IO Interactive has announced today that it has laid off nearly half of its current workforce as part of a refocus on the Hitman series.
Speaking to GI.Biz, a Square Enix Europe representative revealed that all other projects by the studio has been canned, and it’ll soon start work on a new Hitman game.
Hannes Siefert, previously production director, will take over as the new studio head as part of this restructuring.
A Square Enix rep has released the following statement in the wake of this news.
“We are making significant changes at IO Interactive as we align our business against a changing and challenging market. Hannes Seifert, formerly Production Director for 3 years at the studio, will take over the position of Studio Head at IO.”
“The studio will focus resolutely on the future vision for the Hitman franchise and is in pre-production on a new AAA Hitman project. However we have taken the difficult decision to cancel other studio projects and initiatives at IO and reduce the workforce in this studio, which will impact almost half of the employees currently at IO, as we make internal adjustments to face the challenges of today’s market.”
“For those affected, we are extremely grateful for the hard work which they have contributed, and where it’s possible and appropriate to relocate staff to open positions at other studios within the group, we will try to do so,” the statement continued. “We are also reaching out to other companies for outplacement opportunities. We sincerely wish them well in their future careers. If you are part of a company that is looking for additional development talent, please contact us directly at email@example.com”
It’s always sad to see talented studios suffer the consequences of today’s competitive market, and VG247 wishes the best for everyone who has been affected.