Soft and chewy center

September 17, 2004 by Tim

The move is now two weeks away. For those of you that missed it, I’m moving back up to New England at the end of the month. I anticipate a fairly smooth transition, and I shouldn’t be out of touch for more than a few days. I swear, if I have to go through anything like that which Brian is experiencing, I will start blowing up buildings.

I did an interview for the Buzz Bugle which you can go check out if you want.

Inbetween preparing comics for the move, and actually packing my stuff, I have been playing Fable. I think at this point I’ve played far enough to give my impressions of the game.

The game is pretty open as far as what it allows you to do. I’ve gotten some pretty cool result by mixing all of the different abilities, expressions and actions there are. One of the first things I’ve noticed, probably because I played it recently, were the differences between Fable and Knights of the Old Republic.

Now, I can tell you right off the bat, the story in Fable is nowhere near as long, or deep as the story in KOTOR. And Fable plays more like an action game with RPG elements. You can cry about that all you want, but it’s the truth. Your stats may determine how hard you hit, but they don’t determine whether you do hit. I mean, you can go into first person mode with your bow and arrow, and aim in real-time. Sword fights are entirely based on button tapping. That’s an RPG? I think not.

Fine, argue that you’re “playing a role”. When you play Mario, is that an RPG? I mean, you’re controlling him, right? No, and RPG is when your character’s skills in combat and such are totally unrelated to your own hand-eye coordination. When a character’s stats determine how he reacts in the game, you become the character. When a character’s actions in a game are determined by how fast you can push buttons, then the character is becoming you.

Anyway, that was a bit of a tangent. That’s not what I wanted to discuss here. What I wanted to touch on was the differences between the two games when choosing to be good or evil, which both allow you to do with some bit of freedom.

It’s strange… I almost feel like I had more freedom to be good or evil in KOTOR, even though it seems like I have more actual freedoms in Fable.

For instance, in Fable, I can walk into a tavern, order a beer, get drunk, and then cut down the bartender and everyone in the bar if I so choose. However, if I take a quest, during which one of the objectives is to save someone, I actually have to play nice and save them, or the quest fails, and requires me to start over.

Now, in KOTOR, I couldn’t just kill anyone I wanted. I had to piss them off at me enough so that they attacked me, before I could attack them. However, when faced with a dialogue tree concerning rescuing someone, I could choose “Sure, I’ll help save the day!” or I could choose “Fuck you! I’m going to kill you and your whole family just for asking!”.

The game mechanics are different, obviously, but I think it’s safe to say that in KOTOR I felt that my character’s evilness was more developed. In Fable, sure, I can go kill a bunch of people, and that’s pretty evil. And my character gets all evil looking. But do I really feel like he’s a mean son of a bitch? Hmm… not so much.

At any rate, it’s really a non-issue. Fable is pretty cool, and I’m having fun with it, even if just for a short time. I’ll post a picture of my character later on today. He got gang-raped by hobbes again, so he’s not a pretty boy anymore.

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