Game Spotlight: Fable for Xbox

by Beauty

Maxpower and I had the opportunity to preview Fable, which I?ve been eagerly anticipating for what feels like forever. This role-playing game (RPG) combines elements from the best games of the genre and takes them farther than any game has gone before. It promises to be a game of epic proportions, with seemingly endless choices and replay value. Fable is a game in which your actions affect your character?s skills, morality, and appearance, as with other RPGs such as Morrowind, and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. Unlike the latter games, however, your character in Fable ages from a small child to an elderly being. You can choose the path of good or evil, and see your choices reflected in your character?s appearance and reputation.

There are a number of character classes to choose from, revolving around weapons, magic, and stealth. Combat is real-time, and battle scars are permanent. You meet and interact with countless characters in this game, and your past deeds affect your reputation. This concept is similar to that introduced in games such as Morrowind and Black & White, but is taken to a new level. Characters may comment and react to your appearance and deeds through panic, flirtation, or anything in between. The game?s environments are highly interactive and include dynamic weather systems, evolving landscapes, and numerous people and creatures. Fable?s creators have aimed for new heights of realism, as they introduce the ability to start a family, acquire real estate and tattoos, and much more.

When I had the opportunity to take the game for a test drive, I found it exceeded all my expectations. The controls were easy to pick up, and the game play felt smooth and natural. The graphics were better than Morrowind?s as I expected, but more cartoon-ish and reminiscent of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time. A few elements in particular reminded me of Zelda: the third-person fighting style; and when you find an important object it displays in the center of the screen with a quick musical jingle. Gamers with short attention spans, be forewarned: there is a great deal of conversation and character interaction in Fable, although the character details and voice acting are top notch (you can also skip the cut scenes). If the fighting is what you?re interested in, you won?t be disappointed. There is good feedback control during the battles, which are smooth and visually impressive. There is more control over the battles than in, for example, Morrowind, or KOTOR, which should satisfy some of those games critics who were looking for more action in their RPG.

You also have all the game information you need at a moment?s notice. The screen packs in useful and detailed mini-maps, and you can also pause your game while you scroll through the menus and quest screens. Everything is easy to learn and intuitive, even for beginner players? we picked up the controls within minutes of starting the game. Both Maxpower and I agree; Fable is a must-buy for RPG and action fans this holiday season, no doubt about it.

  • Game Spotlight: Fable for Xbox
  • by Beauty
  • Published on September 1st, 2004

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