Follow TV Tropes


Video Game / Fear Effect

Go To

Fear Effect is an action/adventure/horror game published by Eidos Interactive. Released midway through the original PlayStation's life cycle, the game is the tale of three merciless mercenaries — Hana, Glas, and Deke. The daughter of a rich and powerful businessman has run away, and the trio have learned of this via an inside source and plot to find her. Although, the three of them plan to ransom her back to her father if all goes well. However, everything is not what it seems to be, and the girl in question is the key to an epic ordeal — possibly involving the fate of the world itself.

The game spawned a prequel, Fear Effect 2: Retro Helix, which shows how the three main characters met, and introduces Rain, Hana's love interest. Their mission in this game is to stop an epidemic of a highly dangerous disease.


The gameplay features typical action/adventure elements, run and gunning enemies, stealth sequences, keycard-fetching and puzzle solving, but the setting fuses influences as diverse as cyberpunk and Chinese mythology. What is somewhat unique is each character you control has a "fear/confidence meter". By solving puzzles and taking out foes quickly, your character's meter stays green. When you screw up or take damage, the meter goes down. When it's red, your character has all the defense of wet paper.

A third game titled Fear Effect: Inferno was planned to be released for the PlayStation 2. However, it was ultimately cancelled.

A French indie developer Sushee (with the blessing of the IP holder Square Enix) launched a Kickstarter campaign in 2016 for a new game titled Fear Effect Sedna and released it on March 6, 2018. Sedna takes place four years after the events of the first game. Due to the interest this game drew, a remake of the first game, titled Fear Effect Reinvented, is in development.


This series provides examples of:

  • Aborted Arc: Sedna doesn’t try to follow, not even throw hints towards, the planned love triangle between Hana, Glas and Rain that would have happened in the cancelled Inferno; Sedna has Glas as someone who had become estranged from the team, while Hana and Rain are really close only towards each other, as they always were, with Glas completely out of the equation.
  • Absolute Cleavage: Hana's green party gown in Fear Effect 2. As Rain said, "You're wearing that?! Why don't you just walk in there naked?!"
  • Accidental Misnaming: Hana calls Deke "Dick" the first time they meet. Then again....
  • Action Girl: Hana. Rain starts to come into her own by the time the climax rolls around.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Not all of Glas gets out of the first game intact. Except in the true ending. Then there's his brother Drew.
  • An Ass-Kicking Christmas: The second game takes place at or around Christmas, before ending just after New Year's has started.
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: The games regularly switch between all available characters at such a rapid pace you can struggle to acclimatize yourself to them.
  • Art Shift: Somewhat; The first two discs of the original game had exaggerated animations done by hand in the cutscenes. Disc 3 suddenly shifts to mocap animation.
  • Ax-Crazy: The Planner, the guy that Hana and Rain fight in the aqueducts, massacres almost his entire work force, tried to blow up the entire downtown district of Hong Kong, and straps Rain to a device straight out of the most demented doujinshi.
  • Badass Beard: Every sequel has seen Deke grow out his beard a little more.
  • Bare Your Midriff: Hana, in about half her outfits.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Hana and Glas have something like this. They have a habit of pointing guns at each other and giving tough talk. Also, the one female of the Eight Immortals says to Glas about Hana being his friend, which he tries so very hard to deny. In spite of this they are quick to help each other. A trailer for Inferno shows Glas putting a hand over Hana's hand. He awkwardly tells her that "I just want to careful, you know?" A few seconds later, she smiles and puts her head against his back, surprising him. She responds "We've all got to be careful." Considering what happens later... well, see the Love Triangle entry below.
  • Berserk Button: The quickest way to get on Hana's bad side is to mess with Rain.
  • Big Bad: Yim Lau Wong. The one behind everything in Fear Effect, he's also a minor antagonist in Fear Effect 2. Inferno also would have had him involved in some way.
