Fable: The Lost Chapters

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Fable: The Lost Chapters on Steam

MSRP: $9.99

Platforms: Windows, Mac, XBox

Release: 9/20/05

Steam rating: 93% positive

Fable: The Lost Chapters is the expanded version created for Windows of the original Fable game made for XBox.  It features additional content not available in the original game, and until 2014, when Fable: Anniversary was released, was the only Fable title available on PC.   What really set Fable (and its sequels) apart from other RPGs of the time was the morality system, and the fact that, even playing as a completely evil and heartless character, you could still complete the main story.

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As someone who’s never felt the urge to go full on dark-side in an RPG, there was still a lot about the Fable series I enjoyed. I think Fable 2 is the only game I ever played all the way through on my XBox 360, and for me, what made it great was all the extra stuff that was weaseled in around the main story.  Although not truly open-world, Fable: The Lost Chapters features a ridiculous amount of side quests, puzzles, and collectibles.  If you’re the type to hunt down all those things, you can quite easily almost triple the play time of this 15ish hour game.

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The playable character is known only as the Hero of Oakvale, and he is taken to the Hero’s Guild to begin training after bandits attack his home town, killing his father and kidnapping his mother and sister. You are very definitely a chosen one, and that’s set up right from the get go.  However you choose to fulfill your destiny will be apparent both in your appearance and in the way the NPCs in the game react to you.

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The biggest downside of the game, as I see it, is that it takes awhile to really draw you in – the earliest quests in the game are all part of an extended tutorial to get you accustomed to all the systems and mechanics.  It might turn off players who are playing for the first time without the benefit of the nostalgia glasses.

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I did struggle to get the game to run on Windows 10 (and there are reports of similar issues all the way back to Windows 7).  Running the game in Win XP (Service Pack 3) compatibility allows the game to be played, although I still experienced crashes on exit. If you prefer, Fable: Anniversary is an HD remaster, designed to run on more modern hardware, that also adds achievements, but at 3.5 times the price.  As someone who doesn’t mind dated graphics so much, I find the original to be completely serviceable with that one small tweak.

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Although Fable: The Lost Chapters may be a somewhat slower RPG than you are used to, I think in a lot of ways, it’s still a very interesting game to play through.  It has that distinctive Molyneux charm, and the things it does well, it does very very well. If you’ve never played a Fable game (or if somehow, god forbid, you’ve only ever had the chance to play Fable 3), this is a fantastic choice for $10.  If you’ve played it before, and want to relive the nostalgia, this is solid gold.

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