PAX 2010: Hands On - F.3.A.R.

by: Sean -
F.3.A.R.? Fithreer? Fifthrear? Whatever, I played it and it was fun.
I played the original F.E.A.R., and the sequel, and while I enjoyed the plot immensely, the gameplay difference between the two was pretty much nil. The gameplay was, for all intents and purposes, essentially the same, to include the exact same "special abilities" the original character had. In F.3.A.R., there are some definite changes.

First of all, you can play the entire campaign, which takes place 9 months after the events of the second game (and for those of you who remember the ending of the second game, 9 months is a pretty important number), and finds The Point Man, the original protagonist from the first game, fighting with, and against, the ghost of Paxton Fettel, his brother and one of the antagonists of the first game. They're both working to stop Alma, but Fettel has an agenda that he doesn't necessarily share with The Point Man.

As The Point Man, the player has access to all the run 'n' gun, bullet-time-inducing powers that he possessed in the first game. As Fettel, the player can possess pretty much any enemy and have access to their weapons and abilities; possessing a sniper nets a sniper rifle, possessing a rocket trooper nets a rocket launcher, that kind of thing. Possessing doesn't seem to have a range-limit, at least not that I can see, and Fettel has some other abilities to create an interesting dynamic between the two players. Fettel can see alternate routes, secret doors and passageways that could lead to either safer passage or more supplies; whether that player chooses to tell the other character about it is up to him.

However you pronounce it, F.3.A.R. looks pretty sweet, and should scare the crap out of you in April 2011
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