Daily Glixel: Going Indie 'a Genuine Watershed Moment' For IO Interactive

The 'Hitman' studio was in danger of closing last year.

IO Interactive Talks About Its Independence And The Future of 'Hitman'
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IO Interactive Talks About Its Independence And The Future of 'Hitman'

The fate of IO Interactive was uncertain, even after the success of last year's Hitman reboot. Publisher Square Enix wanted to sell the studio, but finding a buyer was difficult. People lost jobs. Then, IO Interactive announced it would go indie via a management buyout and retain control of the Hitman IP. Over on GamesIndustry.biz, IO Interactive CEO Hakan Abrak says being independent makes the studio far more attractive to work with.

"We need to be free to embrace and live directly with our fans and community, and free to make fundamental decisions for the studio and our games, within our own halls," he says.

Going forward, Abrak says the studio will continue working on Hitman. Having learned so much doing its first "season," Abrak tells GamesIndustry.biz the studio didn't want to give up before attempting a second one.

"Look, we feel like we're onto a good thing with our latest Hitman game," he says. "We've changed how we work, and as a studio we've never felt more confident and more in control of knowing what we're doing. I think our Game of the Year Edition is a testament to that. We learned so much during the first season of this game, and by the end we felt like a well-oiled machine."

"This has been a genuine watershed moment for us," he adds. "Just like our games, it can be challenging at times, but now we're in control of what we do next and that's quite satisfying. Being independent means we don't have to do things the way we've done them in the past. We can decide what's right for IO Interactive, for Hitman and for our players."