Publisher: Warner Bros. Interactive
Developer: Monolith Productions
E3 2007 Preview
It is the player to be named later … in a manner of speaking. Codenamed Fear 2, the actual name of the game will be determined through a contest currently being run, but whatever the name of this Monolith/Warner Brothers title, there is still plenty of ‘fear’ to go around.
Those who played the original game will likely remember just how creepy and otherworldly the little girl was. She is back and even nastier, more evil and menacing than before.
The Monolith representative, who showed off a demo of the 360 version of the game, stated that the company was “trying to create the best first-person shooter ever. We are working off the same pillars as we worked with in FEAR.”
There are some similarities between the two titles, but there are a lot of differences as well. “The big difference between this game and the first is we’ve done a lot of work with our engine.” The game is very visceral and very fast-paced – so much so that a slo-motion feature has been added so that players will be able to appreciate everything that is happening on the screen. All the combat takes place within 10-15 feet, and the environments have impact points and destructible features. The game also supports a cover-creation system, meaning that the player can kick over gurneys (the game begins in a hospital) and take cover behind it. But do not expect that feeling of safety to last long. The developers want players to participate in the action, not “build a fort in the corner” and try to watch the game go by.
The game begins in a hospital. Between doctors working to save the life of the central character, there are visions (or nightmares) of a psychotic nature with doctors carving and ripping into a patient, blood is everywhere and the operation – if it could be so termed – is on a conscious patient. It is brutal and nasty, and occasionally punctuated by the silhouette of the little girl in a doorway, or moving toward the operating table.
“We are carrying on the development of the little girl and her impact on the world.”
You awake in a hospital, but it is readily apparent that all is not well. There are soldiers on the scene, shooting patients and anything else that is moving. Some of what is moving may have once been human, but now is wall-crawling, throat-ripping, blood-drinking nightmares. Your character is the target of both, while at the same time, given to flashes of red and yellow imagery blasted against hellish circumstances. This is truly edge-of-the-seat survival horror gaming. It is not a game for the faint of hear, or even younger gamers.
Graphically the game is stunning. The world has great textures and even a gun battle in an enclosed area will leave smoke hanging in the air. There are great animations and the rag-doll physics is first rate. The dev team even added a set of incendiary behaviors so that characters on fire will react as if they were on fire.
F.E.A.R. 2, or whatever it will be called, is a “solid mix of combat and tension elements.” It is also eerie and unnerving at the same time. As good as the original game was, the sequel will take it to the next level. While on the 360 version was demonstrated, this title will also release in 2008 on the PS3 and PC.
F.E.A.R. 2 is a terrifying journey into the FPS survival-horror genre
Reviewer: Michael Lafferty
Review Date: 07/13/2007