Product Type: Warner Bros. Xbox 360 games
Newest Review: ... game play. I started playing fear 2 to see that they had thrown fear to the wind, just using the fear name to push some new call of duty u... more
Don't Fear the Sequel
F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin (Xbox 360)
Member Name: samueltyler
F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin (Xbox 360)
Advantages: Good AI, effective horror, sound
Disadvantages: Samey, mediocre level design
The first 'FEAR' was a First Person Shooter (FPS) that had a few unique selling points. It was a psychological horror with intelligent enemy AI and the ability to slow down time. However, it also suffered due to its bland environments. 'FEAR 2' looks to expand on these ideas, but imo not enough. In many ways this is just a better looking version of the first game. The horror, AI and slowdown are the same as the first game. Luckily, the environments have been improved, but they are still not that interesting. What you are left with is a FPS that feels like it is 5 years old, but looks better.
There are some new gameplay ideas in the sequel. During the game you come across Mech robots that you can climb into and destroy the enemy. These moments are fun, but do not engage you in any real way. I felt almost indestructible in the armour and played like I was in 'Operation Wolf' back on the Spectrum! The various weapons pack a punch and the enemy AI will try and flank you when possible. However, none of the features are different enough anymore from the majority of FPSs on the market to push the gameplay over average. (3 out of 5)
Bless their little cotton socks, but Monolith do try and engage the player in some sort of story and character in 'FEAR 2'. This game follows on from the first as you investigate an insidious company and a mysterious ghoul called Alma. You are connected to her and she uses this link to force hallucinations. As you progress through the game you can read texts that are left around that deepen the story. Personally, I do not play games to read reams of text so I did not bother. What I was left with was a story that tries to be deep, but ended up being as vacuous as most other computer game. I never got too involved with my character, teammates or enemies. At least they tried. (3 out of 5)
'FEAR 2' is not the longest FPS on the market and took me around 9-10 to complete. For a game that is pretty samey and average there are not enough highlights to make this time well spent. The additional online game could add lifespan for some people, but I found it a little crude and old school for my tastes. The numerous achievements that can be earned from the game will have people looking in every corner; this may also improve the lifespan. However, the core experience was just enough to avoid being a rip off. (3 out of 5)
I have mentioned at least 10 times this generation that I would prefer resources to be spent on a top quality single player games than having an added rubbish multiplayer. 'FEAR 2' is the next in line to have fallen into the trap. The multiplayer is just deathmatch style gameplay vs. other people. I no longer enjoy this style of play, especially when it feels as uninspired as this. The maps were decent, but the actual gameplay was boring. With the likes of 'Call of Duty: World at War' dominating the online world I imagine that no one is still playing this. (2 out of 5)
The first 'FEAR' game was an older game ported over from the PC onto the 360 and looked like it. 'FEAR 2' is an enhanced graphics engine and certainly looks better than the first game. The character models look very good, but unfortunately they are let down elsewhere. The environments may be better in the sequel, but there are still too many bland corridors. 'FEAR 2' cannot show off its full graphical potential because the levels are too dull. (3 out of 5)
As mentioned before I feel this game really suffered in terms of level design. 'FEAR' was almost entirely set in office corridors and 'FEAR 2' at least mixes things up a bit. However, far too much of the game is still inside and becomes repetitive. Where the level design does make up ground is in the horror set pieces. As your character gets closer to Alma he hallucinates enabling Monolith to take you on some very trippy experiences. The game was at its best when it merged reality and the world of horror. More of this would have pushed the level design above the average. (3 out of 5)
Finally an area in which 'FEAR 2' can shine. Although not up there with the crème this game sounds great. The use of horror sound effects and ambient music does as much to heighten the tension as any grisly monster. I was also very impressed with the voice acting which always sounded authentic and was acted well. (4 out of 5)
'FEAR 2' was a game that came out a little too late for its own good. Originally held back from a Winter 08 release to a Spring 09 it was free to sell to a crowd of gamers hampering for a new game. However, the game would have been better suited released spring 07 before the likes of 'Bioshock'. Compared to the best in the FPS genre 'FEAR 2' is average on almost every level. The sound effects and AI do still stand out, but are let down by bland level design and an awful online versus mode. The FEAR franchise may have arrived with some original ideas back in the day; it's a shame that Monolith did not implement a whole load more to raise the quality of 'FEAR 2'. This is a game worth playing, but only by those who are running out of top quality FPSs and for £20 or less. (3 out of 5)
Maker: Monolith RRP £50
Amazon uk £22.99
Summary: A decent enough FPS
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