IO Interactive

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

IO Interactive A/S
Formerly
IO Interactive ApS (1998–2000)
Private
IndustryVideo game industry
Founded16 September 1998; 20 years ago (1998-09-16)
Founders
  • Jesper Vorsholt Jørgensen
  • Rasmus Guldberg-Kjær
  • Martin Munk Pollas
  • Karsten Lemann Hvidberg
  • Jacob Andersen
  • Janos Flösser
  • David Guldbrandsen
Headquarters,
Denmark
Key people
Hakan B. Abrak (CEO)
Products
Number of employees
Increase 170 (2016)
Parent
SubsidiariesIOI Malmö
Websiteioi.dk

IO Interactive A/S (often shortened as IOI) is a Danish video game developer based in Copenhagen, best known for creating and developing the Hitman franchise. IO Interactive employs 170 people as of October 2016, and operates a Malmö-based studio, IOI Malmö, since January 2019.

The company was founded in September 1998 as a joint venture between Reto-Moto, a seven-man development team, and Nordisk Film, a film studio. The company was acquired by publisher Eidos Interactive for GB£23 million in March 2004, which saw itself acquired by Square Enix and renamed as Square Enix Europe in 2009. In May 2017, Square Enix ceased funding for IO Interactive and started seeking a buyer for the studio. IO Interactive performed a management buyout in June 2017, becoming independent and regaining the rights to their Hitman and Freedom Fighters franchises. IO Interactive's most recent game is Hitman 2, which was released in November 2018.

History[edit]

Background and foundation (1997–1998)[edit]

Sign outside IO Interactive's former location at Farvergade 2, Copenhagen

In 1997, Reto-Moto was founded as a video game developer in Copenhagen.[1] Before the studio finished any games, they struck a partnership with Danish film studio Nordisk Film in 1998 that would lead to the creation of a developer jointly owned by the two companies.[2] The resulting company, IO Interactive, was founded on 16 September 1998,[3] with Reto-Moto's seven employees, Jesper Vorsholt Jørgensen, Rasmus Guldberg-Kjær, Martin Munk Pollas, Karsten Lemann Hvidberg, Jacob Andersen, Janos Flösser and David Guldbrandsen, serving as the founders and initial staff of IO Interactive.[4][5] Nordisk Film held a 40.3% stake in the venture,[4] while all other shares were owned by the seven founders through Reto-Moto.[5]

Hitman: Codename 47 (1998–2000)[edit]

Early on, IO Interactive conceptualised a fantasy massively multiplayer online game (MMO) entitled Rex Dominus, however, Nordisk Film staff asked the development team to cease production on Rex Dominus and "test [themselves]" by developing a "simple shooter" instead.[6] As such, the team opted for a run-and-gun action game, as it took less time to develop compared to an MMO, drawing inspiration from John Woo films, such as Hard Boiled and The Killer.[6] They turned to develop for personal computers (PCs), because they were unable to acquire development kits for consoles, and had also found interest in the steady increase of PCs' 3D graphics capabilities.[6]

A part of the development on the game, which would later become Hitman: Codename 47, was the creation of the Glacier, the studio's proprietary game engine that fit their needs; co-founder Andersen stated: "Since killing was the main theme of the game, we wanted to do something special. [...] Standard 'death animations' just looked too static so some of the coders tried to see if they could use real-time inverse kinematics for the falling bodies. The first versions ran terribly slowly until one of the programmers figured out a way to fake the whole calculation."[6] This led to the first use of advanced ragdoll physics in a video game.[6] This physics system caught the eyes of British publisher Eidos Interactive, and especially staff member Jonas Eneroth, who thought that the system could greatly benefit Codename 47's gameplay.[6] Following six months of negotiations, a publishing deal was signed between IO Interactive and Eidos Interactive.[7] Eneroth became executive producer on the project.[6]

