Using trophy/achievement systems as monitors, it is very easy for developers to keep track of how few people finish their games. IO Interactive director Tore Blystad thinks that’s a shame, since his upcoming game Hitman: Absolution is made for high replayability.
“The general player will probably never even finish the game, which is very sad. Or they might only play through it once, but the game is built for the people who want to go back through every single level and get all the stuff out of it. It’s built to last, rather than be a one-off experience,” said Blystad. “I guess people can’t commit to taking all those hours to finish one product, they get tired of it. It’s not just for this game, it’s for any game. Knowing that 20 percent of the players will see the last level of the game. It’s horrible to know. It makes the people working on it really really sad.”
While there’s a temptation to move more interesting levels earlier in the game, Blystad says that’s not really possible in Hitman: Absolution. “It’s very difficult when something is constructed to fit into a larger story to move things too much around. I think in some of the previous Hitman games that that might have been the case – that some levels were moved earlier, because they were more catchy or interesting. For us it hasn’t really been that easy, because the story is really tying all the levels together, so they’re still coming in the same order, more or less, that they were designed.”
Source: OPM UK