Fable is coming back to Xbox with Playground Games at the helm, but the franchise revival is not likely to magically appear from nowhere in 2021.
Fans of the Fable series were more than underserved in the Xbox One generation. Fable Legends was an odd turn into co-op multiplayer, which the people at Microsoft eventually canceled. Card game spin-off Fable Fortune couldn’t find an audience in the long run and shut off its servers in early 2020. A true follow-up to Fable 3 seemed less and less like a sure thing as the years went on, but a proper new entry finally revealed itself last year in one of Microsoft’s digital showcase streams. So, will Fable 4 find its way to Xbox Series X before the end of 2021?
The Fable revival will see a new studio take the helm, as Playground Games creates a new fantasy adventure in place of the shuttered Lionhead Studios. Playground is probably best known for Forza Horizon, and the last release in that series focused on driving through the stunning British countryside. While Fable takes place in a fantasy kingdom, it’s likely that a lot of that distinctly English landscaping will make its way into a new take on Albion.
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Other than the fact that the Forza Horizon team is stretching out beyond the steering wheel, the general public knows very little about the next entry in the Fable series. The reveal trailer is a CG tease at what’s to come, featuring a faerie, a sword, and a joke that’s very much in line with the franchise’s sense of humor. It’s likely that the game will have some sort of showing at the publisher’s showcase at E3 2021, perhaps even with gameplay. Even if it does show up there, it’s not a lock for a release at any point this year, and there’s good reason for that.
Why Fable’s Reboot Might Not Release In 2021
It’s known that Playground Games has been working on the new Fable since 2018, which means that it would release in 2021 under normal circumstances. However, because of the global COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the entire gaming industry had to shift to meet the demands of working from home. Microsoft delayed Halo Infinite into 2021’s holiday season, and it’s possible that the company wants its signature shooter to stand alone in that timeframe. It’s also possible that the game was delayed for reasons similar to Infinite, giving it more time to hit the mark it needs to in the hopes of reviving Fable as a vital Xbox franchise. It’s even possible that Fable 4 simply won’t be ready for years, as was claimed recently by an Xbox insider.
Considering that Fable 4 still hasn’t even had a public gameplay reveal, a release in 2021 is unlikely. That’s not to say that it’s impossible. However, it’s more likely that the publisher is being conservative and mapping out 2022 and beyond. If Xbox can add a huge game from Xbox Game Studios to Game Pass most months in 2022, the narrative about the console’s poor first-party output might begin to shift. If that happens, the Xbox team can put up a better fight against rivals at PlayStation and beyond. Fable is more ammo for that plan, and that could be reason enough to hold it back even in the unlikely event that it’s ready to go in 2021.
Next: Everything We Know About The Fable Reboot
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