As executive producer, Eneroth encouraged the development team to stray away from the run-and-gun gameplay, and instead focus on a "methodical experience", including dragging dead bodies around the scene to create tension.[6] He had previously worked on Deus Ex and Thief: The Dark Project, which had heavily exposed him to the stealth game mechanics he wished to see in Codename 47.[6] The game was released on 19 November 2000,[8] with reception mixed due to the difficulty of the game.[6]

Further ventures (2000–2004)[edit]

In October 2001, Eidos Interactive announced Hitman 2: Silent Assassin, a sequel to Codename 47.[9] Following a slight delay in March 2002,[10] it was released in September 2002, this time for Microsoft Windows, as well as PlayStation 2 and Xbox.[11] To more easily overcome the challenge of bringing the game to consoles, IO Interactive grew "considerably" in headcount.[7] The game was received well by critics; according to Greg Kasavin in his review for GameSpot, "Hitman 2 fixes virtually all of the problems of its predecessor".[12] The success of Silent Assassin came as a surprise to the team,[7] and was swiftly followed up with by porting the game to GameCube the following year.[13]

In 2003, IO Interactive decided to open a Hungarian offshoot, named IO Interactive Hungary.[5] To properly establish the studio, 50 Hungarian staff were hired and brought to the company's Copenhagen headquarters for a six-month training programme.[5] However, after the training had been finished, IO Interactive realised that there were 50 people with talent but no leadership that could guide them when in Hungary.[5] Instead of fulfilling the Hungarian subsidiary, IO Interactive opted to offer all 50 people jobs at their headquarters, to which most of them agreed.[5] In October that year, Electronic Arts released Freedom Fighters, an IO Interactive-developed third-person shooter which was previously announced as Freedom: The Battle for Liberty Island in May 2002.[14][15] Although a sequel to Freedom Fighters has been anticipated, IO Interactive has been unable to comment on whether such a game was in development.[16]

Acquisition by Eidos Interactive, further Hitman releases (2004–2006)[edit]

On 3 March 2004, Eidos Interactive announced that they were acquiring IO Interactive for GB£23 million in cash and stock, plus another GB£5 million linked to the studio's performance in the following four years.[17][18] The deal closed on 31 March that year.[4] At the time, IO Interactive was Europe's 10th largest video game developer, with 140 staff members employed at their offices.[4] The sale was primarily negotiated by founding member Flösser.[19]

The first game to release under Eidos Interactive's management was Hitman: Contracts, the third game in the Hitman franchise, which was announced and released in April that year.[20] The game was developed in about nine months, from concept stage to console submission, but was under the influence of "crunch time" throughout the entire development.[21] Contracts received positive reception.[22][23] The next game, Hitman: Blood Money, was announced shortly afterwards, in November 2004.[24] Released in April 2006,[25] the game was praised by critics and retrospectively multiply referred to as the best game in the Hitman series.[26][27]

Other games (2006–2010)[edit]

IO Interactive announced their next game, Kane & Lynch: Dead Men, in August 2006.[28] Unlike their Hitman games, Kane & Lynch: Dead Men played as a linear, cooperative gameplay-focused third-person shooter, as opposed to Hitman's sandbox solo stealth gameplay.[29] Released in November 2007,[30] the game gained mixed reviews, wherein some reviewers felt like the game had a disconnect with modern gameplay styles.[31]

On 11 April 2008, four of IO Interactive's co-founders, Vorsholt Jørgensen, Pollas, Andersen and Guldbrandsen, announced that they had, together with former Eidos Interactive executive producer Neil Donnell, reformed Reto-Moto as an active developer.[32] Guldbrandsen and Donnell became chief technology officer and chief executive officer, respectively.[33] Six further IO Interactive employees followed to Reto-Moto in December that year.[34] Co-founder and at the time managing director Flösser left the company on 16 April 2008, and was succeeded by Niels Jørgensen, who had joined the company in 2002.[35]

In January 2009, Eidos Interactive announced IO Interactive-developed Mini Ninjas, a family-friendly game, as opposed to all of the studio's previous titles.[36] Jørgensen explained that, using Mini Ninjas, the studio wanted to reach a broader demographic in the gaming market.[5]

