Hitman developer IO Interactive is currently crafting Project 007, but like the world of espionage, information on the next James Bond game has been slim. Until now that is, as IO Interactive unveils new details about the game’s concept and how it could signpost the arrival of a bigger James Bond gaming universe.
Speaking with Eurogamer about the tight-lipped James Bond game, IO Interactive co-owners Hakan Abrak and Christian Elverdamn detail the inception of Project 007. “It’s extremely awe-inspiring and literally just inspiring to work with the team at Eon [Productions], the people who are behind everything Bond […] for us it’s been about finding a mutual understanding of ‘what is James Bond about?'” says Elverdamn.
However, unlike past games under the gaze of Activision, Project 007 won’t adhere to the cinematic canon that James Bond Bloodstone and 2008’s Quantum of Solace adaptation fit into.
Many fans of the Ian Fleming spy may know that Project 007 is an origin story, but Elverdamn expresses the importance of bringing a different flavour to Bond: “we’re doing an origin […] it’s time to have a James Bond character who was not a movie character but who’s comfortably just his own game character.”
James Bond’s past has been explored before in the Charlie Higson-helmed Young Bond novel series, as well as movies such as the critically acclaimed Skyfall. The game’s official website states that “players will step into the shoes of the world’s favourite secret agent to earn their 00 status in the very first James Bond origin story.” It is possible that this origin story could take influences from Casino Royale, where a more vulnerable version of the character embarks on one of his first missions.
“I think we can safely say we’re very good at agent fantasy and everything we’ve learned with our Hitman franchise, and now we’re rediscovering new sides of the agent fantasy with James Bond,” Elverdamn adds. The scale of the Hitman World of Assassination trilogy has seemingly influenced Project 007 too, as the developer eyes a larger scope for Bond’s new adventure.
“In 2013 we’re talking about this [Hitman] World of Assassination pitch, this idea that we wanted to elevate Hitman […] we started getting an idea that ‘oh maybe we should try to talk to them [MGM and Eon] about what it is we’re doing and what they aren’t doing with their franchise,” explains Elverdamn. Hakan Abrak details that “when we commit to something we commit with everything. With community and how we grow this love for the game we’re doing […] it’s the beginning of something new and it’s the beginning, hopefully, of something that the gamers can call their own.”
The Project 007 release date has yet to be revealed, but there are plenty of upcoming PS5 games to look forward to in the meantime. We experienced the first teaser for Project 007 two years ago, and we’re yet to see James Bond himself or what locations he’ll visit. However, we’re sure it’ll be a view to kill for, wherever Bond ends up.