Hitman Absolution altered over outcry

Director Tore Blystad says he was "surprised" by reaction to action game's controversial trailer; level amended to provide deeper context.

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IO Interactive has amended a level from Hitman Absolution following outcry stemming from one of the game's teaser trailers. In the video, the game's main character, Agent 47, is shown murdering a group of assassins disguised as gun-wielding nuns. Hitman Absolution game director Tore Blystad explained to Eurogamer that the trailer was based on a level in the game, which has now been tweaked to provide greater context.

IO is going back to provide greater context for this scene.

"One way to go about that level is to go in all-guns blazing, but of course, it's not the smartest way," he said. "We learned from the trailer that we really needed to give these characters some context and some backstory. We're working within the game--within that level--to build these characters up before you meet them. That way you know what you're getting and you aren't put off by them."

The reaction to the video was unexpected, Blystad said. He said despite hundreds of internal staffers having witnessed the trailer, none had any idea it would draw the levels of criticism it did.

"We were surprised by the reaction to it. We've been trying to find out, y'know, how could we not see this happening? If we knew it would get such a negative reaction we would have done it in a different way."

Ultimately, Blystad does not think drama related to the trailer, and the amended level, will be remembered when the game launches in November. "People will have forgotten about it," he said.

Hitman: Absolution is due out for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC on November 20. It is the first entry in the series since 2006's Hitman: Blood Money, which saw Agent 47 bring silent death to locales ranging from mid-Mardis Gras New Orleans to the White House.

Discussion

867 comments
neonasty
neonasty

personally i think that's one of the best game trailers i've seen since dead island, at least this game lived up to it's hype.

i'm struggling to think of a better game in '12.

open to recommendations?

Unindoctrinated
Unindoctrinated

It will be much more fun if I pretend they are nuns.

Biggs613
Biggs613

This just in, they also got complaints about the multiple endings being exactly the same, minus a different color scheme in each one, so one month after launch, they'll have huge public outcry demanding that the ending be changed to suit the fanboys needs, thus creating Hitman: Absolution: Extended Cut.

BiiteMe
BiiteMe

I am really excited about this game, and I loved that trailer. As they say "all publicity is good publicity". Keep up the great work team, maybe the Hitman games just got a larger following just from that one clip.

Locuus
Locuus

It's an awesome trailer, and nothing offensive about it.

New flash for whoever was offended - Sex and violence sells. Just go watch TV or read a magazine.

 

So stop your bitchin' and let developers develop.

quattro_guy
quattro_guy

so if they were dressed as female mercenaries, would someone still be offended?  probably, simply because they are women.  if Agent 41 was shooting/killing a bunch of dudes, it would be ok.  double standard, this society!

kohle36
kohle36

I'm offended because someone somewhere might be offended

findingaplace
findingaplace

sigh.  You know, for those confused about what the problem is with this video is, it's not that he's killing women or that they were dressed as nuns.  It's the fact they strip down into a dominatix outfit.  If they had stripped into battle gear I don't think anyone would have been offended.  Or Agent 47 could fight in a speedo. ;P

Kravyn81
Kravyn81

So I'm confused...what was so controversial about that trailer? Was it because they were dressed like nuns or because he was killing them dressed as nuns? I don't understand? I think people need to grow some balls and stop letting every little piss-ant issue "offend" them. Get over it.

kuda001
kuda001

The fact that people are talking about this means the trailer is a success, this isn't controversial by a long shot. What did you think a mature rated game called Hitman would be about? Solving problems via peaceful, diplomatic talks. I bet the people complaining have never picked up a gamepad let alone played a Hitman game.

templar1403
templar1403

developers should not be to concerned with political correctness, some of the most famous art in history was controversial at the time. Besides controversy gives a lot of publicity.

Killer6b9
Killer6b9

No worries here.....Still can't wait!!!

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

1.) Trailer = Badass

2.) Anyone who was offended by that should just kill themselves and stop wasting everyones time with frivilous BS like this.

 

3.) Anyone who has played the games can easily see they are from the agency.and most importantly. 4.) Anyone with a brain can see that those are not really nuns. It's called a disguise you imbred dufus.

Uninvited
Uninvited

If they've fleshed out an intriguing set of characters, surely that isn't a bad thing? To be honest, I'm much more concerned that IO felt there wasn't enough context in the game to justify their existence in the first place and so they've had to add this. Otherwise surely they would have just done a press release stating something along those lines?

carlo235
carlo235

Congratulations, they've managed to offend both feminists AND religious zealots. Well, anything that has to do with scantily clad women usually does the trick. The nun part is extra caustic, though. And anything that offends those two bickering groups deserve nothing less than 2 thumbs up. It's about time we apply gender equality in death tolls in video games, nay?

