The lights are on
A bioterrorism outbreak of global proportions is just around the corner. Chris Redfield, Leon S. Kennedy, and the rest of our heroes will travel across China, a sleepy U.S. town, and Eastern Europe to stop it. Prepare yourself for the impending outbreak of the c-virus with this handy primer.
Know The Cast
Leon S. Kennedy: Survived the zombie outbreak in Raccoon City on his first day as a cop. He rescued the former President Graham’s daughter from an infected cult in Spain. Leon is a personal friend and agent for President Adam Benford preceding the events of Resident Evil 6. Get ready for a lot of badass action-movie stunts and goofy one-liners.
Helena Harper: Secret service agent and Leon’s new partner. Helena is somehow involved with the c-virus attack on Tall Oaks, which also resulted in the death of the president, but she’s not one of the bad guys.
Chris Redfield: Raccoon City survivor and former S.T.A.R.S. operative. He helped his sister Claire escape Umbrella’s prison on Rockford Island. He later joined the Bioterrorism Security Assessment Alliance and took down longtime nemesis Albert Wesker. He’s been wasting away in a bar following an incident in Europe where he lost fellow agents to the c-virus. He doesn’t seem to remember the tragedy.
Piers Nivans: Chris’s partner in the BSAA. He finds Chris getting drunk in a European bar when he asks him to take up the fight again. He convinces Chris to help in the fight against the c-virus in China. Piers is a crack-shot sniper and as dependable as partners get.
Jake Muller: A mercenary who got his start earning money for his sick mom before she died. His deadbeat dad is Albert Wesker, which means his blood is the cure to the c-virus. He discovers this fact in RE 6, and asks for a lot of money in exchange for his blood. He’s a sarcastic guy and amazing in close-quarters combat.
Sherry Birkin: Raccoon City survivor. She’s the daughter of deceased Umbrella scientist William Birkin. Claire Redfield and Leon saved her life when she was just a young girl trying to survive the Raccoon City outbreak. She is now a government agent tasked with escorting Jake back to the US.
Ada Wong: Raccoon City survivor. Ada’s early espionage career began by stealing information from an Umbrella scientist, and escalated to recovering a sample of the g-virus. Ada and Leon helped each other during the Raccoon City incident, and since then have had a complicated “relationship.” She appears to be one of the bad guys in RE 6, but something seems amiss.
Derek Simmons: This shady scientist is a presidential aide assigned to helping assess national bioterrorism security. Leon suspects that Simmons has something to do with the Tall Oaks c-virus outbreak.
Jake Is A Melee Beast
All characters can instantly start punching and kicking with a tap of the right trigger. However, Jake sacrifices a blade or other melee weapon in exchange for martial arts. Holding down the left trigger charges up his deadly palm strike, similar to Wesker’s ability in previous Mercenary Modes. Pressing the triggers simultaneously makes him perform a quick uppercut or ground attack that automatically locks on the nearest enemy. He can also throw enemies into one another and perform short, powerful combos. Be sure to use his martial arts abilities, as it saves ammo and increases your overall accuracy score for end-of-chapter bonuses.
Set Your Lasersights
Resident Evil 6’s default reticule is a crosshairs with a red dot in the middle of it. However, the solid laser-sight beam from RE 4 and 5 is optional if you want something familiar. I liked the laser-sight beam at first, but eventually dragging the beam around the screen felt too sluggish. The new crosshairs are perfect for RE 6’s faster pace.
Choose Your Starting Campaign
I suggest playing the game in the order listed under the campaign select screen: Leon, Chris, Jake. However, you can choose any order you like, or switch between them as you please. Leon’s campaign has some slower-paced horror elements, and you’ll mostly be fighting zombies. Chris’s campaign features the most firefights, so get ready to use cover and take a few bullets. Jake’s campaign has a lot of crazy setpiece moments and an enemy that reminds me of Nemesis chasing them the entire time.
Prepare For Co-op
As with RE 5, this game has a strong emphasis on two-player co-op. You can play with a buddy online, split-screen, or with a system link. I recommend getting two TVs, two 360s, two copies of RE 6, and an Ethernet cable to link the systems for the best experience. Nothing beats hunkering down with a friend and each having your own HDTV to play on.
Resident Evil 6 has plenty of contextual button press moments. You may think that you’re about to watch a popcorn-friendly cutscene, but you need to always be ready for a timed button press. Remember the first time Leon was rolled over by a boulder in RE 4 because you put down the controller? Learn from that mistake.
Invest In Good Perks
Unlike the past two games, guns can’t be directly upgraded in RE 6. Instead, you’ll spend skill points (works the same as gold), to purchase and upgrade perks. These include bonuses like decreased weapon recoil, increased ammo pick-ups, and improved stamina. However, the best perks appear to be ones that improve your firepower, melee, and make you stronger against specific weapon types. I recommend you always have improved firepower and melee equipped, which will eventually make your bullets and strikes hit much harder. For your third perk you should swap between Zombie Killer and J’avo Killer depending on what you’re fighting. You can even swap out perk loadouts mid-mission.
Don’t Shoot Everything
Recent Resident Evil titles haven’t required players to hoard ammo and health as much as the earlier games, but it’s still a commodity. Save yourself a few bullets or shotgun shells by sprinting past an enemy or dispatching one with melee. Stomping heads is a good go-to move. You can also toss a flashbang to stun enemies and open them up for brutal melee finishers. Don’t forget to use grenades and remote mines, too. They can clear a room quickly.
No matter which weapon you have equipped, quickly pressing each trigger simultaneously will make you automatically fire a quick shot at your nearest enemy. This doesn’t do crazy damage, but it stops impending attacks by stunning your enemy. It also opens them up for a contextual melee attack. Use it wisely.
Herbs return in Resident Evil 6. You can combine your herbs in your inventory screen to create health pills, which are placed in your pill box for quick, one-button use. Each character has six health bars, and each pill recovers one health bar, along with replenishing your stamina meter (drained during melee attacks). A health bar will regenerate if only partial damage is received. Moving a single herb to the pill box will only produce one pill, so it’s best to wait until you have multiple herbs to combine. Combining two green herbs produces three green herbs, and mixing three green herbs with another single herb creates six herbs, which can then be transformed into six health pills. The best option is to combine a single green herb with a single red herb, which produces six green herbs. Popping health pills or a first-aid spray near your partner will rejuvenate them as well.
I hope these tips help you during your mission to rid the world of dreadful bio-organic weapons. Be sure to share any helpful information you’ve learned while playing through the Resident Evil 6 demos. Resident Evil 6 releases October 2 on 360 and PS3.