Last night, I spent a little time playing through F.E.A.R. 2: Reborn, the new single-player content for Monolith's first-person shooter we reviewed back in February. Emphasis here on "a little time playing through," as the content -- which is available today for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC -- can be completed in under two hours.
Reborn is the story of Replica Soldier Foxtrot 813 who, due to a strong psychic link to Paxton Fettal (the antagonist from the first F.E.A.R.), goes rogue. The next five chapters (or "Intervals" as they're called) have you hunting down Fettal's position through war-torn streets, buildings, and the terrifying psychic hell manipulated by the creepy "I'm never having kids" Alma.
More after the jump.
The DLC starts you off in the action, Foxtrot 813 thrust into the cockpit of one of the game's Elite Powered Armor mechs, blasting through enemies and leaving blood splattered across the floor and smeared along the walls. That's pretty much the game; it all feels a bit like a big, pretty shooting gallery with little substance, running from room to room gibbing enemies as you push your way to next batch of dialogue as you creep towards the end.
Don't get me wrong -- blasting soldiers to bloody bits is fun, and F.E.A.R. 2's solid first-person shooting mechanic coupled with stunning visuals will keep you playing until the end. But again, it simply ends too soon -- I finished it around the two hour mark, and a good portion of that time was me aimlessly wandering around trying to find my next destination (there's no map or path indicator in F.E.A.R. 2, and some paths left me scratching my head). Your mileage may vary.
The problem isn't so much the quality of the DLC, either. These aren't recycled areas from the retail game; there's one particularly cool Interval that takes place inside a building turned on its side that's particularly awesome. The issue is simply how much you get for your buck -- F.E.A.R. 2: Reborn will cost you 800 MS Points/$9.99. Depending on what area of the country you live, that's about the price of a movie, which can also be completed in about two hours.
When you look at it like that, Reborn doesn't seem like that bad of a deal. (The 360 version I played even had its own Achievements, if that's your sort of thing.) It's a solid DLC offering from Monolith, just one that ends too soon. If you choose to spend the cash, just don't cancel your evening plans -- you'll be done playing it before your friends take their second shot at the bar.