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whatshot F.E.A.R. PS3 PlayStation 3 Review - www.impulsegamer.com -

Gameplay 8.8
Graphics 8.8
Sound 9.0
Value 8.8
Distributor: Vivendi Universal
Classification:
M15+
Review Date:
April 2007
Reviewer:
Kyle Sudukis

8.8

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F.E.A.R

First it was the PC games time, then the XBox 360 gamers turn and now it's the PS3's turn with one of the most acclaimed games of 2005 arriving on the PlayStation 2 with spectacular graphics and gameplay that once again returns players to the supernatural world of F.E.A.R. (First Encounter Assault and Recon).

In the game, the player is transformed into a soldier for a black-op government paranormal investigation team that has the team chasing a former commander called Paxton Fettel who has telepathic control his cloned soldiers. However as you slowly progress through F.E.A.R, you soon discover that there may be more than just telepathy involved as you witness the supernatural on more than just one occasion.

Features
 
  • Hyper Stylized FPS Action - Experience intense, cinematic combat using a vast array of equipment and abilities: Powerful arsenal: Utilize a diverse selection of weaponry, from obliterating enemies with a remote charge to sticking them to a wall with the nail gun; Melee combat: Use your body as a lethal weapon with intense melee attacks, like the powerful roundhouse kick or the devastating slide kick, to eliminate enemies with one swift blow; Slo-mo: Manipulate time and slow down the action around you to gain the upper-hand on the enemy. * Supernatural Storyline - Expect the unexpected in an atmosphere of extreme tension and unknown danger. A mysterious, unidentified military force infiltrates a multi-billion dollar aerospace compound. An entire special forces team is slaughtered with no signs of struggle and no shell casings anywhere. Can you, as a member of the classified strike team F.E.A.R. (First Encounter Assault Recon) contain the situation?

  • Larger-than-life enemies - The enemy A.I. makes you feel like you are battling against live players. Maneuvering like a true squad the AI will flank, seek cover, and use the environment as they respond to your attacks. The enemies also sport state-of-the-art suits with special abilities including invisibility and heavy duty armor that protects against specific attacks, making them a compelling challenge in combat. 

  • Advanced Graphics Engine - A graphics engine that has been judged among the very best in the industry.

  • Cinematic Special Effects - Get the feeling of being in your own action movie complete with sparks, smoke, debris from surrounding walls. It is all here when you unleash your arsenal in the world.

  • Advanced Game Technology - A world so convincing that youll feel like you are actually in the game and not behind a keyboard. Utilizes the newest rendering technology employing real-time per pixel lighting, shadow volumes, normal mapping, and advanced shaders. Havok Physics 2 system makes unleashing hell on your enemies visceral and satisfying. Bodies will fall, collapse and recoil accurately along with objects reacting to being shot, pushed or blown up as they would in real life. 

  • Multi-Player Action - Multiple game play modes for up to 16 players online or over a LAN. All single player capabilities exist in the multiplayer modes including all of the powerful weapons, melee combat maneuvers and the slow-motion capability.

Although in its essence, F.E.A.R. is your traditional first person shooter, the developers have added a variety of changes to the genre to really set itself from its competitors with your characters special ability such as hand-to-hand combat (even scissor kicks) and your ultra-fast reflexes that are more akin to bullet-time from the Matrix. Needless to say, when used in conjunction, it is a very impressive feat that will leave you gob smacked from the moment you lay eyes on these super moves. Needless to say, the bullet-time in F.E.A.R is amazing and when you engage in it, time slows down and you can virtually see every shell fired as they leave steams within the air.

The artificial intelligence of F.E.A.R. is brilliant and also dastardly frustrating as the A.I. almost works like real players who will do a variety of manoeuvres such as flanking your character, covering their colleagues and even alerting their fellow-soldiers of your whereabouts. With that said, the gamer just cannot run around like Arnold Schwarzenegger from Commando as you really need to use your strafe ability and also a touch of stealth as your interact with the gaming environment. As the A.I. can be quite tough, the developers have ensured that there are a variety of health packs and armour scattered around the levels to ensure that this title doesn't become too annoying but rather a constant yet beatable challenge.

As with all good console games, the PS3 version of F.E.A.R. does not allow the gamer to save at anytime, rather the game is dictated by set checkpoints in the game and fortunately there are quite a few of these points. Although it does become a little annoying on the more difficult levels, providing what difficulty level you have set.

This omnipresent tension combined with the outstanding combat make F.E.A.R. an immersive game, even if it leaves you a bit emotionally exhausted after a while that is definitely open for a sequel and with the title heavily based on Japanese horror movies, there are enough scares and good story telling to really have you immersed to your television screen for hours upon hours. It should take the more experienced gamer around 10 to 15 hours to successfully complete  and fortunately the PS3 version comes with a "bonus" mission that extends the gameplay of the title, although too briefly. For those that are looking for more, F.E.A.R. offers a great multiplayer experience for those lovers of online play.

Graphically, the PS3 version looks almost identical to the XBox 360 version with extremely detailed background environments and highly detailed characters with a sturdy frame rate. Although after seeing both the PC version and the XBox 360 version, the PS3 still looks as good as both previous incarnations and not just a straight port. The title also sports an immersive soundtrack with all the sounds, screams and noises of battle with professional voice acting and some really scary sounds from a little girl that keeps popping up here and there.

In conclusion, F.E.A.R. is easily one of the better first person shooters on the market at the moment which contains one of the best storylines, sturdy gameplay engines that is a mixture of horror and action. A few little tweaks and extras makes this a definite must have for the PlayStation 3.





 

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