GamesRadar "Now, while it probably wasn't a surprise for Xbox boss Phil Spencer, he was clearly not giving anything away at last week's Xbox Spring Showcase when we asked how Fable Legends was going, and if we'd ever see another numbered Fable?"
"All quiet on the western front"
"The thing around Legends that I'm committed to is I want to make sure its release matches the expectations" I guess people weren't expecting it to release? Unbelieveable that he said that just a few days ago.
Not really unbelievable at all. What did you expect him to say? "OK you got me, Lionhead really has crapped the bed on this one and we are thinking of shutting down studio?" Any executive is going to say something similar to what Phil said in a similar situation.
Yeah nothing he said was wrong, in fact he alluded to the game needing to meet quality expectations for release, so it seems something didn't pan out, although from my point of view the game looked great...beta impressions were very positive too.
That high level PR speak. Normal people would have said "We will have more details soon" or "yeah, it being cancelled"
@Eonjay in no way shape or form would he have said "its being cancelled" at press event prior to them actually telling the studio and personnel themselves that the game and studio was being shut down.
Hey Nix, "...in terms of quality..." is the part of the sentence right after your partial quote. Not sure how you could have missed it, really. Clearly, expectations references the quality of the title, not whether or not it releases. Is there any particular reason for you to misconstrue the meaning of Phil's statement by omitting crucial parts of the sentence? Edit: Just saw earlier news about the official closing of Lionhead and cancellation of Fable Legends, so your post makes more sense now. I apologize, but this article was rather vague in covering that part of the story and made it appear as if the title was still being worked on. Your context makes a lot more sense now.
You realise in this respect he isn't just a "normal person" right? This is a huge deal and a massive shock to the Fable team, if he said no comment and the guys at Lionhead saw that it would be so much worse for him and them. This really sucks for all the team who have been working on this years. The hard truth is I don't think it would have delivered, it was already free to play and sadly Lionhead has been slipping for some time now, they just had to make the hard decision to end it before anymore money was spent.
@Dlacy13g how about the truth MS just proves to me over and over that they are not to be trusted. As an Xb1 owner I'm left shaking my head more than I'd like lately.
I agree he should of been honest and at least said something more along the lines of. "We will have some news about Lionhead Studio and Fable legends in the coming weeks."
a very politician-like answer. He said the truth but not the whole truth.
Baffling; I cant believe how much MS executives lie to your face only to be exposed later. And gullible fanboys really believe whatever they say. Just last week fanboys were using his clarification to argue that if Spencer says Windows 10 will be open then it will be open platform. Darth72 was especially eager to prove me wrong even though I was talking about upgradeable consoles. You guys see now how much weight Spencer's words actually have and if they really mean anything Darth72? Just last week he says he is committed to releasing this game and this week it is cancelled. Mind blowing. Can we trust him that Windows 10 platform will be open or there will be another Xbox? Or they are releasing upgradeable consoles for the benefit of the consumer? His word has no value whatsoever. It is as if he has no idea of and power over what actually goes on in the company and is just a PR guy OR that he is a really big liar.
@Griever "Just last week he says he is committed to releasing this game and this week it is cancelled." You seriously need to re-read the quote of what Phil said he was committed too. "it's been in beta for a while, and we're watching the engagement numbers. The thing around Legends that I'm committed to is I want to make sure its release matches the expectations in terms of quality that our customers deserve. So it's not about releasing something because it's on a poster, because there was a date posted somewhere." Unless you have a different quote that you are referring to and like to share that with us here. Griever, we know you like to associate everything that is wrong in your own opinion with video games today with MS. But every company shuts down studios or cancels projects, do you really expect these companies to tell us, the public the inner workings of what goes on and why? Would that even satisfy you with your extreme view that MS is some evil corporation out to rule the world through Xbox? Stop associating your own bias and your soap box grand standing with every bit of news that comes out for MS. There's no easy way for any person in power to handle a situation when and where people lose their jobs or their project is canceled and it's certainly not for the general public to know beforehand.
What he said is being either spinNed or misinterpreted. He said he would like it to meet expectations, but apparently it is not meeting his expectations so he decided that the studio is not delivering and decided to shut the whole thing down. If the game was released as a turd, the critics would be even more harsh. Gess there is just no way for him to win around these parts.
