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Cry of Fear has been taunting everyone on ModDB for years, slowly dripping out content, detailing the massive changes that have been made to GoldSRC and giving everyone a very good idea of the tone that CoF is creating. Has the wait been worth it?

Posted by Henley on Feb 19th, 2012

Cry of Fear can be best described in one word, immersive. From the first time you boot up the mod right through to completion the entire world closes in around you and holds you tight. You will take on the role of Simon, a young teen who wakes up in a dark alleyway with only questions. He has no idea of the events leading up to this point or why the world around him is slowly filling with horrible monsters. Simon needs to fight the darkness (and what lies within) with the intention of uncovering the mysteries and surviving to see another day. I won’t go into any more details regarding the story but it is worth mentioning that you are in for a very enjoyable ride, if you can muster up the courage to press into the night.

Cry of Fear has something very special. You see the gents from Team Psykskallar Team Psykskallar have not just been sitting idle for the past 4 years as CoF boasts some of the best engine implementations for GoldSRC since Paranoia. From the very beginning of the mod you are greeted with a new hint system, inventory changes and my personal favourite the new map loading system (more details on that later). Lighting effects are vastly improved and actually make a big difference. The world – while not extremely dark – still requires some player held light source to navigate effectively so your combat will change based solely on the lighting made available to you. With 6 different lighting solutions available at different points in the game you are spoilt for choice each having their own pros and cons.

Unlike the majority of half-life mods CoF is not a linear game. You will often find yourself backtracking as you pick up items for areas you have since passed, however the world is far from static. New obstacles will appear within areas you so bravely exorcised on your first pass, familiar routes will change and new areas and shortcuts to old will open up. Players who have ventured into the Dark/Demon Souls games will have a good idea at what I am hinting at. This is all thanks to the above mentioned level loading system where every door you enter loads (rather quickly I might add) a new map within the game. With each new instance the enemies you face will be randomly placed, codes for doors and computers change meaning each new game will be different. The system itself is fantastic, it is a “think outside the box” that just works so well, I might even go as far to say it is the best level management system I have seen in a modification to date. And I have played a LOT of mods.

Following the motif of survival horror, inventory space is quite limited and in some cases extremely frustrating. One example I had to find and carry two fuses from one location to another, each fuse takes up a whole slot within your inventory and if you take into account that each weapon, key, light source takes up as slot well you will be forced (quite regularly) to make hard choices on what you will be carrying with you. I will admit that this system was frustrating for me; I tend to “save” items for more difficult encounters so if I wanted that shotgun again I would need to backtrack. Personal issues aside I believe the whole system could have still worked well if the issues of size and weight been a factor rather than a slot based system.

Now I am imagining you are all saying “Enough about the engine, IS THE MOD SCARY?!?” Yes, Cry of Fear is really frightening! There are a fair amount of “BOO!” moments but CoF really shines in how it builds up the suspense and for that the music plays a very big part. These moments are effective at getting deep under your skin, to the point where it had literally given me shivers. Mix in the removal of ye-old f5 to quick save for a suitably better and far more traditional save point system and the resulting effect will fill you with a sense of dread since you are very much gambling with your progress. For those among us who are weak at heart Cry of Fear does have some downtime that works wonders for the pacing of the mod. The first few chapters will really run you ragged for scares, but when you finally step out into the open streets and the soothing music envelopes your tormented mind you realise how much of a powerful hold CoF has over your emotional state.

So should you try Cry of Fear? Yes, without a doubt. But know this, no matter how much you think you are prepared for what you are about to experience I can tell you right now that you are not. So turn down the lights, put on your favourite headphones and get ready for what will most likely become an all-time classic mod.


Post comment Comments  (50 - 100 of 111)
Evil-Police Feb 19 2012 says:

But the real question is, will it be scarier than Amnesia?

+4 votes     reply to comment
Mkilbride Feb 20 2012 buried:


I seriously doubt it.

As good as this looks, I find it hard to imagine...especially considering you can fight back in this.

-5 votes     reply to comment
SeBu Feb 20 2012 replied:

It's too early to judge that. Amnesia wasn't scary for me, atmoshperic yeah, but not scary. When the first monsters was encountered it was all over for me.

As henley said COF will have many "Boo" situations, that will surely keep you on the edge of your chair, but i strongly believe that they have built great dark athmosphere too.

+4 votes     reply to comment
Mkilbride Feb 20 2012 buried:


If Amnesia wasn't scary for you, then there isn't a game on the market that is.

Or even a mod, for that matter, as because that they've shown looks dark and wonderful, and I'm sure I'll jump many a times, I don't think it'll give me a near heart attack like Amnesia did. I could only play it 20 minutes at a time before I was sweating to much.

