Capcom is once again inflicting an evil on to the masses with its latest: Resident Evil 5. Known to most as Biohazard or as RE, this game has many different aliases but this game seems to be famous for reasons other then being a new entry into the long storied franchise, but more on that later. The game takes place in Kijuju, Africa as you reprise the role of Chris Redfield. Teamed up with Sheva Alomar, you are sent to Kijuju to arrest Richardo Irving before he sells a bio-weapon to the black market.
All the while, you and Sheva witness disturbing behavior taking place by the locals, from the beheadings to the bizarre worshipping rituals that take place, something is going on much further beneath the scenes with Kijuju. Chris is also on the search for his former comrade, Jill Valentine, who has gone missing since an attempt to arrest Albert Wesker, the same villain from the first game. Wesker’s appearances in the early stages of the game are brief, but those scenes are very important and the delivery in the cinematic presentation is stellar to say the least. As you progress it becomes more and more obvious that the true threat here is Wesker. When Chris and Jill approach Wesker, Wesker refuses to cooperate and a fighting scene that would be from “The Matrix” takes place, Chris is on the ground and Jill tackles Wesker sending both of them through a window and falling to there supposed death. Wesker somehow survives the fall, but Jill hasn’t been scene or heard from since this incident.
The game still features the over the shoulder camera from Resident Evil 4 which i loved incredibly since it opens up a new way to play this game. Also, the musical score is perfect given the situation you are in. Also from Resident Evil 4, the enemies in this game still work together and even communicate amongst themselves so they can work together against the common enemy: You.
Your Chris: http://i40.tinypic.com/28i807s.jpg
Meet Sheva: http://i39.tinypic.com/2mecp60.jpg
Enter Wesker: http://i43.tinypic.com/142dcmd.jpg
The controls are solid but not perfect. There is no longer a pause in the game to manage your inventory, everything is on the go and in real time. You work with Sheva throughout the ENTIRE game, so be used to not only controlling Chris but also controlling Sheva at the same time. The game itself is really a Co-Op style game wether your playing alone or online with a friend. You can share items, swap items, combine items, upgrade items, drop items, sell items, and the list doesn’t end.
Another thing that changes this game from the previous games is that your playing on a Chapter Basis, at the beginning and end of each chapter your given a chance to buy all your necessary items, weapons, ammo, and body armor before you head on to the next chapter. Each kill you get, a reward is given wether it be health, ammo, or gold which is the currency in the game to obtain items. While in the single player, you can decide who obtains the gold. Chris or Sheva.
Playing alone it don’t really matter since it goes into a single pot, but playing online whomever is Sheva will receive the gold that you give to her or let her pick it up. Ammo works the same way, only it does matter who gives and gets since your teammate will not be able to just take the ammo from you without requesting for it. You can use voice commands in game to change the way that a situation plays out. When the enemy hears you or your teammate call out for help or health, they will be more aggressive towards that player. This is a nice addition, while it is subtle since its something i picked up on and not something that was talked about too much. The way the enemies work together really shows how much detail went into the AI for this game, its just too bad they didn’t put much into your teammate.
Box Art: http://i40.tinypic.com/eriis1.jpg
Xbox 360 Bundle: http://i44.tinypic.com/201e7r.jpg
Playstation 3 Bundle: http://i40.tinypic.com/333aamv.jpg
I have noticed a lot of times that Sheva tends to not respond to well to your voice commands and often times it ruins the game for you since if your teammate dies, your game ends. This happens a lot throughout the game especially in close corridors and ledges, thats where it gets heavy (There’s that word again, Heavy). The later monsters you encounter make the games intensity go up, which is nice, but certainly becomes problematic later on in the game. The Reapers are by far the worst monsters in the game since they can regenerate ANY limb you destroy, even there heads.
