Fresh off re-launching the modern Hitman trilogy as a complete experience known as ‘World of Assassination‘, studio IO Interactive has announced yet another surprise: it’s now working on a major online fantasy RPG with a unique mythos. After years of developing within the action genre, IO is now branching out with a view to expand its creativity and capabilities.
‘We are embarking on a new adventure,’ IO Interactive announced on its website. ‘ One that expands our creativity, our capabilities, and in some sense, our identity. We are building a new world, a new IP – an online fantasy RPG. A world and a game built from the core to entertain players and expand for many years to come. It feels familiar, yet at the same time IOI is going on a journey unlike any we have been on before.’
According to IOI, the studio’s roots were formed by the fantasy genre, with books like Fighting Fantasy encouraging developers to pursue creative careers. Many began their creative journey as dungeon master storytellers, and participants in sweeping tabletop adventures.
‘For everyone around that table it meant creativity, imagination, building a world together, and a shared goal in creating a great game experience,’ IOI said. ‘This idea – that a diverse group of individuals with different skills and strengths can work together and become more than the sum of their parts – is what inspires us. It inspires the fantasy world we are building – and it inspires how we build it.’
Going forward, developers from IOI Copenhagen, Malmö and Barcelona will work together to create the studio’s vision for an online fantasy world that brings players together. While the game is only in its infancy, it’s clear developers are excited about this new direction, and about the potential of creating an original tale that differs vastly from other IOI experiences.
‘Project Fantasy’ is currently untitled, but it is now in development alongside other IOI Interactive games, including a mystery James Bond adventure known as ‘Project 007’.