Tag Archives: Resident Evil

Resident Evil 2 (PC, PlayStation, Nintendo 64, Dreamcast & GameCube)

Developer(s) – Capcom

Publisher(s) – Capcom

Director(s) – Hideki Kamiya

Producer(s) – Shinji Mikami

PEGI – 18

Released in 1998 has generated more revenue than most Hollywood movies at the time, Resident Evil 2 is a continuation of the story of the original with new characters, new setting, and new dangers to overcome besides the zombies littering the mansion on the borders of Raccoon City. For various different reasons, I found the second game, whilst suffering from a few of the same problems as the first, to be a decisive improvement on its predecessor in a number of respects. 

 

Graphics – 9/10

The most notable improvement of which, in my opinion, is in terms of its visual quality, with the player no longer being confined to a single mansion on the outskirts of Raccoon City, but rather in the heart of Raccoon City itself. Locations range from the ruins of Raccoon City streets to the Raccoon Police Department to research facilities and it was a welcome change of scenery at the time that made the franchise a lot more diverse. The quality of the zombie sprites was also a lot more varied than in the original game with different outfits for zombies, zombie policemen, and even female zombies too. There were visible improvements in both the technical and conceptual aspects of the game, which were pleasant to see. 

 

Gameplay – 8/10

In terms of gameplay, it plays out pretty much like an extension to the first game with a couple of added mechanics thrown in for good measure. Like in the first game, there are two scenarios to play through with two different characters, so it almost felt like two different games at the time, especially as it came on two discs.  It also presents more of a challenge in the respect that it has new kinds of puzzles and new enemies to fight that require different strategies to take down, as well as a greater number of boss fights, which would later become a staple of the series. 

 

Controls – 7/10

The game’s control scheme, as such, is also the same as it was in the first game, and therefore, it suffers from very much the same issues as it did in the first game, with movement feeling very stiff and clunky, seemingly needlessly when compared to other games on the system. There had been some minor adjustments made, but enough for the game to deviate away further enough from the problems that came with the first game. The whole formula would go on to be improved with games like Onimusha, but overall, it didn’t make the game unplayable. 

 

Lifespan – 7/10

The game can be made to last the same amount of time as the first game; 15 hours give or take. That’s to play through both scenarios on both discs. There are a few more side quests in comparison to the original game, but overall, it lasts as long as Resident Evil. As a fan of the Onimusha series, I can’t help but think what the game would’ve been like if Capcom had implemented the same kind of ideas they with Onimusha 2 in comparison with the original Onimusha; how even more varied gameplay would’ve been and what different kinds of events could have been made to happen as a result. 

 

Storyline – 7/10

The story takes place around 2 months after the events of the original Resident Evil. It follows the journeys of Leon Kennedy, a STARS officer on his day with the department, and Claire Redfield, the brother of the previous games’ main protagonist Chris Redfield, whom she has come to Raccoon City to try and track down. The two soon become embroiled in a zombie outbreak across Raccoon City and they set out on a journey to discover the source of the outbreak. The quality of the story is much better than in the original game, with a better script and even better voice acting to a certain extent. It still comes across as somewhat corny and cliche at times, but it was certainly an improvement on the quality of writing that the first game had to offer. I’ve yet to come across many bigger memes in gaming than the whole Jill Sandwich thing; thankfully there’s nothing quite as laughable in this game as that. 

 

Originality – 7/10

A common problem I encounter with survival horror sequels is that when the same threat is included as in the original game, it seems far less scary when the player knows what they’re up against. But in Resident Evil 2, there is a new threat added to keep things diverse, which has become another staple within the series. The second game introduces players to the Lickers and other eldritch abominations that spawn from the new G-virus that acts as the main threat of the game, which at the time did relatively well to keep things fresh in comparison to the first game. The zombies didn’t seem as scary anymore, even at the time, but encountering a Licker for the first time most definitely instilled fear in me back in the day. 

 

Happii

Overall, Resident Evil 2 made some very definitive improvements over the original game in almost every respect. I recommend it far more than I do than the first game as even taking the recent remaster into account, the original experience still holds up to this day. 

