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Hitman 3 has a Lord of the Rings easter egg

You can spot the Lord of the Rings reference in Hitman 3's fifth mission in Mendoza, Argentina

Hitman 3 Mendoza location

Hitman 3 releases today, January 20, and players cannot wait to jump into the final instalment of the World of Assassination trilogy. We described it as a “Hollywood ending” to the trilogy in our Hitman 3 review, and players will have a ball figuring out the most creative ways to assassinate their targets as Agent 47 skulks towards his destiny.

However, in the fifth location – which takes place in a vineyard in Mendoza, Argentina – has a little reference that fantasy fans are sure to enjoy. The mission sees Agent 47 infiltrate the retirement party of a high-profile lawyer – and our bald butcher is intent on ruining the mood. With murder.

However, if you try to get into the target’s house via the front entrance, you’ll be turned away by guards. But as a keen Lord of the Rings fan, my gaze was drawn away from the heavily armed guards and towards the sign at their feet.

The sign reads, “no admittance except on party business” and you can check it out in-game below.

This sign may seem innocuous to Hitman fans, but anyone who has read the Lord of the Rings books or seen the films will know that this is a reference to the sign that one Bilbo Baggins puts on his front gate at Bag End ahead of his and Frodo’s joint birthday party. While the fancy lettering on the “no” in Hitman makes it a little difficult to read, this is undoubtedly a little reference to the iconic sign.

Now we’re just dreaming of an IO Interactive Lord of the Rings game to be honest. We know their next foray will be a licensed James Bond game, perhaps afterwards they’ll introduce a stealth game where you play as Gollum? That might interfere with Daedalic’s plans for Lord of the Rings: Gollum, however, so maybe IO could work on a stealth-based Hobbit sim – sneaking into Smaug’s lair to find the Arkenstone perhaps. Or maybe something more First Age, following Beren in his quest to steal a Silmaril from Melkor’s lair in Angband? Who knows, maybe you could even escape with both arms intact.

In all likelihood, it’s none of those things and just a little reference with a wink and a nudge. But let a boy dream, okay?