New F.E.A.R. 3 trailer and screens demonstrate the game's mechanized combat

If you haven't played any of the F.E.A.R. games, you may not know that there's more to the series than guns, blood, and a creepy chick. There are also giant mechs! The walking weapons were introduced in the first game, but weren't pilotableuntil F.E.A.R. 2. They are, of course, back for F.E.A.R. 3.

Above: This is a giant mech... but not too giant

F.E.A.R. 3 takes the series in a new direction with a co-op setup involving the protagonist, Point Man, and his totally-evil brother and former antagonist, Paxton Fettel. I was initially skeptical that the idea could work while maintaininga palatablebalance betweenF.E.A.R.'s fast-paced action and terror-inducing creep alongs, but after playing a mission at this year's PAX, I can tell you that it has potential.

I played as Fettel in the mission. As he's a ghost, the only way he can interact with the physical world is by possessing enemies... which is sort of a lot of fun. After possessing one such unfortunate flesh bag, I got to pilot one of the game's mechs, of which there are two types, PA (Power Armor) and EPA (Enhanced Power Armor).

In a press release today, Warner Bros. Interactive detailed the metal monsters:

"The PA (Power Armor) and EPA (Enhanced Power Armor) are two mechanical weaponized vehicles developed by Armacham. Requiring only a single pilot, these machines are easily manned and pack enough power to turn the tide of the battlefield. Their design allows them to drop into combat from far distances, granting the PA and EPA quick access to any hotzone they are needed.

The PA is smaller and maneuverable, allowing it to operate in tighter conflict areas. Armed with two auto-cannons loaded with explosive rounds, the PA can force its way into where it needs to go. Additionally, the PA has a shoulder mounted energy weapon that not only eliminates threats but has the power to ignite what it touches.

The EPA is a much different mechanical beast. What it lacks in speed and maneuverability it more than makes up for in firepower. The EPA is a titan, capable of taking on an army with its vast armament. It is equipped with dual chain guns that can rip both man and machine apart along with a ballistic missile system capable of locking on to the most evasive of targets. The EPA is Armacham’s most deadly weapon and the damage it can create in the wrong hands is staggering."

Point Man and Fettel will pilot the machines, but they'll also encounter them on foot, which WB and developer Day 1 Studiossay are"critical moments" as "taking on such powerful machines is a monumental task."WB also assures us that "the experiences within the vehicles have been structured to maintain the intense tension for which F.E.A.R. is known."

We hope it congeals into an experience as creepy-but-still-action-packed as the previous games. Check out the rest of the new screensin our viewer.

F.E.A.R. 3releases spring 2011for the PS3, 360, and PC.

Oct 14, 2010

Associate Editor, Digital at PC Gamer