F.E.A.R. Series

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F.E.A.R. (First Encounter Assault Recon)
Monolith Productions
Windows, PS3, XB360
F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin
Monolith Productions
Windows, PS3, XB360
F.E.A.R. 3 (F.3.A.R.)
Day 1 Studios
Windows, PS3, XB360


F.E.A.R. Box Art F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin F.E.A.R. 3



When the world of the paranormal gets seriously pissed off, it is comforting to know the existence of the F.E.A.R. team. The F.E.A.R series places you on the "First Encounter Assault Recon" special ops task force whose job is to eliminate the destructive supernatural forces taking over the earth. Think of yourself as a modern day Ghostbuster out to stop the incredibly vicious and homicidal spirit of a girl named Alma. Alma's powers get progressively more intense throughout the series and eventually even get strong enough to dismantle a whole city. Even with a large assortment of weapons ranging from rail guns to rocket launchers, the combination of battling against mounds of clone super soldiers while being constantly tormented by violent supernatural phenomena is enough of a challenge for anyone. However, your character does have the unique ability called "reflex time", much like the "stasis module" in the Dead Space games, that allows you to slow down time to give you a bit of an edge.

Gore is abundant in the F.E.A.R series and is rather explosive in nature. The most dominating feature of the gore is the insane amount of blood shed. It doesn't take long at all to completely redecorate a room in the red stuff. This is mostly due the fact that limb dismemberment seems to have a mind of its own. All limbs can be shot off in all games of the series, but it is very imprecise. For example, lets say you want to shoot a guy's head off. Seems like a simple task, right? So, you grab your shotgun and aim point blank on your enemies forehead and pull the trigger. Well, one of three things will happen. One is nothing, the enemy just falls down with a little noticeable texture damage. Or, sometimes your enemy will just completely explode into a shower of blood and meaty chunks. Then again, if your lucky you will actually just blow their head off like you were expecting, but not often.

The quirky dismemberment seems to be at its worst in the first and second titles. In F.E.A.R. and F.E.A.R. 2, limb dismemberment is actually pretty hard to perform in general. It does seem a bit easier to accomplish in "reflex time" though, since you can get in so many shots in the slow-mo environment, but it is still not easy. Fortunately though, the dismemberment in F.E.A.R. 3 is much more accurate than its predecessors. All F.E.A.R. games have about the same level of limb dismemberment, although F.E.A.R. 3 actually lets you shoot off the limbs you are aiming at with ease. Not only that, but also unlike the previous games you can actually shoot off limbs after an enemy has fallen as well.

However, despite the buckets of amazing looking blood flying and dripping about, the actual anatomy destruction of enemies is pretty limited. All limbs have only one sever point, along with the torso. Skin damage from weapons is present, but is very low quality and imprecise. One thing about the F.E.A.R. series is that it does environmental gore, overall creepiness, and scares better than most any other similar games out there. It even puts games like the Doom series to shame in terms of the scare factor. In other words, you best keep a spare pair of underpants by your side when tackling these games :-)

One thing to mention about F.E.A.R. 2 that is rather annoying is that throughout the whole game there is this awful film grain texture overlaying the whole screen. This overused visual effect makes everything look very rough in appearance taking away from the game's otherwise great visuals. Even more frustrating is the fact that, unlike other effects, this particular effect can not be turned off in the options menu at all! This is a real downer because with this effect the higher the screen resolution is set the worse the effect looks. Fortunately though, this atrocity is not present in F.E.A.R. or F.E.A.R. 3.

Even though F.E.A.R. 3 wasn't made by the original developers, which usually spells disaster for a sequel, it is actually the best F.E.A.R. game so far. Not only in the gore department, but also overall visuals and gameplay as well. All F.E.A.R. titles have incredible graphics for their times ranking right up there with the Call of Duty series. All are high quality games and buying any of them would be no mistake. However, if you want maximum limb scatter and blood splatter from this series, you have to give F.E.A.R. 3 a go.



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F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin

F.E.A.R. 3

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