Shortly after the announcement of Mini Ninjas, in April 2009, Eidos Interactive was acquired by Japanese video game conglomerate Square Enix for GB£84.3 million.[37] Eidos Interactive was reorganised over the course of 2009 and became known as Square Enix Europe in November that year.[38] Square Enix Europe continued to oversee their previously owned development studios, including IO Interactive.[39] Speaking for IO Interactive, Karsten Lund stated that the studio experienced "no loss of freedom" following the buyout.[40]

A sequel to Kane & Lynch: Dead Men, titled Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days, was announced in November 2009,[41] and released in August 2010.[42] Critics found that most elements in the game had deliberately been made "ugly" to better fit into the well-told story of the game.[43]

In a November 2009 interview with gaming website Gamasutra, Jørgensen revealed that, due to the high costs associated with living in Scandinavia, much of the company's graphic department had been outsourced to Shanghai.[5] The Chinese office had been set up by two Danish representatives from IO Interactive, with one Dane permanently residing in Shanghai to look over the outsourcing progress.[5] In March 2010, 35 of previously 200 employees were let go from the company.[44][45] Further 30 people were laid off in November that year, supposedly due to the cancellation of a project that was in development for Microsoft.[46]

Return to Hitman (2011–2016)[edit]

In May 2011, IO Interactive and Square Enix announced that they would be returning to the Hitman franchise through a new entry, Hitman: Absolution.[47][48] A spin-off demo, Hitman: Sniper Challenge was released in May 2012.[49] Absolution was released in November that year,[50] and, like Blood Money, saw highly positive reception from critics.[51] However, many fans of the series, including the developers at IO Interactive, felt like Absolution was leaning too far into the mainstream, as a result of which they were losing their core player base.[52]

In February 2012, Square Enix opened a new Copenhagen office under the IO Interactive name.[53] The following March, this new office was announced to be Hapti.co, a subsidiary studio focused on mobile games.[54] Hapti.co was sold to Wargaming Mobile, the mobile games division of publisher Wargaming, in September 2017, and was renamed as Wargaming Copenhagen.[55]

In June 2013, 70 staff members, half of IO Interactive's workforce at the time, were made redundant due to "internal adjustments to face the challenges of today's market".[56][57] Square Enix announced that, from that point on, IO Interactive would exclusively focus on the development of new entries in the Hitman franchise.[58] At the same time, Hannes Seifert, who for the past three years had held the position of production director at IO Interactive, took over the company's management as studio head.[59] At a June 2015 press conference, Sony announced that a new game in the Hitman series, simply titled Hitman, had been slated for a December 2015 release.[60] The game was shortly delayed to March 2016,[61] and later announced to be released in an episodic model.[62] As such, starting in March 2016, the first season for the game was released through six episodes, the last of which was released in October 2016.[63] Around the same time, Ryan Barnard, previously director of the game The Division, left Massive Entertainment to join IO Interactive.[64] At the time, IO Interactive had 170 employees,[65] and was the largest video game developer in Denmark.[66]

Management buyout, Hitman 2 (2017–present)[edit]

Seifert announced in February 2017 that he had left IO Interactive to return to his home country of Austria to pursue an unannounced project.[67] Hakan B. Abrak, like Seifert formerly production director for the studio, took over his duties, becoming chief executive officer.[68][69]

In May 2017, Square Enix announced that they had withdrawn funding from IO Interactive and would begin negotiating with potential investors that would want to purchase the studio.[70] Several jobs were cut at IO Interactive shortly following that announcement.[71][72] On 16 June 2017, IO Interactive announced that it had performed a management buyout, as a result of which they became independent.[73][74] The buyout also included the intellectual property for Hitman and Freedom Fighters, but lacked that of Kane & Lynch and Mini Ninjas.[75][76][77] Yosuke Matsuda, president and chief executive officer of Square Enix at the time, stated that the company's decision to divest itself of IO Interactive, alongside Hitman, was made because they felt like the series needed to go on, but would be in better hands with another partner or with IO Interactive itself.[78][79] IO Interactive's associate director, Eskil Mohl, said that, when Square Enix decided to withdraw from the studio, they were already working on Hitman 2, and the job cuts were a necessary step to make sure that the studio would remain viable without Square Enix's backing; Mohl felt that this helped harden the studio to make Hitman 2 a stronger game.[80]