I'd say chances are he knew it was a possibility, but chances are also high there was no definitive answer to if MS was going to drop the project, and potentially LH. Given that, what he said seemed to imply that it could be a quality issue, and possibly it just wasn't up to standards, and he was still under the impression he would be able to get it up to those standards. I don't think the dev went out to deceive anyone, he probably just wasn't 100% sure, so it would be premature for him to state something which may not come to pass, as it would cause more problems.
Good ole Phil. Keeping those Microsoft suits happy.
An awkward situation for any pr guy to deal with to be honest. He couldn't win here...damned if he did, damned if he didn't
PR garbage at its best.. I remember he said that gears of war licence became irrelevant. A few weeks later they buy the licence and it became relevant all of a sudden..
Lets just remember he doesn't get to pick and choose what he says in relation to these things, like almost everything else everything is discussed and agreed upon by a Board or people who specialize in PR talk. Its like when ppl praise him for turning around Xbox lol he didnt turn nothing around, that was decided after the initial slaughtering and Board meetings where many people had a say in the direction that Xbox "had" to go in order to salvage itself or burn.
I've had beta access to that game for about 6 months, I've played it about 3 times and have little or no desire to play it again. The game wasn't good, it wasn't going to anyones expectations
phil spencer has created a good image for himself but now his armor is starting to show cracks
can't blame the guy though. I think the higher ups have something else in their plan for Phil's division and he has little to no say about it. I have no doubt he's genuinely a gamer at heart and is working his hardest to steer the Xbox brand in the right direction but it's now looking like he's losing his grip over what he visions the Xbox brand would be because it differs to what the bosses want it to be. Xbox division has been bleeding money from the get go but the higher ups are looking at a particular part of it that continues to make money which is the XBL! that's why they are now looking like they are phasing out the hardware but trying to preserve XBL on Windows where their money is made!
What the hell is with the him being a good guy or bad guy ? He's the head of Xbox, of course he gon say PR stuffs, he doesn't want to lose his job by saying what he's not supported to.
badz149 I agree with you 1000000000% i think he is being pressured into making some decisions that he otherwise wouldn't have made. When the new CEO for MS took over there were rumors that investors wanted xbox brand to be sold off i am not saying that will happen but i think MS will focus more on PC moving forward. I don't think high ups really understand that if they actually give phil a chance he can make xbox a huge brand and make it more profitable but i think the last 2 people who ran xbox brand just gave it such a bad image and PR that now phil is having to deal with the after affects
@show &badz149 I want to agree with you guys but I'm a firm believer that if you are forbidden from materializing your personal goals no matter how pure and good-intended you are and you are forced to violate your work ethics then you should step down and retain your dignity and respect towards your fans/supporters. If Phil wants to do good by us and the xbox in general and MS higher ups resist or force him to grant their corporate needs then he needs to step down. Phil will be judged when his time comes, for now lets see how all this plays out.
I feel bad for the devs, looks like the cancellation came right out of nowhere. Which is a shame - the game looked good, and without Lionhead we'll probably never see another Fable.
Oh cmon, it was in beta forever they clearly weren't meeting deadlines.
Lionhead never had any problem cranking up the games before so all of a sudden a solid dependable developer just forgets how to make deadlines,that what you want me to believe?
Like I said before, Phil Spencer says alot of things. I'm not sure he knows what committed even means. You can't pledge commitment towards something and then cancel it next week. Just like you can't deepen your commitment to Xbox One by sending all your games to Windows.
Huh? He said this: " So it's not about releasing something because it's on a poster, because there was a date posted somewhere." Or, as it turns out, releasing it all." Read the last bit.
At least take the whole quote. "He continues to say, "it's been in beta for a while, and we're watching the engagement numbers. The thing around Legends that I'm committed to is I want to make sure its release matches the expectations in terms of quality that our customers deserve." Being committed to make sure it's a quality release and then cancelling the project and axing the developers next week, is not commitment.
You only read what you want to read, huh?
Well he did say he wanted: "to make sure its release matches the expectations in terms of quality that our customers deserve." -that's hardly saying "YES it's going great, it will release soon"= No he didn't say that did he? Although the game looked fantastic its quite possible there were some underlying issues and perhaps financial issues as well, who knows? I'm as upset as any about this news but unless you know what happened behind the scenes complete with the financial situation then you're just trolling, sad because when Sony closes a studio myself & most gamers regardless of preference just wish those employees who are affected well, when it's Microsoft then it's a bunch of fanboy BS, weird how that works, but karma says what goes around comes around so I'll just keep wishing everyone the best.
No one in their right mind would interpret that to mean that the game is being cancelled next week and the staff will be laid off. And seeing the Reactions from Lionhead studios, they didn't interpret his answer to mean that either.