  • Big, Screwed-Up Family: Rain comes from one. To wit:
    • Her mother, Rachel Kazra, injects herself with the DNA of Qin Zhang in a bid to create the perfect being and inadvertently releases the EINDS virus. By the time Fear Effect 2 rolls around, she's become an Abomination.
    • Rain's father, Qin Zhang, is the immortal first emperor of China.
    • Her sister Mist, is an Evil Twin demi god with plans to take over the world.
    • Rain herself is an amnesiac demi god gun for hire. It says a lot that the mercenary is the most normal of the bunch.
  • The Big Guy: Deke.
  • Body Horror: Wee Ming has the power to turn people into monsters just by looking at them. At the final stages of EINDS, people look like they are suffering from a combination of AIDS and smallpox.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing: The two soldiers Deke fights on top of the train take a full magazine from an assault rifle each.
  • Bury Your Gays: Averted in the canon ending, but the bad one does see Hana and possibly Rain dead.
  • But Not Too Foreign: Hana is a mix of French and Chinese.
  • Cain and Abel: Glas and Drew, with Glas being Abel and Drew being Cain. Rain and Mist, with Rain being Abel and Mist being Cain. Subverted in both cases, with Glas and Rain not only surviving the attempts on their lives, but end up killing off Drew and Mist.
  • Casanova Wannabe: "Big" Tom tries a bunch of lame come ons towards Hana with zero effect. One gets the feeling if they weren't in a crowded room she would have shot him.
  • Catchphrase: Glas definitely has one. "You draw on me? You better be prepared to face the consequences!"
  • Cel Shading: The games use an impressive fake cel-shading technique - instead of using real time lighting for the cel-shading, the developers textured the character models to look like they were cel-shaded, then applied basic flat lighting to achieve the full cartoon-like look. True real time cel-shading would not arrive until the Sega Dreamcast, most likely due to a lack of hardware power in the fifth-generation consoles or a lack of precedent in programming cel-shading effects.
  • Characterization Marches On: The first game, Hana outright calls Jin a friend, and when they run into each other in Hell, she is glad to see him. In Fear Effect 2, which is a prequel, she's downright hostile to him.
  • Chinese Vampire: In The Temple of Xi'an in the second game.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Hana's reply to Rain's above statement about her dress. "Don't be silly. I'd only be able to hide one gun naked."
  • Curse Cut Short: Deke tells Glas "You need a shave and a haircut, mate." Glas says "You mother-" before Hana interrupts him. It is likely that she did not interrupt Glas because of his cursing, as Hana can curse, too, but because she needed to ask Deke questions and she could not do that if a fight broke out between Glas and Deke.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Three of the four main characters have one to some degree:
    • Hana was only 5 years old when her parents were killed in front of her by the Triad, who then sold her into slavery, before turning her into a mercenary.
    • Glas was a secret agent/military commander who saw most of his unit wiped out with the few surviving members being used as guinea pigs for the EINDS virus, before being forced to kill his own brother. His brother then reveals himself to be working for the people who killed Glas' men.
    • Rain is an amnesiac demi god whose own family tries to bring about the end of the world.
    • Deke doesn't have one but that's because he is a psychotic hit man who is just another one of Rachel Kazra's failed experiments.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Hana and Glas get a lot more sarcastic in Fear Effect 2.
  • Death Seeker: Glas establishes himself in Retro Helix by playing Russian Roulette with a six-shooter that has two chambers full.
  • Demoted to Extra: Deke in the second game, to the point that the last time you play as him it's actually a demon in disguise.
  • Deadly Rotary Fan: One puzzle in Glas' flashback requires him to get past one. Failure leads to a lovely scene of Glas' chopped corpse being left behind.
  • Devil in Disguise: As it turns out, Jin was Yim Lua Wong the whole time.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: In one ending, Hana shoots Yin Lau Wong right between the eyes. In the true ending, Glas shoots the King of Hell who then falls into a pit.
  • Disney Death: Deke turns up alive and well, complaining of a bump on his head, in the best ending of the first game.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: An effect that saves Hana's life from time to time.
