As you’ve probably seen already, I went to the Fable 2 Launch last Thursday by Microsoft, and along with having a blast, I was also given an early retail copy of Fable 2. (We even showed you an unboxing of the game!) It took me a week and a day to finish the story alone! Yes, that’s how long it is!Â Before we start the review, if you have yet to start Fable 2, get these items, and then start playing!Â So lets get started with graphics, the first thing everyone wants to know about!Â Keep in mind, I will echo the early impressions I had in the Fable 2 Launch post.
The game, looks amazing, and even better, are the cutscenes which look utterly stunning.Â The cutscenes actually do look like they’ve been stolen from high-budget movies, that have been very well rendered.Â Within the game itself, you can be running through environments that are lush, full of colour or are dark and gloomy, and the game will still be running smooth.Â I have seen one graphical glitch with water where it’s not supposed to be that has recurred but it’s nothing that breaks the game.Â Actually, it’s kind of fun to run through it and have nothing happen.Â The draw distance is also very far, probably about 2-3 miles in-game.Â There are also some glitches with putting on certain pieces of clothing, as it’ll come through the outside layers you have on.Â Other than that, the graphics are great, and I have yet to see any major problems.
There are a few important elemets to discuss here: combat with the weapon specific buttons, expressions and social interactions, and your dog.Â Both are very well developed and fit the game even better.
First, the combat buttons: X is used for your equipped Melee weapon, Y is used for your equipped Ranged weapon and B is used for your Will.Â Will in Fable 2 is the equivalent of magic in other games, but for sake of relevance, we’ll call it Will.Â Each of these 3 styles has abilities that you can purchase from your earned experience points, to make them stronger and faster.Â The more money you get and the further through the story you get, you gain access to stronger Melee and Ranged weapons.Â All upgrades to the Â This button configuration is extremely intuitive and very, very easy to pick up.Â Sometimes, because we’re all so used to B being cancel, you will drop a Will spell or two while in a town, scaring a bunch of people.Â Overall, this method works very well and it’s really easy to get used to.
Next up are expressions.Â This is how you interact with just about everything. Your character in Fable 2 could be considered a mute, as they never say anything ever. There is enough speaking by other characters, so you really don’t need to speak, just show expressions of emotions.Â They are used for everything from interacting with your dog, to pleasing people, to scaring people to unlocking statues in the game and even to inviting people over to your place for a night of fun.Â They are really well done, and some even depend on your alignment, so in order to get them all, you would need to be both good and bad.Â My only real complaint with the expressions is that if you want all of them, which you need to have to unlock the completionist achievement, you must play Fable 2 Pub Games, trade with someone online, or see someone complete it online. Other than that expressions can adequately relay your in-game feelings about anything including declining that proposition from that ugly prostitute.
And finally, the dog.Â Peter Molyneux touted this as being one of the most important features of Fable 2 and one thing you will grow to love.Â Truthfully, it worked.Â Your dog follows you around and proves itself by finding you dig spots and treasure chests or keys, and alerts you to enemies you don’t see yet.Â Molyneux also mentioned that if you are fighting enemies up close via Melee, the dog will go attack those that are using ranged or magic attacks.Â That, however, does not happen.Â The dog does attack your enemies (after reading it enough books to have it above the base attack level) when they are down, and that usually kills them with one “bite.”Â It kind of works out too, as you still get experience orbs for the kill.Â When the dog gets hurt in a fight, they yelp and limp, and you can’t help but to feel sorry for them; that means you have an “obligation” to heal them so they’re alright.Â Are you thinking of going evil in the game? Well, your dog will then eventually turn into a black rotweiler of sorts but if you go good, the dog will be a golden retriever. Either way, what your dog looks like will be directly determined by your alignment.Â So I guess Molyneux has achieved what he wanted with the dog: I did feel like he was actually my pet. (Yes, I do personally have 3 dogs in my household.)
Well, these are probably some of the best I’ve ever seen.Â Remember when games made achievements in ranked games only and people felt the need to come together and boost so they could actually get them?Â Well, Lionhead has done away with this, and made getting achievements even easier.Â Some of the more important achievements, and notably the harder ones, can be done by just by “seeing” someone who you’re in co-op get the achievement.Â This is a very smart way of doing achievements and it makes getting them much easier for players that either don’t have the time nor the will to get them.
Oddly enough though, “refreshing” your items, by picking up an item, buying one, or selling one, can unlock a whole range of achievements.Â In fact, while playing to help tehflakes get two achievements, he unlocked 6 achievements instead. These included: The Hoarder, The Ruler of Albion, The Illustrated Hero, The Goth, The Gargoyle and The Extremist.Â The total gamerscore: 225 in about 3 minutes. Still, Avatar is a quicker 1000 gamerscore.Â Either way, this can be used to a great advantage, as strangers and friends alike can exchange and help eachother with achievements. I’ve helped others with achievements as well.Â And, if you need any help with any of these achievements in Fable 2, give me a shout via Xbox Live (text message please)!
Remember how Fable disappointed so many gamers across both the PC and the original Xbox? Well, Fable 2 for the 360 looks to rectify all that. I know I missed story in this review, but that was so not to spoil anything, as it can be easily spoiled.Â All the elements of Fable 2 are well thought out, from controls to the gameplay to even the achievements, which bring a whole view on achievements and getting them.Â The game is a lot more free-roaming as well, and gives a lot more freedom to commit random acts within town.
We hope you enjoyed the review! If you have any questions or comments, that’s what we’ve got our comment system for! And lastly, here are some screenshots of the game.