It is quite refreshing to see someone doing something new and exciting with Pre-Order incentives. And that someone is IO Interactive. In this, by pre-ordering Hitman: Absolution on Xbox 360 or Playstation 3 (not PC), you can get a token to download essentially a demo that is a standalone mission and not part of the full game. From here you are tasked with completing an assassination mission without alerting the enemies and must eliminate all guards plus the target. In the end, you get graded and ranked on Friend, Nation, and Global leaderboards.
Agent 47 is perched on a building in Chicago to take out this high-value target. From there you have many options to go about it, track the target, then take him out and then the guards, or slowly take out guards one-by-one. Though, while all of this is happening, the target is hosting a party that involves A LOT of civilians. Kill one of them, and the whole place goes berserk and the mission ends quicker than you want. The timeout for this mission is 15 minutes. It can end prematurely should anyone be aware of your existence. Once the mission is successful, you can try again for a new approach.
Playing the Sniper Challenge also unlocks bonus items for the full game. So not only is the game itself a nice little bonus mission you won’t see in the full game, but can be used to unlock items in the full game to buff your Agent 47. How you do that, is up to you. There are a ton of challenges to unlock, which roughly equate to making it a hidden object game and selecting what you find by shooting a round through it. There, an in-game ticker will notify you of your progress.
It is without question you should pre-order Hitman: Absolution for the Sniper Challenge. If you’re a fan of Hitman and know what Absolution is all about, it is very exciting and challenging as well as rewarding to compare with your friends. Though, it is not representative of the full game as you’ll see in many cutscenes that Agent 47 is a walking death machine in many situations outside of sniping. But this is essentially a demo, a vertical slice of the full game that’s nothing like any other pre-order incentive.
Hitman: Absolution is due out on Xbox 360, Playstation 3, and PC on November 20th, 2012. This is worth the pre-order money you’re going to spend towards the full game.