F.E.A.R is a First-person psychological horror game in which play as the leading main protagonist “Point Man” an unnamed super soldier sent by Armacham Technology Corporation. Point man and some additional members of the special squad have been assigned to stop the rogue commander “Paxton Fettel” in doing so the team uncover a sinister supernatural secret that has been hidden underground in a special facility. A red-dressed little girl called “Alma Wade” The scientists that operate on her know her to have great destructive abilities that they attempt to experiment with. They later try to create offspring of Alma causing the birth of both Point man and Paxton Fettel, both of which possess psychic abilities.
Throughout the game Point, man experiences hallucinations in regard to his birth and Alma, in the endPoint man tries to stop Alma who has become very powerful and vengeful towards her father Harlan Wade. Her father was responsible for the experiments being done on her in the first place, causing Alma to be enraged with him. In this rage she goes about destroying and killing all in her way, leading point man to try and lock her in the facility vault. However, this leads to him just barely being able to escape the crumbling facility before having to be airlifted on an evacuation helicopter only for the surviving squad members to learn that Alma has escaped and is loose in the world.
Despite FEAR’s old age the game was very enjoyable overall, for somebody who usually doesn’t play niche story driven games like FEAR, especially older games. However, I still found FEAR to be very good and well made in what it tried to accomplish.
The part of FEAR that stuck out to me was definitely the gameplay. In FEAR the player has a special ability called “Slow-Mo” which is part of Point man’s special reflexes this allows the player to slow downtime in order to counter numerous enemies when you are outnumbered. This mechanic is very fun. Making for some very satisfying gameplay especially with the shotgun equipped. The game also offers a great range of different guns which combined with this ability levels the playing field, especially when playing alone. The Pistol was a favourite of mine and I highly recommend it, as it’s useful for accurate controlled fired, allowing the player to make use of ammunition much more tactically in comparison to using an automatic weapon.
FEAR a game praised by its fans for its use of AI pathfinding. This makes for more difficult gameplay as the player has to pay attention to enemy AI movements so that they don’t get flanked and then killed. I remember this fondly when playing through, as for a game as old as FEAR the AI react better than most modern games, This is potentially due to the development team working closely with the level designers and the AI programmers to ensure the AI make effective use of their surroundings similarly to the player.
As of the third of December 2020, the game has very positive overall reviews on steam with the recent reviews being unsurprisingly positive as universally this game is a cult classic.