Square Enix have made Hitman: Blood Money available through their browser-based Core Online gaming service, which makes video games available to play at no cost so long as players watch advertising.

The service is in its beta at the moment, with only the fourth title in the Hitman series and Mini Ninjas available to play, but Tomb Raider: Underworld, Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light and Gyromancer are set to be added soon.

For those players who can't be bothered to sit through adverts, each individual level in Blood Money can be bought for $0.49 (30p) of the whole game can be unlock ad-free for $4.99 (£3).

Hitman: Blood Money is considered to be one of the highlights of the series and tasks players with carrying out a number of Agent 47's hits in the United States.

Meanwhile, Mini Ninjas is a third-person action adventure game in which gamers must take on waves of enemies as one of six playable characters that each have their own abilities, weapons and skills on a quest to defeat an evil army of samurai.

Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light is due to come to Core Online in October, giving players the opportunity to try the 3D platform game at no cost. Unlike other games in the series, it does not carry the Tomb Raider brand and focuses much more on co-operative play than any of the titles that came before it.

Gamers can take on the role of Croft or a 2,000-year-old Mayan warrior named Totec as they fight to stop an evil spirit Xolotl and recover the Mirror of Smoke.

Whether or not the ad-based playing format will prove popular among players will remain to be seen. The thought of a commercial popping up just as someone is about to make the all-important kill in Hitman or jump a giant cavern in Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light may render the titles unplayable, but the concept could also breathe new life into these older video games.ADNFCR-1220-ID-801440991-ADNFCR
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