Hello There, Chicken Chaser!

Fable. What springs to mind when you think of this RPG series? For me it’s 3 things. Its charming sense of humour, the harrowing choices you are forced to make, and Peter Molyneux’s overactive imagination. Usually hype is born in internet forums and like a snowball rolling down a steep hill, the information comes larger and faster and before you know it, it’s an avalanche, and nobody is clear of the source of all this useless information. Hype can become powerful enough to kill a game. A decent game comes out of the blue, nothing special, just a standard RPG with a decent story and nice combat system… you’re not going to hail it game of the year, but you’ll play it, enjoy it, look out for a sequel, job done. A decent game comes out in a blaze of publicity, along with impressive game trailers, and promises that it’ll be the best game since sliced bread… 9 out of 10 times, if you expect too much you’ll be setting yourself up for disappointment.

A good game, but hardly the best.

The difference with Fable was that Peter Molyneux himself made many promises the game failed to keep. It wasn’t just rumours, it was straight from the horse’s mouth. Now, I know that both of the Fable games have sold well and got pretty good reviews, but some gamers were left a bit cold when they realised that they didn’t get what they expected.  I have played Fable and Fable 2 and I enjoyed them both. Sure, neither of them are the masterpieces they were supposed to be but I have had many hours sucked out of my life due to them. Their quality lies in the fact you can leave the story behind and become immersed in the Fable world, marry a villager or five, maybe destroy a town if you please. I also like how there is an actual sense of alignment from good to evil, and how it actually affects how people react to you.

Halo – A must have fashion accessory.

So moving on to the release of Fable 3. Not as hyped up as the previous two, or maybe we’re just more tentative this time around. All we really know for sure is that we get to be King! Well I try not to be too excited. But when I got my hands on the demo at the Eurogamer Expo, I couldn’t help it. I played two out of a possible seven demos, and to be honest I could have sat there all day, if I were allowed. My first demo was one showing off the combat aspect of the game, and my first thought was ‘Where are all of the multicoloured orbs?!’ After my mild dismay, I noticed that actually, they’ve cleaned up the combat a lot. The flourishes are simpler to pull off (not that they were difficult before, just a little fiddly), and switching between melee, ranged and magic seems to be smoother.

You probably guessed, but he's not very nice…

I also played the beginning of the game. Without giving too much away, you won’t even be half an hour in before you’re faced with a difficult decision. I also noticed character interaction is better, you actually make contact with the person you’re talking to instead of dancing like a loon or belching in front of them. I think this shows a lot of promise, and I’m interested to see how my previous save game affects the Fable 3 world. At the Eurogamer Expo Developer Session for Fable 3, Peter Molyneux would reveal nothing about the last half of the game, instead wanting us to find out for ourselves what would happen, and how. This must have been a massive challenge for him to do, but sometimes silence creates the most anticipation.

You start out as the prince (or princess) of Albion.







6 responses to “Hello There, Chicken Chaser!”

  1. Mark P avatar


    I’ve tried to avoid reading about this game as much as I can, to make sure my expectations are low. This way I’ll enjoy the game more! And that is good.

  2. Ninja avatar

    I know it’s a shallow reason to like a game but Fable 2 having actual Northern Irish accents (no idea what they were ingame though) was great! Shame they were all bandits though 🙁

    The thing that grates with me in these choice-heavy games is the fact that there really are only two choices most of the time. You can do the good thing or the bad thing; often this has virtually no consequence in the “long-term” and if it was true choice, you could probably, for example, go and try fighting the main bad guy early or do something else unexpected (which, of course, the developer would have thought of) on a whim. Would that disrupt any narrative? Of course but the world would go on. I think that is a long way off though (unless you’ve played some Bethesda games). Even BioWare, that paragon of the genre, won’t let you go renegade beyond a certain point.

    Anyway, I do have a fondness for the Fable games as being distinctly British in the global, fairly homogenised industry of today even if they do fall short of the hype.

  3. Dean avatar

    Yeah i’m looking forward to this. The thing i loved about Fable 2 was how fun it was to be mean: like marrying a monk (no mean feat, especially when your character is male) and sacrificing him in the temple of shadows for ‘evil loyalty points’, dancing to get several people to follow you and then leading them to their death in the marshes or into a cellar to relieve them of their possessions, or (my favourite) buying all of the caravans in the gypsy camp and hiking up the rent so no one can afford to live there:) As long as that kind of humourous attention to detail remains i think it will be great, and if the garden gnome quest i played at Eurogamer is anything to go by it looks like that’s the case.

  4. Jake avatar

    Fable III is one game that both Jo and myself loved at the Expo. I was the same as Mark in as much as I didn’t want to play the demo at all because I knew that it would make the month-long wait for the next part slightly more unbearable because I’d already know what it was like. I fully intended to watch Jo play. I even told the quest designer from Lionhead that that’s what I was going to do. The next time he walked round the screens I was there, glued to a quest that he’d designed, offing Hollowmen left, centre with frankly awesome skills. Again though, when it comes out I’ll be torn between it and Fallout… as the clocks go back, and darkness descends for winter, it’s definately RPG time.

  5. Jake avatar

    The gargoyles were Irish weren’t they. Those bloody gargoyles. I think they’re in Fable III – I vaguely remember seeing something about them on a stats screen during a demo. There’s definately silver keys to be had, I know that.

  6. Ninja avatar

    No, they were Scottish.

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