Hitman studio orders hit with layoffs, “cancels project”

As great as the fall season is for videogame releases, it’s become a tough time for developers. Layoffs have come to plague the industry in the pre-holiday months as studios scale down projects.

After breaking the news of EA’s “seasonal-roll-offs,” 3D Realms’ George Broussard has tipped that Square Enix has implemented a round of layoffs and killed a project at IO Interactive. Broussard stated via his twitter feed, “Layoffs at IO Interactive (Kane&Lynch/Hitman). As many as 35, and a project cancelled. – Tis’ the season.”

Responding to GameSpot’s initial report, a spokesperson for Square Enix confirmed said tweet, saying, “I can confirm that there have been internal changes at IO Interactive.”

“This a natural part of any studio’s existence when you ramp up and ramp down on projects. We wish those who have been affected by this the best of luck in the future.”

Although Square Enix didn’t elaborate on Broussard’s “canceled project,” it’s speculated that it could refer to IO’s fabled development of Hitman 5 which Agent 47 voice actor David Bateson confirmed last week. IO responded it’s not “currently working” with Bateson, but one only hopes that wasn’t a broader statement about the entire Hitman project.