The Origin Facility Explosion is a devastating event witnessed by all the main characters in the F.E.A.R. series. It is also the start of the war between Armacham's privately hired mercenaries and the U.S. Military.
The Origin Facility Explosion is caused by the F.E.A.R. Point Man damaging the Origin Facility's reactor cells, setting off a chain reaction. The Point Man manages to escape the facility, but is knocked unconscious by the resulting shockwave. When he regains consciousness, he has been brought aboard a UH-60 Blackhawk Helicopter by Jin Sun-Kwon and Douglas Holiday. Sun-Kwon informs him that they haven't been able to contact anyone since the explosion, while Holiday tells him that they do not know the extent of the damage yet. A giant mushroom cloud is visible over the Auburn District, which shows that the extent is at a cataclysmic level.
In F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, the Origin Facility Explosion destroys the city of Fairport and releases a wave of paranormal activity, resulting in most citizens becoming Specters, while a few instead become Remnants. The player is able to see the Ground Zero area in F.E.A.R. 2. While moving through the destroyed streets, the player can see the frozen in time ashes of the people closest to the explosion that crumble and blow away when touched. The Origin Facility and the entire surrounding area is now a vast crater.
The explosion's effects seem markedly more severe than they appeared at the end of the original game; a truly colossal mushroom cloud towers over the entire city for the whole game, appearing to still be slowly expanding with the stem disappearing into a thick cloud, leaving no idea just how high it extends above the cloud line. However, several areas that are located outside the district, such as Wade Elementary School and Still Island, are far enough away that a blue sky can be seen. According to news sources, the national guard is in the process of moving into the city at the time of F.E.A.R. 2's events.
The explosion is also seen in the start of the F.E.A.R. 2: Reborn DLC, seen through the eyes of Paxton Fettel.
The Origin Explosion is seen in the opening cinematic through the Point Man's eyes. Paxton Fettel comments that the blast "must have fried their brains," suggesting that the explosion and accompanying paranormal phenomena created the Cultists and Cannibals.
In F.E.A.R. Extraction Point, the explosion is once again seen in the beginning of the game, recapping the events of F.E.A.R. The city has also been overcome with paranormal activity and is mostly deserted. Whether this is because of the explosion, Alma Wade, or if some of the city was evacuated in time, is unknown. The most likely reason the population is gone is because of the crisis at Armacham Technology Corporation Headquarters. If the player listens closely to radio reports, they say that gunshots can be heard from Armacham Headquarters, and one report heard in a breakroom mentions that police are urging citizens to stay inside their homes. In fact, one civilian can be encountered alive and unharmed who was hiding from the Replica forces.
In F.E.A.R. Perseus Mandate, the explosion is seen after the Second F.E.A.R. Team apprehends Gavin Morrison, only to be distracted by the Origin Facility Explosion. Morrison escapes as the shockwave gets closer, and Steve Chen and the Sergeant pursue him, only to be buried in the Old Underground Metro Area. After the Sergeant emerges from the Old Underground Metro Area and connected Subway, he can find a traumatized civilian who was about to be executed by some Replica soldiers but they were deactiviated when Paxton Fettel was killed. However, the man does not open his eyes nor does his speak as he repeatedly rocks himself back and forth. As the Sergeant moves through the city, he also sees that it has been deserted and is now rife with paranormal activity.
While the blast looks similar to a nuclear weapons strike, the explosion was actually caused by the Point Man shooting the cooling pistons within the lower levels of the Origin Facility, which overheated, causing them to explode. This is supported by the fact that there seems to be no EMP or radioactivity following the explosion. Some believe that the mushroom cloud is the hate and rage Alma has for the world, and is the true catalyst for the explosion while the generator only gave it a small boost. Another possibility is that the explosion was originally only minor, Alma used it as a medium for the expression of her rage, or she used it in combination with her rage to help mold the real world after her own. The official website for F.E.A.R. Online confirms that the explosion was nuclear in nature.
- In F.E.A.R. 2, when visiting Ground Zero, the depth of the crater can be measured with a rangefinder, such as with the Andra SR5 Missile Launcher, Type-12 Energy Weapon Prototype, or the Raab KM50 Sniper Rifle's scopes. The crater is at least 600 meters in depth.