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11:28 AM on 01.26.2009

Iíve been excited for F.E.A.R. 2 for a while being a huge fan of the original game (whilst being disappointed in the mediocre expansions). And I was elated to see that I could get the FEAR 2 demo from PSN this weekend! I promptly downloaded the demo myself and then took my PS3 up to my friendís apartment for the night; we had a party planned so I figured Iíd demo the game for my friends.

ÖNext thing I know I decide to play the demo around noon the next day with one of the worst hangovers ever! Iíd tell you that I didnít get to play the FEAR 2 demo the night before however Iím not sure if I did because I quite honestly donít remember half of the night. All Iíll say is this; Mister Jack Daniels, I do not know who you are and we have never met however I feel that drinking a lot of your fine Tennessee whiskey has somehow offended you. Perhaps my greed for more of your whiskey over the course of the night is what caused this anger from your undisclosed location, since I would be depriving another good soul of your fine whiskey, and if it has then I am sorry and please make this terrible feeling go away.

Iím keeping this evaluation short and sweet because Iím at work and Iím still feeling the effects of this hangover a day later. Iím even going as far as copy/pasting FEAR 2 pictures from other Dtoid articles due to my lazy nature, and also because searching for pictures of Jack Daniels might not be the best idea on a work PC. Also, what would you call a review of a demo? Demoís are pretty much previews of an upcoming game, so would this be a review of a preview? Or would this be a repreview? I donít know Iím confused.

Visually I found FEAR 2 to be impressive specifically during gunfights. I canít explain why in detail, but the gunfights just seem to flow so nicely graphics wise. It actually made me think of gameplay from Killzone 2 a few times. Surprisingly, the game feels a tad toned down from the first FEAR title in regards to gore and violence. With the exception of the combat shotgun and sniper rifle, Iím not just ripping limbs apart left and right with point blank SMG fire like in the original title (however there is still plenty of blood to compensate).

I hate this woman. Hungover or not.

The demo gave a pretty good feel of what the game will present to you. The first half has you doing your typical FPS training while being stalked by Alma and other creepy ass stuff. There was one specific part where youíre walking through a school while being ďattackedĒ by ghostly electric-looking-things (I say ďattackedĒ because Iím not really sure if you can kill them or notÖ they do minimal damage, so low that you can pass them off as a non-lethal enemy, yet when your reticule hovers over them you do get a brief red indicator). Those enemies (along with one or two half broken lights) also provide you with enough light to get through an otherwise darkened area of the school. You get your first taste of the (pretty) combat in this half as well, but its overall more of a taste of the atmosphere of FEAR 2 rather than its gameplay. A lot of the same jumps and scares from FEAR 1 are back, though at more of an amplified level than before, meaning you are never safe from Alma at any turn.

Half number 2 of the demo throws you into more of the combat of the game. You get to test drive a nice small arsenal of weapons (shotgun, SMG, assault rifle, sniper rifle) and get to use them against a couple enemy variations. And then as the icing on the demoís cake, they give you a mech to pilot down a few streets. Yes, a mech, a large robot with machine guns and tons of missiles (Making me really want a new Mechwarrior game) that just blast through any normal enemy and take down power armored bad guys with minimal effort. The enemies seem to be noticeably smarter this time around; for example I saw enemies dive for cover instead of just running away from the blast radius of my grenades, and also saw a couple of enemies stop-drop-and-roll after setting them on fire and attempt to return to fighting. I didnít see anything drastically different in AI behavior behind small things like I just mentioned.

Insert compensation joke here

The controls feel like the one potential shortcoming of this game. Now granted this could have been due to me playing Resistance 2 beforehand as well as my hangover but I had a difficult time adjusting to the button layout for FEAR 2. And unfortunately the demo lacked any real ability to customize the button layout to what I wanted, prompting me to say ďIíll take the 360 or PC versions over this versionĒ. Basically the face buttons are your normal FPS setup; X is jump, Square is reload, etc. R1 is for grenades, R2 is for shooting, L1 is your inventory, L2 I donít remember because I have a headache. I guess the PS3 Ďtriggersí arenít triggery enough for me to prefer them as my triggers.

The FEAR 2 demo was good enough for me to say that Iím definitely going to pick up this game the moment it comes outÖ just not for the PS3. Now if youíll excuse me, Iím going to drink some water and get some Advil.
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