First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
- Still spooky, even in this compromised form; great multiplayer.
- Sub-average frame rate, middling graphics, lengthy level loads.
Despite getting a bit long in the tooth, F.E.A.R is still a fantastic looking game that has been ported across perfectly.
Price$ 99.95 (AUD)
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Our pre-release impressions of the PlayStation 3 port of F.E.A.R. weren't exactly positive, as the alarmingly low-res graphics and uneven framerate left us with a bad taste in our mouths.
The good news is that the developers at Day One Studios have been burning the midnight oil to whip F.E.A.R. into shape before its April release.
Since the older beta build, F.E.A.R.'s visuals have received a noticeable boost in quality. with more detailed environment textures and a truer, crisper 720p presentation (there's still no 1080p support, though). Compared to the early playable builds, the final version of F.E.A.R. looks far closer to the above-average Xbox 360 port from last fall. Unfortunately, the PS3 version bears the burden of a much choppier frame rate. It's still playable, but the action often dips below 30 frames per second, giving the action a sluggish feel. Luckily, the analog aiming is precise, which helps compensate.
Otherwise, it's a cut-and-dried affair. F.E.A.R. on the PS3 is a step down from the Xbox 360 version, which itself was inferior to the PC original. The watered-down visuals, as well as some subtle and not-so-subtle audio flaws (5.1 glitches, skipping background tracks), will annoy PC purists. Many users will also bemoan the lengthy level load times, which approach 30 seconds, and the complete lack of Sixaxis motion sensing functionality.
Despite its blemishes, F.E.A.R. is still a solid single-player shooter with a lot of scares, and the online multiplayer mode is fun and reasonably lag-free. PS3 owners hungry for a post-Resistance shooter experience should at least put F.E.A.R. into their rental queue.
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