Obviously no one thought the statements made last week indicated the game would be cancelled. We can see in hindsight that it wasn't praise for the game either since reading it after the announced closure it seems pretty clear things weren't going as well as they wanted. Phil's reply was clearly deflection since they weren't sure or weren't ready to make the decision or announcement.
"Committed to make sure it's a quality release and then cancelling the project and axing the developers next week." Well couldn't that mean that Fable Legends didn't live up to what Phil's commitment? Maybe the quality wasn't there and that is why it was cancelled. This game was in development for a long time. Almost since the the beginning of Xbox One. Sad to see a studio close and a game cancelled but there must have been some huge problems with development.
If it wasn't a problem with development, remember, this is a business. There could be problems with just it being something profitable. The game itself already has competitors out there, including Neverwinter on the XBO itself (which is F2P in design just like Fables was going to be). I don't discount Phil for doing his job, but this is why you have to take certain things from everyone with a grain of salt. They're not going to pull the plug or say anything negative about a project until that decision is made to pull the plug. Sony wasn't saying Vita TV was dead until it was (heck, even then, they just kinda killed it without saying anything). Zune wasn't dead until it was. This is business and this is why PR comments are just that. At any time, something we just don't see can change the reality and that's how it works.
"There could be problems with just it being something profitable." I completely agree with this. When I first heard the game was F2P I even wondered to myself how the heck where they going to pull this off. Didn't see much interest in the game to begin with (at least with me) and then asking people to stick with it and then support it through a F2P model just seemed odd to me.
@Dash Arrivals... i mean any other random person on this site, "sometimes you just have to call things what they are..." No matter how stupid or ill-informed it might be? No thanks, I try not to just rant about things that happen ALL the time in the business world. "Speak up. Don't tow the company line on every damn thing. Let your voice be heard." You're right! How dare they cancel a game that I had very little to no interest in. Phil lied to me and didn't tell me ahead of time that they were cancelling this game! How dare Phil not tell me before his actual employees who actually work for MS. "This is another strange and prick move by MS." So is it also a strange and prick move when Sony shuts down BIG blue Studio, Studio Liverpool, or took All Stars away from Superbot or when they sold off SOE? How about the many studios EA, Activision and Zynga close down what seems like everyday. How about the many studios and companies that are shut down in life! "They should have just taken the 'hit' and released this game and continued to support it, for the good of the gamer." Awesome business sense 101 you have there. Release a F2P game that has no interest, no support and absolutly zero anticipation and just take the "hit" for the good of the gamer...even though hardly any gamer would play this game. Any other inside "on your way to make your first million" business knowledge you want to share Dash?
So that means fire the whole team?
commitment is as strong as potential financial strength the game has. This game didn't. I don't think the game had a lot of consistent active users based on the long wait times. This is a mobile game on a console. Not really a good idea and ms fin ally realized it. Fable legends from the get go was t a good idea imo
Oh god ! This is just "sign". I don't really like this.
Same the signs are pointing to something that I don't like.
Phil needs to come clean on what happened to Fable. I even mentioned before MS E3 is looking very shaky how much are they gonna show at the event? What other games could get canceled? How many games will get revealed just to get canceled couple years later? I'm probably jumping to conclusions but I always tell it like it is because this is very disturbing and upsetting news for me a as a gamer.
It has been in alpha/beta for a 1.5 years, they missed several deadlines. I predicted this happening, but I didn't think the studio would close because of it.
According to the article, Lionhead restructured their studio to the point all they could do is a FTP version of Fable. Obviously that was a very risky move to make since the cancellation of the game also resulted in the shut down of the studio.
Yeah i was starting to suspect somethig too. They havent released anything for 3.5 years and this game doesnt justify that dev cycle.
Fable Legends most likely got.cancelled because of quality control. Chances are, it was turning out to be rather shit and not worth investing in any further.
Phil did say he wanted to make AAA's that make an impact. I don't ubderstand why they just didn't go with a traditional Fable 4 sequel.
He said in an interview that the team had consolidated and weren't big enough to do a next gen full-fledged RPG.
Well that was my impression of the game since it was announced. But that explains the game being cancelled but not the studio being closed. Something else is going on here.
