The sixth episode of the Power On The Story of Xbox documentary includes a segment dedicated to Lionhead Studios, a British team purchased by Microsoft in 2006 and closed in 2016 among great controversy. Several key figures of the company reflected on that period and on the precise choice, defining the closure of the study as a false step.
Shannon Loftis, at the time General Manager of Global Games Publishing in Xbox, says that closing Lionhead was a misstep: “after Fable, people wanted more. Fable was a success and that’s why we bought Lionhead. Everybody went crazy about Fable 2, but then with Kinect things didn’t go the right way. Fable The Journey was a project carried on with great passion but that did not include those elements that made Fable and Fable 2 of the big hits.”
Sarah Bond, Head of Game Creator Experiences at Xbox Ecosystem, has long thought about closing Lionhead: “We bought Lionhead in 2006 and closed the studio ten years later. What have we learned and how can we not repeat the same mistakes?”
Phil Spencer also said: “What have we learned? When you buy a study, your commitment is to make sure that they can produce what they can do best in the shortest possible time, accelerating and simplifying their work.”
The Lionhead studio was closed in 2016 after the cancellation of Fable Legends for Xbox One, today Peter Molyneux (founder of the studio) founded the 22Cans team and just announced the new Legacy game while Fable is preparing to