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News video games 30 May 2017, 13:13

author: luckie

Square Enix wants Hitman to survive the sale of IO Interactive

Despite the decision to sell IO Interactive, Square Enix wants to see to it that the developer's Hitman series and other IPs stay in good hands.

Recently, there has been a solid reason for Hitman fans to be concerned about the future of this popular stealth action franchise, as its publisher Square Enix decided to part ways with the series’ developer, Danish studio IO Interactive. That decision came into force on March 31, 2017, which explains why we haven’t heard any official news about the next season of Hitman so far. The good news is that Square Enix intends to keep the Hitman franchise alive and is looking for a worthy investor who could take over IO Interactive. The company’s president Yosuke Matsuda said (thanks, GameSpot!):

Our decision to withdraw from the IO Interactive business was the result of a review of our portfolio that we conducted as part of our effort to concentrate our resources in order to strengthen our development capabilities. Because the firm is engaged in the development of Hitman and other renowned titles, we are negotiating with prospective external investors capable of ensuring that these titles carry on.

Square Enix wants Hitman to survive the sale of IO Interactive - picture #1
In terms of gameplay, last year’s Hitman was a solid return to the series’ roots. It appears, however, that its sales numbers haven’t been satisfactory for Square Enix.

It looks like IO Interactive is going to retain the rights to the Hitman IP and some “other renowned titles” (provided that a solid buyer shows up), unless Square Enix wants to license them out. This, however, puts a big question mark over the second season of last year’s Hitman – even if it does come out eventually, it is hard to tell when that could happen. At least it is good to hear that the publisher cares about the series and is not giving up on it just yet.

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