, this is 47's nightmare, and everything is a bit skewed.
  • Gas Leak Cover-Up: The police have cordoned off Room 108 in the Budapest Hotel due to "an accident... just a bad accident." The occupant is a hotel guard who is busy washing blood off himself. He points accusingly at the bathroom mirror... Does he sees the apparition, too?
  • Gray Rain of Depression: Since this world exists in 47's drug-addled skull, and it never rained in Codename 47, the rain must reflect his mood at the moment.
  • Government Agency of Fiction: The UN is called UF in the hotel mission and on one of the placards in front of the conference room. No idea why. Even Diana reads it like "UN" even though it says "UF" in the briefing.
  • Guns Akimbo: Par for the course with the Silverballers, but every pistol, a few submachineguns and even the Sawed-Off Shotgun can be dual wielded if the player is able to unlock them, which in every case barring the Desert Eagle, requires obtaining a Silent Assassin rating on each mission. Or just cheating.
  • Hall of Mirrors: In this continuity, a Mr. 48 is lying dead in a mirror-lined hallway.
  • Hazmat Suit: In The Bjarkov Bomb, 47 spends the latter part of the mission waddling around looking like a giant peanut M&M. He'll need to borrow the radiation suit from the Red Army to get close to the submarine, which is where Bjarkov produces his dirty bombs. It's also the only outfit which won't cause an Alert in there. This step can be skipped if you find C4s elsewhere.
  • Hedge Maze: One route into Beldingford Manor is a trapdoor hidden on the outer fringe of the hedge maze.
  • Hell Hotel: Remember that in the previous game, 47 was convinced he would go to Hell, both due to his bloody past and because he lacks a human soul.
    • When signing in at the hotel reception, one of the rooms on the signature pad is listed as 666, even though the hotel only has around 310 rooms.
    • Agent 47, Ghostbuster. In the northeast corner of the Hotel Gallard, a ghost can be found floating in the hallways of the restricted wing. It is assumed that this is the spirit of the deceased guest, whose corpse can be found in one of the nearby rooms. You may also see it while looking at a mirror in POV mode (it even waves at you). With a little luck and patience, 47 can 'kill' the ghost (er, again) and blood will spatter on the walls. You can also fiber wire the spook and drag it around like an actual body, and cops will even treat it as a dead civilian. Weird.
    • The neon sign outside of the French hotel is burnt out, leaving only the letters "H", "E", and "L" in red.
  • Hollywood Satanism: "Meat King's Party". Bear in mind the same mission features a stylish yet highly-illegal underground opium party, full of seedy guests in horned masks and gimp suits. It's astonishing how Contracts didn't get slapped with the dreaded 18+ tag in the UK.
  • Homage: If you are disguised as a SWAT officer, you can join the raid on Boris' ship and even mow down the Russian sailors, and the SWAT officers will not fire upon you. Or, if you're out for Silent Assassin, just hang to the rear of your squad and let them do your dirty work for you. This is a reference to the ending of The Professional.
  • Hooks and Crooks: 47 automatically enters the slaughterhouse with a meat hook in his inventory. If you're dressed as a butcher, the bouncers won't confiscate it, but the upstairs guards will be more diligent.
  • Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: The Beldingford clan has kidnapped the scion of their rival, the Northcotts. Apparently, the lad is an Oxford sprinting champion and there's going to be a foxhunt in the morning...
  • Ironic Nickname: Check out the name tags on the bouncers in Rotterdam.
  • Just a Stupid Accent: The people in Rotterdam speak really bad Dutch, probably because Eidos could not get Dutch voice actors.
  • Laxative Prank: In two levels (Lee Hong's place and the Siberian airbase), you can spike some soup with laxative to help lure your target to the toilets.
