F.E.A.R. Online open beta precedes full launch on Steam in October

F.E.A.R. Online

In many ways, F.E.A.R. is very much like Highlander: I loved the original and remain a fan even though it's well past its 'best before' date, and I try not to think too much about anything that came after. Now, with the announcement that F.E.A.R. Online is just a few weeks out, I once again find myself stretching the analogy to ask if there really can only be one.

F.E.A.R. Online is a free-to-play online shooter that pits the First Encounter Assault Recon team against the elite soldiers of the Armacham Technology Corporation, and both of them against a raft of supernatural horrors. It was announced last summer and entered closed beta this past May, after which it underwent an "extensive redesign" based on player feedback.

Aeria Games didn't get into what exactly was changed in that overhaul, but it did say in the announcement of the looming launch on Steam that the game will feature "several" modes of gameplay (two PvE and five PvP, from what I can tell) across more than ten maps. The action will range from straight-up Team Deathmatch to a cooperative "scenario mode" for up to four players, a "knife mode" that seems fairly self-explanatory, and even the "Soul King" mode from FEAR 3, in which players compete to possess enemies and collect the souls of the fallen.

For those who want a (slightly) advanced look at the game, a brief open beta will begin on October 8 and run until October 17, when the whole thing goes live on Steam. Details and sign-up links are up now at Aeria's F.E.A.R. Online portal.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.