Hitman: Absolution won't be releasing until November but Square/Enix has partnered with GameStop to offer pre-order customers an early taste of what they can expect with a bonus game, Hitman: Sniper Challenge.
It is pretty much exactly what the title would imply, a single mission entirely centered around the use of a sniper rifle. From a stationary position, Agent 47 must eliminate the CEO of an arms manufacturer and his team of bodyguards during a rooftop party. Players earn bonuses for killing enemies in such a way so their bodies cannot be discovered, taking advantage of the environment and, of course, maintaining discretion.
All of that hard work on the rooftop will pay off later, as your cumulative score across all rounds counts toward unlocking items and abilities in Hitman: Absolution. Not only that, the very best sniper (as of the time the game launches) will win a trip for them and another person to Copenhagen to meet the development team and have their likeness appear in the next Hitman title.
For those of us who have no chance of winning such a prize, there are also a number of optional challenges to attempt, most of which provide clues toward more creative methods of eliminating foes. That's really the whole point of Hitman when it comes right down to it, killing people in as clever a manner as possible while not being detected, and Sniper Challenge offers up a healthy little dose of tension.
If you're planning to pick up Hitman: Absolution and do your shopping at GameStop, just put in your pre-order and you'll receive a code for Hitman: Sniper Challenge when it becomes available on May 15. A PC version of the promo game will be arriving on Steam August 1. Hitman Absolution itself releases for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 on November 20 (PC release date still TBD).
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