Any examination of the Focus for Campaign play in Absolution must first acknowledge the opposite side of the coin, and that is the online Contracts Mode. The reason for that is largely because the two modes of play are interlinked and interdependent. Contracts Mode relies upon your game play in Campaign Mode to unlock (collect) disguises, weapons, abilities, and play styles that will be of critical important and use as you play through the levels that are created by other gamers, while the money in Contract Dollars that you acquire while doing so has a direct impact on your Campaign play because it allows you to take shortcuts and unlock kit or upgrades you normally do not have access to.
That sympathetic relationship is important largely because it replaces the carte blanche that you previously enjoyed from the ICA but that has now been completely withdrawn. Before your focus ends up with a sort of tunnel vision in that respect, it is also important for you to remember that while you need to be aware of that element to the game, this is still a Hitman title, and therefore the story, and not the cool connection between modes, is the operative and important point.
With respect to the Focus for Campaign play that means that while you should be considering that relationship, it should be a secondary consideration. Completing the story mode with the best outcome and the highest score is of paramount importance, especially with respect to unlocking the underlying abilities in the game, which are attached to performance in each level and chapter.
The Official Director Benjamin Travis Intro Montage
In practical terms what that means is you should be approaching Campaign mode with the notion that your first time through a level and chapter is meant to both unlock it but also complete it with the best result. You can then replay it – immediately if you like – to collect all of the weapons and disguises, as well as complete the different challenges that are built into it, and as often as you like until it is stripped clean – but always with the understanding that your first run through should be with an eye on the story. Because after all, this is a Hitman title, and the story has always been the primary focus in the Hitman Series!
Once you have completed a Chapter with a score that is high enough to unlock the abilities that are available via it, your focus should be divided between the collectibles and the challenges, all of which are fully documented in this guide. You may find it helpful to work your way through the game one Chapter at a time, and then milking the newly unlocked Chapter for what it can offer you, before moving on to the next one, or you may find it easier to complete the entire story and only then return to milk the Chapters for the extras, that call is yours. This guide is set up to support you no matter what decision you make.
Be stealthy, be efficient, and hey, don't get killed!