  • Lethal Joke Item/Nerf Arm: In Contracts, you can get a cardboard tube (in homage to the Penny Arcade strip) that, when used properly, results in an instant kill on nearly any enemy. The weapon's description mentions that it was "crafted from the finest natural cardboard and honed to its maximum lethality", or "constructed from five-star ultra-dense musashi cardboard". Hitting an opponent with it sends them sailing in a nearly flat trajectory, usually only stopping when they strike an obstacle. Ouch. And yes, it can be carried over in other missions. You win it by getting a Silent Assassin rating on the Training level, but since training mode can't be "beaten" the only way to do that is to use the level skip cheat.
  • Level Ate: "The Meat King's Party." All of the melee weapons are themed around food, including the kitchen knife, meathook, meat cleaver, and cattle gun.
  • Little Useless Gun: The SG220 silenced pistol is basically a quieter and much less effective version of the silenced Silverballer. It has the exact same ammunition capacity, but fires the more common generic pistol ammo. Point blank headshots are not even guaranteed kills with this gun.
  • Minecart Madness: The Airport Service Tunnel has a rail cart to move Bjarkov's men from A to B. The Tunnel connects the Siberian Airport to the Marine base on the other side of the mountain.
  • Mission-Pack Sequel: As a supplement for fans of Silent Assassin, there's very little that's different.
  • My Rules Are Not Your Rules: In the original, Lee Hong's Sword could not be equipped by 47 (similar to C47's stungun and blowgun). It can be equipped in Contracts after you take it off Hong, but the poison effect has worn off (the green glint is gone), reducing it to a glorified golf club.
  • No Name Given: In "Meat King's Party", the VIP is listed simply as "the girl". She is the only VIP whose death is scripted and unpreventable.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent: Giles has a Yankee accent for some reason. Maybe he is supposed to be an Anglophile.
  • Not Me This Time: The Meat King's Party. It turns out that while still immoral, 47's target is not the guy that killed the client's daughter. Although he appears on the level, the real killer is never marked as a target. Justified, as 47 is not there for justice, he is there to kill who he is told to kill, and the client just didn't do enough research. On the other hand, the killer can still be killed, but it might ruin the best rating
  • Not My Driver: A trailer for Contracts featured this. An asthmatic businessman has discovered that he is about to be murdered by 47 and promptly flees the building he's in, huffing and puffing to a waiting car. When the driver is told to start driving, he lowers the divider window to reveal the barcode tattoo.
  • Oddball in the Series: In a series built primarily around offing colourful villains in exotic locales, Contracts sticks out like a sore thumb. Every mission takes place at night and/or in foul weather, is filled with unusually-nasty characters, with vague hints of supernatural elements and a tone which borders on Surreal Horror.
  • Opium Den: The lawyer, Andrei, can be found vaping on a bed in the first floor of the slaughterhouse. You may pose as an attendant and serve him a pipe before plugging him, leaving no trace of your handiwork. (Wearing red was a bad choice, Counselor.) You can also knock out Campbell's girls with the pipe, before turning your attention to Jabba himself. So long as the window's closed, nobody will disturb Campbell or discover the body.
  • Pillow Pistol: Available in three of the bedrooms in "Beldingford Manner". If you lack a silenced pistol, using one of the throw pillows should do the trick. Or you could just smother them.
  • Press Start to Game Over: The absolute instant the final mission starts, run like hell. The SWAT raid every single room and then barricade each exit after they've done so you can't hide, nor can you exit somewhere peacefully.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: ♪ Put your head on my shoulder... ♪ Your briefing lists only two targets, so encountering Campbell's kooky brother definitely comes as a surprise. He's clad in nothing but a butcher's smock, undies, and socks, and brandishing a meat cleaver. If he catches you sniffing around his lair, he will attack you without pause. This makes him a more dangerous enemy than his brother, but it's not a requirement to kill him.
  • "Rashomon"-Style: Notably, by the same guy. Some of the missions play very differently than on the original game. There are some points that really stand out, such as the hotel pool and the fish restaurant missions.