Killing those is almost impossible but it can be done, just be ready to buy more ammo afterwards. And they pop up on you from cocoons that hang from ceilings. When you first encounter them, one just creeps up on you from out of nowhere, so the scare factor is there and in place. When you are fighting it, you suddenly realize how insane it is to eliminate it. It’s almost like a Terminator…only your no John Connor. There giant crickets in a sense and they have INSTANT kill attacks that do as they say, instantly kill you OR your teammate. The whole teammate thing really brings the game down at this point since Sheva can stay close to you but if your running around and she is attacking, she will not follow unless you issue a voice command, that sucks. The Reaper can grab you and once that happens, it’s over.
I have had numerous “You/Your Teammate has Died” screens pop up on me when i ran into them. Even the Lickers are not as tough, thats sad since the licker was the most feared monster from RE 2 outside of the Tyrant. Another thing i do not like about some of the monsters is there tendency to become predictable, the AI is smart since it works well when there is a large crowd of monsters or enemies attacking you, but when it’s one on one or a small group, you can really start to see the AI fall apart. Its’ like the AI is working, but each enemy has a mind of there own at times. In the end, they all have a real problem with becoming so overwhelming that there kills get very cheap and unavoidable.
There are sequences in the game where you are separated which is nice, but its in these scenes that you can see how well Co-Op comes into play here. You can snipe and protect Sheva or you can have her work with you from the opposite side of a wall to open a passage for you, it’s like Gears Of War, but not as successful. There are driving scenes and scenes were your on a boat (look at me…I’m on a boat). So you are getting a lot of things to do here and a lot of collectibles are to be had, its just that the game is very short and over very quick. They rely on the Co-Op heavily and the difficulty here to extend the amount of time it takes to play the game, in the end sadly though its just like any other Resident Evil…no replay value.
They do add “The Mercenaries” mode when you complete the game which is a timed based mode of RE 5 which rewards you with points and gold on the amount of kills you get in the mode. These are used to unlock additional characters and costumes to have in the mode itself. As you play, you can shoot and destroy “Time Crystals” which you can use to extend your time limit…obviously…..that will allow you to get more kills and more unlockables.
You play solo or you can play with a friend in Co-Op in this mode as well. There is a difference here though in two ways, the first is the way you are revived. In the single player you can used a health item after your teammate injects you or you inject them. In Mercenaries, you must fully restore the health of your teammate instead of them using items to restore themselves. So stay close to your allies at all times and work together. The second difference here is the points system. When your playing solo your rank is determined by the amount of points you obtain from your kills. The Co-Op mode of Mercenaries raises the points required for ranks up since you are playing with a live player instead of a CPU controlled character.
Mercenaries Mode: http://i41.tinypic.com/34xrles.jpg
Mercenaries Mode With All Characters Unlocked: http://i39.tinypic.com/281xzd3.jpg
I liked the boss battles in this game also, there was a huge sense of scale here since there were normal sized monsters to just insanely huge creatures you would read about in mythology. The best had to have been the giant fish you fight. I won’t go in-depth as to who it is and when it happens since i am not a spoiler here, but you have to work with Sheva using rail guns and missile turrets to work the monster down and out. It gets really epic with the ways the monster tries to finish you off in one move.
The detail in the effects in the water and weather here are awesome as well. Just about everything with the graphics i liked. There are some issues with collision detection which will never be solved with Resident Evil, you can still see your enemies come through the door and walls…Next Gen Huh? I also love the detail that goes into the animations of all the characters given the situation, there facial reactions are really good and well mapped out. So in a sense, there are somethings they really improved on with the graphics in Resident Evil, but there are still others that will linger on for what seems to me forever.
The voice acting is better this time around, but not as good as Resident Evil 4 as that game had a much darker feeling to it as the story was way more mystery based then this game. Resident Evil 5 brings a lot of fun and intense scenes of suspense and a more improved camera which was excellent to begin with from Resident Evil 4. But sadly, these are things that the media choose not to notice when talking about this game. Everyone choose to look at some other “element” about this game that just annoys me to no end.
