Appointment With F.E.A.R
Gameplay 8
Graphics 8
Sound 8

If you are a fan of the original role playing gamebook you will love the way that Tin Man Games brought it to life. You’ll still spend most of your time reading, but the great illustrations and comic book style presentation along with the soundtrack brings everything to life. The storyline is pretty straightforward, but infused with plenty of humor and parodies which makes it more entertaining. The different powers and story branches also give the game a lot of replay value.

Gameplay: Like reading a visual novel and making the key choices yourself.

Graphics: No animations, but some nice comic book style art and bold colors.

Sound: The music and sound effects make the game feel more dynamic

Summary 8.0 Great
Gameplay 0
Graphics 0
Sound 0
Summary rating from user's marks. You can set own marks for this article - just click on stars above and press "Accept".
Accept
Summary 0.0 Terrible

Appointment With F.E.A.R

Developer: Tin Man Games | Publisher: Tin Man Games |Release Date: 2011 | Genre: Adventure, Indie, Visual Novel |Website: Official Website | Format: Digital Download

As the superhero of Titan City it is your job to protect your fellow citizens from harm. When you learn that the nefarious F.E.A.R (Federation of Euro-American Rebels) is holding a top secret meeting somewhere in the city, stopping them becomes your top priority. You only have three days to uncover the location of the meeting and stop the leader of F.E.A.R, the Titanium Cyborg, from whatever dastardly deeds he is planning.

I grew up with (and still own quite a few) of the Steve Jackson role playing gamebooks, so when I heard that Tin Man Games released an adaptation for PC I knew that I had to check it out. This game is actually based on the original book which was released back in 1985, but this doesn’t mean that it feels dated. Instead, you are presented with a stylish and well illustrated graphic novel where you are handed the reins to make choices at key branches in the storyline. At the start of the game you can select the gender and appearance of your character (which doesn’t influence the story) and their super power (which definitely influences the story.) The game doesn’t take itself too seriously, as illustrated by the random list of names you can choose for your hero which include the likes of the Geeky Cactus, Australian Anteater and Velcro Moth.

The story is presented to you in comic book style, with new panels sliding up from the bottom of the screen. Your primary goal is to find clues about the whereabouts of the secret F.E.A.R meeting, but standing between you and this goal is a rogue’s gallery of more than 30 villains. You won’t encounter all of them in one playthrough, instead your encounters depend on which locations you visit and what super power you selected at the start of the game. Your character is equipped with a special crime watch, which issues alerts when trouble brews somewhere. It is up to you to choose whether you want to investigate or not and even if you are in the right place at the right time you might not have the right clues or powers to make a difference. While this boosts the replay value of the game immensely, it also leads to plenty of trial-and-error which might annoy some players.

The game can be completed in about 30 minutes if you know exactly what to do, but believe me, you will be replaying it many, many times to get to the real ending and thwart F.E.A.R. In my first few playthroughs I failed miserably at gathering all the necessary clues to locate the meeting and it wasn’t until I started taking down notes about which events rewarded me with certain clues that I started to slowly piece it all together. You are rewarded with clues by either being at the right place at the right time or by defeating the villains you encounter. At certain points in the game you can try to “solve” a mystery by selecting the right clue from the list you have gathered. Not all clues are vital to completing the game, but most of them do open up new scenes or lead to better outcomes, so they are worth tracking down.

If you are successful in combat or perform heroic actions you are also rewarded with “Hero Points.” These points serve as an indication of how well you are doing, but you can also lose hero points if you mess up and injure the wrong people, act in a cowardly manner or make stupid choices. Next up is “Luck” points, which are awarded for finding clues. Luck points can be spent to increase your chances of receiving a rare card after defeating a villain in combat. On mobile devices these cards could be swapped via Facebook to complete your collection, but on PC they are just something extra that is collectible.

The interface of the game is very clean and apart from the clues and cards that you find there is no inventory. Even dice rolls are handled behind the scenes, so when you have to perform a skill check you are only informed if you are successful or not. During combat you have access to three different attacks, easy, medium or difficult, with corresponding damage. The type of attack and area you aim for is randomized and quite goofy, so be prepared to claw at peoples armpits, slap their hair, hit their toes or aim your assault at their parietal lobe. There are no animations, unfortunately, but the music and sound effects make things sound a lot more dynamic than what they really are. The game also doesn’t feature any speech, but considering the amount of reading that has to be done this isn’t really an issue. You can even enable a dyslexic-friendly font for better accessibility, which is a great touch for such a text heavy game.