  • Reality Bleed: The cutscenes in Contracts play with 47's fever dream hallucinations. In one, the hotel bathroom reverts to a meat locker, and in another, the hotel room door opens vertically like a cargo hold entrance, with a Russian foreman shouting instructions.
    1. When 47 first collapses on the floor, he flashes back to his fatal shooting of Dr. Ort-Meyer.
    2. Later, as 47 stumbles between his hotel room and the bathroom, he will start to hallucinate being in a meat locker.
    3. In the next scene, he sees a Russian soldier (actually a doctor) standing at the foot of his room, and this takes 47 back to a mission in Siberia.
    4. As the doctor prepares 47 for surgery, he takes out a hip flask and douses the wound with alcohol. The noise brings back memories of 47 riding a raft to the Beldingford estate.
    5. As the still-groggy 47 pulls the aesthetic out of his leg, he is pulled back to the Hotel Galar with a sedated VIP at his feet.
    6. Finally, 47 comes to and hears the Gendarme (French police) rapidly moving in; the sound of a chopper brings 47 back to Hong Kong.
  • Retcon: A large part of the game is a remake of Codename 47 missions, with key differences.
    • Dr. Ort-Meyer's lab is much bigger and high tech than it was in Codename 47, and it is somehow filled with inmates of the asylum. The Mr. 48s are depicted as being more austere, with buttoned-up jackets to contrast with 47's unbuttoned one. There's around 15 of them in the original corridor, but Contracts included more dead clones littering the rooms (25 in this version), including three inside of the chamber where you shot Ort-Meyer. Also, the basement is accessible by elevator, rather than a secret staircase.
    • Both Codename 47 Rotterdam missions (the nudie bar and the docks) have been condensed into one. You also don't get to hijack the ship afterward, meaning that 47 doesn't have to hurt the crew. There is still a ticking clock, but if you keep a low profile, you can finish your objectives without any bloodshed.
      • The biker gang is larger than before and has a more visible hierarchy than in "Gunrunner's Paradise". If you look, they each wear vests and hoodies with the gang insignia (a flaming windmill) on the back. The prospects (the guys at the bottom of the food chain) are lacking the windmill logo, so they aren't allowed into the VIP rooms.
      • Speaking of the Rotterdam mission, the Flamin' Windmills gang has been retconned from punks (some of them were black people) to (all white) bikers, and a whole new mission takes place at their bar/HQ. One thing that was kept is that they still enjoy watching strippers.
      • There are no Gas Mask Mooks and no dogs guarding the docks. Workers, cops, SWAT teams and the like populate the harbor instead.
      • Boris doesn't use an escape limo and doesn't immediately activate the nuclear bomb with a 3 minutes countdown. Instead, he threatens to detonate the bomb if he doesn't get a helicopter to escape in.
      • Ivan (the clown gangster) doesn't appear at any point.
      • Interestingly, the shootout with the Russian sailors can still occur if you allow the police to raid the boat as planned; the layout of the ship is almost exactly the same. Also, the Captain still dies. (Boris shoots him, not you).
    • "Traditions of the Trade":
      • The mission takes place at night instead of during the day.
      • The hotel is bigger, includes more shops than the florist and the dentist cabinet is bigger as well.
      • The hotel is full of Hungarian cops and there are no civilians walking everywhere this time around — the hotel is closed since a murder has been committed in one of its wings.
    • The Hong Kong missions play roughly the same, although there are visible changes:
      • The Cheung Chau fish restaurant is much bigger, and there are more ways to deal with the targets (sniping, poisoning food and so on).
      • Lee Hong's restaurant/HQ is more akin to a fortress and there's a ladder to get inside without having to use the gates.
      • The brothel is a separate building with a bridge linking it to the restaurant instead of being situated on the upper floor of the restaurant, and 47 doesn't need to go through it provided the safe containing the jade figure isn't there (Lee Hong has the codes on himself, so there's no need to help the prostitute to get them).
      • 47 must take the jade figure with him instead of bringing it to the old Chinese shopkeeper (speaking of which, that shop has disappeared).