IO Interactive confirmed shortly after the split that all profits from 2016's Hitman would from that point go directly to the studio.[81] In August that year, the studio confirmed that another Hitman game was in development.[82] In April 2018, IO Interactive partnered with Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment to distribute a Definitive Edition of 2016's Hitman, which was released in the following month.[83][84] In June 2018, IO Interactive announced Hitman 2.[85] Unlike 2016's Hitman, Hitman 2 does not feature an episodic release format.[86] Published by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, Hitman 2 was released in November that year.[87] On 16 January 2019, IO Interactive opened a subsidiary studio, IOI Malmö, in Malmö, Sweden.[88]

Games developed[edit]

Year Title Platform(s) Publisher(s)
GCN PS2 PS3 PS4 Wii Win Linux Mac Xbox X360 XONE
2000 Hitman: Codename 47 No No No No No Yes No No No No No Eidos Interactive
2002 Hitman 2: Silent Assassin Yes Yes No No No Yes No No Yes No No
2003 Freedom Fighters Yes Yes No No No Yes No No Yes No No Electronic Arts
2004 Hitman: Contracts No Yes No No No Yes No No Yes No No Eidos Interactive
2006 Hitman: Blood Money No Yes No No No Yes No No Yes Yes No
2007 Kane & Lynch: Dead Men No No Yes No No Yes No No No Yes No
2009 Mini Ninjas No No Yes No Yes Yes No Yes No Yes No Eidos Interactive, Feral Interactive
2010 Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days No No Yes No No Yes No No No Yes No Square Enix
2012 Hitman: Absolution No No Yes No No Yes No Yes No Yes No Square Enix, Feral Interactive
2016 Hitman No No No Yes No Yes Yes Yes No No Yes
2018 Hitman 2 No No No Yes No Yes No No No No Yes Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment

Cancelled games[edit]

  • Rex Dominus
  • Unannounced game for Microsoft (2009)

