February 21, 2014

Fable Anniversary

Lasting First Impressions

When Microsoft released Halo Anniversary in 2011, the original Halo game was given the love it deserved and was brought up to current gaming’s standards.  This set the bar high for any future “Anniversary” titles that may come along.  Then Microsoft announced that the original Fable game was going to be given the high definition upgrade and thus Fable Anniversary was born.  Being a fan of the Fable series, I was thoroughly excited to see the original title be given the same love and care that seemed to have gone into Halo Anniversary.  With updated 1080p graphics, added achievements, and SmartGlass support, one would think this would be the best Fable game available to date.  In some respects, they’d be right, but in most respects, this Anniversary edition of Fable still falls far short from what was expected.

Fable Anniversary Screen 1

Fable Anniversary is the exact same game as the Fable: The Lost Chapters directors cut version of the game from the Original Xbox.  As with any “HD Remake” game, the graphics have been prettied up and given the full HD treatment.  There is even some fancy new SmartGlass features that allow players to display the map on their device at all times.  Included on this map are quest points and camera icons that, when selected, display an image from the original game as a comparison between the two.  Unfortunately, I still don’t think the game looks as good as it probably could have given today’s standards.  It’s definitely prettier than the original, but is it enough to carry the game to a new generation of players?

With both Fable II and Fable III under their belt, I went into Fable Anniversary hoping that Lionhead Studios would take the Fable III engine with all it improvements and enhancements since 2004 and recreate the original Fable story in that engine.  Unfortunately, it seems all we’ve received here is the exact same game we had ten years ago, with slightly improved graphics. Even the bugs and problems that were in the game in 2004 are still there now.  The game itself wasn’t fixed in any way and this really detracts from the enjoyment of this classic title.  I went into Fable Anniversary looking for a brand new Fable game telling the story we all came to love 10 years ago.  What we got was a 10 year old game with all its flaws and wrinkles still showing.  Fable deserves better.

Fable Anniversary Screen 2

Fable Anniversary is certainly worth playing for someone who may have been introduced to the franchise with Fable II or III and want to see where the series started.  For the diehard Fable fans out there, however, Fable Anniversary was not given the same love and care that went into Halo Anniversary, and that’s a real shame. There was so much potential to make this great action RPG even greater.  SmartGlass support, HD graphics and achievements are not enough to fix a still broken game.

Lionhead Studios, I gave you an hour and I am NOT IMPRESSED.

About the Author

Sean is an avid gamer and lover of all thing tech. He is a dedicated husband and the father to three beautiful daughters. In addition to taking his love of gaming to a new level with this site, Sean is also host of our podcasts: The OMG! Hour, Lost Treasures of Gaming, and Primetime as well as the bi-weekly podcast mashup show, Gamers Unscripted. Follow Sean on Twitter as @Xiantayne and this blog as @OMGnexus.



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