FEAR Files Review

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Graphics: 5.0
Sound : 6.0
Gameplay : 5.0
Multiplayer : 8.0
Overall : 6
Review by Dwayne Hicks
In F.E.A.R Files, the stand-alone expansion pack for the 360, you are given a choice between two expansions (Extraction Point and Perseus Mandate) and some multiplayer action.

In Extraction point you start off where the original game ended. Trying to meet up with your partners seemed to be the goal for every level. Or it was escape “fill in office or warehouse†and meet up with your partner. This didn’t help to engross me in any type of story, it just felt like going through the motions. The AI seemed a bit too advanced at times. As I was walking down a hallway the enemy was somehow able to see through walls and call out that they could see me. But that didn’t affect gameplay too much as said enemy would just run out into the open. Meanwhile I waited behind a crate and dropped the enemy with my time slowing ability/shotgun combo every time! This made the game feel mundane. The graphics also seem very dated. A couple of years ago they were great, but at this point they fall below or at least at the minimum of a next gen console. The environments made me feel like I wasn’t progressing at all during the campaign. Every level looked the same and every enemy looked very similar. Combine the dated graphics, the repetitive office, warehouse, crate, barrel environment and Extraction Point gets boring fast. Although one thing that stayed true was the mood of the game. The voiceover was at best average. The creepy sound was still there, granted the dripping water was getting bothersome at times. Having creatures run by knocking over chairs still got the blood pumping every once and a while which made Extraction Point bearable.

Now playing the other expansion pack Perseus Mandate was a bit better but not by much. It did fall victim to the same gameplay and graphics. But it did have a bit of variation in enemies early into the game. Within the first half hour, a good swap of enemies and a slight change of environment made this expansion feel fresh. Granted they both have the same color pallet, it was still a nice change.

The multiplayer action was fun. I was able to link up with eight players in a matter of minutes for some quick action. It had the same feel as the original F.E.A.R.'s multiplayer which is a good thing. While multiplayer did have some new maps, it also had some of the same look as the first game. Another drawback to the multiplayer which I also found in the game was the crouch button mapped to the pushing down on the analog stick which is also mapped to character movement. While I didn’t find any problem with it in the campaign (because I never felt too rushed), in the multiplayer when I would get into a gun battle I found myself crouching every time. This is probably something easily fixed in options but I found it a bit annoying in multiplayer. I would definitely say I played more multiplayer than I did both expansion packs. It was for me the best part of the game.

In closing I would say this game seems like it should have come out a year ago. It’s too little too late. If you loved the first one you will love this one because it is almost exactly the same game. But by the same token, it IS the exact same game and that’s what really hurts it. I would recommend a rental rather than a purchase for this expansion.