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Resident Evil 6 Review

Many gamers associate the Resident Evil games with some very fond memories and feelings, like the fear of meeting your very first zombie, the heartbeat skipping fright as rabid dogs jump through windows or the memory of laughing at the ropey dialogue and the pant soiling village attack in Resident Evil 4. Now, with Resident Evil 6, a new feeling is brought to the table, ambivalence. 

Playing through Resident Evil 6 leaves me void of any feelings for it, no fear, no excitement but at the same time, no hatred. Maybe I am resigned to the fact that Capcom has moved on from trying to scare us, its finger no longer on the pulse of what gamers expect from this once great franchise or maybe I should have taken the recent Operation Raccoon City as a warning, thought initially to be a side project it seems it was in fact a precursor to Resident Evil 6 in terms of gameplay. Long gone are the moments of dread as you will yourself to look around a corner, now you just charge around, guns blazing.

Starting off with a rather disappointing tutorial-style flash forward introduction that relies on far too many quick time events, we join Leon and Hannah mid-way through a huge running battle, trying to get across a zombie infested Chinese city and ending with a "back for more" moment, the game then taking us back to the main game timeline.

In Resident Evil 6 we join a whose who of the Resident Evil world with the game being split into four campaigns set against a new outbreak, a new virus and a new Umbrella. Leon and Hannah, Chris and Piers, Jake and Sherry are paired up for each chapter with a final chapter unlocking after completion of the separate story threads. Each duo has a different story that ultimately links together, each with an attempt to make them play differently from one another, though this does not really work as they are all far too action heavy with Leon's story being the perfect example; In this story we join Leon right at the start of an outbreak, something we don't usually see in games, with a strange fog turning the towns inhabitants into flesh eaters, panicked townsfolk running away, getting eaten and even fighting back. Leon's partner Hannah has some information about the outbreak, with them following this lead through a town slowly destroying itself; eventually making it to more familiar Resident Evil territory involving churches, underground caverns and labs. Though similar in terms of action each campaign has some very original ideas implemented, especially for a Resident Evil game, but all too often it boils down to a basic third person shooter. It seems Capcom has forgotten its core ideals and what made the originals so popular - fear. That and the term survival horror seems to have been all but forgotten with even Leon's missions being more of a frag fest, rarely running low on ammunition.

All of the characters have been significantly upgraded, most notably with the ability to move and shoot at the same time. Just from the move sets you can tell the general direction of this franchise has changed with duel wielding weapons, combat rolls and ducking behind walls for shots from behind cover and a Physical Combat Gauge that allows for quick shots and some brutal melee attacks.

Upgrading characters is also a new addition with Skill Points being dropped from kills or found hidden in vases and crates. These points can be spent on specific stat altering skills like more powerful firearms and melee attacks, less recoil, quick reloads, item drop increases and also the ability to remove the target sight in exchange for increased firepower.

All of the chapters in each campaign can be played as single player, local split screen or via the internet, allowing friends or random players to join your game as the second player and work together to pull all those switches. At certain parts of the story there are also opportunities for another two players to join in the fight for the truth, granting four of you the ability to try and take out some of the larger, more challenging bosses.

An additional online mode that is unlocked during the campaign is the Agent Hunt; if you are fed up helping people you can become the enemy, joining the game as a creature and trying to get one over on the host.

With all of the action in the campaign mode the thrill of the Mercenaries mode has been somewhat tarnished, where before it was a chance to run around blasting zombies instead of trying to survive, now it seems just like the rest of the game. Set across three maps you have a set time limit to kill as many undead as you can, solo or as a team. As in the main campaign the skill points collected here can also be spent on solo skills or some more specific to the Mercenaries mode.

Graphically Resident Evil 6 is a very impressive looking game offering plenty of fast paced action and no slowdown. Visually, this once scary series seems to now focus more on gore with blood spraying everywhere; headshots that if not spot on can leave zombies walking around with half their skull missing and melee attacks now include sticking a broken bottle into the neck of a zombie. There are a couple of graphical glitches though - on more than one occasion zombies, can at times, appear out of nowhere, most notably within a group and in these cases melees don't always connect properly.

Though previous games allowed for a restricted amount of wandering around mansions and such, Resident Evil 6 is an extremely linear game, puzzles are a bit too simple and are laid out one after the other. This means you are unable to wander off the main route, to the point where you have a few invisible walls blocking off otherwise accessible areas, something I do not expect to see in modern games.

I mentioned the quick time event heavy intro; sadly these are not kept to that area with far too many appearing throughout the game, requiring a waggle or a manic tap to operate or escape one trap or another. Something that was very upsetting are the cheap deaths, with Leon's levels alone having a few moments that, without real warning, sees your character die, just because you where standing in the wrong place; be it crushed by a runaway ambulance or a speeding underground train, it feels cheap to be sent back to the checkpoint in this way. Whilst on the subject of saving, typewriters are a thing of the past, with levels just auto saving at pre-set areas.

At numerous points in reviewing this game I found myself comparing Resident Evil 6 with the previous games; this should not be the case as if it were it would have a very low score, however as a standalone game it certainly has a lot of action and shooting of zombies and hours upon hours of replayability, if that's your pleasure then there will be some enjoyment in this for you.

