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When Lionhead Studios' Peter Molyneux talks, people listen. His enthusiasm for games and RPGs is infectious, making it easy to get excited when Molyneux is talking up an upcoming Fable game. However, the designer's zeal for promoting his latest projects has gotten him in trouble at times, earning him a reputation as an exaggerator, a teller of tall tales who makes promises that his games can't keep.
But even though every Fable game developed under his lead has received overwhelmingly positive reviews and was well received, Molyneux always seems more than willing to speak candidly and critically about his titles' shortcomings. That's what we admire about him. And that's why we thought we'd pit Molyneux against his toughest critic of all: himself. So join us on a trip through time as we remember the joys of optimistic pre-release excitement, tempered by sharp post-release apologies and regrets...
“[Fable] is going to be the best game ever.”
“Children, your own children, are significant, very much so. But that’s all I’ll say about that for now.”
“Ah yes, the Force Push. It’s one of the first spells we designed actually, and one of the best.
– Peter Molyneux, 2003 Responding when asked if it will really be possible to push an opponent’s skeleton right out of their body.
“Everything I have said about Fable is absolutely true. Yes you can get married, yes you will have children, but the whole thing must follow the main story. It’s an RPG.”
– Peter Molyneux 2003
Useless Fact: The first Fable was called Project Ego during the early stages of development.
“In Fable we didn't really spend enough time on the story.”
“If I have mentioned any feature in the past which, for whatever reason, didn't make it as I described into Fable, I apologize. Every feature I have ever talked about WAS in development, but not all made it. Often the reason is that the feature did not make sense. For example, three years ago I talked about trees growing as time past. The team did code this but it took so much processor time (15%) that the feature was not worth leaving in. That 15 % was much better spent on effects and combat. So nothing I said was groundless hype, but people expecting specific features which couldn't be included were of course disappointed. If that's you, I apologize. All I can say is that Fable is the best game we could possibly make, and that people really seem to love it.”
"I think the first mistake with Fable 1 was that I really mistook the idea of game features as goodness. I just stuffed it full of game features and didn’t think about the mechanics of those features or how to explain them to people or how to exploit them in the story. I can remember going into meetings three months before the game was on the shelves and saying, 'I’ve just had this brilliant idea, why don’t we do this?' That was just insane, man."
– Peter Molyneux, 2010