The decision to stray from the established triple-A pricing model and try something different has ultimately paid off, the developers of Hitman have said.
Rather than release the complete game at full price, Io chose instead for its latest title to release it in instalments – or episodes – that could either be purchased upfront or bit by bit. It was a move that raised a few eyebrows, but seems to have ultimately been warmly received.
There was a lot of scepticism, which I think is very common when you’re doing something new,” creative director Christian Elverdam told Videogamer. Part of the scepticism was, is this going to work? Are you going to be delayed? How does this even work for a game like this? And that kind of scepticism, I think we proved that we have a good way of doing it.”
Elverdam admits, however, that the company did not help itself with a slightly confused initial reveal, the details of which changed twice before the final model was settled on.
I think we made it hard for ourselves [by] not being clearer about what we wanted and subsequently also what we communicated,” he admitted. If you’re going to do something like we’re doing the internet is a fairly unforgiving place, and so I think we got ourselves into some trouble there.
No matter what we would have to have the game speak for itself, but you can make that journey easier or harder. I think we absolutely made it hard in the beginning. So I would have loved us to have launched with a little less controversy.”
The developer also claimed that the model helped to reduce what has sadly become the typical pre-launch triple-A crunch.