We never like to hear about studios affected by lay-offs, especially when those teams have a ton of talent.
As reported by GamesIndustry International , Hitman: Absolution developer IO Interactive has been forced to halve its staff, and they've also axed "multiple projects."
This was part of "significant changes" to the company's business strategy. However, Hitman fans shouldn't despair; a Square Enix representative confirmed that the revamped team will definitely focus on a new AAA installment in the future:
"The studio will focus resolutely on the future vision for the Hitman franchise and is in pre-production on a new AAA Hitman project. However, we have taken the difficult decision to cancel other studio projects and initiatives at IO and reduce the workforce in this studio, which will impact almost half of the employees currently at IO, as we make internal adjustments to face the challenges of today's market."
Square Enix says they're "extremely grateful" for all the work IO has done and if it's possible, they will attempt to find work for the affected staff. If there are internal or external positions available elsewhere, these guys should get first dibs (hopefully). You know, Absolution was a damn good game ; play it if you haven't already.