There's more. You can hold down X to block, or hold and release for charging power moves. Learn the rhythm of a fight and you can use X to deliver devastating counter attacks, like grabbing a bandit's arm, spinning him around and slicing him across the back. In tight corridors, however, big splashy swings will just bounce off the walls, so you might need to rely on a smaller dagger instead.
Still not convinced? Remember the three other buttons. Putting so much diversity on one button frees the others up for equally diverse task loads. How much the team behind Fable 2 manages to squeeze onto the Y button (long-range weapons) and B button (magic) could determine how satisfying the combat truly is. When we asked Molyneux how the magic button would work, he refused to divulge anything other than the fact that he wanted players to "feel like Gandalf."
Death has also been simplified in Fable 2. So much so that it doesn't even exist anymore. Molyneux admitted to us that he absolutely hates having to replay a section of a game again and again because he keeps dying. He also realized that, in Hollywood, heroes never perish - they just get really, really hurt before bouncing back with a flourish. The same is true here. Instead of dying, your character will fall to the ground and be savaged mercilessly by his or her enemies, who will only stop when they've received tribute of gold, experience or renown.
Hesitate too long and your hero will actually become mutilated, with scars that last a lifetime... in other words, the entire game. He or she will be noticeably uglier, not only to you, but to every other person in the game as well. Will townspeople respect you less because of your appearance? Fear you more? Will you be able to marry as easily? While the new punishment system does sound rather strange, we can imagine it creating some entertaining wrinkles in how we role play.
Fable 2 will be released in 2008. There are still a lot of gameplay elements yet to be revealed, so check GamesRadar for continuing coverage in the coming months.