by: Regina Woodard
; edited by: Michael Hartman
; updated: 4/17/2012
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Fifty years have passed since you lead a hero through Albion. In Fable III, take your child and lead him or her on a revolt against a tyrant. In this Fable 3 review, we'll look at the storyline and features in this third installment of the series.
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The first Fable was released in 2004; six years later, the fate of the fictional Albion is once again in your hands, as you take another descendant of the Hero in order to shape the country. This time, the fate of all of Albion is in your hands as you lead a revolt to take back the throne.
In this Fable 3 review, we'll look at the new story line, the new features, and whether or not this third game in the series is worth it.
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If you have been playing Fable from the beginning, many of the places and towns that you explored in the first and second games are once again here in this. The story takes places fifty years after the events in the second game, where you - the player - are the child of the Hero from Fable II, who went on to rule Albion. The lands have entered into the Industrial Revolution and it's a revolution that will need to take place against your brother, Logan, who has become a tyrant since the death of your father.
While you still need to decide between good and evil for yourself, the changed storyline from just conqueroring evil to actually ascending to the throne and ruling is a central part of the story. The first half is about gaining followers - similar to what you did in Fable II - but these followers are to help you overthrow your brother for the good of the land. The second half of the game focuses on whether or not you keep your promises or follow the path of your brother.
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Game Play & Powers
The game play in Fable 3 is much like that of the previous games. As a Hero, you have to fight off different adversaries while completing quests that lead you to the final match up of the game. In Fable 3, there is a different system in which to gain followers and gaining powers.
In the first two games, completing the featured quests as well as gaining experience points enabled you to get more XP whenever you defeated a foe and gained prestige. In this game, both of these things are combined; the quests you do count as part of your XP, as well as getting you more points in regards to followers. Certain plot points will require that you attain a certain amount of followers in order to reach the next mission.
Powers are the same as previous games, but here you are able to chose a power that will allow you to wield two powers at once. This combines two powers - such as fire and shock - into one powerful attack.
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The graphics in Fable 3 have gone up a notch, though are still on par with that of Fable 2. Graphically, there seems to be more of a realism in comparison to the original game, where lightning and facial expressions are extremely important. Nothing looks the same, as in buildings seem different from each other, and the class differences are definitely seen in certain areas.
What is Fable without the blood and gore of killing things? That factor is high in this third edition, especially when using your powers. Fire will burn enemies to a liter crisp, while a combination of both fire and shock with melt the skin of people. There's something of triumph when you defeat an enemy to nothing but bones.
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Sounds in Fable aren't terribly remarkable, other than that of the excellent voice casting and the new feature of your character being able to speak.
Lionhead seemed to go all out for this game, getting some very good voice actors to portray those that the player comes in contact with. Sir Ben Kingsley (Shutter Island, Gandhi), John Cleese (Monty Python, Shrek), Simon Pegg (Star Trek 2009, Hot Fuzz), and Bernard Hill (Titanic, Lord of the Rings) provide the main cast who help (or hinder) your progress through the game.
One new feature for this Fable is that your character of the Hero can now speak, allowing for cut scenes to have your character interact with the NPCs, as well as being able to speak to those around him or her as they try to gain followers to the cause. As mentioned in the gameplay, the important factor is to gain followers, so the ability for you - the prince - to actively speak to your subjects is not only an interesting concept, but a nice touch.
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The one major caveat I had was the user controls; not the controls themselves, which are the usual standard, but the power controls. In the previous two games, the player was able to switch through their powers by use of the B button or the right trigger; in Fable 3, the player must return to the former Hero's secret room - which is also the place where you will find the map, all weapons, and clothing - in order to switch the power glove the current Hero wears.
I thought this was an odd break and would have preferred the option to cycle through like in Fable 2. There is also the annoyance of using the START button as a means of returning to the room, instead of the normal option of pausing the game or entering in the game options. I thought this a bad mistake, especially when needing to pause or save the game.
The upshot to this though is the addition of having the ability to wield two powers at once, creating a combination power that could do greater damage.
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Bottom line, Fable 3 is a great next step in the evolving storyline of Albion and its Hero. There were a few things that I found to be annoying - such as the switching of powers and coming back to your father/mother's secret room - that seem to hinder gameplay, but it's not enough to take away from the enjoyment of the game.
Fable fans will enjoy the familiar chaacters and places, while the storyline will keep you insterested.