Most people will not finish Hitman: Absolution
Wednesday, June 27, 2012 12:51 PM
No matter how good upcoming stealth title Hitman: Absolution turns out to be, most people who play it will never see the last level of the game.
That is the somewhat stark assessment made by developer IO Interactive's Tore Blystad, who explained that only 20 per cent of gamers are likely to stick with Agent 47 to the bitter end.
In an interview with Official PlayStation Magazine, he revealed that the figure had been gleaned using various metrics and measures of player behavior.
The fact that the typical gamer does not finish many titles is nothing new. A couple of years ago, Ubisoft's Gaelec Simard revealed that the completion rate for Assassin's Creed 2 was just 40 per cent. Although that figure didn't sound too great, he went on to call it huge and explained it had exceeded the 35 per cent completion rate of the first title in the series.
Blystad's comments shed further light on the issue of completion in video games and, also, what effect such depressing metrics can have on the developers themselves.
He told the magazine: "20 per cent of the players will see the last level of the game. It's horrible to know. It makes the people working on it really, really sad.
"We are using metrics a lot more now than we did, for good and for bad. The general player will probably never even finish the game, which is very sad. Or they might only play through it once, but the game is built for the people who want to go back through every single level and get all the stuff out of it. It's built to last, rather than be a one-off experience."
It also brings up an interesting question – namely whether it's really worth it for developers to pump in as much time and resources into the ends of their games as the beginnings?
While we're not suggesting that any self-respecting game designer would willingly scrimp on the end of a game just because most won't complete it, the furor surrounding the less-than-stellar conclusions to recent high-profile games – Mass Effect 3, Uncharted 3 anyone? – does make us wonder, if even for a second.
What we at Gamezine think is that, if you're going to be stretched for time or money, the end of a game is where compromises will most likely be felt. It's also much harder writing an ending that will satisfy everyone than a beginning or a middle!
But most of all, we're left wondering if all those who were complaining so adamantly about the climax to ME3 actually reached it themselves!