  • Distressed Damsel: Rain, at the end of the aqueducts level. She gets nabbed again in the Temple of Xi'an, but manages to free herself off screen, forcing Demon!Deke and Mist to pull the ol' twin switch.
  • Doppelgänger Spin + Evil Twin: Part of the prequel's climax and determines whether you get the good ending or the bad ending.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: Glas already has six empty bottles of whiskey when kills a seventh one at the start of Fear Effect 2.
  • Due to the Dead: Both of Hana and Glas' endings in the first game has them apologizing for killing the other. In addition, Glas burns down Madame Chen's brothel as he believes that's what Hana would have wanted.
  • Everybody Lives: Both games have this as their good endings. Otherwise, one, maybe two named characters are still alive at the end.
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: And they do. However, the students in the aqueducts will leave you alone if you don't go around actively shooting them, the Immortals will not fight you if you make the right choices (i.e. not shooting the students), and the girls in the bio-hazard suits will ignore Rain for as long as she doesn't have her weapons armed. Same goes for Hana and the guards in Madame Chen's restaurant while she's in the hooker outfit.
  • Evil Laugh: The bad guys really enjoy this one.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Wee Ming goes through one, should you pick Glas in the final boss fight. Losing to her just cements it.
  • Face Palm: Glas pinches the bridge of his nose in exasperation when told to lower his guns by Hana during the second game's climax.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Hana, Glas, Deke, and Rain. In Inferno, the bonds between the four of them have improved significantly. In fact, the four of them seem to have started romantic or sexual relationships with each other, except for between Hana and Deke, and Glas and Deke. Best shown by this line from Glas: "That's no way to talk to my friend. Even if you are a king.
  • Firing One-Handed: Glas, after having his arm cut off in the first game.
  • Freudian Trio: Hana is the leader who tends to drag Glas into situations he does not want, which would put her between Id and Ego. Glas has been a leader, tends to be concerned about his profits, and he tries to figure out all the angles, which would put him in Superego territory. Deke has little problem working with Hana and Glas, and he tends to kill people left and right when he is alone, which would put him in Ego and maybe towards Id. Of course, this is before you put Rain in there.
  • Full Motion Video: The first two games extensively use FMV. Not only are the cutscenes presented using video, but during gameplay, the backgrounds are almost exclusively short looping videos which you guide the characters over, instead of the static bitmaps of Resident Evil and its imitators. Sedna dropped this aspect since technology had advanced enough to make the practice largely redundant.
  • Genre Shift: The first game starts out as a third person stealth action game, in a similar vein to Syphon Filter. Then our heroes come across a burning village and it goes head long into Survival Horror.
  • Girly Run: Rain definitely runs like this. Hana does not. This serves as a contrast between the characters, with Hana being more masculine and Rain being more feminine.
  • Girl-on-Girl Is Hot: During the infamous elevator scene, one of the guards watching actually thinks about doing his job and removing Hana and Rain from the off limits area. The other guard gives him a Dope Slap and continues watching hoping the dress covering the camera will fall off.
  • Golden Ending: Of the three endings in the original Fear Effect, the best can only be obtained by playing on hard mode. In it, Glas willfully pulls his gun back, allowing Hana to fight the monstrous Mr. Lam. Once she defeats him, Wee Ming promises to repay Hana and Glas for their sacrifices, and that she will never forget Hana before disappearing. The King of Hell attempts to attack Hana, only to get shot down by Glas. The King falls down a pit, which causes the area that Glas and Hana are in to start collapsing around them, causing them to flee for their lives. Crawling out of the now destroyed brothel, both are surprised to see Deke alive and well, with Glas surprised to see his once severed arm has grown back. Deke asks how they made out, with Hana and Glas agreeing they did just fine.
  • Gorn: Both games have death sequences that are oh-so-lovingly crafted, and happen often, you'd think the developers were shooting for this.
  • Gosh Darn It to Heck!: Rain drops a few "darn its" when everyone else is saying something much stronger.
  • Guns Akimbo
  • Handicapped Badass: Glas won't let a little thing like a severed arm stop him from storming the very gates of Hell itself.
