Despite being one of the most dependable developers around, IO Interactive have been forced to split from their publisher Square Enix after the sales disappointment of Hitman. The future of the Danish developers is now uncertain.
It was announced by Square Enix in a note to investors. The Japanese company are looking to recoup the £33/$42m that they (most likely) lost from writing off a second season of Hitman by…selling the people who made it.
“To maximize player satisfaction as well as market potential going forward, we are focusing our resources and energies on key franchises and studios. As a result, the Company has regrettably decided to withdraw from the business of IO INTERACTIVE A/S, a wholly‐owned subsidiary and a Danish corporation, as of March 31, 2017.”
Square Enix are currently looking for investors. If a buy is not secure, IO may be shut down.
IO took to Twitter to thank fans for their support:
This news is surprising, partly due to how successful Hitman’s episodic approach appeared from the outside looking in. The experiment seemed to be a success (even with some detractors), but as most of the game’s sales came through digital, it’s hard to know how much it really sold. It probably sold well, but not enough millions to satisfy Square Enix.
We wish IO all the best. Maybe now they’ll get to make Freedom Fighters 2.
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