Square Enix surprised a lot of people when it first announced that it was taking the Hitman franchise to mobile. Much gnashing of teeth followed. Then the gaming community actually saw Hitman GO, and while it wasn’t universally loved, it was stylish enough that it pacified the skeptics.
That being the case, today’s announcement from Square Enix Montreal comes as much less of a shock. While one team of developers works on additional content for Hitman GO, another has been busy creating Agent 47’s next mobile adventure. It’s called Hitman: Sniper, and the studio is calling it “a massively competitive sniping game that will focus on the subtlety of execution.” Designed to encourage some thoughtfulness before puling the trigger, the gameplay is said to be similar to the Hitman: Sniper Challenge that IO Interactive came up with back in 2012, but with an interface designed specifically for touchscreens.
Unlike Hitman GO, Hitman: Sniper will be free-to-play, monetized by optional in-app purchases. It certainly won’t be the first game to try emphasizing the “optional” part of that plan, though Square Enix Montreal is saying that anything offered for sale will also be obtainable simply by playng enough of the game. In other words, it’ll be “pay or grind” instead of “pay to win,” which is a small but important distinction.
The next step is to put it in the hands of players, which will happen next week at E3. If you’re not fortunate enough to have plans to be in Los Angeles, keep your eyes peeled for Square Enix Presents on YouTube on Wednesday, June 11th at 3:30 pm EDT. You just might see Agent 47 practicing his aim there.