You wake up in a dark alley, not knowing anything. What has happened anyway? You struggle after the truth and answers. Answers you want to know in the darkness and fear, which makes your heartbeat race like violent blows against your head. Where do "they" come from? What has happened? Are you just turning insane? The time is up; you can't stay there reading your smses forever. It's time to head out and find the answers. Cry of Fear is a singleplayer modification of Half-Life 1 which brings you the horror you've always been afraid of. It's a total conversion of Half-Life 1, which means it uses NO Half-Life 1 content or other peoples' files. It's all made exclusively by the developers. It also uses new gaming styles that you will rarely find in Half-Life mods, such as advanced cutscenes and other stuff that will be revealed at a later date.
Cry Of Fear isn't what it's all cracked up to be. People praise it for being an amazing achievement in the horror genre, but for me it just falls flat on all scares around the half-way point. It has a lot of issues that will hinder the experience, and some of the game breaking glitches may cause you to never want to touch the game again. However, they do nail some things pretty nicely such as the story element, environments, and even some of the monsters.
The Save System is pretty awesome, and reminds me some of the old-school horror games like Silent Hill, and Resident Evil.
The inclusion of the Health System via morphine.
Story can be quite entertaining, and is well worth a playthrough just to experience it.
Some of the enemies feel terrifying, and will prove some challenge.
Co-op mode with 4 players.
It's free if you own Half-Life 1
A ton of glitches, and game breaking issues that can really ruin the experience.
Some of the weapons feel incredibly useless, and you're better off just running.
The "horror" gets old after the first three chapters. Jump-scares tend to lose their appeal.
Some elements of the story can be a tad over-bearing, and seem to push the depression onto you to the point of being annoying.
Sometimes feels a little too much like the original Silent Hill, but doesn't deliver as well as Silent Hill.
Game feels unpolished.
Flawed mechanics such as melee combat, and the dual wielding system.
The inventory system is extremely frustrating to manage.
Over-all it's not a horrible game, but it's no where near an amazing game either. I can't really recommend this to anyone, unless you're a hardcore fan of horror games, and don't mind having to deal with frustrating elements, and poor game design. However, the story is well worth a play-through even though it can be too depressing for it's own good.
Cry of Fear is a good, fun game but is nowhere near extraordinary.
- CREATIVELY DESIGNED MONSTERS. I liked the lady/ies who make Simon want to shoot himself.
- INTERESTING BOSS FIGHTS. Different strategies, man.
- NICE VISUALS/AMBIANCE. The boat ride was memorable.
- FITTING MUSICAL SCORE.
- CHALLENGING GAMEPLAY.
- LEVEL/MAP DESIGN (or at least most weren't terrible)
- TOO MANY MONSTERS. At some parts that the game stopped being fun and just became a chore.
- THE INVENTORY SYSTEM. It did not add a sense of "being helpless" or "powerless". Instead, it made the whole game a hassle, particularly when it came to keys. I would drop my pistol because my inventory is filled with a whopping three items, pick up the key, run and unlock the door that's 5 minutes away, spend another 5 minutes running back to my pistol to pick it up, and another 5 running back to the door just so I could be properly equipped for the next area. This type of inventory doesn't add anything to the game except a new pain in the ***.
-THE STORY/PLOT. The story had so much going on that it all just felt cobbled together. It tried too hard to force emotion onto the player that it came out like a joke. For example, here's Simon going about his business, killing monsters, discovering truths,OHBYTHEWAY THERE'S THIS GIRL NAMED SOPHIE WHO HE USED TO LIKE BUT SHE KILLED HERESLF AWWWW ISN'T THAT SADDDDDD, forget about Sophie- onto more monster killing whoopwhoop. But then the story never even revisits that seemingly "important" part of the plot. It was just there to be there.
-THE CHARACTERS + SYMBOLISM. I didn't care one bit about Simon or what his "monsters" represented because his whole development was just so flat.
-THE GAME IS TOO LONG. It just dragged on and felt too long for its own good.
-TOO MUCH BACKTRACKING.
All in all, Cry of Fear was a solid, good game. There was a lot wrong with it and I probably won't be playing it again, but it was fun.
Leaving aside the often confusing mapping, my main gripe with this mod is that it pushes the Half Life engine to it's breaking point - and leaves it there.
So instead of being able to launch through Steam you have to use a special program to launch it 'for better stability'. Ingame, you have two sets of menus for some reason - you can't edit options in one and you can't load custom missions from the other. If you try and edit video options, you can't because that's handled in the launcher program - which is a problem since you don't have an option for anything higher than 1920X1200 (but Half Life, by default, does support my resolution of 2560x1440). If you just left the menus as they were this wouldn't be a problem.
Then there's all the bugs that come from forcing in bump mapping and other graphical effects, like a bug I encountered in 1.5 where my screen kept turning white and I couldn't see what I was doing. I ended up having to revert to an older savegame to fix it.
If you want to use fancy graphical effects, use a new engine - don't force it into an old engine and break it. The mod would be great otherwise.
- This mod takes Half-Life and entirely revamps it. New animations, new graphics, entirely new sounds, etc., all show the extensive work of this mod.
- Atmosphere. Like Silent Hill, which this clearly draws inspiration from, this provides a great atmosphere, a mix of jumpscares and simple unnervingness balanced well. You'll jump when something pops out, but feel scared the entire time whenever nothing happens, because you know something will happen.
- Length. Enough maps and time to make this an Indie game, not a mod, in its own right.
- The storyline, involving Simon and his book, is very loose. I won't spoil anything, but the bizarre storyline simply makes no sense put together. The gameplay too shows a large variety of elements, which would be a positive thing, but it seems clumsy and bulky. The mod tries so hard to be unique and to mix so many elements together, it just feels like a potluck of other games tossed randomly in a blender. The idea of 'bosses' is quickly abandoned, a camera sequence at the beginning has no relevance to the rest of the game, and the list goes on. The story often relies on pointless backtracking to extend game time.
- Punishing difficulty. Make no mistake, this is not an easy game, even on Medium, and should not be played as such. But instead of having real challenge, like Half-Life, the mod relies on 'cheating' to get the best of you. Jerkily-animated enemy monsters are often very durable and faster than you, the poorly-implemented dodging system, the high recoil of firearms, useless ironsights, and completely useless melee weapons, having little effect. Gun-toting enemies literally never miss a shot, further frustrating player efforts, and far too many monsters are often thrown in. Real challenge turns into frustration, especially halfway through. Jump puzzles based on the aging GoldSource engine further compound issues due to a very low stamina bar.
- Unrefined animations, graphical errors, etc.