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Fable: The Lost Chapters

A slightly extended version of a total classic but should Fable vets splash the cash for the extended mix?

In case you're new to the whole Fable 'scene' here's a quick recap. Fable is a traditional role-playing game. You play a young boy living in the fantasy world of Albion as he grows up to become a prophetic hero of legend. So far, so predictable, but it's how you get there that makes Fable so special.

Essentially, you're given free reign to develop your character any way you like. Fight monsters, cast spells, buy a house and rent it out, enter a bare knuckle boxing tournament, get married, get married again (only this time to a man), eat loads of food and get fat, get some tattoos, drink until you puke and so on. More specifically, it allowed you to tread a path of good or evil, both of which led to significantly different conclusions. While half the game was about following the story, the other, bigger, half was simply having fun in the expansive and highly imaginative world of Albion.


And it was mind-blowing. Really great fun. But Fable's creator, Peter 'Black & White' Molyneux, still wasn't happy. Not only was the actual plot component itself a little on the short side, Fable wasn't quite the all-encompassing 'life-simulator' he promised. It did a lot, certainly, but there were plenty of areas that still felt distinctly unfinished. Albion, for example, wasn't quite the living, evolving world that was originally envisaged.

Hence we have The Lost Chapters, a re-release of Fable that, among other things, boasts new spells, new missions, new characters and an extra chapter that takes place after the original game's end boss. Don't be fooled though, this is still exactly the same game as before, it just happens that this one is a little wider around the girth.

But you probably knew that already, right? The real question here is does The Lost Chapters boast enough new content for people who owned the original? As a Fable master, should you shell out your hard earned cash on a budget version of a game you've for all intents and purposes got already? That depends on whether you're prepared to sit down and play the game all over again for what ultimately adds up to a few extra sub-quests and an hour-long (give or take) bonus mission tacked onto the end. It's still Fable, and therefore still great fun, but even at 20 that's a big ask for something that, in all honesty, could have been released as a couple of Xbox Live downloads.

On the other hand, if you're a Fable virgin now's the time to pick up one of the most unique, entertaining games to appear on Xbox.

The verdict

A slightly extended version of a total classic. Not worth buying for Fable vets, but newbies should snap it up instantly.