When Square Enix announced that the upcoming Hitman game will initially be a digital download with an evolving story, many felt that the company was merely stopping short of calling it an early access title. However, Square Enix refuted such claims, stating that Hitman will be “fully complete” at launch but that developer IO Interactive will continue to add more content over the course of 2016. In a new interview with GamesIndustry.biz, Square Enix’s European CEO, Phil Rogers, reiterated once again that Hitman will be a “polished AAA” game.
It’s game first. We want to keep the business model very simple. There’s going to be one price, so we’re not talking micro-transactions, and it allows us to evolve the content itself… Gamers don’t want unfinished content, so we’re being very clear. This is going to be AAA, polished – Hitman as you’d expect. But we can continue to create experiences, so the world only expands. We’re experimenting.
Using Just Cause 2 as an example, Rogers said that developer Avalanche Studios finished its work on the game’s world three months prior to its release, but had it continued to evolve that world over a period of time, players would have enjoyed it a lot more. This doesn’t mean players didn’t have fun, however. Rogers revealed that despite Just Cause 2 being a 5-year old title, it still gets “hundreds of thousands of unique gamers” every month.