Square Enix opens ad-supported streaming game service

Coreonline offers Mini Ninjas and Hitman: Blood Money in browsers for purchase or commercial breaks; more games planned for future.

A new service from Square Enix offers console-quality games in browsers with intermittent commercial breaks. The publisher today announced Coreonline, a browser-based gaming service that runs games natively within Chrome, Firefox, or Internet Explorer. The service's business model supports purchases as well as video advertisements.

Regular-sized ninjas are too big to fit in a browser.

Hitman: Blood Money and Mini Ninjas are the first two titles available for Coreonline, and both are fully playable with video advertisements. Users select from several sponsored videos of differing lengths; as of this writing some 10-second ads bestow five minutes of playtime and others that run more than a minute unlock 25, though they pause if the Web page is navigated away from. This playtime can be transferred from game to game, and if time runs out the action pauses and users are prompted to watch more ads.

Users can also pay at any point to unlock individual levels for $0.50 or the full versions of Mini Ninjas and Hitman: Blood Money for $5 and $6.50, respectively. Players can start from any level of the game they wish, and saves and achievements are stored on user accounts.

Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light will launch on Coreonline in October, and Tomb Raider: Underworld and Gyromancer are also undergoing work to appear on the service.

Coreonline was developed by Danish studio Hapti.co, which is owned by Square Enix. It joins fellow streaming game services Gaikai, which was purchased by Sony in July, and OnLive, which has undergone a restructuring within the last few weeks.

Written By

Want the latest news about Hitman: Blood Money?

Hitman: Blood Money

Hitman: Blood Money

Discussion

0 comments
Daian
Daian

I love this idea, I have no problem watching 1 minute of ads every 20-25 minutes of gameplay (and by watch I mean rest my eyes for a bit and go grab a drink from the fridge) if I get to play a full big good game for free.

 

It's a much better idea than that Pay-to-Win bs.

 

PS. I tried Mini Ninjas, kept getting some "Uh-Oh" errors, couldn't get the game started.

anvilone
anvilone moderator

This actually sounds pretty good. Mini Ninjas, Hitman Bloodmoney and Lara Croft GOL are all cool games. Getting to play them for free with some commercial interruption then being able to unlock the full game at such a reasonable price is an excellent deal. If advertising money keeps the cost down, I don't see the problem.

JimmeyBurrows
JimmeyBurrows

TV with adverts = annoying enough as it is... Put it in games where there are no points made for ad breaks, count me out. Would be better to just have in game assets for ads then I'd considder it, things such as billboards with real ads on them and [Insert character name here] is sponsored by [Insert brand of drink here] so that character is shows throughout the game only drinking that product... I like ads that I can ignore and people think are subliminally making me buy their product, that way the business' is pumping money into the industry without effecting me.

Megavideogamer
Megavideogamer

This will not last long. Most people will just buy the games and not worry about commercials in their game. This is similar to "free" cell phone service with ads/commercials in order to use the service. Before cell phone was Ads/Commercials for pagers. So this service will not survive very long.

OJ_the_LION
OJ_the_LION

Unlike OnLive, it doesn't attempt to make you pay full price for a game you basically have an extended rental of, which I like. This model could work out with some support, although I'd obviously prefer to actually own the games in question.

DAOWAce
DAOWAce

Hey, it's just like TV.

 

Not bad.. but I prefer to own my games and not be disrupted by advertisements.. and not play in a browser, and configure my controls and options to suit my playstyle and take advantage of my gaming system.

 

Like OnLive and Gaikai, the main feature of this type of stuff (to me at any rate) is using it for demos, because demos are scarce in current generation games.

Mega_Skrull
Mega_Skrull

Not interested at all. Endless commercials are the main reason I stopped watching TV altogether. (well and the shit programs). Give me full worthy games at full reasonable price. Is it so much to ask for these days?

jorge69696
jorge69696

You forgot that poor people have slow ass internet connections and won't be able to play this smoothly. Also, pirating it would solve their lag issue.

 

It's ok I guess. Trying to milk 2 games that are not giving you any money.

jsmoke03
jsmoke03

yikes....if i was playing a game and i had commercial interruptions, i would just buy the game in the first place

Granpire
Granpire

I tried this. My first time with Hitman, and I can't say it's kept my interest for long, but the ads are generous with your time (1 minute ads = 20 minutes gameplay, and you're able to watch about 3 or 4 minutes of ads).

 

I must say the performance (lag) is excellent for me, though, as well as image quality. Neither of which I can say for Gaikai or Onlive, both of which have horrible latency and blurred image quality. I would never have guessed I was playing a streaming game, honestly.

PeterTechGuy
PeterTechGuy

Just like how TV works, eh? Yes, it's pretty ad-heavy, but this might be just how game streaming service should work, not pay the stuff you already owned plus a subscription fee. However this should remains as an option, not a trend. For people who are too poor to buy video games this is absolutely a great news for them, especially in Asia; for others this should act like a demo or something. It's all very interesting how this will turns out. A good way to combat piracy IMO, but then again, this should remains as an OPTION and hopefully no one will abuse it.

