Justin Lee On October 26, 2010 at 12:01 am

Fable III, we have all been waiting for it since the second we finished Fable II. We wanted to get back to Albion and save it from whatever evil may bestow it. Lionhead Studios has been giving us many screenshots, previews and even interviews here at Gametactics. After being shown the game by Peter Molyneux himself at E3 2010 behind closed doors, we just couldn’t wait to get our hands on the final copy to review and share it with you. Here it is, the review of Fable III for the Xbox 360.

The start of Fable III is set many years after the last game, your brother Logan has taken over the throne of Albion and the citizens are in despair. It is up to you to lead the country in revolution, the game starts off with a small tutorial to show you some of the new features of the game which includes touch system which has, hugs/kisses, hand holding and more.

If you thought Fable II was beautiful and stunning, the first scene shows off how improved Lionhead Studios has made Fable III, the land just seems seems so much more colourful and vibrant.

John Cleese, Simon Pegg and Stephen Fry voice the main screen characters. Of course the most recognizable voice is John Cleese who plays Jasper your trusty butler. The voice acting is great in Fable III and for the first time you will hear yourself, the hero. Whether male or female, your voice will be heard quite often and the main characters address you accordingly if you are female or male. This is a nice touch that Lionhead didn’t just record a generic script that is used whether you are male or female.

A large change in the game is the Sanctuary, this is simply an easier way to access the Options screen. It is a room where you can change your equipped weapon, examine your unique weapon that is shaped by your decisions, select which two spells to weave together, you can even dress yourself in this room and use the map to navigate around Albion. Speaking about the map, it has been greatly improved with different zoom levels. You can quickly scroll around the map, then click on a city and zoom in one level at a time. It is easy to spot where all the quests are and drop to the nearest spot, the old map is rubbish compared to this new one. The Sanctuary even has the main options for the game, when we said it was the options screen…it really is: Even the gamma and sound options are in this “room” that you can wonder around in.

Many people found the forced marriages and relationships in Fable II annoying; in Fable III they are now totally optional, if you wish to power through Fable III without even talking to one citizen that has nothing to do with the main story line…no problem. If you wish to take your time buying houses, getting a wife and having a child in Fable III, you can easily do this without affecting the game play. This is a great change in the game that allows more freedom to the player to choose to worry about the main story or take his or her sweet time live in Albion with a family and business.

You can of course choose to be evil or good in the game. You can start off blasting everyone in town and scaring everyone to death or be amazingly good and give to the poor and become a true hero and leader. Speaking of being a leader, it was revealed to the general public that you will rule Albion as a king or queen. Fortunately, after you become ruler of Albion, it doesn’t fail horribly. It’s just a new twist to the old Fable gameplay mechanic to the game and story. Without spoiling too much, you simply make decisions with cut scenes that affect your country. You will still go on a few adventures after you become King or Queen, the game does slowdown with less action than before you were ruling Albion…but fortunately not so much that it becomes boring. Just remember that you can still take on quests while you are ruling, just not all the time.

The game is obviously larger with brand new areas to explore and to go on quests. You will explore snow covered mountains, blazing hot desserts and lush green forests. This unfortunately seems to cause a few slowdowns in gameplay; if you are casting spells and there are many enemies on the screen. This isn’t just a minor framerate drop, the whole game actually slows down into slow motion as if the cpu or gpu can’t keep up with all the enemies and magic on the screen. This slow down doesn’t happen too often, but it is annoying when it does.

While you can easily skip some of the side quests, I encourage you to try out some of the fun ones such as trying to hunt down “evil” gnomes whom actually insult you verbally all over the land, quite a fun quest as you’ll really need to run from end to end to find all of them. Another quest is to round up chickens while you are dressed up as a giant chicken. You can easily miss these quests if you don’t pay attention the quest button (Yellow Y) on the main map screen.

Another change in the game is the “Road to Rule”, this path that you can walk down contains treasure chests where you can upgrade your magic, melee and ranged attacks by spending your guild seals you accumulate during quests and battles. Also at each gate is a major plot point in the game, each gate opens as you progress through the game until you reach the end of the game. A very important part about the “Road to Rule” is that you can easily miss some chests contain unlocks so you can purchase, rent buildings, open a business and even get married.

One new feature that was touted in the game was the new “touch system”, you can shake the citizens hands, and even your co-op partner. It makes the game more personal and your first hug or kiss is fun, you can even kiss someone who is of the opposite sex and see the reaction. If you get married, you can have children, own a house, even hold a wedding based on how much money you have. If you are a gay couple, not a problem to have children, you can now adopt one.

