The bugs-and-rags Assassin boss is now live in Hunt: Showdown

The Hunt: Showdown 6.0 update is now live, and that means that the Assassin, a new boss announced at the beginning of April, is now roaming free in the Louisiana swamps. The Assassin is a fast-moving creature made from rags and bugs—a bit like Ragman, from the sound of it, but without the chiseled pecs or rigid moral imperative—that uses vertical surfaces to enhance its mobility and can temporarily clone itself to cause twice the headaches for hunters. 

"The Assassin is the product born from a lot of investigation into what bosses mean to Hunt in its current state, since the previous two boss targets were created, the game has shifted a lot to build a better core experience," developer Crytek explained. "With this in mind, we wanted to approach the issues that came out of the other bosses and see where we can build a benchmark that offers a few things; a challenge to new and old players, a balance between boss PvE engagement and the ever looming PvP, and something unique to set each boss apart." 

Early iterations of the Assassin behaved much differently from the final version, as ideas that sounded cool in theory proved "unreadable and annoying to play" when the bullets actually started flying. Crytek ultimately opted for something dangerous but also reasonably manageable: It "will use its behaviors in specific ways to punish the unprepared and reward those who keep calm and pay attention to what is about to happen," the developers wrote. 

Also included in the update are new weapons including the LeMat Mark II revolver and Lebel 1886 bolt-action rifle, the Bomb Lance (basically a huge spear that also fires explosive harpoons), a couple of trip mines, and placeable ammo boxes. Three new character traits are also now on tap: 

  • Ghoul: With the Ghoul trait, players instantly heal 50 hitpoints when looting a dead Hunter
  • Vulture: The Vulture trait allows players to always loot dead Hunters they come across, even if they had already been looted by other players
  • Adrenaline: Adrenaline enables players to instantly start recharging stamina when their health is critically low

There's the usual big pile of bug fixes and updates as well, including one interesting-sounding change that prevents "burning or burned-out" hunters from being looted, which Crytek described as "an attempt to introduce more choice into existing player actions."

"Now players will have to consider whether it makes sense to burn a downed player. If they burn them, they lose the chance to loot the body. If they don't, that player's partner might have a chance to go for a revive," Crytek said. "Burning should no longer be the given default choice"

Similarly, looting downed hunters is now a "hold interaction" that takes four seconds to complete, the same length of time required for a revive: "Looting is just as risky as reviving, preventing players from looting a downed hunter quickly and then setting the body on fire anyway."

The Hunt: Showdown 6.0 patch notes are available in full on Steam.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.