I downloaded the demo for F.E.A.R. today. Talk about totally smashing any hope of getting into the Christmas spirit! The demo is impressive: if the rest of the game is as good as this preview, the game as a whole must be as good as Halflife 2. Assuming you liked Halflife 2, and if you didn’t then what the heck is wrong with you?
Basically, its another in a long line of oppressive, scary first person shooters. Things leap out at you from the dark. You carry large guns with which to make said Things bleed. Blood flows everywhere, and death comes quickly. You have your flashlight (with limited duration, naturally)- thankfully, you can have it turned on and shoot at the same time, unlike other games *cough*Doom3*cough* where the duct tape required for this high tech feat hasn’t been developed yet. And you have a sort of “bullet time” ability that reflects your characters amazing reflexes. The graphics are great, and the physics of the world seem realistic.
With these types of games, the technology features are not the selling point for me. The technology has reached the point where reflecting water, realistic shadows and lighting, and plausible physics are no longer surprising: they are expected. What makes action FPS games work for me is a combination of story line and “atmosphere”. Does the game make me jump in surprise? Do I care about uncovering the story behind all those bloody deaths? And does all that fancy technology work together well to bring the atmosphere and story together seamlessly for me?
F.E.A.R., at least based on the demo, seems to do these things for me. So much so that I’m trying to get the “direct to disk” download of the full game to work. Unfortunately, I keep getting an “Internal Server Error” on the game purchase website each time I click on the “Download Now!” button. Buggerit!