Friday, October 31, 2008

Fable 2 Review

So I finally finished Fable 2. Without cheats okay!!?? Unlike Ammar who is a known cheater in-game and in the real world too. So I'm going to write a personal review on what I think about the game as a whole. So I'm gonna cover all the aspects of the game if possible in the least amount of words possible.

The Hype
Yes, this game is one of the most awaited games for the XBOX 360. It's a console exclusive which means it's only available on the XBOX 360. I have to say that Microsoft's bottomless pockets have managed to save this console from being another Dreamcast. We all know how that went, and even after all the hardware failures going around it still managed to survive. Which is really an amazing feat in the gaming world.

Enough of Microsoft and straight to the Lionhead Studios's RPG sequel to the epic Fable. I had a lot of expectations from this game. I really wanted it to be good since the first one was already great but had lots to improve on. But after playing a lot of games that were all talk and no show I was keeping my fingers crossed from the minute I inserted the game disc into my XBOX.

The First Impression
I was greeted with a very simplistic Fable 2 game title as the intro and a fairly simple start menu with a rolling illustrated background. As soon as I started a new game and you get to choose either to be a boy or a girl which was a pretty cool extra. After that it was straight to business. The cutscenes were of course mostly narrated illustrations following true to the first fable. Which is kinda cool actually. I always liked the mood in the Fable world. So far so good.

The story starts off with you in your childhood years with your elder sister in a town called Bowerstone. I'm not sure but I think this was about a few hundred years after the first Fable. Okay, so you guys are homeless kids living in the streets with no parents obviously, trying to find a way to get to the castle. A few simple tasks later to get you used to the controls and how the game works you finally get yourself a little trinket from a travelling merchant. Blah blah blah, you got shot, your sister dies and you're picked up by this weird blind woman and the game starts.

The Game
So now let's talk about the game itself. Graphics-wise it's leaps and bounds from the first one. You get a lot more dynamic chatter and interactions from the people in the game which is actually one of the main attractions.

The world of Albion as they call it in Fable is a really pretty one. It's much bigger and the attention to detail is astounding. Even the posters on the walls are high-res textures, and the Havok engine gives some really cool ragdoll effects and gives you a lot of fun bashing thing around.

You won't really get to see how much work they put into this game until you play it all over again after you've won. The character detail, the emotions, and how they react to you. What the little choices you make affect the world in a few years. And all the other little things you'll discover the more you get into the game.

The Gameplay
The battle system this time is a bit different. Although it still retains the same stats of Strength, Skill and Will. But the way that all of the three manage to play a part in battle works. Unlike the first Fable in which I really think raising the Willpower has no benefits except for the healing perk. This time the whole thing integrates so well with the battle system that it's just seamless. I could spend all day just spamming magics and combo-ing with my gun and sword.

The experience system is also quite interesting cuz this time we have what they call in the game the "General Experience". So what this means that apart from the three main experience orbs that are specifically for each attribute. This general experience can be added up to any of the three. Which really helps cuz you won't be able to use much of the will powers at first cuz they're pretty weak on the first couple of levels but are real killers once you maxed them out. Crowd control anyone?

The Brute
So what I'm trying to say here is that although all these three battle styles integrate so well together. They are very-very different in its own sense. For instance, the Strength attribute. The melee battle style includes rythm based attacks which you can chain together for faster attacks. Flourishes, which are basically really strong blows in which you have to charge and release to break enemy blocks, and of course counters and reversals. Top it off with a few types of melee weapons to play with, Clubs, Maces, Axes, Swords, Cleavers, etc. Now these are already a lot to experiment with but wait! We're not done yet!

The Thief
On the agility side in which the game refers to Skill. Focuses on of course the speed of your attacks and how accurate(powerful) your ranged weapons get. You get a choice of crossbows, pistols and rifles. Now all the three types have different pros and cons to meet with your style of playing.

As you progress through this skill type you'll be able to unlock things like instant reloads to chain your shots faster, aiming capabilities, zooming and the coolest part, you can even get to shoot specific parts on an enemy body. Yeah baby, I'm talking disarming the enemy with a shot to its arm and decapitations with headshots. Oh yeah!!!

And you get the roll ability which is just what it is. To dodge enemy attacks.

The Mage
Now whne you first get into the game, it's kinda hard to pick which one of the attributes to spend those extra general experiences on. I just wanna say, spend them on your will. Cuz it's kinda hard to kill enemies with this skill until you max it out. Now that's when you get to rain havoc and death to your enemies!! Trust me, you won't regret it. :D And there are several different types of spells to experiment with. And couple that with customizable spell slots which you can flip through on the fly. It makes for really interesting battles.

The Story
The storyline this time around is much-much darker. The first one was dark but this time it's wayy darker which is good in a way but it just gets worse and worse as you get further in the game. Up to a point of being somewhat disturbing.

You'll be facing a lot of choices in the game. Most of the time testing your morality. The way they make you decide is really something you have to experience yourself. Some of the choices you make might even affect the Albion world in the future.

The Possibilities
Apart from the main game. There are jobs for you to do to gain money. You can do side quests such as bounty hunting, tricking villagers into slavery, murdering them to get their stuff and make the prices on their house fall so that you can buy them. Get married, have sex, have kids. Own mansions. Kick chickens. Bring the economy of a city down or up. Buy all of the real estate in the game. Have orgies. Be famous and get the people to cheer when they see you, the kids will even ask for autographs which you can actually give. lol! Be a funny guy. Be a scary guy. Be a goth. Be a cross-dresser. Be a saint. Be the devil. Woohh!!! There's just so many things going on in the game.

The Pros
All of the above. but all in all I have to say that this is a must have game for any XBOX 360 owner who has and haven't played the first game. The limited edition set even gives you a Halo suit with an Energy Blade for your game character too apart from other little trinkets. How awesome is that!??

The Cons
Ah, now we come to the bad side of things. There are some bugs which really spoils the game. If you want to enjoy the game fully. I advise to update the game before you play it. Other than that it has to be the framerate. It lags a lot and the framerate drops to alarmingly when there are a lot of mobs and when you spam your magic. The in-game menu is a bit slow to load which is a pain cuz you're gonna be using it a lot. No on-screen map which is a major pain. And finally the inventory is like a high-school kid's locker. You can find everything there but it takes a bit more time than you would like lol.

As an end note. I hope they fix most of the things with future patches. There are already some really great DLCs online. Costumes, games and stuff. This game is really great. Just bear with the little bugs and annoyances and you won't be disappointed.

Whew!! Now I think this will be the last game review I'm ever gonna make. Cuz this is hard work!! haha!! aites till later.

1 comment:

Nicholas Leong said...

Time to go play Fallout :P