Friday, January 23, 2009

20cc asks: Are you afraid?

It's back. What's back, you ask? F.E.A.R. is back. I'm aware that this is somewhat preemptive, but I just downloaded the demo on Steam, and it's brought the game to the front of my mind.

I'm not counting this as a review, since I only played a little of the demo, partly because it was damn scary, and partly because as soon as I tried to move, my computer started screaming in pain and flailing with protest. Apparently it's a problem that my processor is roughly half as powerful as required. It seems I'll be buying it for 360 when it comes out.

More on topic, I've been harboring high hopes for F.E.A.R. 2 since Sierra butchered the plot in Extraction Point and Perseus Mandate. From what I played, it's hard to tell if the plot is any good. However, it has retained the feel of the first game. Since most of it takes place in Auburn after the Origin meltdown, I imagine it will be rather more, as they say, fucked up than the original. The Replicas make a return, and I found myself fighting hordes of semi-visible creatures resembling the psychic monsters from Perseus Mandate, except more human in shape, and harder to see.

Unfortunately the interface has been streamlined quite a bit, and I'm not convinced that's good. The numbers have been removed from the health and ammo displays, and in general the layout has been simplified. The graphics look promising, but it's hard to tell when I have the settings turned down so low. I could say more, but I want to save some stuff for a full review once I get my hands on a copy of the full game. I just hope the 360 version doesn't eliminate the action button and force you to melee open doors, like F.E.A.R. Files did.

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