Fable II was a buggy, buggy project

If Fable III is the chatty one, then Fable II was, at least at one point, most certainly the buggy one. Very buggy.

The 2008 RPG was the first game that Microsoft’s test team had rated black, “super-black” even, Lionhead main man Peter Molyneux said during his hour-long talk at the Develop conference today. “That never had happened to a game before, Microsoft had in the past rated some games as ‘Red’, but never ‘Black’.”

The game had 67 thousand bugs at one point in development. “It was thought that coming back from black was impossible.”

Molyneux lists an “awful” voice-acted navigator, “female characters [that] looked like Russian shot-putters,” a “boring and tedious” map and “boring” inventory screens as some of the game’s many flaws. It also “had some terribly messy things about it,” he says, explaining that there were considerable design flaws and that the studio didn’t get to focus enough on the game’s ‘unique selling points’.

Another mistake was “throwing all these game features on the player.” “More than 50 per cent of people who played Fable II only used 60 per cent of the content on offer.”

Fable III, Molyneux promises, will be a far more focused and far less clattered affair.