-5 votes     reply to comment
SeBu Feb 20 2012 replied:

You might be right. I'm that kind coldheaded gamer that i dont fear the "athmosphere" so much, like the amnesias immersive world (dat sounddesignt etc..) had. Like in amnesia, you get early warning when enemies are near and have time to react properly. But like in AOM:DC i was always waiting the next moment, when it will get me out of guard. (And yes, dark room and my 300$ senheiser production headphones will give me a great experience) :D

I hope just that COF will succeed on that too. I strongly believe so.

+4 votes     reply to comment
Nebcake Feb 19 2012 says:

Looking forward to some thrills and chills.

+2 votes     reply to comment
juju102 Feb 19 2012 buried:


Please have a day early said 5000 likes and we would get a early release.

-8 votes     reply to comment
Minuit Feb 20 2012 replied:

No, we did not say that. We said we'd give the release date if we got 5000 likes, which we did.

+8 votes     reply to comment
krusader2530 Feb 19 2012 says:

this looks really good, nice job, cant wait for this to come out.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Sarathstra Feb 19 2012 says:

Only just looked into this mod (Thank you news page) and i gotta' say, This is looking really nice, a good read too i'll be definitely trying out this Mod once it's released :)

+2 votes     reply to comment
TheShadowCookie Feb 19 2012 says:

Three simply words... I am ready.


No, I am not. Nobody is. This nightmare will consume us all.

... and it will be delicious horror ~

+2 votes     reply to comment
rage_killerz Feb 19 2012 says:

will this work on the steam half life?

+2 votes     reply to comment
TheShadowCookie Feb 19 2012 replied:

Yes it will. It is infact meant to be played with it, the original non-steam HL is not supported.

+2 votes     reply to comment
deadplug Feb 19 2012 says:

2 moar days....

+2 votes     reply to comment
Zombiep00pZ Feb 19 2012 says:

i cant wait for it to come out so me and my friend are going to do a countdown for it to come out and as soon as it opens we are going coop!

+2 votes     reply to comment
D3ads Feb 20 2012 says:

Great review Henley! Thanks for making a good old Half-Life 1 mod a spotlight on the front page =)

+3 votes     reply to comment
brainbomb Feb 20 2012 says:

Damn i hate all this trollers in moddb srsly their annoying stuff like some guy on the top replying saying they have betrayed the half life 1 community wtf enough with the trolling and leave now!

+4 votes     reply to comment
REENIGAV Feb 20 2012 says:

Some hours gentlemen, some hours...

+2 votes     reply to comment
Nemesisurvivorleon Feb 20 2012 says:

I woke up thinking it was Tuesday. :(

+2 votes     reply to comment
TheShadowCookie Feb 20 2012 says:

Indeed, have auto-saves and a bigger inventory... excuse me?

I may be one of a few rare cases, but as a gamer I like a good challenge. What annoys me nowadays is, for example... auto-saving. In certain games, yes, it saves you from a lot of redoing stuff. However, this is a horror game where you are expected to suddenly be surprised and ambushed. What fun is it to die, and just "respawn" nearby to do it again. No auto-saving means: Watch out for yourself, keep your eyes on guard, be ready for anything. And if your PC crashes, well... tough luck.

And what is it with the "we want bigger inventory" bitching? Sure, Simon does carry a bag, but how easy to you guys want to have it? Carrying countless syringes, ammo, guns and etc.? Where is the challenge? I am NOT saying that saving up items for tough times is a bad thing, not at all. However, once again in games like this, it creates tension. You have to use your brain, think up a strategy of which goodies you want to take with you.

Shesh, has anybody ever played Resident Evil or Silent Hill? Limited inventory space, saving via ink-ribbons at certain places. Yes, it was tedious at times, but at the same time created a special atmosphere. YOU had to decide which items to chose, YOU had to be careful not to waste your saves. And backtracking also created fear, cause you didn't know what you might run into on the way back.

Final verdict: Just learn to live with it folks. Enjoy a good game and don't whine while it is not even out yet.

+10 votes     reply to comment
EvilAngel Feb 20 2012 says:

I am too scared to play this mod now lol xD

+2 votes     reply to comment
Reborn:X Feb 20 2012 says:

Surely this will become one of the most famous creations that have come from the ModDB.

And a prime example of true psychological horror.

+5 votes     reply to comment
Mkilbride Feb 20 2012 buried:


Stop treating them like they're the most amazing things ever. It ****** me off when people do that for no reason.

They've created something great, and wonderful, but I really hate when people start bending over and claiming them the best ever.