  • Honey Pot: Hana uses this in the opening cinematic of Retro Helix, to deadly effect. She even taunts the poor fool's corpse by asking him if it was worth dying for.
  • Honor Before Reason: The final boss fight in the good ending of Fear Effect 2 has Rain fighting her twin sister Mist one on one, when it could have been 4 on 1 if she had allowed it.
  • Humongous Mecha: Glas both fights and pilots them in Fear Effect 2.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Glas justifies slitting Wee Ming's throat thinking that would end the madness he and Hana had been subject to over the last 24 hours. It doesn't take however.
  • Insistent Terminology: Deke is not fat, he's stocky.
  • Jerkass: Deke. In his profile for both games, he's described as a "borderline psychopath". Hana and Glas get several Pet the Dog moments, with Rain being a borderline woobie.
  • Jiggle Physics: Hana has a little bit of a bounce when she switches to the hooker outfit in the first game.
  • Just Between You and Me: The very second Jin reveals himself as Yim Lau Wong, he begins explaining his reasoning for his plan. Unlike most examples, he actually wanted Hana to know because he wanted her to protect Wee Ming. Should you fail the final boss fight as Hana, you'll get to see why.
  • Knight in Sour Armor: Glas. He claims he is hardened beyond caring, but his actions speak louder. In fact, one of his deaths in Fear Effect is shooting an innocent woman, and being so stunned he allows a mook to shoot him.
  • Last-Second Ending Choice: Both games endings depend entirely on who you choose to shoot at the end.
  • Left Hanging: The trailers for Inferno revealed a number of things:
    • One scene shows Jin/Yim Lau Wong alive and plotting with an unnamed man about Hana. This unnamed man is probably a member of the Triad Hana has to work for.
    • There was a website that said that Hana reached to the point where she decided to go against her contract with the Triad. It is hard to say if that means she got enough money at that point or that she simply had had it. Either way, a woman named Minx threatens to kill Rain if Hana goes against the contract.
    • Hana does not take threats like that lightly, so she decides to kill Minx, with Glas, Rain, and Deke helping her. There is next to nothing revealed about Minx. She may be a member of the Triad, or perhaps a servant of Jin/Yim Lau Wong.
    • The outcome of the mission to kill Minx is not revealed.
    • Trailers and Wikipedia indicate that Hana was captured and put in an insane asylum (or she may have been killed and sent to hell, forcing the other characters to find some way to get to hell and rescue her). Unfortunately, the insane asylum is controlled by Jin/Yim Lau Wong's demons.
    • She also has visions and gains some abilities. She even gains some kind of sword and uses it against a boss. The boss is an asylum doctor who is a monstrous creature whose brain pops open - and if Hana loses, a cutscene plays showing the monster ripping off Hana's arm and adding it to his body. Oh, yeah, and Deke infiltrates the asylum as one of the patients.
  • Leitmotif: Deke is usually accompanied by drums and a didgeridoo in the original Fear Effect.
  • Loads and Loads of Loading: A real annoyance in the first game, particularly after death scenes, but was fixed in the prequel.
  • Losing Your Head: Deke. Well, not completely. Just enough to be really, really gross.
  • Love Triangle: Trailers for Inferno reveal that one would have developed between Hana, Rain, and Glas. Hana loves Rain very much, and she begins to show affection to Glas. Rain loves Hana very much, and she appears to want to have sex with Glas and maybe more than that. Glas begins to show affection to Hana, and he appears to be willing to have sex with Rain and maybe more than that. This would have been one complicated Love Triangle and how it would have been handled has not revealed. One trailer indicates that Rain and Deke have formed a relationship. Talk about complicated relationships.
  • Made of Iron: The Planner. He takes a full magazine from an assault rifle when he fights Rain, gets knocked into an electrified waterfall three times by Hana, which melts half his face off, and get back up and tries to kill both every time. This leads an exasperated Rain to shout "why won't he die!"
  • Male Gaze: We get several close ups of Hana's body in both games. An in-universe example is averted when Hana threatens to kill Deke for peeking at her.
