Ex-Lionhead devs announce Fable Fortune, a free-to-play Fable card game [Updated]

Update: The Kickstarter campaign is now live, with a more detailed breakdown of Flaming Fowl's plans for Fable Fortune and a breakdown of some basic mechanics, as well as the usual reward tiers and stretch goals. The campaign description also notes that achieving the Kickstarter goal will enable the team "to head safely into Closed Beta," but notes that it "may still need to look elsewhere to organize the final funding," depending on how much the campaign ultimately brings in.

The Fable Fortune Kickstarter campaign runs until June 28. The pitch video is below.

Original story:

Lionhead is gone, but the Fable name may live on—although not in the way you might expect. It turns out that Lionhead had spent well over a year prior to its closure working on a free-to-play Fable collectible card game called Fable Fortune, and IGN reports that a handful of former Lionhead devs have set up an indie studio to finish and release it. 

It doesn't sound like Fable Fortune will stray too far from the basic formula of Hearthstone, with players building decks and using them in ever more complex and devious ways to reduce their opponents' health to zero. But developer Flaming Fowl Studios, founded by Fable veterans Craig Oman, Mike West, and Marcus Lynn, hopes to make it stand out from the crowd with 3D art, an online co-op mode against AI bosses, leveled cards, and enhancements like mid-match "quests," such as playing certain card types or making good/evil choices that can change your hero, powers, or cards. It will also lean heavily on the Fable name, using characters, locations, and “in-jokes” from throughout the game's history.   

“We're looking to build this game with the fans, and then potentially morph and change things about the game over time,” West said. “This is our starting position. We need to find out what people want from a CCG, and we're ready to talk to them.” 

Flaming Fowl has Microsoft's permission to use the Fable license for the game, but apparently not its financial support. There will therefore be a Kickstarter campaign, scheduled to get underway on May 31, with a goal of £250,000 ($366,000). A closed beta is expected to begin a few weeks after the campaign ends, followed by an open beta on the PC and Xbox One in October, and full release sometime in 2017.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.