Yep, IO’s Big Reveal Is Indeed Hitman: Sniper Challenge

Well that was anticlimactic. Earlier this week, IO Interactive posted a message to their Facebook account: “Heads up! A MAJOR announcement is coming up on MAY 10th. Don’t miss this!” Almost immediately, astute observers noted that the latest Game Informer seemed to have spoiled the big reveal, via an ad for something called Hitman: Sniper Challenge. That seemed off to me: Why would IO boast about a big reveal they knew would be spoiled ahead of time in an issue of Game Informer that came out 5 days earlier, right?

I guess they would. Yes folks, the big reveal is indeed Hitman: Sniper Challenge, a stand-alone game available May 15th to anyone who preorders Hitman: Absolution through GameStop. Through the November 20 launch of Absolution, participating players will compete in a unique assiagnment, “from balcony overlooking a rooftop gathering, players will be tasked with taking out Richard Strong, Jr., CEO of Stallion Armaments, along with his entire staff of bodyguards”. Fun! And there’s prizes, baby. Ranked snipers will be given unspecified goodies monthly, and the top sniper in North America the day Absolution launches will win a trip for two to Copenhagen, Denmark where they’ll meet with the Hitman development team and have their likeness built into the next installment of Hitman.

On the 15th, Hitman: Sniper Challenge will be available only on XBLA and PSN. It will become available for PC in August. But enough about that, here, because you demand it, is the official press release.

LOS ANGELES (May 10, 2012) –

Square Enix, Inc., the publisher of SQUARE ENIX® interactive entertainment products in the Americas, in association with GameStop®, the world’s largest multichannel video game retailer, today announced HITMAN: SNIPER CHALLENGE™, a stand-alone sniper experience exclusively in North America for GameStop customers who pre-order HITMAN®: ABSOLUTION™. The HITMAN: SNIPER CHALLENGE pre-order promotion will be available starting May 15, 2012. HITMAN: ABSOLUTION will be available on November 20, 2012 for the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system, Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and Windows PC.

Developed by IO Interactive A/S, a Square Enix studio, HITMAN: SNIPER CHALLENGE is not part of the main game, but a stand-alone experience to reward fans who pre-order HITMAN: ABSOLUTION. Players can don the suit of Agent 47 as he takes on an exclusive assassination assignment. From a balcony overlooking a rooftop gathering, players will be tasked with taking out Richard Strong, Jr., CEO of Stallion Armaments, along with his entire staff of bodyguards. Skilled players will capitalize on score multipliers, hidden secrets, unlock equipment upgrades and marvel at the many creative ways one can discretely dispose of a body while they work to fulfill their contract in the most efficient way possible.
An online leaderboard allows players to compare their sniping abilities with monthly prizes, keeping the stakes high through launch. In North America, the top sniper at the time of HITMAN: ABSOLUTION’s launch will win a trip for two to Copenhagen, Denmark where they will meet with the HITMAN development team and have their likeness incorporated into the next HITMAN game. Keep an eye on www.HitmanSniper.com for more details. Additionally, the high-powered Kazo TRG sniper rifle used in the challenge can be carried over into the main game along with all the “Sniper Challenge” upgrades and unlockables earned.

“HITMAN: SNIPER CHALLENGE sets a new industry standard for pre-order incentives,” said Mona Hamilton, vice president of marketing at Square Enix, Inc. “For all those HITMAN fans that just can’t wait to play HITMAN: ABSOLUTION, they can immediately take part in an exclusive competition featuring the original assassin when they pre-order at GameStop.”

Available May 15, HITMAN: SNIPER CHALLENGE will be downloadable exclusively for customers who pre-order through GameStop for the PlayStation®Network and Xbox LIVE®. The Windows PC version will be made available through Steam on August 1, 2012. For more information, please visit: www.HitmanSniper.com.

* Customers will be able to pre-order HITMAN: ABSOLUTION from May 15 and will be able to play HITMAN: SNIPER CHALLENGE from May 15 through access to Xbox LIVE or PlayStation Network. The PC version will be made available through Steam from August 1. Terms of the pre-order program will be set by individual retailers in each country where HITMAN: ABSOLUTION is available for pre-order. Please refer to retailers for full terms and details.

About HITMAN: ABSOLUTION
HITMAN: ABSOLUTION follows Agent 47, a cold-blooded assassin, who takes on his most dangerous contract to date. Betrayed by those he once trusted — and now hunted by the police — Agent 47 suddenly finds himself at the center of a dark conspiracy and must embark on a personal journey through a corrupt and twisted world.

Developed by IO Interactive A/S, a Square Enix studio, HITMAN: ABSOLUTION is not yet rated. Please visit the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) website at www.esrb.org for more information about ratings.

Related Links

HITMAN: SNIPER CHALLENGE Official website: http://www.HitmanSniper.com
HITMAN: ABSOLUTION Official Homepage: http://www.Hitman.com
HITMAN: ABSOLUTION Official Facebook® page: http://www.facebook.com/Hitman
Join the HITMAN community: http://www.barcodesociety.com

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