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April 26th, 2008, 06:49
Lionhead's Fable 2 has been previewed at Next Gen in an article taken from Edge magazine. Apparently the one-button combat is actually three buttons:
If Peter Molyneux’s popularity has been hurt by his tendency to over-promise, then it was not evident at GDC, where an obligingly rapt audience had queued round the block in order to hear the latest on Lionhead’s sequel to the Xbox’s action RPG. Nor did Molyneux’s propensity for making large claims appear diminished, labeling his talk, ‘Fable 2 – The Big Three Features Revealed.’ It turns out that Fable 2 will have drama, combat and co-op. Who would have guessed?
Of course, Molyneux’s grandstanding aside, it is not the presence of those features but the manner of their implementation that is remarkable. Molyneux has spoken before about putting an entire combat system on one button, and here he reiterated his desire for anyone, even someone who has never touched a joystick before, to be able to pick up and play Fable 2 immediately. It turns out that there are now three buttons – one for melee attack, one for ranged weaponry and one for magic. A game-naïve person might be able to trounce a pack of enemies using only one, but the number of experience points you get from each victory increases as you mix combat styles and use the environment to best effect. And given that combat is entirely context sensitive in Fable 2 the environment becomes an essential part of your arsenal; stand near a wall, hit the melee button and you might flip off it to slam a knee into an enemy’s face. Attack whilst near an object lying on the floor and your character will kick it into someone’s stomach.
How do you balance that? If newbies can kill everything with blind one-button mashing but other players get more experience points, how does that balance out?
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April 26th, 2008, 06:49
That enviromental combat sounds like a pretty good idea, maybe someone can take the idea and implement it in a game.
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April 29th, 2008, 17:51
Originally Posted by Dhruin View Post
How do you balance that? If newbies can kill everything with blind one-button mashing but other players get more experience points, how does that balance out?
Level scaling? Anyway, I suspect game balance is moot because gameplay is unlikely to be a central component of Fable 2.
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April 29th, 2008, 19:17
I don't know how you could balance it. To me it says that this game will play out more like an adventure game. You know, the ones that don't require any button mashing skills, you're just playing it for the story and scenery e.g. Broken Sword, Dreamfall, etc… the only difference is you will see fancier combat, and feel that you had *some* sort of influence on the outcome. There will probably be a lot of dissappointment for Fable 2, as most people will go into the game expecting the usual RPG type of play.
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April 29th, 2008, 22:25
There was a time when Molyneux could excite me as a gamer, but that is long gone now. He's proven again and again that he's a great idea man, but is either totally ignorant or indifferent in terms of creating a wholesome gaming experience. What's really odd to me, though, is that the games they put out are still pretty good and have amazing production values. I wonder what would happen if someone with a genuine understanding of good gameplay mechanics were to come along and teach Molyneux a thing or two.

Lionhead is really an amazingly talented team and it's profoundly unfortunate that their lead developer/marketing dude is such a media/attention whore. I don't think it would take THAT much to change their games and make them live up to a bit more of the staggeringly ridiculous hype they tend to generate.




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