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Former Hitman, Kane and Lynch creators launch Reto-Moto". engadget.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  2. ^ Sinclair, Brendan (11 April 2008). "Hitman devs go solo with Reto-Moto". gamespot.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  3. ^ "Unit View". virk.dk.
  4. ^ a b c d "Hitman solgt til England". business.dk. 4 March 2004. Archived from the original on 27 May 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i Puha, Thomas. "Q&A: The Then And Now of Hitman Dev IO Interactive". gamasutra.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Love, Edward (17 May 2018). "The Making Of: Hitman: Codename 47". Retro Gamer. No. 181. Future Publishing. pp. 86–89. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  7. ^ a b c Reilly, Luke (18 February 2013). "Killing Them Softly: The Hitman Story, Part 1". ign.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  8. ^ McLaughlin, Rus (1 October 2012). "IGN Presents: The History of Hitman". ign.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  9. ^ Walker, Trey (4 October 2001). "Hitman 2: Silent Assassin announced". gamespot.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  10. ^ Walker, Trey (17 May 2006). "Hitman 2 delayed". gamespot.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  11. ^ Parker, Sam (30 September 2002). "Hitman 2 goes gold". gamespot.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  12. ^ Kasavin, Greg (8 October 2002). "Hitman 2: Silent Assassin Review". gamespot.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  13. ^ Calvert, Justin (31 October 2002). "Hitman 2 announced for the GameCube". gamespot.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  14. ^ Adams, David (1 October 2003). "Freedom Fighters Ships". ign.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  15. ^ Park, Andrew (21 May 2002). "E3 2002: Freedom:The Battle for Liberty Island announced". gamespot.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  16. ^ "IO gives "no comment" to Freedom Fighters 2 - VG247". vg247.com. 15 January 2010. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  17. ^ "Eidos acquires Hitman developer as profits rise". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  18. ^ Calvert, Justin (4 March 2004). "Eidos announces results and acquisition of Io Interactive". gamespot.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  19. ^ "Portræt: Flygtningen og forretningsmanden Flösser". business.dk. 4 March 2004. Archived from the original on 14 July 2018. Retrieved 14 July 2018.
  20. ^ Torres, Ricardo (7 April 2004). "Hitman: Contracts Update". gamespot.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  21. ^ Reilly, Luke (24 February 2013). "Killing Them Softly: The Hitman Story, Part 2". ign.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  22. ^ Perry, Douglass C. (16 April 2004). "Hitman: Contracts". ign.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  23. ^ "Hitman: Contracts". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  24. ^ "Hitman: Blood Money announced". engadget.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  25. ^ "Hitman: Blood Money dated". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  26. ^ "Reinstall: Hitman: Blood Money". pcgamer.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  27. ^ "Hitman: Blood Money retrospective". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  28. ^ Brudvig, Erik (18 August 2006). "GC 2006: Kane and Lynch: Dead Men Revealed". ign.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  29. ^ Brudvig, Erik (27 June 2007). "Kane and Lynch Hands-on". ign.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  30. ^ "Kane & Lynch dated". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  31. ^ Brudvig, Erik (26 November 2007). "Kane & Lynch: Dead Men Review". ign.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  32. ^ "Hitman Veterans Leave IO, Form Reto-Moto". Shacknews. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  33. ^ Kumar, Mathew. "IO Interactive Founders Reform Reto Moto". gamasutra.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  34. ^ "More IO Interactive employees join Reto-Moto". mcvuk.com.
  35. ^ "Janos Flösser forlader IO Interactive". Computerworld. 16 April 2008. Archived from the original on 26 August 2018. Retrieved 25 August 2018.
  36. ^ "Eidos unveils new Mini Ninjas game". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  37. ^ Staff, Gamespot (25 April 2009). "Square Enix closes on Eidos, Final Fantasy sells 85 million". gamespot.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  38. ^ "Goodbye Eidos, hello Square Enix Europe". engadget.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  39. ^ "Square Enix confirms European identity". gamesindustry.biz. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  40. ^ "No loss of "freedom" after Eidos-Square Enix takeover, says IO - VG247". vg247.com. 15 January 2010. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  41. ^ "Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days Announced". Shacknews. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  42. ^ Brudvig, Erik (17 March 2010). "Kane & Lynch 2 Release Date". ign.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  43. ^ "Kane & Lynch 2 is nasty, pointless, and well worth playing". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  44. ^ Graft, Kris. "Report: IO Interactive Makes Round Of Layoffs". gamasutra.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  45. ^ "Layoffs Hit Hitman Developer IO Interactive". Shacknews. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  46. ^ "IO Interactive Lays Off 30; Rumored to be Due to Canceled Microsoft Project". Shacknews. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  47. ^ "Hitman: Absolution officially announced for 2012 with painfully vague teaser". gamesradar.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  48. ^ "Hitman: Absolution announced". mcvuk.com.
