I can’t decide what the best bit about F.E.A.R 2: Project Origin is, the fantastic gun battles, or the spooky atmosphere it builds up in between these action packed fire-fights. Maybe it its a combination of the two, I just cannot make up my mind…
The gun battles are solid, action packed events with some great weapons, weapons that can be unforgivably brutal, especially the first time you hit an enemy with a shotgun at very close range. Explosive to say the least. The enemy AI is very clever, moving items in the environment to create somewhere for cover as you try to shoot them, you can also use the tables, chairs or even vending machines as cover, a press of the “A” button sees you tip the item over so you have somewhere to duck when coming under enemy fire. The enemy will also run around finding good spots to take some pot-shots at you, and they will even run away from grenades that you have thrown at them.
The controls are pretty standard for a first person shooter so you’ll get to grips with it right away if you are a fan of the genre. After a while you also acquire a slow-motion ability and it works really well; allowing you to pick off enemies before they have time to react.
There are a variety of enemies as you progress; there are regular soldiers, which you will encounter early on who are also joined by mutants which are fast and more difficult to dispose of, as well as ninja soldiers, which have some sort of camouflage and can sneak up on you.
As probably given away by the title the horror element of the game is quite high, there are many jumpy moments in between the gun battles and there is a lot of tension as you are walking through abandoned blood stained hallways of the various environments. Occasionally you get visions of Alma, either as a little girl or grown woman, she is the main cause of the chaos and destruction you are witnessing, some of the scariest moments are when you walk down a corridor satisfied it is clear and then you come to a dead end, so you turn around only to see Alma in front of you for a split second, it really makes you jump and keeps you on your toes, peaking around every corner wondering if you really did you see something up ahead. After a while you do get used to these visions and it becomes a little less unnerving but it still builds the tension well.
The other thing that helps is the sound, the surround sound works well, footsteps, distant screams, doors slamming, and general cluttering about all occur and it really adds a ‘something could happen any second now’ feel to the game.
F.E.A.R 2 is a solid, fun, action packed title, and at times, scary, so if you like your frights, as well as some good old fashioned first person action then I would recommend this game.