Fable II's episodic experiment seems to have been a success, because Lionhead and Microsoft will be doing the same thing with upcoming Xbox RPG Fable III, releasing the game in downloadable chapters over Xbox Live.

It won't replace the retail version, of course, as it'll be shipping shortly afterwards. But it'll be a nice complement to people who are on the fence about spending $50-60 up-front on the game.

"Soon after the retail launch we're doing episodic", series creator Peter Molyneux told GI.biz. "We break it down in chapters. We give away the first chapter entirely free, the first hour. When you reach a certain point in the game it says 'thank you for playing the pilot of Fable 3, do you want to spend an extra 2-5 or whatever dollars to buy the next episode, or buy the whole lot?' Press 'yes' and you will immediately continue playing."

These comments clarify statements made by Molyneux earlier in the year, which suggested Lionhead would try something a little different. Guess not!


Microsoft targets 5m Fable III sales, profits of $150m [GI.biz]