According to a posting from Square Enix, the publishing company is cutting loose IO Interactive. The studio, responsible for the Hitman series has been under fire lately due to the patchwork releases of DLCs and episodic adventures in addition to the base game. Rather than revamp the series or try another strategy, Square Enix is selling the Danish studio.
Square Enix states that this is because they want to focus their resources and energies on key franchises and studios, namely not Hitman. The posted price of 4,898 million yen is to cover their financial losses and the selling of IP rights. They say that IO Interactive is in negotiations with potential investors, but there are no guarantees that they will be successful. But Square Enix will work to seal a deal, as it is in the best interests of their shareholders.
These best interests appear to be due to Marvel, as most of Square Enix’s upcoming titles are of the comic franchise, including The Avengers Project and The Guardians of the Galaxy. The usual titles like Final Fantasy, Kingdom Hearts, and Dragon Quest, are there too but none quite as anticipated as Square Enix’s Marvel titles. Perhaps the company is trying a different approach after all, pushing at the Western market with hollywood based games rather than completely original titles.
Who knows what impact this will have on IO Interactive, as after such incidences studios usually disband and employees move on to other places. Hopefully this will not be the case we might see a brand new Hitman on the horizon with less episodes and chapters and more fully fleshed out games. That’s probably a little too optimistic though.
Are you sorry to see IO Interactive go? Who do you think will pick them up? Will they continue the Hitman franchise? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!