The word psionic refers to any paranormal power of the mind or body and is a prevalent subject in the F.E.A.R. series. Psionic individuals are those whose minds are as deadly as any common weapon.
The origin of psionics and psychic abilities are unknown. The earliest documented case of psionics is Alma Wade, a severely troubled child with tremendous psychic powers who suffered nightmares and was attuned to the negative emotions of the people around her. Her father, Harlan Wade, noticed her powers not long after birth, and introduced her to Armacham Technology Corporation's experiments when she was three years old. Armacham tested Alma for every type of psychic power, and she passed all tests. At the age of five, Alma began to purposefully fail Armacham's tests. When she was six, she set fire to a lab in the Project Origin facility and began to psychically attack the scientists experimenting on her. The scientists began to suffer delusions, sudden mood changes, and vivid nightmares. When Armacham realized that the only thing stopping Alma from doing much worse things to the scientists was her young age, they devised a plan to keep her alive, but unable to psychically attack anyone.
At the age of seven, Alma was recruited into ATC's "Project Origin" with the aim of creating psychic individuals from a psychic forebearer: two days before her eighth birthday, in 1987, she was put into an induced coma and locked in the Vault, a spherical structure located deep inside the secret Origin Facility. During the project, Alma was impregnated twice with prototypes created from her own DNA mixed with that of the Origin researchers. She gave birth to a first prototype, Point Man, when she was 15 years old, and then a second, Paxton Fettel, when she was 16. Life support was removed from the Vault when Alma was 26, leading ATC to believe she was dead. According to Harlan Wade, her physical body died six days after the removal of life support, but apparently her psychic energy continued to linger long after her heart stopped, fueled by the hatred of her angry, rageful spirit.
Paxton Fettel was trained as a psychic commander in "Project Perseus", controlling the cloned, elite Replicas. However, after Alma synchronized her mind with her youngest son, an event referred to as the "Synchronicity Event," Fettel became homicidal and took command of the Replica prototypes, seizing control of the ATC headquarters in Fairport, Washington and killing all occupants.
Observed Psionic Abilities
- Enhanced Reflexes: Certain psychic individuals (e.g. Point Man) have exhibited superhuman reflexes that allow them to act with vastly heightened speed and agility. While earlier F.E.A.R. games and material claimed the Point Man's heightened reflexes resulted from invasive surgery performed by Armacham Technology Corporation when he was an adult, it is suggested in F.E.A.R. 3 that his superhuman reflexes are the result of his relation to his mother, Alma Wade, and being born with psionic capabilities.
- Telepathy: This psychic ability allows one to enter into the minds of others to read their thoughts and access their memories. Alma could cause hallucinations in others' minds seemingly at will, and speak directly to them without needing to be physically present.
- Mind Control: Alma was able to apply psychic influence onto the minds of others. Alma was shown enthralling Harold Keegan and causing him to wander into the abandoned Still Island nuclear power plant. Additionally, Fettel telepathically took command of a battalion of cloned supersoldiers.
- Psychic Illusions: Derived from her mind control, Alma could create realistic mental illusions, forcing her victims to perceive what she wanted. Alma usually used this technique to cause dread in the minds of her victims, subjecting them to horrific visions from her own warped perspective.
- Mind Synchronization: Alma, most likely stemming from her telepathic abilities, had the ability to synchronize her mind with her youngest son, referred to as a "Synchronicity Event." This allowed Fettel to see her thoughts and memories, as well as granted Alma the ability to manifest in his presence and control him to some extent.
- Telekinesis: Alma and Fettel could both psionically levitate and manipulate matter to varying degrees. In F.E.A.R., boxes and other objects are shown moving seemingly of their own will, sometimes tumbling off of shelves, likely responding to the presence of Alma and Fettel.
- Thunder-Clap: Fettel can deliver a psychic shock-wave that kills every enemy within a certain radius. This ability can only be performed when the Point Man uses Slow-Mo and Fettel uses a melee attack.
- Psychic Flame Manipulation: Alma was able to control and create fire out of pure psychic energy; her mere presence was typically "accented" by flames.
- Liquefy: Alma's primary psionic attack, this ability can melt any target's flesh off, leaving only a charred, blood-drenched skeleton behind. Given that the remains often give off smoke or steam, this is most likely related to her pyrokinetic abilities.
- Psycho Warping: Throughout the F.E.A.R. video game series, Alma Wade is masterful at warping reality via her psionics on a metaphysical level. For example, she can cause illusions that are actually real, and she can create her own personal reality known as the Almaverse.
- Personal Reality: Again, Alma Wade had created her own reality within her mind known as the Almaverse, but over time, it began to spill into the real world.
- Summon Nightmares: Alma can summon these fragile but malevolent creatures, usually in large swarms, from the depths of her mind on the target, both in hallucinations and in reality. She is unable to use it in reality until she is let out of the Origin Facility by her father. This is very similar to her ability to create Scavengers in F.E.A.R. 3.
- The exact source of psychic powers is not explicitly known. Paxton Fettel and his brother, the Point Man seemingly inherited their own psychic abilities from their mother, Alma Wade, suggesting a genetic link as an explanation for psychic powers.
- However, as both Alma and Fettel's psionic abilities extended to the spiritual level, allowing their spirits to return as psychic spectres, suggest a spiritual connection for their powers.