-9 votes     reply to comment
Eoks Feb 20 2012 replied:

Then who is the best? There is allways someone on the top.
And their achievements proved them to be the best.

+8 votes     reply to comment
m82sniper Feb 20 2012 replied:

I'd have to agree. This is the best I've ever seen of Half-Life 1, and, in my opinion the best from Moddb in a long while.

+4 votes     reply to comment
MrSaturdayKnight Feb 21 2012 replied:

Oh the irony Mkilbride... You were acting the very same way when Underhell prologue came out now you're telling Reborn:X to "stop treating them like they're the most amazing thing ever" such a hypocrite you are.

+3 votes     reply to comment
Kornhead0123 Feb 20 2012 says:

HELP!!! im wondering if half life opposing force will work?

+2 votes     reply to comment
Chiromishi Feb 20 2012 says:

There are absolutely no words that can describe this. Hopefully, this will scare me till I cry, which AoM was just about close to doing so.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Prowler445 Feb 20 2012 says:

Its a good feeling when you go read the "Cry of Fear announced" news post, then going to the "Release date announced" news post

It takes you back

+3 votes     reply to comment
Vicyous Feb 20 2012 says:

wait half life mod, if this game don´t have crowar, i don´t will enjoy it so much D:

0 votes     reply to comment
TheShadowCookie Feb 21 2012 replied:

Well Sir, I am afraid a "crowar" won't be present in the game. However, a so called crowbar might exist. Most likely not though, after all this is Cry of Fear, not Freeman's Half-Life. You can't even call this a mod anymore, it is like a stand-alone game.

+3 votes     reply to comment
aidy70060 Feb 21 2012 says:

Yes please.

+2 votes     reply to comment
SaggiTariuS(UA) Feb 21 2012 says:

so close to relise...

+2 votes     reply to comment
roflwatanoob Feb 21 2012 says:

I'm SO excited to play this mod! I've been waiting to play this for AGES! I really hope hamachi can be used so me and a friend can play this together. If not we will spend HOURS trying to find something to use. I bet its going to be worth the wait!

+2 votes     reply to comment
Mkilbride Feb 21 2012 replied:

Use Tunngle.

+1 vote     reply to comment
roflwatanoob Feb 21 2012 replied:

Ive never heard of Tunngle, yet ill be sure to check it out. Thanks!

+2 votes     reply to comment
m82sniper Feb 21 2012 replied:

If you have Hamachi installed already, just try that first before you go and install that. It'll most likely work.

+1 vote     reply to comment
roflwatanoob Feb 21 2012 replied:

Well i have hamachi installed. And just to be safe, i also have tunngle beta installed. So im ready to go!

+1 vote     reply to comment
DON_MAKARONI Feb 21 2012 says:

I can't wait it. I think it will be the best mod creppy mod for half-life.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Miroki_Wolf Feb 21 2012 says:

Can someone tell me when is it going to be released ? Because the release date is 21/02 but some people said something about timezones and I am really excited about the release

+2 votes     reply to comment
deadplug Feb 21 2012 says:




Till now.

+3 votes     reply to comment
ZaliaS Feb 21 2012 says:

Can't WAIT! Man, been waiting so long, and it's finally about to all pay off!

Great read by the way, Henley! Very well articulated, and all round a good insight in what to expect in the public release.

+2 votes     reply to comment
AlbinoBob147 Feb 21 2012 says:

Want. NOW.

+2 votes     reply to comment
slayersarge Feb 21 2012 says:

Hey could the dev team let us know after release about donating and what you can get. Would really boost a lot of donations if people saw what exclusive content would be given.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Kark-Jocke Feb 22 2012 says:

Looking like a scary and a good game for me ;)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Evil-Police Feb 22 2012 says:

JUST SO EVERYONE KNOWS: ModDB has to authorize the upload, so it may take longer than you think. It's possible the file has already been uploaded to ModDB but has not yet been auhorized.

+1 vote     reply to comment
GiGuX Feb 22 2012 says:


+1 vote     reply to comment
Conchobhar Feb 22 2012 says:

Wasn't this supposed to release yesterday?

+1 vote     reply to comment
sg1221 Feb 22 2012 says:

So, it's 22/2/2012 , night... WHERE THE **** IS IT?
I'm not trying to offend anyone I'm just really pumped for this :D

+1 vote     reply to comment
Razzeld Feb 22 2012 says:

Whears is the download it is 22 feb already you are late

+1 vote     reply to comment
Ramlapa Feb 22 2012 says:

They Changed The Release Date Back To TBD

+1 vote     reply to comment
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