      • The bartender will also denounce 47 to the guards after talking to him instead of giving him a pass for the brothel.
    • "Hunter and Hunted" lists two of your targets (the tenor and the ambassador) as already hit. These guys will be revisited in Blood Money, though they appear under different names here.
  • Rule of Seven: Sedation is quicker than the chloroform rag from Silent Assassin. You have seven minutes before the victim awakens and runs after the nearest guard.
  • Schizophrenic Difficulty: Because many of the missions are taken from Hitman: Codename 47, some of which are essentially unchanged, the difficulty of this game tends to spike or drop, depending. "Traditions Of The Trade" and "Slaying A Dragon" are far easier than "Deadly Cargo", which originally appeared as two missions later into the original game. "Slaying A Dragon" in particular, is more or less unchanged from the first mission in Codename 47, can be completed with little difficulty. "Hunter and Hunted" ramps up the difficulty, though it is the final mission.
  • Schmuck Bait:
    • Just like last time, your first thought might be to reach for the rat poison before serving Hong his meal. In Contracts, you have the added option of spiking the soup with laxative, which will pacify Tzun and give you a minute alone with Hong. Otherwise, Tzun will pull a gun on you, just like in the original.
    • The fake-out when Bjarkov goes to get a drink, but quickly turns around to give you a suspicious look after you refuse his offer. If you try to wire him beforehand, he will see 47 approaching. A nice little way of IOI telling you not to be too hasty.
  • Sequel Difficulty Drop:
    • Sneaking is much faster than in Silent Assassin, even if 47 moves like a mincing ballerina this time.
    • Contracts introduced "Last Man Standing", which occurs when 47 has lost all health. Time slows down, and the screen becomes whiter and whiter until, finally, you keel over and die. The player can still open doors, shoot at enemies, and even pick up items, but they must score at least 3 headshots to escape the mode. If the player succeeds, the game resumes with some health replenished. Additionally, if the player has completed all objectives and is very close to the exit, it is possible to escape while in slow motion.
    • The remade Codename 47 missions are less maddening than before, thanks to the smaller maps and add-ons like the lockpick. And saving options.
    • Second verse, same as the first. You have to thwart Frantz's and Fritz's attempts to detonate a bomb again. In the hotel, the nice thing about Fritz's dental clinic is that the walls are lead-lined, so nobody outside (or inside, if you fire a gun next door) will hear your gunshots.
    • The thermal bath is reserved for Fritz alone, so the guest swimmers and scary Hungarian lady are all gone (although there's a cop watching him and civilians looking through the window from the floor above). Also, the bomb suitcase is now impervious to detectors, making your escape as quiet as the grave.
    • In Lee Hong's restaurant/fortress, the VIP/warehouse safes were moved to the basement and Lee Hong's office, both of which are well-protected. Luckily, the jade figure always starts off in the guard's quarters, and moves around only if you die and restart the mission. Having to break into the Codename 47 guard's quarters was a bad stroke of luck, whereas in Contracts it's one of the easier locations. Similarly, you don't need to go to the brothel since Lee Hong has the codes on him.
    • The requirements for Silent Assassin are slightly more lenient. You can kill two guards, provided it takes no more than one bullet to do so.
  • Sequel Difficulty Spike:
    • In order to throw off C47 veterans and build up the dark atmosphere, the police have roped off large sections of the hotel and made it overall a bit more claustrophobic. You have to lockpick to get to a few crucial parts, the knife is in a completely different spot and is better guarded, and guests and employees will be spooked if you pocket the bellboy's key when they're in sight. Also, don't bother trying out the towel boy disguise; you'll just be ejected by the guard in 10 seconds.
    • Four more targets have been added to the Wang Fou Incident, so your job doesn't end at blowing up the Triad limo. The other Hong Kong missions play out roughly the same as before.
