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The future of Io Interactive is just a bit clearer now. The developer of notable franchises like Hitman and Kane and Lynch have announced, via a blog post, that they are now an independent studio, and retain the rights to make Hitman. This is after their former publisher Square Enix announced that they would be splitting from Io, considering Hitman didn’t perform as well as Square had hoped. This put the future of Io and Hitman in a lurch, since it wasn’t clear how the rights to the hit series of games would land.
Luckily, it seems the split worked out for Io. It isn’t instantly clear if Hitman’s upcoming Season 2 will still have the same level of content and release schedule as the first season did. Also, no clue if Io can maintain and keep the same relationships and financial responsibility that a typical publisher could. Can Io just keep updating last year’s Hitman? Do they need to establish new working relationships from the ground up? Can they afford a physical release? There’s a lot to figure out, but at least Io and Hitman have survived and moved on.