  • The Many Deaths of You: This series had an entire cottage industry devoted to the various ways for Hana, Rain, and their friends to die in various horrible ways: devoured by a horde of rats, crushed to death, burned to a cinder, etc. And that's just assuming you weren't killed by a Mook first.
  • Mexican Standoff: Part of the first game's climax. You choose who fires first, and it decides your ending. On Hard, however, you don't have to choose, and both characters make it out alive.
  • Money to Burn: An inversion of sorts, as Mr. Lam became wealthy by actually burning money in a ritual pact with Yim Lua Wong.
  • Ms. Fanservice:
    • Hana, from gratuitous shower scenes to stripper disguises to running around in nothing but a towel. A noticeable example is in the original game. What is the solution to one puzzle where Hana having a gun pointed at her point-blank while she's only wearing said towel? Go into your inventory and use the towel. As a result, she takes it off. Nice butt, Hana. Deke breaks the guy's neck while he's distracted.
    • Rain. She can easily match Hana in terms of being Ms. Fanservice.
  • Multiple Endings: The first game had many:
    • If you side with Hana, she kills Glas for his attempt to kill Wee Ming Lam. Mr. Lam transforms into a monster and becomes the Final Boss. Hana kills Yim Lau Wong while burning the brothel to the ground. Wee Ming simply disappears.
    • Siding with Hana and then losing the fight has her being forced to work for Yim Lau Wong as she goes on a killing spree in the world while justifying it by saying that they could probably make the world better than it was originally. Wee Ming stands by her side.
    • If you side with Glas, he kills Hana believing that she was being deluded about the prophecy. Wee Ming transforms into a monster and becomes the Final Boss for Glas. When she's defeated, she becomes a paper doll that Glas picks up and takes with him as he escapes and burns the brothel to the ground in Hana and Deke's names.
    • If Glas dies, Wee Ming uses his blood to fulfill the prophecy where she now roams the world and can transform anyone she looks at into a monster.
    • On Hard mode, you can Take a Third Option by siding with both Hana and Glas. Hana fights Mr. Lam. Wee Ming completes her prophecy and promises Hana and Glas that their sacrifices will be repaid in full. Glas shoots Yim Lau Wong and causes him to fall into a pit. Deke is brought back to life with no memory of his death and Glas grows a new arm.
  • My Eyes Are Up Here: Hana has one of these moments in both games. The first when she distracts a guard by dropping the towel she was wearing, whom Deke then kills. Hana reminds him not to look too long, for she's killed for less. The second happens during the Christmas party, when she uses the trope name word for word on a guy who just can not take a hint.
  • New Rules as the Plot Demands: The penultimate level reveals that when Wee Ming comes into contact with blood, anyone in the surrounding area mutates into a monster, and yet Lam somehow doesn't mutate in the brothel like all the prostitutes even though he was standing right next to Wee Ming. Similarly, when Mr. Lam mutates at the very end, Glas is unaffected by Wee Ming's Blood Magic even though he is standing nearby. Possibly justified by her powers being similar to the Ark of the Covenant, in that you have to look at her.
  • Nice Hat: Deke, as typical of an Australian, wears a slouch hat.
  • Nintendo Hard: The original game has virtually no margin for error in many fights and is full of adventure-game-style instant kills if you aren't careful. Fear Effect 2 isn't quite as difficult, but it's still a challenge.
  • Non Standard Game Over: Dying in the final boss fight in either game gives a cutscene from the bad guys perspective, with Yim Lau Wong sparing Hana but making her into Wee Ming's body guard as intended, or Glas dying, and Wee Ming completing a Face–Heel Turn and kick starting Yim Lua Wong's plan. In Retro Helix, the Temple of Xi'an goes nuclear, and Yim Lua Wong contemplates that maybe his plan wouldn't be as hard as he thought.
  • Oh, Crap!: Getting sucked into the Shores of Eternity against his will gets one of these from Glas. Likewise, almost getting blown up with a rocket launcher elects one from Hana. Hana has another one in Fear Effect when the train she is on starts going off a destroyed bridge.
