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Agent 47 is a serial killer. We can enjoy the games as a form of escapism, for sure, but he is still a serial killer. His modus operandi is trackless, untraceable, incredibly clean murders of various targets, for money and, occasionally, for vengeance. No need to romanticize it, he’s a cold-blooded killer, and in fact the Hitman games, for the most part, don’t shy away from this at all. His emotionally cold personality and general neutrality to anything in regards to morals is probably not something we’d ever want to emulate in our everyday lives.
As if all this were not enough, Agent 47 has been betrayed, abandoned, and abused by almost everyone he has grown any kind of attachment to. In fact, he himself has double crossed quite a few of his own comrades and peers, often to ensure his own personal gains above their losses. To say he’s not exactly a “people person” is really an understatement.
So, can we gain anything of value from this fractured, borderline sociopathic person?
I say yes.
Cold as Winter, Cool as a Cucumber
Agent 47 is always, always cool under pressure. The emotional detachment that he cultivates with almost everyone enables him to look upon situations from a more neutral perspective than most “normal” human beings. This ability enables him to operate on a different level, tactically, than most people are capable. While I would never advocate detaching yourself from your emotions, temporarily removing emotionality can certainly help in some situations.
First off, you need to admit something to yourself: Your biased on absolutely every subject you know of. Everything you talk about, everything you believe, and every stance you take is inherently biased, even if you try your hardest to keep bias out of it! You can think you’re basing your opinions on the “cold hard facts” on most things, but the fact is, your emotions and subconscious cues are directing the most base levels of your opinions on things.
There’s no real way to escape this, heck, it’s part of being human. However by realizing this, you can, in fact, counteract your biases a bit. I’m sure you’ve heard the wishy-washy, “everything is different from another’s perspective,” stuff that people spout as a way to refute another’s opinions. The fact is, there are correct opinions and incorrect opinions about almost everything. Yes, opinions, and points of view can be wrong.
But that doesn’t mean that you’re inherently right. And even if it does, if your goal is to navigate a situation tactically, you need to realize that the person you’re interacting with thinks that they are just as right as you are, and that they have just as many facts on their side. So, instead of having your tactics be about changing their mind, instead you should be realizing that because you both have your own inherent biases, you should be trying to come up with methods of accomplishing your goals, rather than trying to alter the behavior of another person.
This leads us to…
Agent 47 is creative in his uses of the environment, the people around him, the equipment he has on hand, and the attire he has access to. When trying to accomplish a goal, he is incredibly adept at developing multiple solutions to solve a single problem, not all of which are obvious. Rather than trying to kill a guard, he can utilize that guard’s patrol route to obfuscate his own travels, by using that guard’s own travels to mask his passage.
No weapon on hand? Agent 47 can improvise with some faulty electrical wiring and a puddle! Need to get near a certain person? Drop your dignity, don a mascot suit, and infiltrate the area as a friendly, cuddly playtime friend! The name of the game is improvisation. By looking at a problem from all sides, you can come up with creative methods of solving it that may not be obvious at first glance.
Focus on the goal that needs to get accomplished, and think of as many ways you can to solve that goal. Really, think about this in terms of goals, too. For instance: the crackdown on pirated music and movies was at its height when the RIAA and MPAA were suing the pants off everyone that chanced sharing things in digital form, but it did absolutely nothing to stop the sharing. The real goal was to continue to generate as much (or more) revenue from their products as they had in the pre-internet era, but they got so hung up on prosecuting the file-sharers that they missed that goal.
This opened the space for iTunes, Netflix, and other legal, widely-available digital delivery services that have become incredibly popular over the last decade. Now telecom and major media companies are watching the reigns slip from their hands, all because of a bit of lateral thinking that they missed out on.
Focus on the goals, and develop the methods from there. Find your high concept, and execute.
Part of the reason why Agent 47 is so terrifying is his reputation for always getting his target. You can attempt to deter or escape him as much as you want, but he will find you, and he will fulfill his contract. While this single-minded pursuit from a serial killer is absolutely horrifying, applying that single-minded pursuit to more beneficial quests can reap wonderful results.
The fact is, no one succeeds all the time. No one succeeds even most of the time. We all screw up, we all fall off the bus, we all make bad decisions. Failure is literally more common than success, it’s just the way it is. Baseball players are really, really good if they get a hit for just one out of every three at-bats. Michael Jordan lost more games than he won. Everyone fails.
But failing forever is a choice. Not getting back up off the ground is a choice. Not trying again is a choice.
It’s fine to take a break sometimes. Life is stressful, if you take a particularly heavy hit in life, it’s fine to take some time off. However, when you have a goal you’re really working towards, when you have something that you need instead of just want… Remember Agent 47’s dogged pursuit. That goal is your contract, and you will see it fulfilled. Try to become known for your reputation to see something done, no matter how many times you’re denied. Do. Not. Give. Up.
Because you can, and you will succeed.
That’s it for Agent 47! I hope you enjoyed this series! Make sure you stop over and check out The BaGC YouTube Channel, we’ve got videos going up every day this week! Also, remember The Holiday Hunt is going on for the rest of December! Have you found a prize yet?
Live boldly, change the world, and continue to be awesome!
Dan “DaRatmastah” Wallace