Despite its success, the F.E.A.R. franchise always seemed like it was trying to figure out what kind of game it really wanted to be. The first two games were a jumble of overly complex storytelling, pitch-perfect shooter controls, J-horror pastiche, and unchallenging AI that—when mixed together—gave us games that play well but feel distinctly uninspired. So, when we heard a third installment was coming out, we were a little surprised.

Thankfully, all those complaints may be redeemed with F.3.A.R. (Get it? They switched the E with a 3 because it's the third game!) Despite the unfortunate title styling, Day 1 Studios had some fresh ideas on display that we were able to get our hands on. We hadn't been bouncing off the walls waiting for this sequel, but once we played through some of it, we've actually found five things to be (guardedly) excited about. 

By Stu Horvath