Like a man dying of thirst, I continue to suck hungrily at the shiny gemstone that is Fable Legends. For too long have I been forced to Play The Hero in role-playing games, tasked with saving damsels among other tedious fluffy things - this is the first Xbox specimen since Overlord that caters to my not-so-inner Villain.
Alas, playing the Villain appears to have its limitations. For one thing, it's unlikely - though not entirely impossible - that you'll be able to lay siege to a town. "The idea of villain players attacking towns sounds interesting!" community manager Chris Hohbein commented on the official forums last week. "But I'd imagine that would be a huge challenge, both technically and in terms of gameplay for those in the town! Nevertheless, always good to hear ideas!"
To recap, the basic setup in Legends is as follows: four, human and/or AI-controlled players attempt to complete a quest while one, human and/or AI-controlled villain. Between battles you'll get to hang out at hub areas like Brightlodge, mingling with NPCs and customising one of several playable hero classes.
Villains are never physically manifest on the battlefield, Hohbein revealed, but they'll "have different sorts of minions at their disposal - some more powerful than others - so, while you won't get to physically fight the Villain 'one on one' as it were, the Villain is able to control every minion you encounter including the more powerful ones".
You can play as a Villain using the Xbox SmartGlass app on a tablet, but this "won't be mandatory - it's there as an option to improve your experience". Hohbein also has "no info currently on whether couch co-op will be possible - though it is possible to play as a Villain in the same room as a Hero using SmartGlass".
Here are nine things you need to know about Fable: Legends, as passed on by game director David Eckelberry. Lionhead is also developing Fable Anniversary for Xbox 360, and has another non-Fable game in the works for Xbox One.
If you squint, you can make out bits of Fable: Legends art and some in-development environments in the below video.