- The Crucible (Part 2) - Fable 2
Round 1 is pleasantly simple. Everyone's favourite enemy the Giant Beetles come in three distinct waves – if you are going for the target tme of 1:45 then bear in mind that you have to squash every last one in each wave before the next one spawns. They are also quite hard to spot sometimes so watch for any sneaking off. Use Inferno and crossbow bolts or gunfire to despatch them. Fire attacks get the crowd happiest, increasing the amount of gold they throw down onto the arena in pouches.
Round 2 is against Hobbes. Use your previous strategies from the Hobbe cave to see them off, but try to lure them onto the spikes as you hit the switch on the floor for maximum commentary and crowd acclaim. With only 1:50 on the clock and three rounds to battle through though, if you're going for a perfect run and aim to beat each time, don't waste it messing with the environmental traps.
Round 3 contains Hobbes too, but with 2:25 to do it in. Use the pit in the centre of the arena to push the Hobbes into either with the push Will spell or general combat. Target the explosive barrels dotted around to inflict heavy damage on these tougher Hobbes who can also attack from range (watch out for suicidal ones too!) as well.
You now get the chance to buy some items off a trader in between the rounds, though he doesn't have a lot on offer. It's still worth getting as much as possible however, as there is a sharp rise in difficulty now.
Round 4 is Hollow Men. With these three waves, just use your usualy Hollow Man tactics i.e. Inferno and melee combat. The timer is at 2:30 for those going for a quick run, and the crowd here have a penchant for flourishes and seeing the undead burn!
Round 5 is the Bandit round, with an interesting arena layout. Some will spawn onto the central bridge, which also features explosive containers allowing easy and crowd-pleasing kills. Many will also come down lower to attack you on the ground, but try to take out as many as possible using Accuracy to zoom in close. To trigger the next wave you may well have to climb up onto the bridge and finish some off. It is worth staying up there from then on and dealing with them head on if you are going for time (2:10 on this one), otherwise remember that health is at a premium and don't be afraid to attack from as far away as possible!
Round 6 is the Bandit's closest ally, Highwaymen. The same sort of idea would usually apply, except they'll want to attack from range as much as you will. Lines of ranged Highwaymen will circle the edge of the arena, but pleasingly there are a number of switches to activate fire walls to burn them off the ledge and into the central pit. With that done, move in close to take out the rest using the explosive barrels provided and close up melee and Will attacks. Return to the switches for the next wave and repeat the process. The time for this one is 2:00 and again, the crowd appreciate using the scenery as much as possible, so send them into the central pit and use the barrels and switches if you want the most gold from the crowd.
Round 6 is tremendous fun, unless you're going for a perfect round!
Another visit to the merchant (he can't get much business off Hollow Men and Hobbes, so feel free to keep him going) is on the cards here, so make use of it.
Round 7, the penultimate arena is against those tenacious Balverines in the hardest room of the Crucible. As such you have a seemingly-generous 2:35 to do it in for a perfect round, but they pack a punch and have plenty of health. They do catch fire as we learnt on the way to Westcliff however, so make Inferno Will spells your top priority.
Round 8 is a paltry 1:50 but features the largest enemy in the Crucible. A Rock Troll, similar to the one we fought to get Lucien's Diary, is standing in the way this time, but of potential glory and the Spire rather than a single item. Use targetted spells on its weak spots such as Blades and your ranged weapon, while avoiding its attacks and dealing with the Hobbes it calls in as quickly and ruthlessly as possible. Dodge its attacks and then unleash your ranged weaponry to burst its bulging warts, slowly moving round the back so as to get them all.
When he falls the ordeal is over, and you are free to leave the Crucible as champion. With this you earn the Crucible trophy, 10,000 gold, admission to Lucien's army and the Lionheart title on request. Theresa will inform you that you are now able to join Lucien's ranks and depart for the Spire. It is made clear that you will not be back for some time, and she is right, so sort out your family (there's no need to stock up on weapons though, or equipment as you won't need them in the epic quest that awaits) and ensure you've completed the two choice quests of Cold Comfort Farmer or Red Harvest (depending on which you want to do, as outlined above) and Defender of the Light or The Oakfield Massacre which will be outlined below now. The rest should keep for later, though you also will want to invest some money in Barnum and Westcliff Development, which we'll come to shortly.
First is the good option, Defender of the Light.