Goodbye, Lionhead: studio officially closes

Fable, Black & White and The Movies developer originally founded in 1996 by Peter Molyneux
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In news that is unsurprising, but painful all the same, Lionhead Studios has closed its doors for good.

Microsoft first announced that it was considering the nearly 20-year-old studio for closure at the start of March, as a consultation period for at-risk staff is required by UK law.

However, the company has now confirmed to Eurogamer that no buyers for the developer were found in time, leading to Lionhead’s shutdown.

"We can confirm that after much consideration over the six week consultation period with Lionhead employees, we have reached the decision to close Lionhead Studios,” a representative said in a statement.

“We have nothing but heart-felt thanks for the team at Lionhead for their significant contributions to Xbox and the games industry."

Multiple other companies have stepped in following the news to offer their help to Lionhead staff, with Sony and Ubisoft both holding job fairs in Guildford.

Staff have also been sharing their condolences and memories on Twitter and social media.

Former art chief John McCormack recently highlighted the potential silver lining of the studio’s closure, suggesting it ‘could be exciting for the UK indie scene’.

In fact, subsequent reports suggested that cancelled release Fable Legends could live on at an indie spin-off formed by ex-Lionhead devs.

Meanwhile, Team17 MD Debbie Bestwick pointed a finger at the growing risk of triple-A development as one of the causes behind the fate of Lionhead, Evolution and FreeStyle.

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