Combat was one of the features of Fable II that I felt needed a bit of polishing despite Lionhead Studio’s championing of its accessibility. Senior design director Josh Atkins spoke with CVG about how they’re ramping up drama of fighting in Fable III: “We worked harder on staging our fights, our music and our overall combat experience to ensure the encounters all felt different and memorable – and in the end, more action-packed than before.” Bonus! Differing the experience would help rid any kind of monotony that this kind of action game is susceptible to.
Spell casting was another part of combat that has been rethought to allow for more dynamic play: “Much like every other section of the game, the spell casting system has had a complete overhaul,” he said. “From the moment the player receives their first spell, they are able to cast the maximum spell level, albeit very very slowly.” This time around, your level increases will effect the speed of your casting and not the strength of the spell. Adding to this is the new ability to merge spells together called Spellweaving: “For example, if the player chooses Vortex on one hand and Fireball on the other then they will cast a Fire Vortex which sucks people off the ground and sets them on fire, especially good against those annoying Hobbes!” Oh how I hated the Hobbes. Anything to end them quicker is a godsend.
And what of the morphing weapons announced back in February? They look to be the icing on a very violent combat cake: “Initially, all weapons look very standard, but as the hero powers up, the weapons morph to reflect the hero’s playing style,” Said Atkins. “Some weapons have predetermined paths and missions the player has to perform to give them amazing new abilities while others morph to reflect exactly what the hero has done in the game.” I’m very interested to see how weapons change from player to player and by how much too. Co-op play morphs the weapons even further with some only changing if you pass them on as gifts or do a good deed.
Fable III is only a couple of months away from release its on October 29th and Lionhead are definitely making sure it’s at the forefront of our minds with news like this. Maybe the predictions of five million units are an achievable goal after all.