“To go along with the great visuals is great sound work. The strip club level, as tawdry as this will sound, is the best example of the two in action. The entertainment does it’s thing on stage as hordes of horny business men stand around cat calling. Bassy stripper tunes bang out of the clubs sound system as 47 works his way through the crowd, following his target. As you move from room to room the volume drops and rises according to where you are located compared to the speakers in the main room, and voices rise and fall too, struggling to be heard over the din. It’s all very well put together.”
“The larger, more open stages will feel familiar to fans of the series. Some of these are impressively sizable in scope, and even more impressively populated by teeming crowds of Joe and Jane Q. Public, and the presentation, performance and – especially – sound design in these busy areas are all excellent.
Subsequent to a relatively quiet build-up, the first time the game sets 47 strolling through a gate and into a surging and noisy Chinatown market packed with hundreds of people is a thrilling moment. Street vendors hawk wares, fry cooks bellow out orders, and 47 can even eavesdrop on unique one-sided cellphone conversations as he picks his way through the crowd. Pinching an idea from Assassin’s Creed, Absolution also allows 47 to blend into the crowd to avoid unwanted attention. All in, the crowd scenes are probably the games’ crowning achievement, which is why it’s only a shame there aren’t more of them.”
“Many of the levels are jammed with shoulder-to-shoulder civilians, and Hitman: Absolution sports some of the most convincing, enjoyable crowds I’ve encountered in a game. Those crowds are greatly enhanced by some wonderfully written ambient dialogue—these writers know exactly how to capture the rhythm of a one-sided cell-phone conversation, to the point that I stopped evading the cops in a crowded Chicago train station just to sit back and listen. Playing Absolution so soon after Assassin’s Creed III is a lesson in how crowd-stealth should feel, and how to believably render the chaos of a dense urban scene.”