KimCheeWarriorX
KimCheeWarriorX

i didnt find the trailer offensive in the least, i wonder what "people" theyre talking about that found it offensive? in fact, out of the few dozen people ive personally talked with about the trailer, none found it offensive in the least, in fact, quite the opposite. sucks that theyre toning it down for the crybabies. boo.

hurvee
hurvee

I don't usually get it when people complain about a game being offensive like what the trailer shows. I think that is offensive is when everyone thinks they have the right to be offended and that their reaction matters in any meaningful way. The game does not point to any one, to any individual.And the first thing that should come to mind to those people spending a good deal of their time whining about a game's trailer is that it's just a game. nothing more, nothing less. video games have the liberty to create their own fantasy world, our fantasy world, to help us and gamers alike pass time and combat boredom. some games today are not just even games themselves. they have become art. many artists sometimes work on games. that does not mean anyone can whine and complain and start demanding to change the games because they are offensive. it's as simple as don't buy it if you don't like it.just because women-dressed as nuns-in the trailer were shown being murdered is not reason enough to label the game as offensive. killing gun-weilding nuns in the trailer does not, in any way, objectifies women. I mean look at the women in a daily basis. you don't want to take my word for it but if you go to a mall and look around, you'll see a lot of women objectifying themselves.And does it matter if there's a religous point of view involved? if you are that religious fanatic, go home and deal with it. the last thing i want to hear is people complaining that religion is being made fun of or even portrayed wronfully. Isn't it cool to see gun-totting nuns running around? It reminds me of Boondock Saints a little.anyway, another good thing i heard about the game is its  asynchronous multiplayer mode. Check it here at gamearena (http://www.gamearena.com.au/news/read.php/5114676?latest=1) for more details.I think this one will make the game more than fun once and for all.

ACLastRaven
ACLastRaven

People... this is marketing strategy for any game developer(s) who wants to attract consumers of the gaming community... Especially young adults gamers who are new and veteran gamers alike.... and yes, there will be some or more scrutinizing of the religious sect in any part of the world who would see this trailer...

Nun and Guns = Assassins!!!

Cool trailer and kick ass!!!

For that, Hitman: Absolution might sell million copies or more of the game maybe in

one day of the release street date per se?  

 

mkb11109
mkb11109

people get "offended" so easily. if you dont like it dont watch it...

Clive-Owen
Clive-Owen

hitman has always been about pornography, no wonder.

SavoyPrime
SavoyPrime

I still don't get what everyone was up-in-arms about.

zaoy
zaoy

A back story to these nuns would be good. But I like it. The girls look hot as far as video games go.

GryphonICD
GryphonICD

It was over the top, which jus made it slightly more cool as a result. But an outcry? Tsk. Even so, I like the idea that they will be built up a lot more, not that I had an issue with it before. Said outcry as I recall was regarding the whole 'why are there assassins in PVC nun costumes? This is just sex sells as they seem to have no relevence".

isshiah
isshiah

i thought it was a bit over the top, but i wasn't really offended by it. there are some people who will see evil in every corner, however, so they should have know what would happen.

Cappuccin0
Cappuccin0

I'm totally OK with this. Who the heck made an outcry, feminist religious fanatics? Nobody should ever pay attention to those.

botsio
botsio

why not tell hip hop acts to stop fashionalizing the rosary!huh!

botsio
botsio

i know which religious sect will be bickering about this!any i see nothing wrong with it!its totally a work of fiction!so where from this outcry!

pilot_riaz
pilot_riaz

What is his salary for killing all these people, he should be driving a Lamborghini to his missions.

pilot_riaz
pilot_riaz

@Gebatron - yeah he wears the same outfit everywhere he goes.  He never showers hey, haha.  Can he not afford different suits?  Interesting one.

malachi
malachi

Not a fan of the game but I like the trailer :)

Sevenizz
Sevenizz

If most of you actually read the article instead of just watching the trailer, you'd see the 'outcry' is for something totally different than what you're all assuming.

Gebatron
Gebatron

And no shit the outfits are ridiculous.  Agent 47 wears the same suit everywhere he goes, is always impeccably bald, and has a barcode tattoo on the back of his head, but no one seems to be pissed about how silly that is...

Gebatron
Gebatron

Hello people!!!! The game is called Hitman and allows the player to live out the dark fantasy of methodical and exacting murder. Hitman has always had religious undertones and the group of "nuns" is just a marketing ploy to appeal to the sort of people who are going to be into that stuff anyway. I'm sure the people complaining aren't the fans or people who are even familiar with the series at all. It is an excellent trailer because it got attention and created awareness. A+

SiLenTWarrior29
SiLenTWarrior29

I dont see whats the big deal is... assassins wearing some biytchin nun outfits... aaand.. Ive seen worst but do they know its just a game!? Idk why this is even news

Buck_Swaggler
Buck_Swaggler

"...If we knew it would get such a negative reaction we would have done it in a different way."

