I recall saying a few weeks back that even though Lionhead was gone, there was no way that Fable would be gone forever. Microsoft knows how profitable the franchise is and would eventually farm the IP out to one of its studios, turns out that studio would be Lionhead.
Well, technically it would be the newly formed Flaming Fowl, an indie studio made up of ex-Lionhead devs.
In an interview with IGN, founders Craig Oman, Mike West and Marcus Lynn talked about their new game Fable Fortune, a collectible card game set in the Fable universe.
The game has actually been in development for quite a while, says West. The game was originally pitched as a mini-game within Fable 2 when the idea was eventually rejected. Then in 2014 production began on the game with Mediatonic, another London developer. It wasn’t until the announced closure of Lionhead that the team decided to shift all their focus onto the game.
Much like Blizzard’s Hearthstone, Fable Fortune will have a set of heroes with specific powers that players can choose from, but that is were the comparisons end. One of the bigger differences is that Fable Fortune will feature mid-games quests, usually “play this card” or “do this thing”. Completing these quest will give players a Morality option, a big part of the franchise, which will change how the player’s hero acts (i.e augmenting their power) and cause certain cards morph into another more powerful version.
The game will also have a co-op mode where two players can face-off against an A.I controlled boss with a themed deck as well as a leveling system for cards and a 3D art style.
You can see an early build in action over at IGN.
Even though Microsoft is still owns the Fable IP that doesn’t mean that they will be producing the game. To help fund the game Flaming Fowl is turning to Kickstarter.
Fable Fortune kickstarter will start tomorrow with a goal of £250,000 (roughly $278,425) and run for four weeks. As said in the demo, the main goal is to get all of the heroes in and work from there. Once that has been funded, the team will move on to other aesthetic things like speech for the cards and messing around with the board during the game (much like what Hearthstone does).
The other goal for the game is to give fans a lot of input during its development. As Mike West said, they want fans to tell them what they want from the game, since it’s being made for them.
We’re looking to build this game with the fans, and then potentially morph and change things about the game over time. This is our starting position – we need to find out what people want from a CCG, and we’re ready to talk to them.
Fans who choose to back the game will be able to take part in these discussions with special forums.
Right now Flaming Fowl expects to release Fable Fortune sometime in October 2017 for Xbox One and PC with a beta to come a few weeks after the campaign ends.
Whether this game can compete with the ever popular Hearthstone is up to the players to decide, but Fable fans will definitely be happy to see the franchise come back.