Not so much a Fable anymore, at least it has sexy jawas in it.
When I first played Fable way back on the original xbox I thought it was one of the best games I'd ever played. It was light hearted, funny and had addictive combat which was based around RPG principles. Then Fable 2 came out and it was good but I still think it was a step in the wrong direction. The one button combat system for shooting, magic and melee was fun for a while but it gets old. They also really dummed down the RPG elements by taking out armour ratings and removing many of the skills such as guile, less choice of spells, etc. Also, don't even get me started on the ending of that game.
Then Fable 3 comes along and it's not really even an RPG anymore. You upgrade your character by dancing with villagers, earning guild seals and then opening chests! It sounds more like a game aimed at children or many of the simpletons you meet on your travels in Albion. When I realised interacting with villagers got you more of these Guild Seals than actually fighting enemies I just thought "What's the point in fighting unless I have to?" and so I didn't. Many of the times I found myself surrounded by Balverines I would just leg it. It isn't even that fun fighting anymore because the combat has been even more simplified and is more tedious than ever. Rather than fighting most of the time I just ran around farting in peoples' faces to get my Guild Seals, the gentleman's choice for growing levels. One of my favourite additions to Fable 2 was the ability to shoot peoples limbs. I just ran around shooting weapons out of peoples hands and then repeatedly shooting them in the crotch. It was both satisfying and hilarious but they even decided to take that out of the game. Now you just auto aim at everything and your character misses half the time anyway. Not to mention using melee weapons in the game is completely useless. Flourishes take about 2 seconds to charge up and never seem to kill in one. I spent the entire game using only magic and shooting and wasn't knocked out once. I barely got hit. Also, only six spells and you have to use gauntlets to cast them? I don't recall the heroes of old having to put up with this inconvenience. It's both inconsistent with their past games and a bit boring. I have to admit the ability to combine gauntlets was a nice touch but other than that magic is overpowered and lacklustre. I always just used it to blast bandits, shadows, hollow men and hobbes and they usually died in one.
What's that you say? Aren't those the same enemies from the two other games? Yes, yes they are. When they recycled all of the same foes from Fable 1 to Fable 2 I was a little annoyed. I never thought they would do it again, but they did. The only new enemies are Sand Furies and some wierd construct creatures both of which aren't overly original. Sand Furies are essentiually just sexy lady jawas and constructs are used in almost every RPG. I was also excited about this strange new land Aurora but it turns out they only made 3 areas there for you to explore each filled with these new enemies. I have to admit these new areas do look amazing but they really should have had more.
When it actually comes to the story of this game (which when you think about the name of the game should really be the highlight) it fails spectacularly. The first 3/4 of the game is exactly the same as the other 2 Fables, kill the big bad man and take the kingdom for your own. Admittedly the first half of the game is good, very funny and quite compelling. Then the game tries getting more serious just before you become king and it's not necessarily bad, it just doesn't feel like Fable. Anyway after you've completed you're quest you become the king, yay! Sadly you're only king for about half an hour...and then the game ends in almost the same un-spectacular fashion as the second. Yay?
I haven't even mentioned the many frustrating glitches yet have I? Well frankly I couldn't be bothered listing them all but they're there. You're dog is an idiot, the golden trail frequently disappears, your ranged attacks miss quite a lot, the game lags at times even when installed to the hard drive and this is to name but a few. You'd think if they were going to make a game that in essence is very similar to their past games they may have perfected the art, but they haven't.
After all of this ranting you may wonder why I gave the game 3/5. Well the simple answer is, besides all of this I still found the game fun, addictive and very funny. It's probably the funniest Fable yet so kudos to the writers in that respect. The reason I am so highly critical is that I absolutely love the Fable franchise and when I think of how good this game could have been it frustrates me. Not to mention Molyneux lied about so much again. You can't craft your own weapons, you don't become king half way through the game it's right at the end, there was no Kinect support on release and this is just to name 3 of his secrets and lies. He kept going on about how cool it was that we could touch people in game. He was so obsessed with it to the point I just repeatedly heard him saying "touch" in my nightmares while he gently carressed my hair. It isn't that cool, it's a novelty at best. He has to get over himself and stop thinking his shit smells of gold (yes that's right I said smells of gold!) and that all of his ideas are brilliant and original which they aren't.
In conclusion, if you love the Fable franchise as I do then buy this game. You will still probably really enjoy it, just don't expect it to leave your jaw in the floor. If you don't like Fable or are new to the franchise then don't bother. At least not until you've seen what the gameplay is like.