“Fable Anniversary” is Microsoft’s gift to fans of the original game first released in 2004, and while the graphics receive a facelift, there’s not much else changed in this update of the game.
For Xbox 360
Review Score: 4/5
When “Fable” was first released in 2004 it was hyped up to an extreme, promising to dwarf the “Elder Scrolls” franchise and essentially failed at delivering on those promises. What gamers did get was a unique straight forward action RPG with a quirky British sense of humor that would influence future titles to come.
The mechanics are, for the most part, unchanged from the original release. The world map is still divided by multiple load screens in bite size areas – actions and alignment are still fairly black and white and affect the character customization the same, and fighting still feels like a chore due to a bad lock-on mechanism.
What is different is the fighting controls, as well as the graphics and some sounds.
The combat controls used to be mapped in a very counter-intuitive fashion, but with the update the combat scheme resembles that of the newer games. The new scheme puts everything on its own button, meaning that melee fighting isn’t mapped to separate face buttons – but just one, while magic and range also gain their own buttons as well.
The graphics get a fantastic polish shaving only a few years off the title as character models are still largely unchanged. Characters still move on a loop animation, have rigid movement and just plain ugly faces. The sound received some updates too, as voices still sound the same, while the music sounds crisp and clearer than ever before.
Overall, Anniversary is made for the fans and a great way to introduce new people in the franchise.
The games definitely feel dated and better morality systems exist today in games like “Mass Effect,” but what sets “Fable” apart is its unique art style and quirky sense of humor, because why wouldn’t you be an angelic mage who happens to enjoy farting on shopkeepers before returning home to your gay husband after a day of questing.
Because the game has been so well preserved and a few aspects have been improved, I give this title 4 out of 5.