Most controls in Fear Effect
are simple to learn and master, but a few deserve special mention. The three characters you control during the game carry different weapons, and most can be paired, letting you break out a double can of whoop-ass. Tomb Raider
consistently incorporates the two-gun idea, but Fear Effect
goes one step further. When an enemy is on screen, you’ll see crosshairs come up that show you’re targeting the baddie. Two enemies, two guns, and suddenly you can target both and track them when they move. Because Fear Effect
often throws waves of enemies at you, this double-gun skill really adds depth to battles. Also, taking a page from Metal Gear Solid
, if you’re close enough to an enemy and undetected, the crosshairs turn red to indicate a quick kill. Ammo isn’t always plentiful, so it’s never a bad idea to reach out and stab someone.
They didn’t name it Fear Effect for nothing, ‘cause instead of a life-or-damage-meter, you’ll find the ‘fear’ meter. Like a damage meter, when your fear is maxed out, you’re dead. Unlike a life meter, decisions you make can directly affect your fear, or prevent fear in the first place. The upside to this is that a careful player will stay in control and keep the fear low, but those accustomed to looking for med-packs or recharge points will be disappointed. It takes a while to get used to, and there are times when it’s impossible to clear a level if the fear meter is too high.
There’s no way to be critical of anything but minutiae when talking about Eidos’ Fear Effect. It’s a game that will go down as a classic, and more than anything I’ve seen in console or PC gaming, gives a glimpse of what mating good video games and movies might look like.