|Version Reviewed: X-Box
Fable was designed to be the ultimate game in terms of freedom of choice, in that you could do just about anything you wanted. Well that’s not entirely true (still no gay marriages), but Fable definitely pushed an envelope not seen before in RPGs. Just about every non player character (NPC) that you come across can be killed (with appropriate consequences) if you so desire.
Fable’s combat system is actually a unique one, although it has been described as a “cross between Zelda 64: Ocarina of Time and Knights of the Old Republic.” Personally, I see it as more of an adapted Zelda system. The system is fairly simple to use and doesn’t take long to get used to, it makes full use of the X-Box controller but also realizes that certain buttons are inconvenient to reach and assigns them actions not used much in combat (i.e. the black and white buttons are used to draw/sheathe your melee or ranged weapon).
Graphically, Fable isn’t exactly anything amazing. There is nothing mind blowing about the graphics and the main character is really quite generic looking. The townsfolk tend to look the same throughout the world and it can become really hard to distinguish between them. However, since they are generic NPCs that reappear a while later even if you kill them on a whim, it doesn’t really matter.
The music of Fable is okay, nothing great though. The voice acting is generally poor with an excessive use of different accents. Between all the cockney townsfolk and the big Jamaican Thunder and his sister Whisper, it becomes rather irritating. The narration of the storyline is quite good, but it doesn’t make up for the otherwise poor job with everyone else.
The storyline of Fable is something difficult to judge. It is a well known fact that it was cut in half, but the story that was left behind is not that bad. There are some fairly predictable sequences, but the storyline has a great deal of intriguing twists that will keep you wondering “what will happen next?”
Overall Fable is not a bad game. The downside is that it is short and the choice between good and evil doesn’t make the storyline play out any differently, which would have increased the replay value. Whether you own or rent this game is up to you, but it is definitely worth checking out.