Almost anyone who follows video games will know the name Peter Molyneaux. The British video game designer and programmer founded Lionhead Studios, the creator of the massive Fable franchise, and he developed quite the reputation for over-exalting upcoming games and promising the moon and the stars even when the final product didn’t end up meeting expectations.
Whether the man just wanted to do or say whatever it took to sell a game or if he simply had a childlike passion that led to his exaggerations is not clear, but you can’t deny that when he talked about his games, he made you as excited as he seemed to be about them.
But for better or worse, Molyneaux has decided to move on to new things, announcing his departure from the Microsoft-owned Lionhead for a new company called 22 Cans.
Molyneaux shared the news via the Twitter saying “I have left the lovely amazing Microsoft and Lionhead. Now for something really amazing, scary and brave a new company called 22 Cans,” later sharing that he made the decision when development on Fable: The Journey—the new installment of the franchise made for the Kinect motion gaming system—concluded, and that he did so with “mixed emotions.”
Then again, he was also quoted last year saying:
“I’m trying to think of a more diplomatic way of saying this, but I’m just a little bit bored of doing things the same way in games.
While I love all the drama of modern games, there is this sameness about it.”
So perhaps he wasn’t as heartbroken as led to believe by this decision. And perhaps if more focus was put into expanding upon the all-around greatness of the first Fable game and its RPG elements with fresh and creative new takes instead of dumbing it down with each new title, things wouldn’t have gotten so boring. And that’s said from someone who actually enjoyed all of the Fable games thus far, but who can also see where things have gone wrong and why fans have lost faith in the series.
As for the currently unannounced Fable IV, it’s still very much expected that Lionhead and Microsoft are in the process of developing it. One can only wonder now how much Molyneaux had to do with early ideas, concepts, and development, and if his departure from Lionhead will mean exciting new things for the Fable franchise or even more let downs.
What do you think about the departure of Peter Molyneaux from Lionhead Studios, and what do you think/hope it means for Fable IV?