  • One-Hit Point Wonder: When the fear meter is red (or damn close to it).
  • Only Sane Man: Glas comes across as this during the second game. Quickly and correctly deducing it's a setup at the Temple of Xi'an, he tries to leave on several occasions, but keeps getting pulled back in, and voices his disbelief during some of the more absurd moments while everyone else just acts like talking to an Immortal is an everyday occurrence.
  • Out Run The Fire Ball: Done several times over the course of both games.
  • Perma-Stubble: Glas has the "Homer Simpson 2 day growth permanently painted on" one.
  • Pixel Hunt
  • Psycho for Hire: Deke.
  • Poor Communication Kills: Glas is the poster boy of having little to no communication skills. In Fear Effect 2, he could have explained to Hana why he is so opposed to having faith in someone else. In the original Fear Effect, he fails to explain to Hana why he thinks Wee Ming is the cause of the problems they faced so far. A lot of grief could have been spared if he just explained rather than go on a wild rant. Then there is the fact that he does not try to find out the significance of the paper doll or even mention it to anybody. At least Deke handled the matter of the paper doll than Glas ever did. Oh, and Glas also reveals that he does not speak Chinese. Honestly, does the army cause or teach people to have no communication skills? At least in Inferno, Glas tells Hana to be careful and he clearly shows that it was very hard to get that out of his mouth (i.e. Cannot Spit It Out).
  • Prequel: Fear Effect 2: Retro Helix.
  • Rape as Drama=/=Rape as Comedy: The pendulum swings back and forth between this in Fear Effect 2, when Hana finds Rain strapped to the bug thing, she is genuinely horrified, and later asks Rain if she's alright. In the very next scene, both are cracking jokes about it.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Not only are the Planner's pupils red, but the whites of his eyes are so bloodshot that they have turned yellow.
  • Retcon: The ending of Fear Effect 2 segues right into the first game, when the opening for Fear Effect makes it clear that Hana, Glas, and Deke had been working together for a while.
  • Running Gag: Each character has a sort of theme in terms of what their missions are like. Deke just can't stop falling off things, Glas has an unfortunate tendency to get caught on fire, and Hana seems to have a compulsion to strip once a disk.
  • Russian Roulette: Glas partakes in this during the opening in Fear Effect 2.
  • Sadistic Choice: During the Eight Immortals Challenges, Glas has to pick between his father (loyalty) or his brother (honor). Neither is the right choice. Being able to let go of the demons of his past is, but he doesn't get that choice. Hana gets one her own a little later, having to chose between her parents (the future that never was) or Rain (the future that could be). This one is much easier, as the whole reason Hana is doing these challenges in the first place is for Rain's sake. Picking her parents results in a very difficult duel boss fight.
  • Sanity Slippage: After losing his arm, Glas starts becoming increasingly unhinged.
  • Screw the Money, I Have Rules!: Hana's reason for not just bolting when Mr. Lam finds Wee Ming; she believes that Wee Ming is being sold into sex slavery, and is trying to keep her from the same fate Hana herself was subject to. When Deke asks her is it's still about the money, Hana bluntly tells him "not anymore."
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Glas tries to pull this off multiple times across both games.
  • She-Fu: In Fear Effect 2, Hana has as her melee move a series of spine breaking kicks. The biohazard acrobats in the Wing Chun Tower use flips and cartwheels to avoid bullets.
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: Deke's trademark shot pistols, which are essentially a pair of sawed-off shotguns.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Glas encounters the first emperor of China and they have a short dialogue that was clearly taken from Ghostbusters (1984) and paraphrased a little bit. When Glas fights this fellow, said fellow uses an attack that was clearly lifted from a certain black-robed figure in Return of the Jedi.
    • The Shop, the organization that Glas used to work for, is almost certainly taken from the books of Stephen King.
    • The scene where 5-year-old Hana witnesses her parents get shot and killed right in front of her may very well have its roots go back to Batman.