The controls of the game remain the same, you access your health and potions using the D-pad. Your magic can be charged before being unleashed in a circle around you or directed toward an enemy. You can still perform charged melee attacks which sometimes appear as a cool slow motion action kill. Buying potions and fruits are less important in the game, infact you could easily finish the game with just the treasure chests you find in the game. This makes the game a little too easy in fact, the difficulty level seems to have dropped slightly from the previous Fable game.

Co-op has been greatly improved, while during the review period, we were unable to test the online co-op, we did test the local co-op. You can now bring in your own hero into the game of your friend, you are truly the hero from your save game. You are no longer just tagging along to fight enemies. If you choose when you join your friends game, you can split your earnings 50/50 and share treasure or just keep your money to yourself. The 2nd local co-op player can even buy items from stores now, finally. Many gamers play games with their girlfriends/boyfriends and Lionhead Studios has not forgotten you, you can marry your friend (local or Xbox live co-op) and buy a house, get married and have children.

The Co-op over Xbox live with two copies of the game is to include separate screens for each gamer, we could not test this but the recent co-op video released shows that you can now finally wonder off and do whatever you want while in the game while over Xbox Live. A cool feature we did test in the local co-op (and you can do in Xbox Live Gold) get all the achievements while in co-op. No need to worry that the other player who joined your game will miss out in Avatar unlocks , just makes sure that the “host” isn’t more ahead of the other player or you’ll ruin the story of the game. One note, the 2nd player who joins the main character…your story WILL NOT ADVANCE, even though you get the Achievements from the quests: You will have to RE-DO them just like in Fable 2, it’s just odd that you can actually purchase items now to bring back into your own single player save game.

If you are new to Fable III and never played Fable II, you might feel the game isn’t as deep as most RPG’s. It is more of a design choice, it allows gamers to get into RPG’s without the tedious wandering around villages not knowing where to go and single click commands to attack that most RPG’s have. Your path is clearly marked with a golden trail that rarely disappears unless you are right near the quest or person you need to speak too. However, if you have never played any Fable games you might be lost as to how to even purchase potions in the towns or buy/rent out buildings due to the massive amount of options and choices you can make in the game. Read the manual carefully before starting up Fable III if you are new to this series.

While you can easily power through the game in about 10 hours, it is much more fun to do as many quests you can do, this won’t slow down the story too much and some of them are a blast to do that have funny jokes in them. Simply doing the “minimum” to just get to the next story arc isn’t the way you should play Fable III. Fable III is meant to be enjoyed, all the amazing music, scenery, voice acting, you must take your time in the game.

Albion needs you in Fable III! The game won’t let you down, the length is just about right and other than the odd gameplay slowdown in big battles with lots of magic flying about: Lionhead Studios has reminded us how a great “dream” of rich highly detailed video game should be made.

Without spoiling anything, just a quick hint here for those of you who wish to play the game “all good” and not “evil”, ensure you have lots of money BEFORE you get to the end of the game, that will greatly affect the game after you finish it. Don’t forget to donate to the treasury (hint hint!).


You can easily swing your sword or hammer and cast a spell. If only the game didn’t slowdown when there were tons of enemies on screen, we would had given the Gameplay a 9.


Well done, one of the best looking games on the Xbox 360. Rich colourful world with great looking enemies and friends.


The music is flawless for game, so is the voice acting by all the main characters…even yourself the Hero is heard for the first time.


Fable III oh how we wish we could give it a 10 out of 10, but we just can’t with the slowdown during some rare battles with too much going on. The offline co-op is amazing now and no one can knock it anymore. The story is amazing and well written and game will simply make you wish that Fable IV was already announced, this Holiday Season Fable fans should pick up Fable III and lead Albion to revolution!

Additional notes after release of game: If you both have a decent internet connection, the 2 player co-op over Xbox Live is great. You can both wander off and do whatever you want. Of course what’s the fun in that, but at least you have total freedom now to walk anywhere while over Xbox Live while in your friends game. It is also noted that if you are the guest in the game and not hosting it, your story will NOT advance.

Buy Fable III for the Xbox 360 from EBGames.com


Click here to buy Fable III for the Xbox 360 from EBGames.com


Co-op Developer Diary Video:

One Response

  1. seteia says:

    Great great review, i just was on Kotaku, and was so disappointed by their review, they suck lately. But this was a good review with lots of information! Bookmarked.