In a recent note to it's investors, Square Enix put a £33m loss in it's financial results for the year ending 31st March 2017. The cause of this loss is the planned sale of the Danish studio IO Interactive.
“To maximize player satisfaction as well as market potential going forward, we are focusing our resources and energies on key franchises and studios,” Square Enix declared in a financial announcement today. "As a result, the Company has regrettably decided to withdraw from the business of IO Interactive…the Company started discussions with potential new investors and is currently in negotiations to secure this investment.”
Square Enix has yet to say what exactly this means for the future of the Hitman franchise. The £33million writedown may be the result of canning development on a second season for the game.
IO Interactive was bought by Square Enix in 2009 and released three games under the publisher: Kane & Lynch 2 (2010), Hitman: Absolution (2012) and Hitman (2016). In 2013 half of the studio was layed off by Square Enix and the developer was focused on the Hitman franchise, cancelling all other planned projects. In November 2016, the developer moved into new offices in Copenhagen as Hitman Season 2 was announced.
The news comes a few weeks after rumours of the next Deus Ex game being put on hiatus after disappointing sales of Deus Ex: Mankind Divided and Square Enix shifting developers on different projects. Currently the Deus Ex developer Eidos Montreal is working on the next Tomb Raider game while the Tomb Raider team Crystal Dynamics is developing the untitled Marvel Avengers game.
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