Words by Ash Buchanan.
Review Policy (Version tested: Xbox 360)

Edited On 01 Oct, 2012

( 25 )
Vegeta98's avatar
Vegeta98 4 years ago
Probably get this sometime after release
PrometheusFan's avatar
PrometheusFan 4 years ago
Sounds as terrible as everyone was expecting.
Shnoorum's avatar
I was expecting it to be a big hit. I am genuinely suprised by all the bad reviews its getting. The demo seemed pretty solid from the little I played of it
Shnoorum 4 years ago
Bindiana's avatar
Bindiana 4 years ago
Bit of a shame that capcom went down the action route. Remember the originals on the PS1 they were more about the scares. Did love the really bad voice acting in the first one think it helped make it a classic.
Shnoorum's avatar
I do admit I miss the old style. I also do love the newer Resident Evils (RE4 being one of my all time favourite games) but its such a shame to see old school survival horrors being whiped out in favor of big shiney graphics and run and gunning.
Shnoorum 4 years ago
GamerChr15's avatar
GamerChr15 4 years ago
I really wanted to like this game. I received my copy on Saturday morning (thanks Shopto!) and played a fair portion of it over the weekend. My conclusion, I really don't like it. As the reviewer has stated, they have totally lost sight of what a Resident Evil game should be, but this obviously happened years ago. My Main issue with the game is the terrible A.I if you don't have a human partner in game with you. Also the unfair checkpoint system, this in addition to the endless arena battles against swarms of the undead just left me annoyed and frustrated. It felt like playing Gears of War's horde mode over and over again, which wouldn't be a bad thing if I was actually playing Gears of War. On the bright side, at least Dishonored is out soon and we already have Borderlands 2!
Kettle11's avatar
Kettle11 4 years ago
Capcom were trying to appeal to everyone with four different campaigns. Unfortunately Leon's is the worst as they have no idea what makes a game scary anymore, but I appreciate that they at least tried to encourage horror fans to buy the game for Leon's campaign. The other three are action with a horror tint, and Capcom have done that right this time.
Shnoorum's avatar
I'm leaving any expectations of horror at the door with this game. Not to say I find that a particularly bad thing. The newer RE games have proved to be extremely solid shooters. I think the gameplay could easily carry this one through just like the last 2 games
Shnoorum 4 years ago
shenmue4real's avatar
shenmue4real 4 years ago
Cant remember the last game to get such a mixed response. Reviews are all over the place.
Dead's avatar
Reviews were bound to be mixed, there's still a lot of people out there who don't like what Capcom have done with the franchise. Personally I like the new style RE and am looking forward to playing it tomorrow.
Dead 4 years ago
Blitz1423's avatar
Blitz1423 4 years ago
hope i win a copy because i spent my money on fifa also good to see the review is not saying the game is crap because thats all i hear about the game after the demos release
scourge's avatar
scourge 4 years ago
i think I'll pick this up after Christmas, unless i win the comp that is :P
Datastatic's avatar
Datastatic 4 years ago
I really like this, its loads better than Resi 5 and up there with 4. There is a lot of gravity attached to the early games but they have dated really badly. Its great to see an honest review from the site and there is obvs going to be a backlash but for the record this is all I was expecting and more. Too hard tho....
Datastatic's avatar
Datastatic 4 years ago
Again apols for double post. Shopto confuses me.
Shnoorum's avatar
Shnoorum 4 years ago
Resident Evil is a strange one. For the most part, people have loved and accepted the series new itterations yet you look at Silent Hill and pretty much all the fans (me included) are really annoyed at how the newer games are turning out. Anyways, back on topic. I've noticed all the negative reviews 5 is getting but it really isnt putting me off. After playing the demo and reading up on some of the modes in the game, I really do think I'm going to fully enjoy it. Resident Evil has never let me down before. And yes I have played Dead Aim and the Outbreak series
b3media's avatar
b3media 4 years ago
Don't think you can really beat RE4 on the GameCube,
Dead's avatar
Probably not, I thought Revelations came pretty close though.
Dead 4 years ago
Shnoorum's avatar
I'm dying to play Revelations. Its the main reason I want a 3DS. Soon my precious, soon
Shnoorum 4 years ago
Anonymous user's avatar
LLOYD 4 years ago
I miss the old REs.. 1 2 and 3. I just felt it was so much more thrilling with the puzzles etc.
Skiba's avatar
Skiba 4 years ago
some sites have been way to harsh on this game imo.
AndyMo91's avatar
AndyMo91 4 years ago
never really followed the resident evil series as i am a bit of a wimp and running zombies scare the shit out of me. played bits and pieces of 4 and 5 but the whole standing still and shooting thing done my head in. running zombie
Shnoorum's avatar
On the plus side RE6 is apparently not scary in the slightest. Plus you can move and shoot now
Shnoorum 4 years ago
Konakona's avatar
Konakona 4 years ago
"this once scary series seems to now focus more on gore with blood spraying everywhere" I hope this is not Chris's blood!
Shnoorum's avatar
Shnoorum 4 years ago
warden976's avatar
warden976 4 years ago
the checkpoint system in this game is awful

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