Product Type: Microsoft Xbox 360 games
Newest Review: ... England full of magic, swordfights, sexual innuendos and chicken chasing. Fable 2 is a very easily accessible RPG, set 500 yea... more
And so our journey begins.
Fable II (Xbox 360)
Member Name: peckinpigeon
Fable II (Xbox 360)
Date: 21/07/11, updated on 21/07/11 (23 review reads)
Advantages: Something different for the Role playing genre
Disadvantages: some may not like the style or features
Peter Molyneux's second installment of fable, set 500 years after the events of the first, you follow the story (male OR female this time) of Sparrow, you begin life as a child urchin in the big city of Bowerstone. After acquiring a magic music box, and using it to make a wish, you and your sister Rose are taken to the castle Fairfax, where the evil Lucien has been alerted by the magic from the box, claiming that you and your sister are "Heroes of Albion" he shoots your sister, he shoots sparrow also but he/she falls backward through the castle window and plummets to the ground.
You are rescued and raised by a gypsy fortune teller. and she tells you of the "heroes of Albion" and how you must become the greatest hero in all the land (bedtime story anyone?). And so your journey begins.
After a couple of missions to set the scene and teach you the game mechanics, your pretty much left to your own devices, there are so many features outside the main storyline you'll be kept occupied for hours, you can take up a job to earn gold, such as smithing or woodcutting, later you'll be able to become a bar tender and pull pints for the locals. With said gold you can buy properties and rent them out, or run businesses, get married to anyone you like, have children with them and then slaughter them all if you fancy, or bring them home little pressies (you can take the missus to bed to, it's not graphic though). You can carry out side missions for the locals or other people in need around Albion, most of the side missions are a good laugh to do and have there own little story behind them. Or you could just go explore Albion and take down Bandits until the end of creation, there is no time limit in Fable 2.
It's not the worlds most graphically advanced game, but i think it wins there because of it's individual style, it has a 3d comic style and the whole game and the world of Albion itself really fits nicely into the graphical style, on top of that there aren't many clipping issues and the camera work is good. The individual style that the Fable series in general has, i guess is down to taste, personally i quite like it.
In this second installment you'll be accompanied by a dog, a very good dog at that, he never gets in your way during combat, plus he'll sniff out treasure and help take out your foes, you can train him up using books found around Albion or in shops. You don't even have to look after him or break out the pooper scooper if you don't want to because he'll never roll over dead, even if you don't keep a steady supply or treats coming his way. Some people will love the furry little cutie pie and furnish him with doggy snacks and pet him right through the game, and some people won't like him so much, scold him and withhold the scooby snacks, none of it has any affect on the game, so ultimately you shouldn't even feel guilty if you just ignore him altogether. He's there for fun and occasionally to help drive the story on a little bit, so just enjoy him.
There are collectibles all over Albion, 50 gargoyles to hunt down and destroy, destroying a certain number gives you access to a secret area to obtain some treasure such as gold and weapons. There are also demon doors who require you to perform a certain action to open them, to acquire more treasures, and there are 50 silver keys to find, use them to open treasure chests to obtain... yup... more treasure. Also there are a handful of magic statues, each with a riddle which must be solved.
So... are you loved or hated in Albion? As you traverse the world performing noble or evil actions and completing quests, your popularity in Albion will rise or lower as the case may be. For a little boost in popularity you can stand in the town square or tavern and dance for the people, or pay a bard to sing about how great you are, or you could woo the shopkeepers into giving you a little discount in there stores.
Alternatively you could mooch about and beg for money, or even extort money out of the them, chase after people, and even slap them about a bit!
All of this goes on outside the main storyline, and a lot of people consider this simply "faffing around" but my personal opinion is if you enjoy that sort of thing then my lord will you love the Fable series, it's sometimes like an incredibly elaborate and dare i say far more entertaining SIM's like game in a lovely fantasy setting.
So besides all that, there is a storyline, and it's that you basically must become the greatest hero in Albion, so getting into tons of scraps is a good plan, and you tailor your hero by earning experience orbs, which burst out of slain enemies and scatter over the floor, you need to hoover them up like a cat sucking treats out of the shag carpet (i didn't buy the shag carpet it was there when we moved in thank you very much).
These "orbs" can be allocated into three areas, using the swords and hammers gives you blue orbs for strength based abilities (more damage and combat techniques), using the guns and crossbows gives you yellow orbs, for speed and accuracy based attributes, and using magic gives you red orbs, for more spells and adding power to spells you already have. Fear not though, you won't be pigeon holed into one area of expertise because each fight yeilds a scattering of twinkly green orbs that can be allocated anywhere.
The look of your character changes when you acquire attributes in the three areas, using melee combat and acquiring strength attributes makes you look more muscular, using ranged weapons and associated attributes grants you more height, and using magic has a variety of little effects on your character, using fire magic blackens your hands and face, and lightning magic has you sporting glowy lightning shaped marks all over your body!
The combat itself is wonderfully simple affair, X is your melee combat button, Y for your ranged attack, and B for magic, holding down B gives you an area of effect magic attack (spam spam spam, spiced pork and ham), so the combat can be spiced up by chopping and changing attack modes to take out different enemies. Should you fall in battle, you'll be revived, but any experience orbs scattered on the ground will be lost forever, and you'll be sporting a scar somewhere on your body, if your not a big fan of battle scarred warriors, you might be lucky enough to stumble on a "scar vanishing potion" so Fable has an answer for everything!
You can heal yourself in battle with potions or food, but beware, chomping fatty treats like pies and steaks will plump up your character, if you don't like the plump look you'll have to start munching celery and carrots to slim down again!
Another thing on giving your character a distinctive look apart from buying and acquiring new clothes, is how you play the story, if you go a' rampaging and marauding you'll turn pale as a vampire with an evil look in your eyes. Buying propery and raising the rent, or extorting and threatening the townsfolk will turn you corrupt, covered in acne and flies will buzz around your grubby person! whereas if you rescue grannies kitty from a tree and generally act pure and good, handing out money to beggars and strangely, eating tofu, will give you perfect complexion and a glowing Halo. A nice little touch was being both evil and corrupt had you sporting a dark craggy complexion with lava scars and horns worthy of old Nick himself!
I've gone on and on about the extras in Fable and as i say if you like this sort of malarky you'll love Fable 2, for those looking for a rich storyline i don't think you'll be disappointed either. I really enjoyed the main storyline, it's nice and simple, but well thought out with a couple of little twists to keep you going, and the characters all have there own quirks and eccentricities. The voice acting is superb, and the type of game that benefits most from good voice acting is an RPG, it's quite comical most of the time, and oddly all the townspeople speak with a Bristol accent so there's plenty of humour in the games script, so it's not the dark fantasy style western RPG that's so popular with developers these days.
Overall iv'e found myself saying "if you like this sort of thing" quite a lot, but when looking at some of the criticism of the Fable series in general, I felt it was a little too harsh on Fable when it came to the features in the game, so ultimately Fable 2 is what it is, an action RPG/life slim (with a Bristol accent) with a rich game world and fun accessable gameply.
Fable 2 is what it is, you'll love it, or you'll hate it.
Summary: Crisp and refreshing, the Carlsberg of RPG's
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