    • In Hitman: Codename 47, you could just as well enter through the bathroom window and burst through the fish restaurant after everyone's sat down for their chat. In this version, the Chief has guards stationed right outside the fire escape. So not only can't you reenter once the cops arrive, but you have to schlep all the way back downstairs to leave. Also, the dining area is fully exposed, and there's a sniper who spots you if you shoot the negotiator and Police Chief from the wrong spot.
    • In the original fish restaurant scene, you could safely drop the amulet before you go to the bathroom to get your gun. Not this time: the Red Dragon amulet must be placed between the bodies of the Chief and the negotiator, and if you drop it while they're still alive, they will (justifiably) reach for a gun and light you up at once.
    • If you try to leave the brothel the way you came, the brothel madam will call for help and the Triads open fire, so you need an alternate route. Mei Ling will also need a hand when jumping the balcony, as she's not quite as spry as 47. (In the original, she could climb ladders and run across rooftops with ease) If she lands on the sidewalk, she'll scurry away to safety and you won't get the safe combo. Or you can have 47 kill/sedate her and be done... but he'll still have to slip out the back and avoid the madam.
  • Sequel Hook: We see Diana in the flesh for the first time (or rather, her hand), and she and 47 go on the lam.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: In a room on the second floor of the meat packing plant is the Kidnapped Girl, wrapped in plastic. Campbell's brother, Malcolm, is dancing to Paul Anka's "Put Your Head on My Shoulder" on a phonograph.
  • Spooky Painting:
    • A recurring element in the Asylum is the portrait of a toddler wearing a three-piece suit.
    • In the room where Alistair is chillaxing, there's a portrait over the fireplace. It will bleed if you shoot it.
  • Stalker Shrine: Malcolm's inner sanctum.
  • Stuffed into the Fridge: Picture a once-attractive girl, full of life. In fact, you don't have to picture one, she's already in your inventory. Now picture the same girl, raped, mutilated, drained of blood, and hanging from a meat locker ceiling. A raw arm is the only part of her that can be identified. And an obese Scottish butcher in dirty underwear and an apron is admiring his masterpiece. Meanwhile, “Put your head on my shoulder” crackles over a radio in the background.
  • Suicide Is Painless: A few of Ort-Meyer's "patients" have decided to punch their ticket rather than endure any more experiments. One inmate leaps to his death as 47 is exiting the laboratory. Upstairs, a few more inmates have committed suicide by cop.
  • Suspiciously Apropos Music: Somebody at IO must be a Puressence fan. "Walking Dead" is playing inside The Dirty Rabbit. The lyrics are sung with 47 in mind.
  • Taking You with Me: In the mission "Deadly Cargo," if the player has not killed Boris before the SWAT team arrives, or defused the nuclear weapon he's selling, sniping or otherwise killing him as he holds the trigger will result in Rotterdam going up in a massive mushroom cloud.
    Captain: Борис Иваныч, ты чего? Если тебя застрелят, нам же всем кранты! If they shoot you, we all die!"
    Boris: (shoots him in the head) And that matters to me because?
  • Technicolor Blade: Lee Hong's "venom-coated" sword is glowing bright green. You'd be forgiven for mistaking it for a lightsaber.
  • They Look Just Like Everyone Else!: When you first emerge into the asylum, you'll find that one of the SWAT officers was overwhelmed by the inmates and stabbed to death. It is for this reason that you can't linger too long in the lobby, despite the police using it as safe zone. If you wait for too long, one of the patients will magically pull out an SMG and shoot up the place. This will summon the nearby SWAT who will shoot at everyone. Unfortunately they will shoot at you too.
  • Thriving Ghost Town: In the Hotel Galar, the slots play themselves.
  • Timed Mission:
    • Before long, the cops will proceed to kill the asylum inmates, so don't stick around.
    • In "The Bjarkov Bomb", it's possible to kill both targets and sink the submarine at the same time. All you have to do is wait...and wait...and wait...and wait for Fabian to finish his meal, mosey over to the maintenance shaft, ride the slow-moving platform, walk upstairs to the commander's room, meet with Bjarkov, share a pint, walk back downstairs, get in a jeep, and drive all the way to the sub. Still, the fact he even does this shows a greater attention to detail than in previous games. Alternatively, 47 can snipe his targets after they're done joyriding around the base.
