- "Something's got my leg! FUCK, HELP ME!"
- —Steve Chen, upon being caught by a Scarecrow
A hideous and ghoulish creature, the Scarecrow appears as an upper torso with thin arms and large claws, a faceless head with gouged eyes and a mouth skewered with jagged teeth or metal shards. Because the Scarecrow only appears in the non-canon Perseus Mandate, it is not considered part of the official canon of the F.E.A.R. series.
F.E.A.R. Perseus MandateEdit
The Scarecrow acts as a trap, hiding inside large black smudges that appear on the floor, similar to a huge splat of black blood. Stepping into said spot brings the Scarecrow to attack by holding the player's legs and viciously slashing its claws at him, a move that can disorient and frighten the player. While the creature looks fearsome, and its first encounter in the game is rather gory, it's not really dangerous, as its attacks don't do much damage and killing it stops it from adding up, which can be done rather easily since a blast at point-blank range with the VK-12 Combat Shotgun is usually enough to kill it. Also, shooting at the black hole where the monster hides will kill it safely from a distance, though explosives aren't recommended due to splash damage; the VK-12 fired into the pit will eliminate the Scarecrow in two or three shots.
Active Scarecrows can be heard from a distance through their growls, and their holes, if active, will expand and spew ashes when approached, creating a "ripple" effect in the air above, as if exposed to intense heat. The sounds they make can be easily mistaken for background ambience, so visual identification is a more sure-fire way to detect them. The Scarecrow will shriek loudly and its den will close quickly after its death, ejecting the Sergeant if he was caught, and leaving behind a small, greyish "burnt" mark on the floor.
The first Scarecrow appears when Lt. Steve Chen steps into its hole and is dragged down; while the Sergeant can try to save him by holding his hand, Chen will inevitably be torn to pieces, leaving his arm still holding the Sergeant's hand. From then on, Scarecrows occasionally appear throughout the rest of the game, often cleverly disguised by blood, or even water, on the floor. Some can be avoided, but killing them on sight is a better move, especially if they appear near rooms with human enemies, whereas they may drag down an injured player retreating from a firefight and finish him off.
Dispatching a Scarecrow is fairly easy. The Sergeant is free to attack its pit from afar with total impunity, and any weapon that doesn't deal splash damage works well for this. If caught, aim straight down and fire away, and the Scarecrow should die before it deals too much damage. Using an AP-5 Deployable Turret is not recommended, however, as it'll both take several minutes of continuous fire to shoot the Scarecrow to death, and after it's dead, the turret is wasted, as sections featuring Scarecrows seldom contain other enemies.
- Interestingly, the Scarecrow's legs are never seen. Whether it has any at all is unclear.
- The first Scarecrow seen, which kills Steve Chen, appears differently than the rest of the Scarecrows in the game. First, the black spot on the ground is absent (there is only the grey "burnt" mark), and there is a "particle vortex" that also sucks Chen under the floor. These characteristics do not appear, or at least cannot be perceived in the "vortex"'s case, if the Sergeant himself steps into the hole after Chen is killed.
- With the Scarecrows encountered in the Old Underground Metro Area, the creatures will react to the player differently than the others in the game; the player can approach their hole in the ground and the hole will become the black spot, retreating off to a distance will make the spot turn into the grey "burnt" mark with distortions in the air above it.
- Attempting to jump over holes will still activate the Scarecrow, which will then drag the Sergeant into its hole.
- Remote bombs have an interesting reaction to being thrown into an active Scarecrow pit: the bombs explode instantly, instead of placing themselves normally. The same happens when throwing an AP-5 Deployable Turret into the pit.