Eidos Life President confirms new Hitman, new Kane and Lynch, new IP and a new approach to Lara

Livingstone drops info bomb

The recently appointed Life President at Square Enix-owned Eidos, Ian Livingstone, has opened the floodgates on his company’s current projects.

Livingstone confirmed new editions of Hitman, as well as Kane and Lynch, spoke of the new IP that the Eidos studios are working on, lauded digital content, and stated that the developer is currently re-invigorating the Tomb Raider franchise.

The industry veteran, who was recently selected to join The Conservative Party’s new review body for the creative industries, also stated he expects high scores for Arkham Asylum, and anticipates fans will be looking forward to the next Championship manager game.

In an interview with GamingIndians, he explained that Eidos studio IO Interactive (now of course owned by Square Enix) is currently at work on the next Hitman title and a new Kane and Lynch game.

He stated that there’s been no announcement or release date for Hitman, though implied that Kane and Lynch would be released this year.

Livingstone said that the target release for Kane and Lynch 2 is September , though added that “these games often slip because the production times are so difficult to predict due to the amount of work they have to put into them now in high-end consoles. It’s a tough business.”

Livingstone also briefly mentioned another Eidos-owned IP, one that to this day remains the biggest jewel in the company’s crown. He said that Tomb Raider Underworld had met the company’s expectations, though reiterated that it was released in tough times, with development costs so high and a 360/PS3 userbase that isn’t yet as far reaching as the PS2’s.

He added, however, that the appeal of Lara Croft continues to increase, and compared her longevity to that of James Bond’s. Like 007 films, he said, there have been some poor Tomb Raider games over the years, but like James Bond the Lara Croft character remains strong.

However, Livingstone went on to say that the next Tomb Raider will “surprise a lot of people and reinvigorate the franchise. There are some remarkable things we’re doing in the next Tomb Raider to make you say, ‘Oh Lara, I love you so much!’”

There was also new IP for Livingstone to briefly mention. He spoke of Eidos’ reputation for single player character-based games and stated that the developer needs to “bring diversity” to its portfolio. No new IP is set for release this year.

“We’re also developing games specifically for download. It’s not just the consoles, but also the iPhone. And it’s a great way for developers to get into the industry as well because the costs of development are quite low. So these are exciting times because with the popularity of digital distribution, it also makes it easier to developers to get their games out there,” he said.

Livingstone also stated his expectations for the upcoming Arkham Asylum, and discussed the reasons for delaying the title. For this and more, read the full interview here.

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