The Fable series might be making a comeback
Ever since the original Fable game was released in 2004, the series had been a sort of staple franchise for Microsoft - at least until Fable Legends was canceled almost two years ago. However, it seems that Fable might be making a comeback. Rumor first appeared when a former Lionhead employee tweeted about an "interesting choice" behind Fable 4, a game that has not been announced [tweet now deleted]. At the same time, people noticed that the job listing page for Playground Games - A UK games studio like Lionhead - was hiring for positions with the following description:
"You’ll join the team and the project at an early stage, giving you the rare opportunity to shape the future of an exciting, large-scale open world action / RPG AAA title from the outset."
The job description and UK location would put Playground as a major candidate for a potential Fable revival. The reason why this would be considered an interesting choice is that Playground Games is known for the Forza Horizon series of games. Developing an RPG would be a new direction for the studio and would also explain the hiring needs.
This was all largely speculation until today, when Eurogamer revealed that "Work is underway on a brand new, big-budget Fable game," according to their sources.
We've heard the new Fable is planned as a story and character-focussed open-world action RPG. A significant investment in its development is also planned, with some 200 people set to work on the game at Playground's newly-established second office in Leamington Spa, Warwickshire.
If there is merit to these claims, this title would still be very early in development, with Playground Games still staffing up to meet the needs to develop such an ambitious game. According to Eurogamer's sources, Lionhead had wanted to make a story-driven singleplayer RPG in the vein of Fable III, but Legends was a free-to-play title with a heavy emphasis on multiplayer. The team reportedly was hoping they could move onto a supposed 'Fable 4' once Legends shipped, but that never materialized.
Fable co-creator Simon Carter commented on Eurogamer's story:
"On the one hand it's great for the UK games industry, and very pleasing that Fable isn't dead; indeed, it will be lovely to play one as a punter, without coming out in hives.
"On the other hand it is a little curious to get rid of the team that is uniquely expert in making Fable, and then try and make Fable. Fable is a weird game, and a tough one to deconstruct for a new team. That said, the team in question is very talented, and I'm sure they'll do a fantastic job."
Nothing is concrete at the moment, but it seems more and more likely that Fable may not be gone for good.