Kane and Lynch Hands-on Preview

Written by Joe Martin

October 6, 2007 | 11:45

Tags: #blood-money #dead-men #hands-on #hitman #kane #lynch #microsoft-xmas-show #msxs #preview #the-seven

Companies: #io-interactive

If they don’t kill you

One of the reasons that Kane and Lynch is such a periphery title in most people's mind is, I think, because nobody really knows a lot about the story. In fact, the most publicised element of the game is the titular characters; Kane and Lynch a pair of criminals who have a…complex relationship.

What is known about the story however is an interesting blend of conspirational adventure stuff and gritty realism. The story will cast players as Kane who, in case you weren’t sure, is the one with the plaster on his face.

Who is Kane and why exactly is he sporting a band-aid on his face? These are likely to be primary questions for most players. Allow us to answer.

Kane is a mercenary who elected to take up the way of the gun after the suicide of his son led him to a complete breakdown. After abandoning his family and past, Kane found he thrived in his new profession and was soon approached by a group known as The Seven.

You can probably tell by their name that they aren’t exactly the good guys, but then again this is a game completely bereft of heroes.

Kane and Lynch Hands-on Preview If they don't kill you...
Kane and Lynch are forced to work together, but they don't have to like each other...

The Seven takes Kane into its employ and all is as well as it can be for a messed-up mercenary, until a job goes wrong and Kane’s team is slaughtered. Left with an enormous amount of cash, Kane tries to go into hiding but ends up on death row alongside Lynch, a schizophrenic psychopath prone to blackouts and fits of rage – hardly the ideal dinner party guest.

When The Seven springs Kane from jail, Lynch is ordered to tag along for the ride and appointed to watch over Kane, who he hates, as Kane has to complete a series of missions for The Seven and pays back the cash he owes them. The Seven shatter Kane’s nose to prove they’re serious.

Held in the balance is Kane’s family, who will be executed alongside him if he fails to deliver in any way. This ransom situation then forms the set-up for the game, which takes place as Kane and Lynch get to work causing mayhem across the globe and try to complete their missions.

Kane and Lynch Hands-on Preview If they don't kill you...
Gameplay has a very strong focus on teamwork and basic squad tactics

We went hands-on with two levels of the game, both set in Japan and were able to see how IO Interactive, the developers of the Hitman series, were able to bring elements of the narrative and the personalities of their characters through into the gameplay.

The contempt between the two protagonists, who will be playable in offline co-op, was the first thing we noticed seeping its way out of the cutscenes and into the gameplay. Constantly throughout our hands-on, Kane and Lynch were to be heard bitching and moaning at each other, even as they rappelled down Japanese skyscrapers and burst in on high-powered business meetings.

Rumour has it that the gameplay will be affected by more than just dialog though, with Lynch (the long-haired hippy) going into rages or blacking out as the game progresses. We didn’t get a chance to see any of this ourselves but, as odd as it may sound, the idea of having to suddenly cope with an unstable team-mate sounds very intriguing.
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