Fable Legends, Microsoft’s cross-platform, free-to-play multiplayer game, has been canceled, and its developer Lionhead Studios may close, Microsoft has announced. Additionally, Press Play Studios will be closed as well.
Microsoft Studios Europe’s General Manager Hanno Lemke took to the Xbox Wire blog today to deliver the news:
After much consideration we have decided to cease development on Fable Legends, and are in discussions with employees about the proposed closure of Lionhead Studios in the UK. Additionally, we will close Press Play Studios in Denmark, and sunset development on Project Knoxville.
Fable Legends was a cooperative action RPG set in the Fable universe and was meant to show off many of the Xbox One’s features, including, as previously mentioned, cross-platform play between Xbox One and PC as well as making use of SmartGlass, Microsoft’s cloud features, and DirectX12.
The fate of Lionhead itself is a bit complicated due to the way businesses work in the U.K. As GameInformer notes, when a business is set to close in the UK, it has to go into a consultation period where it must work to avoid layoffs for a certain period, depending on the size of the company. So when they talk about proposed closure, that means that the studio is all-but-closed at this point, and going through the necessary motions to complete it.
Press Play Studios was best known for Max: The Curse of Brotherhood, and was currently developing Project Knoxville, an as-yet-unseen multiplayer game inspired by dystopian game show stories like The Hunger Games and Running Man.
There’s lots of great game development happening in the U.K. and northern Europe, so we hope that the teams behind those games can find new homes quickly and get back to work making great games.