IO Interactive’s split from Square Enix has been a very interesting one in the gaming industry. A truly talented studio, they managed to break away from Square Enix last year, and with that move were able to keep the rights to their very popular Hitman series. Hitman wasn’t the only series that IO worked on, there were some other games such as Kane and Lynch and a little gem called Freedom Fighters, that came out in 2003 on the PlayStation 2, GameCube and original Xbox.
It has been learned that IO actually managed to acquire the rights to Freedom Fighters in the split, however Square Enix did retain the rights to Kane and Lynch. For those that never got to play the game, it was an interesting take on an alternate history where the Soviet Union ended World War 2, and became a massive superpower. The Russians then invade America, and you play as Christopher Stone, plumber turned resistance fighter, defending New York from the Russians. The game is a squad-based shooter, and you recruited new members to your cause and could command them in battles. There was also 4-player split-screen cooperative gameplay that let you and some friends team up to defend the city and country. The game was very well received, and had positive scores and had decent sales as well. However a sequel was never worked on, generally believed to have been due to more focus on Kane and Lynch among other things that IO worked on while being a part of Square Enix.
Now that IO has split away from Square Enix, they have shown that they are still capable of creating top tier games. The first season of Hitman was a hit, and a new one looks to be in the works as well as a tv series. Will Freedom Fighters make a return, as a new squad-based tactical shooter? It would be interesting to see what IO does with the franchise, and there’s a good possibility that Freedom Fighters may live to fight another day.
Source: Geek Culture Podcast