The lights are on
Resident Evil 6, the latest installment of Capcom's know ex-Survival Horror game that started in 1996. The game is full of changes, and it does bring some nostalgia to those who have ventured the road since the Arklay Mountains and Raccoon City. Resident Evil 6 may not be the perfect Resident Evil game, but it is a great game.
The game went through some major changes since Resident Evil 5, from Gameplay through Controller Mechanics. It does take some time to get adjusting, and Gameplay varies from what campaign you choose from. Just so we're clear: Gameplay =/= Controller Mechanics. The challenges in each campaign is different, like how Leon's Campaign has puzzles and Chris' Campaign is more "Clear the area, then proceed".
The Camera Model also takes some time to get adjusted. Unlike Resident Evil 5, this camera isn't completely fixed to stay behind your character. At certain points in the game, you have to run towards your camera, and sometimes they are not just only in events in the game. After a few hours of getting the hang of the camera, it can be a huge edge for you. And the HUD doesn't really get in the way either and it's different from each character in the game, so it can take a few minutes getting used to.
The Inventory slot is different from the previous installments as well. It feels somewhat like you have unlimited space, but you don't. It takes quite a lot to fill the inventory slot, so you would only fill it maybe once or twice. Plus, don't think that your Inventory is full if you can't pick up some bullets, since certain bullets are for your partner(If playing Co-op). I'll talk about that in the cons in more detail.
Sounds in the game are pretty well done and Graphics are pretty detailed in certain aspects and points. Guns look and sound authentic, and character voices don't seem to be as bad as they say they are. Character reactions to attacks and other stuff can be done similar to Resident Evil 5, but a little better.
Also, the ability to buy,equip & upgrade skills like doing more damage with guns or melee, or boosting up your chances of Critical Hits are pretty handy when it comes to playing in harder difficulties. You can customize your Dog Tags and can add a title that can be unlocked by doing certain stuff in the game. Also, the Mercenaries are back, and slightly more challenging than the previous Mercenaries games. And the addition of "Agent Hunt" mode, where you invade another player's campaign and kill him is new and enjoyable.
There are also Files and Figures in the Collections gallery, but you need to unlock them by finding emblems through the campaigns, and the choice to view Cutscenes is there as well, but the menu looks slightly different. It goes by Timeline, which I think it's pretty neat. Your game also records your progress in the game, and are also sent to the Resident Evil 6 tracking site, which I think it's pretty cool.
Again, since Resident Evil 5, there has been drastic changes. There's the ability that you could trade & give weapons & ammunition, as well as other items in Resident Evil 5. This game does not have it for some odd reason, which makes it impossible to hand your partner handgun bullets when needed. And this exact problem is what won't allow you to pick up your partner's special ammo. Even though some characters have special guns, you can't touch their ammo, and vice versa. And not sharing items is something I hoped that would make an appearance again, but it's not there. It's a huge letdown, but I managed since there are a lot of places you can get items from.
Plus, in Resident Evil 5, the weapons that you would carry around would be visible in your character's persona, which RE6 does not have due to the inventory slots. And with the amount of long weapons that you get in the game(Assault Rifle, Sniper Rifle, Shotgun, etc), I think it was a smart move, since it seems like a lot of guns to carry around in the back.
The game feels slightly less challenging, in a way. To me, personally. And if you rush the game, it doesn't really take up to 10 hours each campaign, unless you want to count the amount of time spent in each campaign with each character.
And even though I liked the whole Tic-Tacks pills as medicine, it does seem like it's not the correct way to apply medicine. Neither does spraying the First Aid Spray like a bottle of perfume. It's a small con that I easily ignore, but I would like to share it as a con, though. Would have settled for applying the herbs as a medical lotion or something.
Those who have ventured the game's franchise will find a large amount of references from previous games, which I think it's hilarious. Even though I listed the Tic-Tacks as a con, it is extremely useful to use them right next to your partner(if playing with another player), just like the First Aid Spray. The ability to Melee helps a lot when I'm out of bullets as well, and I think it's a huge and great addition in the game.
The finishing moves used in enemies are really helpful when low on ammo too. And even though a lot of people don't like them, the Quick Time Events are back and in a new sort of way and style.
Not sure if Con or Pro:
There's only one thing that I can't seem to decide whether it's a pro or not. While playing in Single Player, the AI Partner seems to not have any sort of Health Bar, as Resident Evil 5 did. And your partner can take a lot of damage in the game, and not die(unless it's in a QTE or event where you have to help. There, it's help or die). Which is helpful since I don't have to worry about my partner a lot, but it makes the game less challenging. You decide. It's a mix of both to me.
As a Resident Evil Fan, I have to say that Capcom didn't lose any of their touch. In fact, the franchise's genre change was bound to happen. I remember clearly years ago in a forums section that Resident Evil needs to stop using Zombies somewhere in a gaming site(at that time, Gameshark was still around). And that the horror genre isn't going to have much impact in the near future, which seems true.
From Gameplay to story and to genre, the franchise changed, and not for the worst. I, at first, thought that it was in the wrong direction, but I was more into the classic games rather than the later installments. I started to wonder "Why? Why now? Why change? Why everything?" And many asked themselves the same thing.
