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Fable 2 on Xbox 360 Exclusive (May appear on the PC next year) This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

Fable II, nominated for over fifty awards in 2008 and winner of Game of the Year as well, is the highly anticipated sequel to Lionhead’s Fable and Fable: The Lost Chapters. Fable II is set some five-hundred years in the future (from the original Fable) in Lionhead’s innovative world of Albion. This time around, you start your quest as a child (part of a creative tutorial, somewhat like the original Fable) and see that a trader is selling many items in the heart of Old Bowerstone. One of these objects is a magical box. You then advance through the tutorial (which exposes the player to the unique choices of good and evil) and do various things to get gold for you and your sister to afford the magical box. The rest, I will leave in your hands to figure out.

The new addition to the Fable series also brings many new tools upon the player. One of the most noticeable, however, is the gun. Instead of having a long bow (you are still able to purchase cross bows however), you are able to purchase flintlock pistols/rifles (the standard medium fire rate gun), blunderbuss’s (old time scatter shotguns that do a superlative amount of damage at a time, clockwork rifles/pistols (guns with a higher rate of fire than flintlocks), turret rifles/pistols (rifles and pistols with a very high rate of fire) and a few legendary pistols and rifles which do a higher than normal amount of damage, and generally requires the player to do a difficult task before retrieving.

Along with the ranged weapons, there is still the will system. To those new to the series, will equals magic in Fable and II. Some of the spells included are force push, inferno, time control, raise dead and a few others. In the first Fable, you had a will bar, and after using a spell it would decrease and you had to use a potion or wait for it to charge in order to use a spell. Gladly though, there is no such system in Fable 2, you may use spells as many times as you want. Although there is not as big of a collection of spells as the first fable, the spells in Fable II are a bit more powerful.

The last classification of weapons is melee. This classification includes axes, cutlasses, cleavers, long swords, maces and hammers. All of these either require one or two of your hands to use, most of the big ones are wielded with two, while the smaller ones are wielded with one. As with the ranged weapons, there are also legendary melee weapons, which the player also must do something in which to get. This usually includes opening a chest, or diving of a castle into a moat and through a cave. If you used melee in the first Fable more often than will or ranged, I also recommend getting your brutal styles up, which gives you new moves to use like counterattacks and flourishes.

Just like the first Fable there are many choices to make throughout the game that will affect your appearance, morals, and how much the people of Albion like or hate you. Some examples would be brandishing a weapon in the middle of town, being rude to other villagers, getting divorced, slaughtering innocents and raising rent in the property you own. All of these will most likely end up with the people of Albion hating and fearing you, but being nice to villagers and doing good deeds will bring them to like you.

Some things have bid farewell to the series though, like armor (which is only found in the expansion pack, other than that it is non existent), long bows, the guild and a few other things as well. Some of these differences have turned away many old fans of the series. I, however, think they are missing a great game. The graphics are astounding for a game of this measure, you can play even after you beat the game, side missions have been introduced without need of being at a certain point of the game, and also your new dog, which introduces many new things to do in the game.

Overall, this is one of my favorites, and for the low price of around twenty five dollars at Gamestop, it is definitely a must buy for Fable fans. It is a fun, interactive game that many will be playing for the next few years, or at least until Fable III (which is in the makings). I give Fable II a well deserved 9 out of 10.



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