IO Interactive has recently announced plans to grow the studio to handle a new James Bond game, planning to effectively double in size.
James Bond is currently going through the longest stretch of not having a game release since the first game came out in 1982, with the latest entry having come out in 2012. Although the franchise began as a series of novels, James Bond has stretched across film and gaming with serious and respectable entries in both mediums.
IO Interactive will be making the first James Bond game in nearly a decade
It will almost certainly be over ten years since the 2012 release by the time IO releases their own James Bond title. IO Interactive was not handed this responsibility lightly, as this comes after a string of well made successes in their mainline Hitman series. IO has proven that they have the patience and design experience needed to create a wide ranging and engaging open world experience.
Furthermore, the Hitman formula of creating a wide open sandbox and tasking the player with navigating it on their own terms is one that could actually work for a James Bond title.
The most famous James Bond video games were semi-linear experiences where the player had to fight their way through a hostile territory, with the biggest critique being that there was often little reason to avoid conflict.
As a spy, one might expect James Bond to spend more effort remaining undetected and using a combination of charm, wit, and gadgets to accomplish his goals.
How should a James Bond game differ from Hitman?
Of course, Hitman has the luxury of not having to worry about having a character that has to conduct themselves a certain way. Because Agent 47 exists outside the law his behavior can be whatever the player wants it to be. James Bond, by comparison, technically does have to answer to a higher authority, and can’t just run around shooting at innocent civilians in pursuit of his goals.
It’s likely that a James Bond title set in a Hitman-style sandbox will have to have various game mechanics meant to keep the player’s actions in line with the most well-known spy the world has ever seen.
This would also mean that James Bond would need to have more ways to sneak around and access restricted areas as it’s not likely that James Bond would strangle a chef and dress in his uniform. In fact, it’s unlikely that James Bond would ever be seen in anything but the finest suits Mi6 can buy.
IO Interactive has suggested that this new James Bond game would be a wholly original story, and not merely an adaptation of one of the existing films or books. This leaves IO Interactive with a lot of creative freedom to come up with whatever they like, and will definitely be worth keeping an eye out for.