    • In the remake, Boris is still in the process of purchasing a nuke. This time, however, the police are onto him and are preparing a raid on his cargo ship. This throws a wrench into 47's mission, as the Agency doesn't want Boris brought in alive.
    • The "Rendezvous in Rotterdam" refers to a muckraking journalist who is bidding on Rutgert's incriminating photos. If he makes it to Rutgert's office before you do, it's game over. You can stall him by stealing his bribe money, tranquilizing him, or just interrupting his smoke break with a garrote.
  • Tron Lines: Ort-Meyer's lair is a standard Evil Windowless Lab #1, of the sort you would find in a Valve game. Just follow the fluorescent stripes to reach the exit.
  • Unlockable Content:
    • The cool thing about SA ranks in Hitman: Contracts is that you're rewarded with silenced versions of the NPC weapons. So if you're craving a PGM sniper rifle, you needn't torture yourself trying to find an unsuppressed version. (If you're some kind of masochist, feel free to steal one from the Gendarme.)
    • Not only do you keep the weapons collected from future missions, but once 47 has Lee Hong's keycard in hand, you can explore the locked areas of the sanitarium, including the room where Ort-Meyer keeps the bald, frozen clones of his compatriots for organ-harvesting.
    • In the opening mission of the game, you can see an inmate on the other side of a locked door waltzing around with a minigun. Once you finish the game, it's possible to get into that room and take the minigun from him.
  • Unreliable Narrator: Most of 47's memories jive with what we've seen before, while others (like the ghost in the hotel) are a head-scratcher.
  • Video Game Remake: The Hong Kong, Budapest, and Aslyum levels are a very faithful recreation of the Codename 47 maps, right down to little details like the discarded syringe in Dr. Kovacs' office. In terms of overhaul, the Rotterdam missions have seen the most changes: The biker HQ and the police station are new additions, the Ivan segments are discarded completely, and there is much less linearity.
  • Violent Glaswegian: Campbell Sturrock emigrated to Romania from Scotland along with his brother, Malcolm. From the looks of him, he doesn't traverse much.
  • Vodka Drunkenski: Commander Bjarkhov will offer some to "Fabian" to toast their upcoming deal. As 47 can't remove his ski mask without giving the game away, he declines the drink. Bjarkhov will take a second drink if you don't (waste not, want not), but after that, he'll put two and two together and yell for the guards.
  • Vorpal Pillow:
    • Winston is lustful of the maids in his mansion; in fact, you'll find him sleeping next to one. He's packing a double-barreled shotgun next to his bed, so play it safe and smother him to death. Amazingly, the rather long and loud struggle does not wake his paramour (that maid is a really heavy sleeper).
    • Similarly, you can drown one of the Fuchs brothers as he floats on a pool. If you keep out the sight, the guard lingering nearby doesn't bat an eye to his struggle (which is even louder).
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: In Contracts, there are still clones living inside incubation tanks in the asylum. It is unknown what happened to them. Then again, Hitman isn't known for its tight plotting.
  • Wicked Cultured: Most of Malcolm's babble consists of quotes from Scottish poet Robert Burns.
  • You Have Failed Me:
    • The private investigator, Klaus Teller, was sent to steal back the incriminating photos from the bikers. He screwed the pooch royally, and now the client wants him rubbed out, too.
    • In a conversation with Rutgert, he refuses to examine the bribe envelope, stating he'll hunt down 47 and collect any missing cash. If the Journalist shows up without the money (which you can steal), and Rutgert Van Leuven is still alive, Rutgert will execute him.
  • You Just Told Me: In the remake, heading to the Wang Fou bar initiates a funny conversation where 47 extracts the truth from a bartender by giving him nervous bowel syndrome.

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