  49. ^ "Hitman: Absolution out November 20, Sniper Challenge announced". polygon.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  50. ^ "Hitman: Absolution release date announced". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  51. ^ Reilly, Luke (18 November 2012). "Hitman: Absolution Review". ign.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  52. ^ "Hitman Season One: Looking Back With Creative Director Christian Elverdam". USgamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  53. ^ "IO åbner nyt studie i København". Eurogamer.dk. Archived from the original on 17 December 2018. Retrieved 17 December 2018.
  54. ^ "Nyt spilstudie i København søger folk". Eurogamer.dk. Archived from the original on 17 December 2018. Retrieved 17 December 2018.
  55. ^ Cleaver, Sean (8 September 2017). "Wargaming Mobile acquire Danish studio Hapti.co". www.mcvuk.com.
  56. ^ "IO Interactive cancels everything that isn't Hitman, including Kane & Lynch". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  57. ^ "IO Interactive redundancies affect 'around 70' - VideoGamer.com". videogamer.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  58. ^ "IO Interactive halves workforce, will focus only on Hitman franchise - VideoGamer.com". videogamer.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  59. ^ "Io Interactive lays off 'almost half' its staff, focusing on Hitman (update)". polygon.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  60. ^ Albert, Brian (15 June 2015). "E3 2015: Next Hitman Announced at Sony Conference". ign.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  61. ^ "Hitman delayed until March 2016". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  62. ^ "Hitman changes release structure again, now 'fully episodic'". polygon.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  63. ^ "Hitman: Episode 6 - Hokkaido is the Season Finale and out later this month - VG247". vg247.com. 12 October 2016. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  64. ^ "The Division director joins Hitman developer Io-Interactive". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  65. ^ "The Division director jumps ship to IO Interactive". mcvuk.com.
  66. ^ "Japanske ejere sparker benene væk under dansk spilgigant". business.dk. 11 May 2017. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  67. ^ "IO Interactive names new studio head". gamesindustry.biz. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  68. ^ Kerr, Chris. "IO Interactive studio head leaves Hitman dev after seven years". gamasutra.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  69. ^ Devore, Jordan (26 May 2018). "Agent 47 is bald because hair was just too difficult". Destructoid.
  70. ^ "Square Enix drops Hitman developer IO Interactive". polygon.com. Archived from the original on 31 August 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  71. ^ "Jobs lost at IO Interactive as Square Enix searches for buyer". gamesindustry.biz. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  72. ^ "Hitman studio IO Interactive cuts down on staff". polygon.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  73. ^ "IO Interactive becomes an independent studio, retains Hitman IP". mcvuk.com.
  74. ^ "IO Interactive is now independent". gamesindustry.biz. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  75. ^ "More Hitman, more control: IO Interactive on its newfound independence". gamesindustry.biz. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  76. ^ "Io Interactive still have the rights to Freedom Fighters". pcgamesn.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  77. ^ "IO Interactive boss talks Hitman's future & reveals Kane & Lynch were lost 'in the divorce' from Square Enix - VideoGamer.com". videogamer.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  78. ^ ""It's not Hitman without IO": Why Square Enix set the franchise free". gamesindustry.biz. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  79. ^ "Square Enix share their reasons for dropping Hitman studio Io". rockpapershotgun.com. 26 November 2017. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  80. ^ Makuch, Eddie (28 October 2018). "Hitman 2 Developer Talks About Its Painful Breakup With Square Enix". GameSpot. Archived from the original on 29 October 2018. Retrieved 29 October 2018.
  81. ^ "Hitman is no longer Denuvo-protected; all profits from the game now go to the devs". pcgamesn.com.
  82. ^ "IO Interactive confirms that there's a new Hitman in the works". eurogamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  83. ^ "Hitman getting new 'Definitive Edition,' thanks to Warner Bros". polygon.com. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  84. ^ "Hitman Developers Team Up With Warner Bros. to Release New "Definitive Edition" of Hitman". USgamer.net. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  85. ^ "Hitman 2 announced for November, see the first trailer". pcgamer.com. Archived from the original on 10 June 2018. Retrieved 10 June 2018.
  86. ^ "Hitman 2 will release this year and is not episodic". pcgamesn.com. Archived from the original on 8 June 2018. Retrieved 7 June 2018.
  87. ^ "Hitman 2 announced, coming this November". polygon.com. Archived from the original on 7 June 2018. Retrieved 7 June 2018.
  88. ^ Figueroa, Sergio (16 January 2019). "IO Interactive reveals brand new studio in Malmö". Gamereactor.

External links[edit]