"What other games could get canceled? How many games will get revealed just to get canceled couple years later?" See that's the main issue from where I'm standing, it's not about the immediate impact of a game's cancellation or a game no longer being a full exclusive, its about the damage done to consumer trust. How people can still quote Spencer's words as concrete proof of anything is beyond me. When there is lie after lie & half truth after half truth, where does it honestly end? When a game as heavily marketed as Fable Legends has its plug pulled during its release window, how can any gamer trust that the same couldn't happen for literally any other game? What game will be next? Crackdown could easily fit the same bill, a game that will go into beta & if it doesn't "live up to expectations for the full release", then that one could get canned as well going solely off of MS' own track record & history. It's not about MS being consumer forward by not releasing subpar products, its about MS being intelligent enough as a company to realize its visions or tweak them into something worthwhile.
At this point, MS either has to have a lot of unannounced releases, or some major news about it's console for E3, otherwise there won't be much going on for them there. GeOW, Scalebound, Forza, SoT, and probably one I'm forgetting are the only known titles I can see making any sort of buzz, and it's rather rare for more than 2-3 new 1st party games to be announced at a single E3, and chances are, only one of those new game announcements would even show up this year. This leaves MS showing off a lot of 3rd party multi-plat stuff, which is rather ho-hum in terms of getting excitement for the console...particularly since it seems like Sony already secured the big guns for the mainstream. It's always great to see new things from stuff we know is coming, but I can't imagine what MS can do to generate buzz from it's games unless they have a bunch of 2nd party stuff going on we don't know about. It's usually those new game announcements that get the most excitement going, and I can't imagine their show is going to be awesome with some known titles, a few new announcements, and their future plans for one platform(which is likely to be a rather big focus of the show).
What boss or head of a company actually announces or hints they are going to close a studio or cancel a game? Of course Phil isn't going to express his disappointment or plans to shut down a studio beforehand.
ata the same time, they could have easily not done interviews for anything related to Fable or LH
So someone comes up to a person and asks how this game is progressing and you don't say anything? That would give off more warning bells and cause mass exodus if anything.
And when he is talking to them about other things and they say "oh by the way, how's Fable coming?" Phil: "Oh damn, you got me. We're cancelling that next week, you weren't supposed to ask."
LMFAO! @G-Red agreed. Interviewer- "Phil, by the way, how is Fable doing?" Phil- O_O!!! "....." (slowly stands up....walks away)
could have been something on the terms of "we are focusing on the games showed during the showcase, and will be speaking about other Xbox games in the near future" im not in PR so i dont know how to spin these things.
Yeah but giving people hope that they are still committed to the games development and quality then canceling it is even worse. I'd much rather some transparency and give some honest answers. We haven't heard much from Crackdown 3 in the last few months is that the next game on their hit list?
I don't like hearing studios close either but this is the business world. There must have been warning signs already that we the public weren't aware of. The game has been in development forever and not even a real release date was established. You'll never hear honest answers or see transparency, that's just how it is. I don't think that not hearing a game for a couple of months means it's in trouble. We haven't heard a lot from a few games, I wouldn't worry about them either.
Also before telling the employees that they're going to be let go. Totally nonsensical that people in this thread expect that... Totally bummed about this though. One thing that I wish they tried instead of Legends is Fable 4. RIP :(
Always thought this guy looks sneaky and dishonest. It's in his eyes and fake smile.
No, just clean your glasses.
I bet Kaz looks like the pope to you.
Nah its just that this guy absolutely riles up Sony fanboys. They've been DESPERATE to hate on him but then love up for the likes of Boyes (LOL)
He's a suit, nothing more.. I find it funny when people have any faith on anything these corporate suits say. He's not your friend and he doesn't give à F about you. BTW Gotta love that damage control already going at full force.
No he doesn't but the lies and mistrust are what is going to get MS into some deep water later on down the road. It's not good when you start this gen on everyone sh** list because of trying to control all gamers and make sure everyone is online only and just when you really start to turn things around, you have a good pace going, good games releasing and updates that make the system better you start lying and acting shady? Not good, though I'm sure from a business stand point they had a very good reason, some transparency with your consumers who are supposed to trust what you say does go along way.
"it's been in beta for a while, and we're watching the engagement numbers. The thing around Legends that I'm committed to is I want to make sure its release matches the expectations in terms of quality that our customers deserve." I believe I understand why they axed the studio and the game. Basically based off feedback from the testers they realized that the game wasn't good enough for consumers. So they axed the game and at the same time got rid of the studio to prevent this from happening in the future Xbox One customers don't deserve to play bad games which is why Phill made the correct decision. They are essentially improving the quality of their games portfolio by eliminating lower quality IPs. That isn't a bad thing to do in my opinion.