Puppets are on a rampage in Fable Heroes, a fun multiplayer beat-em-up featuring characters and lore from the world of Fable. Pick from several puppet heroes (with different abilities) to start, then head out and start bashing hollow men, hobbes, and balverines. You can play the game solo but it's better to invite three of your friends, either locally or on Xbox LIVE, on this lighthearted romp through iconic Fablesque locations.
The control scheme is fairly simple, with light and heavy attacks and an area attack that costs you a heart. Destroyed enemies yield a shower of coins, which you must race around to collect. Treasure chests along the way give you temporary power-ups -- or occasionally nasty surprises. Then there's always Chesty, the treasure chest that attacks you – this is a Fable game, after all.
As you move from stage to stage, the action gets pretty frantic, and with the bright color palette it can be easy to lose your character in the melee. In typical Fable fashion, there are branching paths you can take through some of the levels. There are also competitive minigames, such as a minecart race, sprinkled throughout the game.
At the end of each level you can spend your coins on upgrades and perks in a quirky power-up board game where you roll dice to advance your character. Your accumulation of riches can also be transferred to Fable: The Journey, the exclusive Kinect adventure coming soon from Lionhead.
The boss battles can be brutal. They're not overly difficult, but they can take quite a while. The game itself is accessible to the whole family -- it's not super-tough, but completing it also unlocks the "dark" version with tougher enemies and varied locations.
More of a fun little button-masher than a challenging team-based fighting game, Fable Heroes is a great game to play with your kids or with your buddies for some lighthearted competition. Grab it today from Marketplace for only 800 Microsoft Points.