Everyone decided to talk about Race with this game. It all began with N’Gai Croal decided to write and article that talks about how this game is Racist since you are a White hero killing Black zombies. First off, lets calm down folks seriously, why are we so obsessed with the race, gender, and orientation of characters in cartoons, muppets, video games, movies and so on? What’s it matter? If you too busy worrying about these issues with characters that do not exist, why bother getting worked up about these matters? Perhaps someone is a little bit insecure about something in there personal life. N’Gai’s article was so ridiculous that after it was published, i had to send him an email asking him all types of questions that went unanswered. He refused to answer these questions i sent and in typical fashion of someone who has no answers, they give you a history lesson hoping that the history will be so large enough to cloud up your view, basically dodging the questions all together.
This article started a fire storm in a sense because everyone began to question this game. The article he wrote was based off of footage from a TRAILER, not the final product. Back at that trailer, no one knew of the Co-Op factor or of Sheva to begin with. So its not all White hero killing Black zombie is it now? The awful network that is G4 decided to dedicate a block of time, believe me with there lineup they can afford it, to this subject. Now first off, why would a network that is ranked close to dead last on the list off ALL the Major Cable Networks decide to dedicate a block to anything that is serious? Who is watching it? Certainly wasn’t me, i read all about it online…well there wasn’t much to be said. In the end, these back and forth discussions of race in gaming are pointless. If your so obsessed over it, wouldn’t mushrooms sick of being stereotyped as an object that can make you a giant? Do all Flowers that make you shoot fire? Don’t all yellow pie charts eat ghost?
The references can go on and on but in the end, where’s the outcry for all these other things that go on in gaming? There’s a group for everything in this country. Back to the issue here, why waste time writing an article that will in the end make you look foolish when you know that everyone important such as the BBFC (British Board of Film Classifications) label the game as NOT racist. Same goes with a Senior Lecturer at the University of Kent stating that the game is “presenting a colonial time”. But i didn’t need these two telling me that this game is not racist since you never hear N’Gai sticking up for Jewish people with all these swastika’s shown in ALL shooting game as of late. I even asked him that….it was avoided. I even asked what if the game were based in Boston, and your a Black hero killing White zombies, is the reverse racist? He avoided that as well. N’Gai does not write for Newsweek Online anymore, he is off to other things now, Hopefully he is insightful and not inciteful as college professors would tell you when you write an article. Freedom of speech is one thing, being stupid is another, figure out which side of the line you want to be on N’Gai.
Resident Evil 5 is now available on the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 for an MSRP of $59.99. Rated M For Mature (Not sure if thats a rating that would be good enough for N’Gai). Buy the regular version since the Collector’s Edition isn’t so worthy of being called that. Your given cheap filler product and a figurine that is so small, you can’t tell it’s from Resident Evil, only the emblem makes it noticeable. The bag is the only thing thats makes it worth it.
Collector’s Edition…If You Can Call It That: http://i42.tinypic.com/25z59iq.jpg
-Great Cinematic Experience
-Great Voice Acting
-Co-Op Works Awesome
-Epic Boss Battles
-Playstation Home Integration
-AI Gets Weak As The Game Progresses
-Enemies Get Easy Kills
-You Die A Lot…Even If It’s Not You
-Ending Sucks (Sorry, It Does)
-Controls Can Be Frustrating
-All Inventory Is Done Live, You Are Not Protected As You Shuffle Through Items
-No Expansion Slots To Carry More Items
-Multiplayer Mode Is NOT Free…Its On The Disc But Requires A Download To Play
-The Limited Edition Version Is Not Worth The Extra $20
Resident Evil 5 Rating – 2 1/2 Stars Out Of 5
Buy Resident Evil 5 For Playstation 3 : here .
Grab the Collector’s Edition for PS3: here .
Buy Resident Evil 5 For Xbox 360: here .
Grab the Collector’s Edition for Xbox 360: here .
Playstation Home Resident Evil 5 & Street Fighter 4 Content: http://www.joystiq.com/2009/02/03/street-fighter-and-resident-evil-invade-playstation-home/
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– John Yomtov