Fable II Multi-platform

Fable II Multi-platform
When cradle-to-grave role-player Fable II floated by in the holiday deluge, I put off playing it for a while, figuring I'd played a gazillion medieval fantasy RPGs already. Plus, the early stages I did play, when my character was a kid, were too goofy, overly reminiscent of the Harry Potter games and overly reliant on fart jokes. But give it some time and Fable II becomes incredibly engrossing, especially when wandering about rather than advancing the primary plotline. After creating a female character, I caused a host of hot lesbian housewives to fall in love with me, though I then ended up marrying a male fisherman in hopes of having a child. But I bought a gypsy caravan for our marital home, which he hated, and when I came back from my day job as a bounty hunter I discovered that he wanted a divorce, and was taking our child! But whatevs, I still have my dog, Sushi, and soon gay-married in the next town over. Of course, everyone else's experience will be quite different from my own. The game truly evolves as you play - die too many times and you'll wind up scarred. Eat too many meat-pies and you'll get fat (though you can fix that by eating celery). Act like a rat bastard and you'll get ugly. Morality is as important here as slaying monsters. But play the hero and townsfolk will swoon and demand autographs. Oh, and have unprotected sex with prostitutes and you risk contracting STDs. Your actions determine how people react to you and you'll be judged not just on good and evil but also on purity and corruption (i.e., you can rescue villagers and be good but then buy their homes and become a slumlord, and therefore corrupt). Also, your canine companion is perhaps the most fully realized A.I. buddy ever (though I still have a soft spot for my horse in Shadow of the Colossus). It's not at the level of Oblivion - the world of Albion feels like a bunch of randomly connected areas rather than a true open-world land, the map feature is practically useless (though the glowing breadcrumb trail makes that a minor bother) and the main quest line could be more vital. But Fable II comes damn close to creator Peter Molyneux's original promise of a fully alive land. (Lionhead/Microsoft)