 

Opposite of Charlie Sheen's mentality.

JimmeyBurrows
JimmeyBurrows

It doesn't make a lot of sense, why assasins would be wearing high heels, latex lingerie or the nun outfits for that matter.

I'm sure they can explain the nun disguises, but high heels aren't good for maneuverability or stealth, you'll hear them coming a mile away.

With it being a trailer, it's bound to leave some questions you'd expect answered in the gameplay, but all I can guess at is he pissed off a bunch of heavily armed angry catholic strippers, which isn't great storytelling.

 

Agreeing with some other comments here, I don't like the amount of run and gun action they're putting into this, it's clearly to attract the cod crowd (as all publishers are asking at the moment) but it seems like it will take away the USP of Hitman, which was stealthy assasinations... If the next trailer shows killstreaks I'm out, lol.

DrunkenGoon
DrunkenGoon

I don't remember hearing any kind of controversy about this.. Do you really need a reason? I mean these "nuns" did try to kill him.. I would just consider this self defense.. I guess at least they didn't change the costumes or remove it all together..

Barrakas21
Barrakas21

why do you still cave on those stupid Catholics...more really who gives a crap about a catholics opinion that still  belive in magic? lol trailer is cool but it doesnt seem like hitman who knows suprise me

Emmett12
Emmett12

 @Biggs613

 Hey why don't you just shut the hell up. I know what the point your trying to make is and it ain't happening. Mass effect's ending was pure shit, and everyone was right to tell bioware about it. The extended cut did little to change it either. Bioware failed and is you think otherwise your stupid. I'm loving Hitman and have played it since it's early days. At least eidos know's how to start and finish a good story!! Blind fanboy's like you shouldn't even give your biased opinion's on games!! STFU

knifey
knifey

 @Kravyn81 plus you can clearly tell they aren't really nuns nuns don't dress like that of carry weapons and try to murder people

YIGIF
YIGIF

 @Uninvited That's a good point, but it world have worked either way. If its not broken, don't fix it.

VenkmanPHD
VenkmanPHD

 @carlo235 Hell yes, it may sound sadistic but I want to kill more women. I always shoot so many men, hell I bet all the aliens I kill aren't female. Why do men always have to get shot at?

Chaos_Dante_456
Chaos_Dante_456

 @Sevenizz lol I've noticed people often comment and respond based on the title/headline rather than the article itself on these thngs. I'd be lying if I said I hadn't done this before lol.

GryphonICD
GryphonICD

 @Barrakas21 Uh, the outcry was gamers saying they couldn't work out why bondage style saints were in a trailer and were concerned it was just a sex sells excuse rather than a solid series of characters. Had nothing to do with religion.

digitdan
digitdan

 @Barrakas21  "Stupid Catholics" as you so kindly refer to them as are probably a significant portion of the company's customer base, so I imagine IO does indeed care about their opinion. The fact you instantly  equate "Religion"  to "Magic" shows how little you actually know about either.  Try educating yourself a little bit--you might end up enjoying it.

JimmeyBurrows
JimmeyBurrows

 @digitdan  @Barrakas21 Technically if god exists so does magic... Or are we to believe he went to town with a hammer to make the world in 6 days?

Just being sarcastic here, I do agree this guys a muppet for his old world view of catholics.

Chaos_Dante_456
Chaos_Dante_456

 @Barrakas21 aye man you are an a)) hole just in case you didn't know or was in denial or something. You started out with hostility @digitdan  actually was pretty defensively civil. And this comes from a stance of just reading the convo not the whole religion vs atheist stuff.

 

but I guess this is the internet where folks decide to try to speak stuff they wouldn't normally say face-to-face. Also actually read the article, they are saying their taking the nuns out they're just fleshing out their story more as response to the reaction of how over the top the stuff was not to religious outcry 

digitdan
digitdan

@Barrakas21 I never acted like I knew you, I just replied judging from what you originally posted.  I'm sure you're actually a very well educated and perfectly reasonable person ;).  And as far as "acting smart", well, that's all very subjective you know . Also, I never referred to you by name, so I don't know why you would try and tell me not to, but since you did bring it up:

 

Barrakas21! Barrakas21! Barrakas21! Barrakas21!

Barrakas21!Barrakas21! Barrakas21!Barrakas21!

Barrakas21! Barrakas21! Barrakas21! Barrakas21!

 

By the way, I'm agnostic. Peace out.