Since I've gotten my new laptop and it came with Windows Live Writer which is a fancy blog-a-ma-bob application, I've decided to try a post through it to see how it goes.
Fable 2 is pretty awesome. For once I don't think anyone is going to be disappointed in this title in the way the first game had a few let downs. The only real issues have been the crazy stuff that happened to the Collector's Edition and how it essentially got whittled down to nothing but a bit of downloadable content that even got screwed up this week.
Fans of the first game will feel right at home with the sequel. The overhaul to the combat system was fantastically done. One of my gripes about the original Fable was that it was too difficult to use magic in combination with other melee or ranged skills. Fable 2 corrects that by making single button presses (X, Y, B) to handle melee, ranged, magic attacks. The combat is simple to use, but difficult to master. You can easily mash buttons and kill enemies, but there is a lot more involved if you want to pull off cool combo attacks using different types of attacks in combination with each other. You also are rewarded with experience bonuses when you show your prowess with combat.
As you can see from the video there are lots of ways to mix and match attacks and they all work very well and are pretty easy to get the hang of within a few minutes of your first couple of fights. There is also a "cool" factor when you kill an enemy with a single critical hit and the camera zooms in and shows you in bullet time the result of your kill. Also magical spell effects are really well done, they all are very impressive and sometimes I find it hard choosing which spell to use to kill enemies with because they are all lots of fun. So far I've been sticking to shock and fire which are great. Shock will stun enemies temporarily so you can use other attacks to finish them off.
So far the story isn't blowing me away, it's a pretty normal RPG-like plot, quickly sets you up with an antagonist and gives you a reason for not liking that person (they kill your sister). So you grow up and have a reason for vengeance and in addition to that, this bad guy is also trying to rebuild a mystical tower that was responsible for blowing up part of the world back after the first game takes place and so it's probably not a good idea. But really that is all well and good, there are so many Other things you can do in the game to occupy your time with, that you may end up only following the main quest when you get bored.
Other things to do in Albion
I'm hardly sure where to begin with this, there seems to be almost an unlimited amount of ways to entertain yourself within the world of Fable 2. Besides progressing along the main quest line, it's nice to stop a bit and take a look around to just explore the rich environments. The developers and the art direction paid a lot of attention to adding little details here and there in every area you encounter. Also the areas themselves are about 2-3 times as big as they were in the original Fable, that you can almost get swept away off exploring. I took a quick trip to explore the graveyard in Bowerstone and ended up spending 30 minutes looking at gravestones, and even finding a couple of secret treasure chests and on top of that noting some things I will most likely need to come back to later as the story progresses.
Here are just a few other possible things you can occupy yourself with:
- attract members of the opposite or same sex
- get married to someone, get divorced
- purchase a house to live in or rent
- redecorate the homes you own with different furniture
- have some children
- get fat, drunk, lazy
- take up odd jobs to earn cash, blacksmith, woodcutter
- play some pub games like keystone or fortune's tower
- take up side quests for loot and experience
- play fetch with your dog
- roam the country side looking for chests and pools to dive in
Those are just a few of the many things I found so far, you can even earn money from the homes you rent out or businesses you purchase while not even playing.
Fable 2 Pub Games Integration
I noticed when I sat down with a game master to play a round of Keystone I had the option of merging with a patron from my Fable 2 Pub Games on Xbox Live. Since I hadn't played the games since they were patched and reset to fix the cheat in Fortune's Tower, I had 500,000 gold available at my disposal to have fun with. There were some consequences for my actions however, while my main alignment of good/evil didn't change, the bar underneath went far down into the "corrupt" level. But the good news is that it is still early in the game so plenty of time to undo the damage and salvage it back to the light. So all in all, there isn't much wrong with cheating in the pub games and then getting that loot in the real game. The pistol I got from the pub games is actually pretty nice. Haven't tried out the fancy bed yet.
Well if you haven't gone out and picked up a copy of this game, then do it now! There is really no way you can be disappointed with this game unless you absolutely hate action RPGs or don't even like dogs. I swear the first time your dog finds you some treasure you would have completely wandered by you will wish you had a virtual milk bone to give him.
Here is are some tips on making money in the game. I found the two for upgrading your dog's treasure hunting ability very useful. There is one note they don't mention in the video. You have to find the first book upgrade before your dog can sniff out the 2nd one. I had trouble finding the first book so I went after the 2nd (very easy to find the location) but the dog couldn't find the spot without the first upgrade.