Hitman Dev Addresses Digital Release, Price, Content Quality Concerns

"It will always be a polished Hitman experience," says IO Interactive

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Developer IO Interactive has addressed the discussion around its upcoming Hitman, specifically concerns about the release strategy, quality of the content, and its online hooks.

In a Q&A, the studio clarified that, although Hitman will be released initially through digital platforms such as PlayStation Network, Xbox Live, and Steam, it will also be released on disc "at some point in 2016," reiterating earlier reports about the physical release.

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At E3 2015, IO revealed the new Hitman will be updated regularly with fresh content, leading to comparison with episodic titles. This, however, is an inaccurate description, according to its developer.

"We think the word 'episodic' sets up the expectation that we will sell individual content drops for individual prices but that’s not something we're planning to do," it explained.

"That said, there are some episodic elements to the story in the sense that it’s delivered in chunks over time, so experiencing the story will probably feel episodic. But there is also a ton of other content including live events, which have nothing to do with the story. We’ll also be improving and changing the game constantly whilst you’re playing it."

On the subject of price, IO provided assurances that the all content will be available as part of the standard $60 pricetag, and there are no microtransactions.

"That $60 includes everything we create in this story arc; from what we release on December 8 through to the end of the story arc in 2016 and all the live events too. There’s no microtransactions or hidden costs in there. No extra paid DLC on top either. It’s one package, all-in for $60. We want that to be simple and clear and it was important for us to be up-front about that."

Finally, IO tackled the discussion that the content released will be of an unfinished state, similar to in-development projects released through Early Access.

"Early access can often mean something unfinished or unpolished," it said. "That’s simply not the approach we’re taking. All of the content we release live to our players will be complete and polished,. It will always be a polished Hitman experience."

Publisher Square Enix has confirmed the Hitman release date as December 8. 2015 on Xbox One, PC, and PS4. New assassination contracts, locations, and gameplay mechanics will be made available over time. Some of the missions will function as "live events," appearing for a brief time window and giving players just one chance to attempt these assassination contracts.

GameSpot got a chance to see the game at E3 2015. Read our full Hitman preview here for more on the game.

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