Score

46/60

7.5/10 (Good)

SG88 Resident Evil Header

Resident Evil (PC, PlayStation, Sega Saturn & DS)

Developer(s) – Capcom

Publisher(s) – Capcom

Director(s) – Shinji Mikami

Producer(s) – Tokuro Fujiwara & Masayuki Akahori

PEGI – 16

 

Released to universal praise back in 1996, the original Resident Evil (or Biohazard as it was named in Japan), in many ways, set the standards of the survival horror genre (for better or for worse) and has since spawned a beloved franchise with countless spin-off games, seven main entries in the series with an eighth on the way. My personal feeling regarding the Resident Evil series, as well as the survival horror genre in general, have been mixed throughout the years, as I have surmised that they offer far too little in terms of Gameplay compared to games in other genres, and far too much story, with the original Resident Evil, for me, being a very mixed bag. On one hand, there is a fair bit of Gameplay and action to keep up the entertainment (as well as replay value) and on the other hand, too much story with very questionable elements. 

 

Graphics – 8/10

The game primarily takes place in a mansion on the outskirts of Raccoon City; the location synonymous with the original trilogy. Like in the Final Fantasy series on the PlayStation, the scenery consists of wonderfully designed still images throughout, but cutscenes were created using live-action, which was something relatively new to me at the time. The technology of the same vein had been used, such as the inclusion of digitized sprites, but the idea of having full live-action cutscenes was something to behold back in the day. The biggest gripe I have with the visuals is the designs of the zombies, with the same sprite being replicated throughout. This would later be rectified in Resident Evil 2, but in the first game, after you see the first zombie, the recycled sprite doesn’t give you the same sense of horror anymore. 

 

Gameplay – 7/10

The game is an action third-person shooting, puzzle-solving survival horror. Players must navigate through the mansion and uncover its secrets; all the while fighting off zombies and other infected creatures including crows, dogs, and giant tarantulas. It’s during gameplay sequences where the vast majority of the horror in this game is conveyed through the build-up of tension as the player progresses through each room, which was a revolutionary gameplay trope at the time. In many ways, the game does display a great deal of innovation, and it’s in the respect of gameplay where this becomes most prominent. 

 

Controls – 7/10

The biggest problem I had with the controls is in terms of character movement. There were a lot of 3D games released early on during the PlayStation and Sega Saturn’s early days that suffered in terms of controls such as the original Tomb Raider, Croc: the Legend of the Gobbos, and Blasto. Unfortunately Resident Evil suffers from much of the same problems as well. It’s especially annoying during both general combat and the game’s end boss fight. Capcom would also use the same principles in games like Onimusha, which whilst improved on the general formula, still suffered from many of the same issues. 

 

Lifespan – 7/10

To complete the game fully will take around 15 hours, which for a survival horror was relatively impressive at the time. I’ve played many other survival horrors since playing through this game for the first time that has been made to last far less time, so for the game that brought the entire genre to greater prominence than ever before, it got off to a great start in this respect.

 

Storyline – 6/10

The story of the original Resident Evil follows the investigations of the Alpha Team of Raccoon City Police’s special forces unit STARS. Following reports of mysterious and seemingly random attacks throughout the city, the team is dispatched to investigate the matter. After becoming stranded in the city’s outskirts, the team is forced to retreat into a nearby mansion after being attacked by mutated dogs. The player chooses between two STARS members; Chris Redfield and Jill Valentine. The story follows the exploits of whichever character the player chooses. The structure of the story is well thought out and there are a lot of exciting twists and turns along the way, but what stops this story from being taken as seriously as it could’ve been is in the quality of both the dialogue and the voice acting. Indeed, the “Jill sandwich” line has become a meme throughout the years. 

 

Originality – 9/10

Regardless of the quality of the storytelling, however, the fact of the matter remains that this game changed the course of how players saw horror games, and the genre evolved from there, with many developers taking this title as a major source of inspiration. The rest of the Resident Evil series went on to vary in quality throughout the years, but this is where it all started, and it got off to a relatively solid start, albeit, an incredibly unique one. 