From what I can tell, the game is a very faithful adaptation of the original book, which only some minor changes here and there. There were a couple of bugs upon release, but Tin Man Games quickly squashed these and I have since completed the game multiple times without encountering any problems. The highlight of the game is definitely the humor and squaring off against villains such as The Serpent, Scarlet Prankster and Ringmaster is a blast. The references and parodies of other superheroes are corny, but funny and overall I found the game to be very entertaining. Your hero simply dons a hat and glasses when they “disguise” themselves as a reporter at the Titan Times and some of the encounters, especially the ones you can mess up are laugh out loud funny. Although the PC version of the game doesn’t’ contain any enhancements over the mobile versions from what I can tell, there are Steam Achievements to earn and support for Steam trading cards.

If you don’t enjoy trial-and-error gameplay or replaying a title over and over to see everything it has to offer then Appointment With F.E.A.R is probably not for you. It can be frustrating to repeatedly fail because you made wrong choices without even knowing it, but I encountered enough new content with each playthrough to make it feel worthwhile. The game also allows you to jump back to certain checkpoints if you don’t want to start from scratch. In the end, I completed the game with each of the four super powers on offer and I’m still missing a few achievements, so replay value is certainly not an issue. Hopefully the game will appeal to enough people as I would love to see more of these titles make their way to PC.

System Requirements

  • OS: Windows XP SP3
  • Processor: 2 GHz dual core
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Hardware Accelerated Graphics with dedicated memory
  • Hard Drive: 350 MB available space
  • OS: Windows 7/8
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Hardware Accelerated Graphics with 1GB memory
  • Hard Drive: 350 MB available space

Related posts

Nightmares from the Deep: The Cursed Heart

Nightmares from the Deep: The Cursed Heart

Rescue your daughter from the clutches of an undead pirate in this enjoyable hidden object game. Or, if hidden object hunting is not your thing, do so instead by playing a couple of solo Mahjong rounds. The Cursed Heart features an interesting storyline, great locations and plenty of puzzles to solve. The only thing holding it back is the low resolution cut-scenes and less than stellar voice acting. Gameplay: Rather easy, but very enjoyable. Graphics: The locations look great, but the cut-scenes plays at a very low resolution. Sound: Nice music and sound effects, but the voice acting could have been better.

QUAKE

QUAKE

Every bit as playable as when it first came out Quake is a true classic and, while the plot might be non-existent, the action is non-stop. It also has enough mods and patches to keep you busy for a long, long time. Gameplay: Fast & frantic. Graphics: Pretty dated but there's enough mods and updates to make it look very decent. Sound: Creepy sound effects and spooky ambience.

Dub Dash

Dub Dash

Take control of a spherical object without brakes as it rolls straight into danger with this fast-paced and colorful rhythm action game. Your job is to dodge whatever is coming at you, something which is easier said than done. We could have done without some of the modes, especially the Flappy Bird style sections, but overall this is a great game for those who relish a proper challenge. It is not perfect, but making it through all the tracks in one piece will keep you busy for a while. Gameplay: Simple controls and straightforward objectives, but the challenge is quite steep. Graphics: Good, but there is rarely time to gawk at your surroundings. Sound: The soundtrack is excellent, but until you are good you will be hearing it in bits and pieces.

T.E.C. 3001

T.E.C. 3001

T.E.C 3001 is a game where you learn the ropes within a few levels, but can spend hours perfecting the moves. The speed of the game is exhilarating and while there is some trial-and-error involved it is also very addictive. If you are looking for a game where you can just jump in and get the adrenaline flowing without bothering with storylines or cut-scenes then T.E.C 3001 is a great option especially for its price. Gameplay: Fast paced and challenging runner that can become quite addictive. Graphics: Simple, but visually striking without interfering with the gameplay. Sound: Some fitting tracks and sound effects, but nothing really memorable.

Enclave

Enclave

It might be a typical console port, but Enclave has enough action to keep players hooked. Don't play this one for the puzzles as you will be disappointed, but if you want some nice hacking and slashing you can't go wrong. Gameplay: A typical console port but still fun. Graphics: Very good for their time. Sound: Epic music score and decent voice acting.

TankBlitz

TankBlitz

If you have a hankering for jumping into a tank and blasting everything in your path to smithereens then TankBlitz has got you covered. This 2D, top down shooter looks and feels like an arcade game from the nineties, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s got nonstop action, tons of different enemies to shoot at and enough upgrades to keep you coming back for more. Three difficulty levels and plenty of achievements add to the replay value, but we would have loved to see more than 12 levels. Nevertheless, the game is entertaining from start to finish and we had a blast with it. Gameplay: Shoot things to earn cash for upgrades so you can do it all again with even more powerful weapons. Graphics: Not as sharp as we would have liked in high resolution, but packed with detailed. Sound: No speech, but the effects sound like they’ve been plucked straight from an arcade.

Leave a comment

1 × 1 =