    • The disease EINDS is similar to the disease AIDS and small pox. AIDS and small pox is not that big of a problem anymore when compared to EINDS. While AIDS has yet to be cured, small pox has, like EINDS. Deke's prolonged exposure to EINDS is similar to Magic Johnson's almost 25 year long battle with HIV, which is longer than people who were born with HIV have lasted.
    • One website said that Jin/Yim Lau Wong is essentially the Kefka of Fear Effect.
    • The King of Hell falling down a pit and apparently exploding is something that can be compared to a certain scene in Return of the Jedi.
    • The Dual Wielding, Mexican Standoffs, and artful dodging while firing are all staples of John Woo films.
    • The first level of Fear Effect is heavily influenced by Blade Runner.
    • One of Hana's death scenes involves turning into a golden statue, much like one of Tomb Raider's most famous death scene.
    • The skinless dog-like creatures Hana and Glas run into during their trek through Hell are almost certainly lifted from Resident Evil.
  • Shower Scene: The reason Hana spends the majority of the village level in a towel and slippers is because the junk she was on comes under attack right after she finishes washing up.
  • Silent Snarker: Some of Glas' best moments are when he's saying nothing at all, such as when he's pinching the bridge of his nose during the final boss fight in the good ending for Fear Effect 2.
  • Silly Rabbit, Cynicism Is for Losers!: Glas is the cynical one. Hana is the idealistic one. Glas is treated as the Butt-Monkey and The Lancer. Hana is treated as the Iron Woobie and The Hero. It probably won't surprise you that the best ending in the first game essentially has Hana winning out without having to shoot Glas.
  • Skippable Boss: Hana has two during the Eight Immortals challenges: The first comes when one reveals himself to be the aqueduct worker who gave Hana a couple of items. His fight is avoided by simply not shooting the other aqueduct workers, as he will simply wave Hana through to the next challenge. The second one comes as a result of a Sadistic Choice for Hana: who does she miss most; Rain or her parents. Picking Rain will again see Hana waved through, but picking Hana's parents results in a fight against 2 of the teleporting demons, who suddenly are much, much more durable than the ones fought in the gardens.
  • Sleeves Are for Wimps: Deke spends most of Retro Helix in a green tank top.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: Okay, this is a tough one. There are points in the series that are certainly cynical. However, there are points that are idealistic. One good example is the contrast between Hana and Glas. Hana proves to be the idealistic one, while Glas proves to be the cynical one. In fact, the ending of the first game could be viewed as the result of a battle between idealism and cynicism. The true ending has Hana winning out, with Glas surviving (as well as regaining the arm he lost) and Deke being resurrected, thus causing the series to lean towards idealistic. Of course, the three of them failed to get any money out of the job, so the series also leans toward cynical. In Fear Effect 2, the manual claims that EINDS is a worldwide epidemic and causing theft, murder and terrorism to become big business. However, the original Fear Effect shows people going about their daily lives and not at all acting like the world is coming to an end. The true ending of Fear Effect 2 has the characters put together a cure for EINDS and make it available to everyone worldwide and not just the highest bidder, which may explain that. The series could be put in the middle of idealistic and cynical.
  • Snow Means Death: Fear Effect Sedna has this as its major thememtic setting, with the latter half of the story taking place in Greenland.
  • Solve the Soup Cans: The series is generally pretty good about this, but the Juniper Gardens have a really bad one as you are supposed to find a bunch of crystals, plant them to grow a tree which sprouts a diamond, then use that to open a door. The game gives you no hints to any of this.
  • Sprite/Polygon Mix: Real time 3D foregrounds, pre-rendered animated 3D backgrounds shown as FMV.
  • Spy Catsuit: Hana and Rain wear a pair in the upper floors of the Wing Chun Towers.
  • Steel Eardrums: Averted. When the aqueduct generator explodes in Hana's face, she tells Rain she is fine beyond her ears ringing like church bells.
  • Survival Horror
  • Swarm of Rats: One of the possible deaths in the second game. They rip apart a Mecha-Mook, and you if you're not careful.