 

Happii

Overall, the original Resident Evil, though being one of the most influential games of all time sat only relatively well with me. Survival horror has never been one of my favorite genres of gaming, but there are titles that have managed to impress me over the years, such as BioShock and  Dead Space, and this is where the genre’s widespread popularity all began. Despite my gripes with it, I have to give credit where it is indeed due. 

Score

44/60

7/10 (Fair)

SG88 Resident Evil 5 Header

Resident Evil 5 (PlayStation 3, PC & Xbox 360)

Developer(s) – Capcom

Publisher(s) – Capcom

Director(s) – Kenichi Ueda & Yasuhiro Anpo

Producer – Jun Takeuchi

PEGI – 18

 

Released back in 2009 as one of the most highly anticipated titles of the year, Resident Evil 5 was met with mostly positive reception from critics and went on to become the highest-selling game in the series at that point. Personally, I’ve never been a huge fan of the Resident Evil series, and in my opinion, this is the worst entry in it that I’ve played for a number of reasons.

 

Graphics – 7/10

From a technical standpoint at least, the visuals in Resident Evil 5 are top-notch. The attention to detail is extremely impressive for the time, and the use of lighting and shadow add to the overall atmosphere of the game beautifully. However, from a conceptual standpoint, I found it to be below par compared to anything else I’d seen of the series at that point. I felt that setting such as the mansion and the police station in the original trilogy would better serve to build up tension throughout the course of the game since places like that would normally be considered safe, and so it would be easier to take players by surprise. It didn’t help matters to see that some of the game is also set in the daytime, which made it even less scary.

 

Gameplay – 6/10

To a certain extent, the same logic concerning the sense of isolation could be applied to the game’s style of play. Playing out more or less identically to Resident Evil 4, it is a linear third-person shooter with not as many options in terms of exploration as in the original three games, and not a great deal more to offer beyond that. Since the player and his partner stick together for the majority of the game, there’s more of a sense of security to be felt throughout, which is the last thing players would expect to feel whilst playing a survival horror game.

 

Controls – 5/10

The game’s control scheme is also extremely flawed in my opinion. Though I think my main concern was added purposely in order to create tension within it, it greatly backfired on the developers. In the game, it is impossible to move and shoot at the same time, which some players may consider adds to either the challenge or the horror aspects of the game, I merely couldn’t help but think of how impractical it is.

 

Lifespan – 5.5/10

Resident Evil 5 can be made to last around 8 hours, which really falls within the average of how long a game of this ilk can be made to last, so to me, it isn’t anything overly impressive. There are a couple of collection side quests to add to the game’s longevity, but it seems to me like an insult that the only option beyond this to make the game last longer is to purchase the DLC. I begrudge games lasting any less than 10 to 15 hours anyway, but when I know that a game could have been made to last with the right amount of content, I can’t help but criticize it.

 

Storyline – 6/10

The story follows former S.T.A.R.S member Chris Redfield, as he travels to Africa to stop the sale of a deadly virus on the black market, with the help of his new partner Sheva Alomar. The plot later unfolds into a scenario, which plays out more or less identically to the events of the first Resident Evil; it’s the same basic premise, with largely even the same characters, just in a completely different setting. To me, it didn’t add anything to the horror or suspense aspect to learn that I was basically going through the same situation as was portrayed in the original game. It’s even more puzzling why this would have happened since this game had four writers attached to it, whereas the original game only had two.

 

Originality – 5/10

In terms of uniqueness, there is hardly anything positive to point out that would differentiate this game from any of the previous four games; the gameplay is identical to that of Resident Evil 4, the plot is more or less the same as the first game, and the setting is nowhere near as imposing or as scary as they ever had been throughout the franchise previously. Shinji Mikami was the man who knew best what to do with the series, and since his departure from Capcom, it has suffered in my opinion.

 

Angrii

Angrii

In summation Resident Evil 5 is the worst game in the series that I’ve played. It falls far short of the quality of the previous four games and is one of the worst survival horror experiences of the seventh generation.

Score

34.5/60

5.5/10 (Below Average)