 

So guys, don't just read the article title and rage all over the place. Stop for a minute to read and think. ;)

profilia
profilia

What on earth... hell no. :|

leeko_link
leeko_link

Seriously commercial breaks in-between gameplay, this is the only innovation they could come up with in gaming nowadays? I don't see how that makes browser gaming anymore unique, to me it's more of an annoyance.

interrasteral7
interrasteral7

Speking of Mini Ninjas, I wonder if there might be another Mini Ninjas or did Square Enix just do not want to publish another one. It might be forgotten in gamers mind, because I have pretty much forgotten it.   

saosebastiao
saosebastiao

Make all the publicity porn related. You could win Billions SE...

 

It could fund your next 13 Final Fantasies AND  Bushido Blade 3

ToTs_00
ToTs_00

Well I guess Square Enix didn't hear about Onlive going bankrupt then.

hadlee73
hadlee73

I know it won't actually work this way, but when I read this article my imagination took over. I imagined the Hitman creeping up behind a victim, reading to choke him with a cord, and just as he is about to make his move, "Feeling a little LIMP? Take advantage of these great Viagra SPECIAAAAAALLLLSSS!" :P

TimboII
TimboII

What a unique idea...I'm not a fan of browser based gaming but this is quite interesting and could go a long ways...

SolidTy
SolidTy

This doesn't seem so bad, but I won't playing this way, lol.

Unholy123
Unholy123

While I am not one to be the fan of F2P I'll say this. From what I understand I approve of this over going the P2W route because ATM no is saying anything about putting ad's in games you pay for this is simply for the F2P crowd who are playing it off their service through the web browsers.

 

I don't see anyone wanting to put ad's into the games you pay for and buy for just simply the ones your playing for free through their service so yeah If you don't want to pay you watch an ad for some game time I guess and I don't really see that as a huge deal.

SolidSnakeFan
SolidSnakeFan

All this gamer entitlement! Such an enriching read.

thom_maytees
thom_maytees

I really do not like this idea as I resent adverstisements on video games especially those that resemble commericals.

Pyrosa
Pyrosa

This is a FAR BETTER approach than "Pay To Win" / "Freemium" crippled gaming garbage.  These games are functionally unaltered, full-fledged gaming experiences, and those people who don't have a ton of money can still enjoy them.  If you just want to TRY a game, then this facilitates that as well.  ...or, just buy the game when you're tired of seeing ads. Bravo!

Wyckid
Wyckid

...maybe if they launched with games that were worth a damn...

Animatronic64
Animatronic64

I'd rather take a screwdriver in the ear than watch stupid commercials.

firehawk998
firehawk998

I can see it now you are playing a RPG like Mass Effect and you start romancing a character. Just about they are about to get it, on the game then blocks and shows you an ad For HERPES.

 

 

This is future concept of gaming that I want to die a horrible death

higherflyerJ
higherflyerJ

HORRIBLE idea.  God, gaming what is happening to you?!  Someone make it stop PLEASE.

PeterTechGuy
PeterTechGuy

 @jorge69696 If poor people have slow ass Internet connections, they won't be playing F2P MMO in the first place.

PeterTechGuy
PeterTechGuy

 @jsmoke03 That's the point. This is perfect for people who don't have enough money to buy the game or people who are not sure if the game is fun.

burnettaj
burnettaj

 @deershadow

 Agree. Not a good idea. Dropped connections and so forth would just piss people off.

syafiqjabar
syafiqjabar

 @leeko_link "This is the only innovation they could come up with in gaming nowadays?" 

 

Gamespot comments has same standards as Gamefaqs forums and Youtube comments, apparently.

SolidSnakeFan
SolidSnakeFan

 @Unholy123 Unfortunately, a bunch of self absorbed kids read an article like this and scream bloody murder, so they're not going to see it this way, i.e. the logical way.

SolidSnakeFan
SolidSnakeFan

 @Suikogaiden It's not like you're buying the full version of the game and getting barraged by adverts. If you people have such a problem with this, pirate the games and feel like you're "sticking it to the man".

blackothh
blackothh

 @higherflyerJ i can see it now,

 

 

you have been awarded the sword of awesomeness......after this break

 

you deal the killing blow to the boss, after the break

 

oh u want to summon Bahamut? sure, right after this break

 

you want to save? after the break.....game crashes, lost progress

 

awesome cut scene? cut in half by an ad

 

level up? get this awesome skill, after the break

 

aww u died? check this ad out

 

oh, ur back alive? res timer. while u are doing nothing, we have something to show u!

 

 

i beg everybody dont give in!!!!!

 

psx_warrior
psx_warrior

 @SolidSnakeFan  @Unholy123

 Agreed.  The thing works for Angry Birds on Android platforms.  I play Angry Birds for free myself on my Android phone because of the advertisements.  They get a little annoying sometimes, but it's not a deal breaker as I can still play the game and enjoy it.  I just have to suffer from an annoying add every now and then.  Personally, I think this is a great thing.  It's like watching Star Trek: Enterprise on StarTrek.com, and having to watch advertisements.  Get to see the whole episode with just a pause of 30 seconds for adverts.  NBD.

higherflyerJ
higherflyerJ

 @blackothh I will quit gaming if this ever becomes mainstream or at least just play older ad-free titles.

SolidSnakeFan
SolidSnakeFan

 @Suikogaiden Just puttin' it out there, since he deleted his comment: he called me a republican.

 

Good stuff, right?