In reality, the Survival Horror fans are scarce in numbers. To gamers, there are a whole lot that says that they are enough, when in fact, it's not about the fans. It's about the money. And Capcom aimed at the perfect direction to gather money. And I would do the same thing. A company won't just survive on a small number of Horror fans, when there's a whole bigger audience that they can target while trying to target their main fans. Even though some think otherwise, it's your own decision in the end.
Sure, people did complain, and who wouldn't? But their anger makes them see all the negative stuff about the game, rather than the positive. For starters, Gameplay changed. And many gamers confuse Gameplay with Control Mechanics, which is pretty common.
Gameplay is Actions & Challenges, and the challenges this game brings weren't all that great. However, the amount of actions that you can do and the new Agent Hunt mode brings more tension & excitement to the game. Mercenaries changed; not drastically, but a lot. And a lot of the SH Core Gamers were hoping something more challenging, in which I can agree with them.
And there's the complaining about the controls and the HUD and storage display. Even though since RE4 evolved the franchise's gameplay, people were complaining that it's too "Crappy" or "Sloppy" and whatnot. It takes time to get adjusted, just like any other game. I didn't like the controller mechanics of The Conduit, and after a certain amount of time spent in the game, I got a hold of myself and enjoyed the game. And even though it feels different, it's close to the same thing.
The story makes up for a lot. The story told in each campaign is surely one I won't forget, and it improves my knowledge of the Resident Evil franchise, and I can't ask for more than that. Heck, I didn't need closure, but it sure felt like it's already/almost over. And that in the back of my head seems like I won't hear the last of Umbrella, or any corporation that will follow in their steps.
The guns, the skill customization, Dog Tags, Achievements/Trophies... I couldn't ask for more. And for those who aimed for the Anthology for the PS3, I say well done. Even though the Anthology version for the 360 was quite crappy, I must say that it wasn't too bad of a deal either. Well, almost.
In the end, there is that part of my RE Gamer side that asks: What about Billy Coen? Rebecca Chambers? Barry Burton? Carlos Olivera? We haven't been told what Jill went to do after the events of RE5. Those Resident Evil Key Characters are not forgotten, but we ask and get no answers. It almost feels that the Resident Evil story isn't over yet. Not by a long shot.
And the addition that your stats are recorded and sent to the RE6 site, a la CoD and Battlefield, it's a smart move. A lot of people lately care about their records and love to get awarded for their work in the game. This site surely is another thing, though. In under a day, the amount of people registered from 16 to 13336, and online players from 2k to 206163(as from when I'm writing this).
Conclusion: The game isn't completely a loss, in fact, it's an upgrade, and that's coming from a Resident Evil fan since the beginning of the franchise. Yes, there was a lot that got changed from the classic games, but to be honest, I've matured a lot since then and it's quite hard to find something that would scare me. And if Capcom were to try to scare me with countless surprise scares, it would eventually just get annoying and dull, which would feel that the game would feel more like a chore after several playthroughs. I feel that way right now from the classic games, but I still enjoy them, but in today's standards and game evolution, I rather just not add it and come up with something new.
Second Hand Overview: (This was another personal comment I made, even though it has many things I already mentioned)
The game isn't really failing, as the franchise has sold more than 50 Million copies, despite the genre's change. If it did, I think Capcom would've gotten the idea of not releasing another game. But then again, there are the people that like the franchise's story and how far it has gotten. Sure, it's not what it used to be, but it was bound to happen. I remember that shortly after Code Veronica was released, there was a forum thread where people were already complaining about the use of Zombies, that they are being "Overrated".
This game doesn't really deserve the low ratings that reviewers give it, but it is their opinion. Yet, the game sells, and there are people that are pretty satisfied with the change, myself included. I love the classics, and I love the change that they added. And Leon's Campaign does seem less action and more Survival Horror elements, not completely but it's there. Besides, the change makes the classic games Unique. And change means trying something new, which may sound bad, but in the end, it's a great idea. While I do think Survival Horror fits this franchise more, there are ways to make it better, and changing genre can help find that sweet spot for the game. Maybe not in my lifetime but the game will eventually find the mechanics and genre that fits right for the game. Maybe bring it back to Survival Horror with new experienced changes. Think of it as "Re-Design to Perfection". It may not be the practice they are exercising, but it could be in a sub-conscious way.People just need to open up their eyes and tolerate change. Change is good, it means different results. Different Results means that you can mix different mechanics and form something new that can enhance the experience of the player. I welcome the change.
Overall of this game:
I will admit that the game wasn't what I was expecting, but it wasn't a let-down either. I already foresee that I will sink a lot of hours into this game, using both characters of the story of each campaign, rack up points & medals, Mercenaries, unlock everything, play Agent Hunt mode and more to come. I know I won't be disappointed in the future installments, and with the possibility of having Resident Evil 2 remade for this generation of consoles, I'm still a fan of Capcom, despite their ugly ways of marketing.
This is my first Review. Thoughts?
Well done Mike. I think you hit every top needed and with a very even hand.
Very nice review,I look forward to more thank you!
Great review Mike. Enjoyed reading it
you beat that fast! awesome review, all though I'm coming to your page right now to share my thoughts.
I want to say that I don't often read reviews (let alone fan reviews) but I have found yours to be very informative. Your philosophy on "change" in the franchise is refreshing to read as well. Thank you for writing something more meaningful than what I have been hearing from others.
Well said. I dont know if the story deserves a 10 because after so many games they need to start tying loose ends. But overall it was a good game worth the money.