The new Fable looks great so far, but I just have one question, where's the dog?

When I tell you I've watched the two Fable 4 trailers that exist more times than I'd like to admit, you do need to believe me. From every celeb cameo, to every dramatic sword unsheathing, I feel like I know these trailers inside out and have absorbed their very essence. However, despite these trailers obviously capturing the overall vibe the series is known for, there's one thing that needs to be added - the iconic Fable dog. 

I've been through the trailers frame-by-frame, looking for even a sniff of snoot, whisker, waggy tail, or lapping tongue, but beyond the werewolf in the 2024 Summer Game Fest trailer the closest we get to any kind of animal life at all in our Fable insights so far is a kicked chicken and an oversized toad. If the dogs are making a return with Fable in 2025, then developer Playground Games is keeping them locked away in a kennel for now. 

Woof of legends

Fable 2 was the pinnacle of the series for me, building on the brilliant base of the first game but introducing new features like being able to own and customize a home, and giving every hero a dog for the first time. You found your pup right at the start of the game, saving it from a bully, and it in turn ends up saving you after you're forcefully removed from Fairfax Castle. 

Your canine buddy helped you out in combat, dug up treasure at otherwise hidden dig spots, and could also do tricks. But, it also became an extension of your hero, with your pup's appearance shifting and changing according to where you aligned yourself on the morality scale. A good hero would have a dog more akin to a goofy and playful golden labrador, while those who chose to fly too close to the dark side would have an aggressive jet-black lab with glowing red eyes. People in the towns would flock to pet the good boys, but kick out at and shoo the less agreeable alternative. It's blunt, yes, but there was something about seeing your dog react to your actions that made it feel more like a familiar than just a pet. In Fable 3, the dog returned but in a slightly lesser role, and without the visual changes tied to your morality. 

Fable 4 screenshot

(Image credit: Xbox Game Studios)

It makes me question, then, whether morality is still going to be a huge part of the next Fable RPG. Myself and Jasmine have had the discussion at GamesRadar+ towers, with her leaning into the side that hopes Fable's morality choices have a greater impact than hair and eye color, while I think that there's room for morality to affect your hero's visuals and behavior. 

I've always loved it when games' characters wear their morality like a mask, with the original Mass Effect trilogy being a great example alongside Fable. I love theming my character around my playstyle, and with the kind of wit we should expect from this new Fable I can imagine Playground having some serious fun with it. I can just imagine waltzing into a cozy Albion shop that looks more like a country cottage, only for a wizened old woman to say "Sorry my liege, you are not morally corrupt enough for this cape". But with a snarl from my grizzled black mutt, she sells it to me anyway. 

Pause for paws 

Fable 4

(Image credit: Playground Games)

Now, while we may not get a dog, I do think that the latest Fable trailer does lean into the idea that fashion can play a part in expressing your hero's morality. In the closing moments of the trailer, what we assume is our player character and once-legendary hero Humphry meet up with a woman who he says "made all the wrong choices". Just a slim part of her rear profile and a gloved hand clasping a staff are visible, but as she moves into view a red cape swings into shot, emitting some kind of reddish smoke. That could well be a manifestation of her magical prowess, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed that it's the cape. I'm the anti-Edna Mode. All capes, all the time. 

Even the fact that our visible hero is dressed in a white shirt, no gloves, and fairly cheerful colors with a face that looks quite endearing, immediately feels different to the darker hues of this unknown woman's dress. It's almost Star Wars-esque when it comes to the color schemes, just with a Medieval fantasy edge. 

With 2025 still seemingly like a long way away for our next romp through Albion, I'd imagine that we're going to learn a lot more about the intricacies of Fable gameplay in the months before its launch next year. How exactly morality will work will be a huge part of that, but whether we'll get the reintroduction of my long-beloved canine compadre is yet to be seen. 

Until then, why not try out on of our picks of the best RPGs available right now?

Sam Loveridge
Global Editor-in-Chief, GamesRadar+

Sam Loveridge is the Global Editor-in-Chief of GamesRadar, and joined the team in August 2017. Sam came to GamesRadar after working at TrustedReviews, Digital Spy, and Fandom, following the completion of an MA in Journalism. In her time, she's also had appearances on The Guardian, BBC, and more. Her experience has seen her cover console and PC games, along with gaming hardware, for a decade, and for GamesRadar, she's in charge of the site's overall direction, managing the team, and making sure it's the best it can be. Her gaming passions lie with weird simulation games, big open-world RPGs, and beautifully crafted indies. She plays across all platforms, and specializes in titles like Pokemon, Assassin's Creed, The Sims, and more. Basically, she loves all games that aren't sports or fighting titles! In her spare time, Sam likes to live like Stardew Valley by cooking and baking, growing vegetables, and enjoying life in the countryside.