How To Be EvilPosted: January 19, 2006
I've been playing the PC version of “Fable” recently, a game where your character changes based on how you behave. If you eat a lot of junk, for example, your character gains weight. If you're not a particularly good player, your character gets lots of scars. More interesting – if you perform good deeds, and help people out, and don't do anything rotten, your character eventually gets a halo or a nice glow, while if you perform lots of bad deeds (killing, stealing, burping at cops), you eventually grow horns and develop a dark aura. Also, “people” (i.e. in-game artificial characters) react differently to you based on your history and your appearance (e.g. they might applaud your visit to their town, or cringe in terror).
Anyway, it's a good game, but I can't figure out how to play Evil. Good is simple – do good deeds, buy goods at full price, help people, and get rewarded. But since bad deeds may also have ramifications, like monetary fines (it's nice to see such a hefty fine for murder: 2000 gold), crime doesn't pay if you get caught. You can always leave a town behind, and you're off scot-free until you visit again, at which point the cops will be waiting for you, weapons in hand, until you pay the fine. So if you want to steal lots of stuff, stay in the town, and still make a profit, you can't get caught.
On the other hand, you could pretty much wipe the town out, plunder it, and escape, if you want to go that route. But that's REALLY evil… I guess you gotta do what you gotta do. No middle ground in Fable, huh?