Tuesday, September 4, 2012

F.E.A.R (First Encounter Assault Recon)

F.E.A.R. (an acronym for First Encounter Assault Recon) is a psychological horror video game developed by Monolith Productions and published by Vivendi Universal and the first game in the F.E.A.R. series. It was released on October 18, 2005, for Microsoft Windows, and ported by Day 1 Studios to the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Timegate Studios has released two expansion packs, F.E.A.R. Extraction Point in October 2006 and F.E.A.R. Perseus Mandate in November 2007. 

Both the expansions were ported to the Xbox 360 packed under the title F.E.A.R. Files. A direct sequel titled F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, was released by Monolith Productions in February 2009. A second sequel, F.E.A.R. 3 (or F3AR), was released on 21 June 2011.
The game's story revolves around a supernatural phenomenon, which F.E.A.R.—a fictional special forces team—is called to contain. The player assumes the role of F.E.A.R.'s Point Man, who possesses superhuman reflexes, and must uncover the secrets of a paranormal menace in the form of a little girl. F.E.A.R. was released on Steam on May 21, 2010, and includes both expansions and the Director's Edition bonus content. 

Gameplay

F.E.A.R. simulates combat from a first person perspective. The protagonist's body is fully present, allowing the player to see his or her character's torso and feet while looking down. Within scripted sequences, when rising from a lying position or fast-roping from a helicopter for example, or climbing ladders, the hands and legs of the protagonist can be seen performing the relevant actions. A prominent gameplay element is "The game contains weapons based on non-fictional firearms, such as pistols, assault rifles, and submachine guns, as well as entirely fictional armaments like particle beam weapons. Each firearm differs in terms of ammunition type, accuracy, range, fire rate, damage, and bulkiness. 

The latter characteristic is crucial, as more powerful/specialized weapons tend to be more cumbersome and slow the player's maneuvers. F.E.A.R. does not scale guns on a curve, so any firearm is potentially deadly in most situations. Monolith Productions stated that it aimed for "... a balanced arsenal where each weapon serves a specific function", rather than "... just going with a bunch of real-world submachine guns and assault rifles." F.E.A.R.'s heads-up display crosshair's size dynamically shows where shots will fall based on movement, aim, and the weapon in use. The player may carry only three firearms at a time; thus, strategy is required when using and selecting weapons. Compared to other shooters where melee is usually a last resort, F.E.A.R.'s melee is a viable instant-kill alternative for taking down enemies. 

The stocks of all firearms can be used in close combat. Lighter weapons, while being less powerful, allow the player to move around more quickly, increasing their chances of melee. Movement speed is maximized if a player holsters their weapon, which also allows them to engage in hand-to-hand attacks with maneuvers including punches, kicks, and slides.reflex time", which slows down the game world while still allowing the player to aim and react at normal speeds. As the player progresses through the game they will be able to pick up injections that will increase the amount of health, and reflex time they have. Reflex time is used to simulate the character's superhuman reflexes. 

Reflex time is represented by stylized visual effects, such as bullets in flight that cause air distortion or interact with the game's particle effects. F.E.A.R. lead designer Craig Hubbard stated that Monolith Productions' primary goal was "to make combat as intense as the tea house shootout at the beginning of John Woo's Hard-Boiled." He continued on to say that "defeat[ing] ... enemies ... with style" was crucial to this goal and that reflex time plays a large role in "mak[ing] the player feel like they are an action movie hero."

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