Lionhead Studios, the developer behind the hugely successful Fable role-playing games, is to be closed by Microsoft, according to a blog post published on the official Xbox news site today.
Hanno Lemke, General Manager of Microsoft Studios Europe, reported this as one of several “difficult changes”, which also include the cancellation of Fable Legends, Lionhead’s previously intended next addition to its flagship franchise. Lemke insisted: “These have been tough decisions and we have not made them lightly, nor are they a reflection on these development teams”.
It’s a historic moment in gaming, as Lionhead had originally been co-founded by industry veteran Peter Molyneux in 1996 – ten years before it was acquired by Microsoft. Several of the studio’s early titles, including Black & White and Fable: The Lost Chapters, were available for Mac OS X as well as Windows.