  • Take a Third Option: In Fear Effect, you get 3 endings. The first two depends on who you choose in the Mexican Standoff at the end. The third however, in which both Hana and Glas lower their guns, can only be gotten by playing on hard.
  • Teeth Clenched Team Work: The second game, being an origin story, features the heroes trying not to kill each other during the Temple of Xi'an, as Glas keeps trying to leave, Hana is more concerned with Rain than the ongoing conspiracy, Deke can't stop betraying everyone, and Rain inadvertently pulls a Twin Switch.
  • That Man Is Dead: Madame Chen constantly calls Hana "Mei Yun", to her chagrin, to the point that Hana attacks Chen with a circular saw for calling her that one too many times.
  • To Hell and Back: The end of the first game takes place in the Chinese version.
  • Took a Level in Badass: A trailer for Inferno shows Rain looking like an expy of Zero Suit Samus. She is trying to open a locked door. She finally gets it open with one powerful jump kick. She also knocks some guy over with one powerful punch, while wearing a red Chinese dress and high heels. If only she could have done these moves in gameplay.
  • Trial-and-Error Gameplay: The series practically breathes this.
  • Trippy Finale Syndrome: It seems normal enough at first, and then suddenly it starts turning into a precursor to Eternal Darkness.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Wee Ming bounces back from having her throat slit remarkably fast.
  • Universal Driver's Licence: Hana either drives or flies in order; a gyrocopter, a military helicopter, a limo, a train, a speed boat that doubles as a submersible, and a motorcycle.
  • Unnecessary Combat Roll: Averted, as like Syphon Filter before it, this is often times the only thing between life and death.
  • Use Item
  • Utopia Justifies the Means: Hana tells herself this more or less, if she losses the final boss fight in Fear Effect.
  • Video Game Caring Potential: Sparing the aqueduct workers (all of whom are horribly traumatized by their boss going nuts and shooting up the place, and as such only shoot when shot themselves, and rather poorly at that) in the first level of Fear Effect 2 pays dividends later by sparing you a boss fight.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: Sometimes it can be pretty funny seeing the many different ways our heroes can be killed.
  • Video Game Cruelty Punishment: If you do kill the aqueduct workers, all you get is a measly little bit of pistol ammo, and a boss fight that requires you to engage in melee combat against a guy who shoots lightning out of his hands.
  • Vomit Discretion Shot: The guard that Rain snatches an elevator keycard from ducks out of frame when he can no longer hold in what he drank.
  • We Have Reserves: The Shop, the organization Glas used to work for, sent Glas and his entire squad on a mission. Said mission caused the squad to end up in an ambush that left them all dead or captured, except for Glas. Glas tried to order the squad to abort, but it was too late. Glas unexpectedly encounters his brother Drew and Drew shoots him in the back. Drew claims that the Shop knew that the squad would be ambushed on this mission, but it sent the squad on it anyway. Glas and his squad were not informed of this. Does anyone realize how much the idea of knowing that an ambush is going to occur and not warning anyone about it makes no sense at all?
  • We're Still Relevant, Dammit!: On the far right side of the second floor of the Wing Chun Tower, is a group of people doing the Macarena. Keep in mind this game takes place about 50 years after it was released.
  • What Could Possibly Go Wrong?: Hana says this at the end of Fear Effect 2. It shows the King of Hell surrounded by fire and laughing hysterically. Those who have played the first game should know exactly what happened.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Hana encounters a frightened old woman in a fishing village, where she gets some exposition about what happened to the village. She then leaves the old woman behind and is not seen or heard from again.
  • Yet Another Stupid Death: Quite a few of the deaths in the games are only possible through gross stupidity. Fear Effect 2 will sometimes play a short cutscene of Hana or Rain talking to themselves about how they shouldn't do whatever it is that will lead to a death through stupidity.
  • You Have Failed Me: Yim Lua Wong turns Mr. Lam into a monster for not killing Glas when he had the chance.

Alternative Title(s): Fear Effect 2 Retro Helix


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: