Agent 47 (born simply 47) is the protagonist and anti-hero in all of the Hitman video games developed by Danish developing company IO Interactive (IOI) and published by Warner Bros. He appears in all mainline games in the series, comics that are published by Dynamite Entertainment, and two live action films. The character first appeared in Hitman: Codename 47 (2000) and more recently in Hitman 2 (2018).
Agent 47 from Hitman: Absolution (2012)
|First appearance||Hitman: Codename 47 (2000)|
|Created by||IO Interactive|
|Designed by||Jacob Anderson|
|Portrayed by||2007 film|
|Voiced by||David Bateson|
|Affiliation||International Contract Agency (ICA)|
47 is a paid assassin (a hitman) clone. He gets his name from being the forty-seventh clone created from the DNA of five different men. These clones were made to be perfect assassins who could easily maintain peak physicality and intelligence, while easily being controlled by whoever they were devoted to, usually a handler. As 47, the player gets to travel the world and execute hits on individuals, while trying to be as stealthy as possible. This includes taking disguises, using aliases, and using silenced weaponry.
The character of Agent 47 has been well received by critics and has become a well known video game character since his inception in 2000.
Concept and creationEdit
According to Jacob Andersen, lead designer of Hitman 2: Silent Assassin, Agent 47 went from being "a mean old hairy guy" to having "hi-tech glasses" before getting to his current design. More inspiration came from "comic books, Hong Kong movies," and other similar media.
According to Game Director Rasmus Højengaard (Hoejengaard), the idea of a clone whose future is decided by the people that created him, intrigued the Hitman team. Hojengaard felt the idea of creating the "ultimate assassin" by cloning "evolved with the character before the first Hitman game was done".
47 is a genetically-enhanced clone, the culmination of decades of secret research into gene augmentation. His creation was funded by a cabal of criminal masterminds who donated their own DNA to the project.
In the 1950s, five men of various nationalities served in the same unit of the French Foreign Legion. After their time with the Legion was finished, four of those men returned to their respective countries and constructed their own criminal empires. The remaining one, Dr. Otto Ort-Meyer, ran a mental institution which he used as a cover for genetic experiments. In exchange for research funding, Ort-Meyer provided his former comrades with donor organs harvested from clone bodies, those organs significantly extending their longevity.
The men whose DNA contributed to 47's creation are often referred to within the series as the "Five Fathers", consisting of Dr. Otto Wolfgang Ort-Meyer, Lee Hong, Pablo Ochoa, Franz Fuchs and Arkadij Jegorov. Otto Wolfgang Ort-Meyer is a discredited German scientist living in Romania, whose radical theories were deemed insane by his peers. Ort-Meyer believed that genetic recombination and human cloning could be used to produce a perfected version of the human species, superior in strength and mind and unburdened by conscience. His ultimate goal, unbeknownst to his associates, was to create an army of flawless and unquestioningly obedient supermen. When Ort-Meyer's associates become suspicious of his motives, he employs 47 to systematically eliminate each of them. When 47 discovers Ort-Meyer's plans, he manages to eliminate Ort-Meyer.
Ort-Meyer's research produced many failed attempts, including a clone named Mr. 17, but ultimately he managed to perfect the process enough to produce an assembly line of genetically augmented clones. 47 belonged to Ort-Meyer's fourth series of clones, possessing a 47th chromosome which, combined with DNA harvested from the world's most dangerous criminals, endowed him with levels of strength, speed, stamina, and intelligence significantly above the human norm.
In Hitman: Blood Money, it is explained that American interests had repeatedly attempted to replicate Ort-Meyer's success, but were largely unsuccessful. 47 is the only successful healthy cloned specimen, and nothing has yet come to parallel him; while other attempts have come close, they were plagued by problems such as albinism and extremely short lifespans (eighteen months). Ort-Meyer's research was distributed among many covert cloning labs, but is insufficient; a sample of 47's bone marrow is needed to fill in the DNA gaps, making him an extremely valuable specimen.
However, during events of Hitman and Hitman 2, it is revealed that 47 had one final brother, Agent 6, who escaped from the asylum and fled to America under the assumed name of Lucas Grey. Grey has created a domestic terror cell with the expressed purpose of hunting down Providence, the secret society which funded and benefited from Ort-Meyer's experiments. Although 47 is initially assigned to hunt Grey, he soon remembers that he and 6 made a blood pact as children to hunt down those responsible for their creation. With his memory restored, 47 secretly aides in 6's crusade.
Agent 47's typical attire consists of a black suit, black leather gloves, white dress shirt and a red tie. As the Hitman video game series allows players the option of engaging in stealth-based strategy to avoid conflict, Agent 47 has the ability to exchange his stock costume (a costume assigned to Agent 47 at the beginning of a level or displayed in a cut scene) with various characters in the game to avoid detection. There are a wide variety of costumes to choose from including police, military, medical and culinary uniforms that are all made available by incapacitating non-player characters and "stealing" their clothing.
In addition to the signature suit, alternative stock costumes are occasionally provided. In Codename 47, he is seen wearing a guerrilla camouflage in the jungle, while in Silent Assassin Agent 47 wears a protective anorak in the Japanese mountains and a blue turban in Afghanistan. At the end of Blood Money, Agent 47 wears a white suit and white gloves while he is placed into a coffin during his funeral.
In addition to clothing, Agent 47's distinctive choice of weaponry plays an important role in his appearance. He prefers to use a pair of silver customized AMT Hardballers, a M1911 clone, nicknamed "Silverballers." Following the third video game in the series, Hitman: Contracts, the Hitman symbol replaces the Silverballer logos that are typically printed on the side of the pistol's slide. Throughout the franchise, the Silverballers serve as Agent 47's signature weapon, along with his fiber wire black garrote, appearing in every game of the series.
Agent 47 is completely bald with very pale skin and blue eyes with dark eyebrows. His International Contract Agency (ICA) file from Hitman: Absolution states his height as 1.88 m (6 ft 2 in). In Hitman: Enemy Within, his weight is given as 85 kg (187 lb). It is apparent that 47 grows older, evident by the added wrinkles through the course of the first four games. He significantly aged in Absolution, with many wrinkles on his face, him performing certain actions slower and other reduced abilities. This is retconned in HITMAN™ as 47 appears much younger, with him looking exactly the same in the game’s main sections and prologue which takes place 20 years ago, when he was inducted into the ICA. A medical report on 47 in-game states that although 47 is in his 50s, his body is still in peak condition as if he is 20–30 years old, and he has no possibilities of developing a disease. Since players of the video game series control the character from a third person perspective, the barcode that is tattooed on the back of his head is starkly prominent, although in Hitman: Absolution, he has the tattoo covered by a bandage for most of the game, after he removes it in an attempt to disguise himself.
His barcode acts as a security key to access areas of the facility where he was created and trained. 47's barcode is implied to be in Code 39; according to Dr. Ort-Meyer's journal, the barcode was added to the tattoo in 1975, one year after the code was developed. Curiously, the other characters in the games appear oblivious to the conspicuous tattoo. A newspaper's description of 47 in Hitman: Blood Money fails to mention the barcode as a notable characteristic. The barcode is however referenced in Hitman: Absolution as the only distinguishing feature 47 has, and that while others do notice it, the description of a bald man in a suit with a barcode tattoo is simply too vague to be useful to law enforcement.
From ages five to seven, 47 was quiet and showed little social interaction. His only display of affection was towards a runaway laboratory rabbit he adopted on August 21, 1970, displeasing Dr. Ort-Meyer. However it died on May 2, 1972. Ort-Meyer noticed 47 crying and was surprised, as he'd never seen any of his clones do so before. Five years later, he also showed affection to a pet mouse. He cared for the mouse for about a month, until it was killed by a fellow clone as a cruel prank.
47 was bullied by another clone in 1977, which was part of the 6 series. They were both 12 years old. After watching a kickboxing tournament held by Ort-Meyer for his friends and colleagues, he killed the clone in a toilet stall by choking him to death and left his face submerged in the toilet. To escape the asylum, he made a fiber wire out of a windowsill and broken parts of a broom, oiled squeaky door hinges to sneak out, and stashed a bow and arrow to kill a guard dog before he jumped the gate.
He hitchhiked his way into a Romanian town, without money. He first noticed luxury clothing stores. Later, an asylum doctor found him at a bus stop and rewarded him with a pancake breakfast. He explained to 47 that he was right to kill that series 6 clone and had done a good job of it, but should in the future only kill when instructed to do so.
Between ages thirteen and twenty-three (1978–1987), 47 began a fairly negative relationship with the asylum staff, attributed to his chronic uneasiness stemming from his regular medical checkups and frequent injections. On one occasion, 47 stabbed a doctor repeatedly with several needles, thus, prompting Dr. Ort-Meyer to assign more security for 47.
Along with the other clones, 47 was trained from youth to become a silent assassin. He was instructed in the use of firearms, military hardware, unarmed combat, the use of disguises, and the use of more classical tools of assassination like the infamous fiber wire and poisons. During his training in Romania, he was noted for his exceptional marksmanship, as well as for attacking the asylum staff with homemade slingshots, all of which were promptly confiscated. Along with learning how to use the tools of an assassin, 47 was trained to analyze and adapt to his surroundings when planning an assassination, allowing him to see multiple paths for which he could eliminate his targets silently and efficiently. He also shot smiley faces into targets when he was bored. This is one of the only possible examples of 47 being exposed to pop culture, although all of the clones were sufficiently educated about the outside world by using traditional school textbooks.
On September 5, 1989, Dr. Ort-Meyer went so far as to remember 47's twenty-fifth birthday in his journal, although 47 himself didn't, along with comments that he had become "mature" and stopped many of his bad habits. In 1993 he stated that 47, now almost thirty, had passed every test he can think of and is his most skilled clone.
As Dr. Ort-Meyer's friends grew weary of funding him with little results, relations between them soured. Dr. Ort-Meyer sometimes blatantly hinted that he would use the clones against them if he felt necessary. Ort-Meyer initiated this plan by purposely creating a gap in the asylum's security for 47 to escape. Having watched 47's every move, Dr. Ort-Meyer was very pleased with 47's performance (despite the fact that 47 killed one of his security guards for a disguise) and concluded that his training was complete.
According to 47's ICA file from the Hitman: Absolution trailers, the International Contract Agency first took an interest in 47's activities in 1998 and enrolled him in 2000. HITMAN chronicles how 47 came to join the ICA – they had been impressed by his previous work as a freelance assassin, and requested to "test" and audition him. Agent 47 arrived at a ICA training facility and was greeted by fellow trainee Diana Burnwood. 47 went through and passed rigorous training programs, psychological evaluations, and a thorough background check, although they found very little about 47's previous life.
While Burnwood believed that 47 would be an invaluable asset to the ICA, Erich Soders, the facility's training director, was very reluctant to recruit 47 because of how little they knew about him, telling Diana, "Frankly, it's as if the earth just spat him out." Soders suspected 47 of lying about coming from a Romanian asylum, because 47 covered his tracks perfectly.
Soders grew displeased with this lack of information on Agent 47's background, there was nothing from 47's past that ICA could use as leverage against him, and administered the strictest possible tests on 47 in hopes of being able to reject him. Learning of this plot Diana also chooses to "bend the rules" and assists 47 to pass his audition. 47 was then made a full agent of ICA and Diana Burnwood was assigned to him as his handler.
With a lifetime of training and genetically augmented physical abilities, Agent 47 swiftly rose to become the Agency's most efficient, and most requested assassin. Immediately after the success of his first contract kill, he was later awarded the rank Gamma. As he has little to no memory of his background, he dedicated his life to be a skilled assassin which provided him with a lifestyle of adventure and luxury.
Despite the threat however, he continued with the I.C.A. until the events of Hitman: Blood Money, during which the organization is destroyed. At the end of that game the I.C.A. is rebuilt. The last scene depicts Agent 47 walking into a shop, using a fake name and asking what they have to sell "preferably in the back," suggesting that he has resumed his career at either the I.C.A. or a competing organized criminal organization.
In Hitman: Absolution it is confirmed that he is still an employee of the ICA, but his employment was put on hiatus once again. He is hunted by ICA official Benjamin Travis and his men, who labeled 47 and Diana as traitors because the latter took Victoria, product of his cloning project. At the end of the game, it is revealed that Travis was corrupt and acting without his superior’s orders and 47 kills him, everything turns out to be an elaborate plot of Diana trying to rid Travis’ influence as well as his clone project. 47 and Diana then resumed their career at The ICA.
It is shown in HITMAN™ that he and Diana still serve with the ICA.
His absolute highest priority is completing his contract. He will sacrifice innocents if he must, but he will kill the target (although it remains a part of his dedication to professionalism to avoid any unnecessary collateral). He is emotionally closed off to the suffering of others when appropriate on a contract, even if they remind him of himself at a younger age. He is very quiet and monotone to the point of being socially awkward, which is perhaps the biggest of his very few weaknesses. Nevertheless, he can blend into the crowd and play the role of a regular person very effectively and efficiently. He is content with being alone, but has a deep if unexpressed admiration for the few people he becomes close to, especially Diana Burnwood, Father Emilio Vittorio, Helen McAdams, Victoria and Tommy Clemenza. Agent 47 also shows uncharacteristic sensitivity towards animals that he keeps as pets, such as his childhood rabbit and mouse he found from the asylum itself, and the yellow canary in Hitman: Blood Money (though he is not hesitant to kill it in the cut-scene before Requiem in order to avoid giving his position away). He very rarely shows the same care towards human beings, though notable exceptions include Mei Ling, Father Vittorio and Victoria (whom 47 and Diana treat sort of like a daughter). He also expressed his disgust at exploiting innocent people, as mentioned during the briefing in Death Factory, when he lamented at how Travis and Blake Dexter used "children as weapons".
Agent 47 approaches his assassinations with professionalism but will, however, not show any hesitation or remorse when it comes to killing or silencing witnesses and other potential threats to his mission. Agent 47 generally speaks in a monotone, proper, non-threatening tone, rarely swearing, or even raising his voice. 47 also has a blank and somewhat sinister facial expression, often scanning the scene with his eyes; the only other facial expression 47 has been known to show is pain. He also occasionally smirks in the 2007 movie adaptation. Agent 47 seems to also be an accomplished conversationalist despite the fact he's extremely reserved, often able to fool and manipulate people with convincing lies and bluffs. Hitman: Enemy Within shows that he has the capability to act far out of his normal personality to imitate people, such as a cocky womanizing biker.
Both Hitman novels as well as some portions of Hitman: Absolution show a side of 47 he rarely shows. When out of his element or not on assignment, 47 occasionally shows behavior similar to ordinary people. In Hitman: Enemy Within, he is shown cursing when under frustration, as well as rarely sharing jokes with Diana. But more often than not, he prefers to share little words and keeps to himself.
Given his fee, Agent 47 would have to be a multi-millionaire from his contract earnings but never stops going for new contracts. He only spends his money on simple things like food, suits, gear, and shelter, although he is also known to donate some of it to Father Vittorio. He does have a particular taste for expensive clothing (it is implied in Blood Money and Absolution that all his suits are custom-tailored) and fine dining.
Knowing this it can be determined that 47 does his work as a hitman for more than just money, but for purpose in life. This is further demonstrated when he did not retrieve the ten million dollar ransom suitcase Blake Dexter had, when he eliminated him but instead let Victoria dump the money on Dexter's body and fly off into the breeze. It is stated that he has to work as a hitman, since trying to live a "normal" life will endanger those around him, such as what happened in the second game, showing he does show concern to other human beings.
Even though 47 is a relatively emotionless assassin, he shows signs of morality. In Hitman 2: Silent Assassin, he is seen confessing his sins to Father Vittorio. Subsequently, he is also depressed at the apparent loss of his spiritual guide that he agrees to take on the "suicide mission" of killing Deewana Ji. The novels often have him pondering the question of his own morality and values. In Hitman: Absolution, 47 initially goes through with his contract to eliminate his former handler Diana Burnwood after she exposed the ICA and went into hiding, shooting her before she has the chance to explain herself. Watching her wounded on the ground, 47 hesitated to finish her and demanded how she could do such a thing. Telling him that she needed to take the young clone Victoria away from the doctors, 47 agrees to keep Victoria safe.
As a class one type clone, 47 was genetically enhanced in order to perform physical tasks much more efficiently than an average human. He has heightened combat skills, speed, reflexes, strength and stamina (he is apparently able to run 10 km (6.2 miles) in 36 minutes and 39 seconds) in as well as an effective metabolism and some form of limited healing power. His healing powers are efficient enough to help him recover from a gunshot in a few hours despite him needing some medical attention in order to have the bullet removed and the pain suppressed with some painkillers, as seen in Hitman: Contracts. 47 has mastered the art of stealth, being able to terminate multiple enemies in the same area one at a time and sneak up on almost anybody and quietly neutralize them. 47 also has an expert level understanding in the use of disguises in order to access unauthorized areas of a location. He is physically strong even when compared to adult males of his size and build in peak condition; being able to climb pipes, move, drag and dispose of bodies, snap necks, knock opponents unconscious, and jump from balcony to balcony with minimum effort. It is evident that 47 is a very skilled driver, judging from how well he managed to maneuver Dr. Ort-Meyer's car past a police blockade (in rainy conditions) at the end of 'Asylum Aftermath', the first mission in Hitman: Contracts. 47's driving skill is also manifested in his ability to drive specialist motor vehicles, such as a bus and a large truck at the end of the mission 'Amendment XXV' in Blood Money and 'The Meat King's Party' in Contracts, respectively. 47's vehicular skills are not just limited to cars: he is seen flying helicopters and planes and driving boats numerous times throughout the series. To keep in his physical condition and also keep his skills in balance, 47 practices his combat, shooting, assassination, and stealth skills whenever he is not on an assignment.
Trained extensively in armed and unarmed combat and in the use of improvised weapons, such as explosives, sniper rifles, automatic weapons and bladed weapons, 47 is fully adept at surveying his environment and using it to his advantage. Highlighted in Hitman: Enemy Within and Hitman: Absolution, 47 is an expert in hand-to-hand combat. From a young age, 47 was trained with his fellow clones to master kickboxing. 47 was an above average fighter, losing only to clone number 6. In Hitman: Blood Money, he can disarm trained and armed soldiers with ease, as well as render people unconscious with minimal effort. In Hitman: Absolution, he is skilled enough to engage several armed enemies unarmed and survive. He also shows his skill in martial arts when he is able to beat a genetically altered giant Sanchez in a one on one fight. He is also resourceful enough to maintain anonymity by avoiding leaving forensic evidence for law enforcement agencies to discover through various methods. 47 is skilled in infiltration, as seen in the trailer for Hitman: Absolution when he must enter Diana Burnwood's mansion to kill her, ex-filtration, and evasion, as well as the traditional art of assassination as seen when carrying out contracts. On site, he can slip past guards without arousing too much suspicion. He is a perfect marksman, so well that the newspaper in Hitman: Blood Money called him "Legendary Agent 47".
47 also has a detailed understanding of human anatomy and human nature, shown through his use of poisons, and sedatives, as well as striking vital points when strangling targets silently or using hand to hand combat. He also knows how best to move throughout an area without catching the attention of civilians or armed guards. He knows exactly what parts of the human body to shoot that would be a survivable shot, a fatal shot or even a slow painful shot which 47 has used to interrogate one of his victims. He is also able to face multiple enemies unarmed and survive the encounter unharmed.
Whatever the odds, 47 never panics. He always keeps his composure and clear mind to the point of being perfectly aware of all his surroundings and constantly calculates his every action, never losing focus.
Over the years, 47 had gained a near mythical reputation of being the world's deadliest hit man, with most people believing that he actually doesn't exist. Due to his successful track record, 47 is usually given the Agency's largest, most complex and most difficult assignments. He completes all of his assignments with unwavering accuracy, fulfilling all of his objectives and unfailingly eliminating his targets. 47's stealth and cunning are so perfect that 47's existence in the I.C.A. became legendary; he is regarded by the world as an urban legend of a "mysterious assassin", and very few know of his appearance (fewer people even know that he exists). He is also given the gamma status by the ICA for his accomplishments as an assasin. The degree of 47's professionalism is such that in the trailer sequence that plays on the title screen of Blood Money, the speaker states that once a client has contracted 47 to perform an assassination, he cannot be called off and will fulfill the contract through to the end no matter the difficulty or the victim itself, even if the client changes their mind, meaning that the client must be absolutely certain of their desire to have the contract fulfilled before they request 47 themselves from the Agency. It also has been noted that 47 is the most expensive assassin offered by the I.C.A., and that his assignments have been among the Agency's most lucrative.
47's hideout is unknown, and it's unknown where it is, or actually how many hideouts he owns. They are often portrayed to be run-down buildings. He operated out of Father Vittorio's church in Hitman 2: Silent Assassin. In Hitman: Contracts, while the game is predominately flashbacks, 47 is staying at a hotel in Paris, where he is recuperating after being shot. In Hitman: Blood Money, his primary hideout seemed to be in a sewer, with a single laptop to maintain contact with the I.C.A., a shooting range and an armory, and a single rusty bed.
In 2012, GamesRadar ranked Agent 47 as 47th "most memorable, influential, and badass" protagonist in video games, commenting "To refer to Hitman's Agent 47 as a hero would be a bit of a misnomer. He has been known, after all, to unceremoniously murder a man simply because his clothes were deemed desirable, and then also cram that man's naked corpse into an armoire in an insane effort to cover his tracks." The same site ranked him as the 4th "top assassin", commenting "Cloned in a lab and raised from birth to be the perfect assassin, 47 is a cold, conflicted soul." GamesRadar also ranked his barcode as the "6th sickest tattoo in gaming", stating "The perfect ink for the perfect assassin, Agent 47's barcode is proof a tattoo doesn't have to be flashy to be sick."
IGN ranked Agent 47's Fiber Wire as the "94th top video game weapon", commenting "It's always there, lurking just inside his jacket pocket, waiting to silently snuff out his marks (or indeed, anybody else he sees fit)." IGN ranked him as the gaming's fourth "most notorious" anti-hero, commenting "He's just doing his job, you might say, like most people do. But his method of operation elevates him to a sadistic level. He does whatever it takes to get the job done – collapsing hot tubs, dressing up as waiters, poisoning donuts, and more. Even if it's just his job, he's no good guy and deserves a spot on this list."
Complex ranked him as the 5th "best assassin and hitman in video games", adding "Whether putting together cold and calculated plots to take out his target or running in guns blazing to empty a room (up to the player, of course), Agent 47 is the original contract killer who makes his own rules." Complex ranked him as the "11th most stylish hitman", adding "Agent 47 trademarks in banality and straightforwardness, so he fittingly sticks to the stock assassin's uniform: black suit and black leather OJ isotoners." Complex also ranked him as the "23rd most stylish video game character", commenting "A well-tailored suit never goes out of fashion. While we would have liked to see Thom Browne put some work into modernizing the cut, we’re not complaining." The same site also named his likeness to David Bateson as the "25th best video game character look-a-like (sic)", where they stated "You can thank him for badass bald head."
WatchMojo.com ranked Agent 47 as the "6th best video game secret agent", commenting "Spanning six video games, two novels, a movie (and a reboot of that movie), Agent 47 may very well be the most recognizable secret agent to debut in a game." WatchMojo also ranked him as the "3rd best video game anti-hero", adding "This contract killer doesn’t show much remorse for his victims, but that allows him to be ruthlessly effective at his job." The same site also ranked him as the "top video game assassin" where they stated "With his black suit, leather gloves, and signature silverballer pistols, who else could top our list?"
Empire ranked him as the 21st "greatest video game character", stating:
"A silent weapon for the International Contract Agency (ICA), Agent 47 – a name derived from the last two digits of his assigned number – is the perfect killer clone: a deadly mix of speed, intellect and strength. Originally conceived by IO Interactive as a disgruntled and bearded old guy, he was later transformed into the barcode-tattooed, snappy dresser who has since become a gaming staple. Leather gloves, red tie, black suit and bald, barcode-adorned head, Agent 47 is striking to the point where it's probably something of a hindrance in his chosen line of work."
Gaming Symmetry ranked Agent 47 as the "top video game assassin of all-time", adding "Agent 47 was created to be an assassin. I mean literally. And I’m not missing the word literally here."
Similarly, The Telegraph placed him third on their Top 10 video game anti-heroes, stating "Call him what you want; any attempt to morally redeem Agent 47 stops dead at his job-title. This gentleman takes life for money." The same site ranked him as the 7th "best video game assassin", commenting "Not only is Agent 47 a master of gunplay, he's also pretty good at making things look like an accident."
In 2012, WhatCulture ranked Agent 47 as "2nd Wicked Video Game Assassin That Couldn't Be Stopped", calling him "simply the best cloned cold blooded bald bar-coded bad ass". In 2013, WhatCulture ranked Agent 47 as "2nd Videogame Character Who Inexplicably Survived A Sh*tload Of Punishment", commenting "The guy can shut out the pain and just keep on trucking, simply because he’s nuts. He can sustain more holes than your average game of Kerplunk, but still aim without a hint of discomfort". In 2015, WhatCulture ranked Agent 47's tattoo as the "14th famous video game tattoo", adding "Agent 47’s famous barcode is a permanent reminder that he’s a product; a cold, clean killing machine that carries its job out with unquestioning efficiency." WhatCulture ranked Agent 47 as the "19th sexiest video game guy of all time" and as the "25th most iconic video game character of all time", commenting "aside from his good looks, Agent 47’s fame comes entirely from the unique mechanics of the Hitman games themselves and the character’s fictional history." In 2016, WhatCulture ranked his Agent 47's fiber wire kill as the "14th most iconic signature move in video game history", adding "Voice actor David Bateson has given Agent 47 quite the cool sense of calm no matter whether you’re bludgeoning someone with a hammer or skewering them with a fork handle, but there’s no more signature execution than using the now 16 year-old fiber wire." The same year, WhatCulture ranked him as the "8th Best Video Game Anti-Hero Of All Time", adding "He's emotionless and merciless, so he'd have no problem actually killing an innocent he just happens to be hired for real threats."
In 2010, G4 included Agent 47 among the best assassins in all video games, adding "From birth he was trained to be a calculated killer and a snappy dresser." In 2011, Buzzer ranked him as the "10th top video game character", calling him "the best representation of the Grim Reaper in video games." Play magazine ranked him as the "3rd top slaphead" and as the "4th greatest PlayStation assassin", adding "Genetically engineered to be the best hitman in the history of humanity, 47 comes with quite a billing."
Crizic ranked him as the "9th best gaming character", stating "Of all the assassins in the world, Agent 47 is the guy you would never want to mess."
In 2013, Cheat Code Central ranked him as the "2nd top video game assassin", adding "47’s kill count is innumerable, and he remains one of the best assassins in the business…period."
In 2015, regarding the character's 15th anniversary, Arcade Sushi commented "Whether he's in his iconic suit or wearing a janitor's jumpsuit, it'll always be a delight to be taking out targets with the Silverballer pistols, sniper rifle and garrote wire as Agent 47."
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