Fable Legends is a multiplayer take on the fantasy world first envisaged by Lionhead Studios way, way back in 2004.
It's a game where four heroes set out on an epic quest against a villain - only you get to play both sides. That is you can either be one of the four heroes, working bravely to survive or flip the script and be the evil one who is trying to thwart their every move. It sounds like a fun idea and the gameplay released so far makes it look fast, fun and colourful, in that special way the Fable series has always been.
Today, the biggest news yet has been announced - Fable Legends is going to be free-to-play.
For a major release from a massive studio like Lionhead, that's a pretty significant move. As you can probably tell in this annoucement by the games directorDavid Eckelberry.
Naturally, there will be a way for the developers to make money from the game as well - it all comes down to silver and gold...
In Fable Legends, there will be many different items, weapons and more available to buy. This includes which monsters you use as the villain and which heroes you embody on the other side of the divide. As you play the game, you'll earn silver for completing quests and (were guessing here) bashing open chests and these can be used to buy anything you want in the game. That's worth saying again - everything you could ever need to play the game can be bought with the free, in game silver currency.
Now all these things are also available by using gold - which comes from real world money. Yes from your actual wallets. So, in the proud tradition of micro-transactions, you can spend some of your own money to get that shiny sword or awesome ability faster. Given that the base game is totally free and there's no subscription, it seems totally fair that people would be encouraged to lay down some dosh if they really like the game.
There are other elements at play too, like the hero roster. The final game will include a huge cast of heroes which you can choose to play as but the free version will only have four unlocked at a time. These four options will rotate on a regular basis, meaning you'll get to play as all of them eventually, and progress with each character is saved until he or she comes back into rotation again. Once more, this seems like a fair trade-off - allowing more casual players to dip into the game and enjoy it.
We don't yet know what the real-world cost of anything in Fable Legends would be, but its reasonable to assume that it will be far less than the regular retail price of a AAA game.
Fable Legends is set for release on Xbox One and Windows 10 some time in 2015.