Peter Molyneux, the game designer behind the Fable franchise, is working on Project Milo. The game is about a relationship with a young boy. Yep!
According to Molyneux, there are "huge mountains" with the subject matter. "The reason for that is it is enormously contentious for us to do a game, a story, an experience, about a boy," he tells USA Today. "You are immediately appealing to all the dark thoughts of humanity." Molyneux is right, because for better or worse, befriending a young boy probably makes many people think of this:
And then this!
Which isn't really fair to Project Milo. But Molyneux seems to relish the challenge. "I actually love that, the idea of being so contentious that it makes people turn around and say, 'You can't do a story about a boy.' But for me, doing that in that way is absolutely right."
It is all about how the story is framed and how the subject matter is approached. Take Pixar's film Up! "If I described for you this story," the game designer explains, "'It's about an old man and a Boy Scout, strangers meeting and living together and going on adventures, you'd say, 'You can't do that. It's out of the question.' What you look for in drama and story is uniqueness and you look for experiences that people haven't had before and I think it's good to get it on a contentious level."
Somewhere between three and four hours of Milo is at "release quality", but Molyneux says he doesn't think of Project Milo as a boxed product at the moment. Rather, he sees it as a "very, very big tech demo". In June 2010, Microsoft exec Aaaron Greenberg said that Milo is "not a game that we're planning to bring to market". Greenberg later told Kotaku, "Project Milo absolutely continues in development at Lionhead Studios. It is just not a product we plan to bring to market this holiday."