Posted on September 25, 2004 by Flames
What do ten strangers sitting in a bar have in common? They’d all make delicious entrees for a few hungry zombies about to attack the bar. That’s right, in this newest installation of Resident Evil Raccoon City is being rampaged by a plague of zombies. It’s up to you to pick one of ten characters and fight for survival.
The game is set up in different sections called scenarios, each with their own theme and unique location. After you complete a scenario, a new one is unlocked and you are given points for your game play. The better you are the more points you get allowing you to trade them in to unlock bonuses such as CG art and cut scenes.
The scenarios begin with you choosing one of 10 characters to play. Choose, but choose wisely. Each person has his or her own unique tools and skills to help you get through the game. For example, you can choose Yoko, the Japanese high school student who can carry more items then normal, or Jim, the guy who amazingly specializes in playing dead, seriously. Look at the characters traits carefully. Don’t just pick the police officer or the security guard because they can start off with guns. Yeah, shooting a zombie in the face as soon as you can is exciting, but when you can find a gun relatively fast right away anyway, you’re going to wish you’d chosen someone with useful tools you can’t pick up during the game. Which brings me to my favorite character Alyssa the journalist, who is also the lock-picker. When you come to a locked room you still don’t have the key for she can pick the door lock. It may take awhile to unlock, but it sure is a lot faster then searching every room to find that stupid key you missed. All of the characters and their abilities are marked down in the instruction guide.
After choosing your player, you are placed in a unique environment and situation, such as a bar you need to get out of. Thus begins your quest to annihilate zombies, find weapons, and, of course, solve puzzles. But you’re in luck. You are not alone in your endeavor. In each scenario you are paired up with two other characters. You can somewhat control their movement through vocal commands, however, they’re not all that reliable. Most of the time I was very happy to have these other characters around because they helped get the zombies off my back. However, certain characters you team up with are more annoying than others, and I soon had a greater desire to kill my teammates than the zombies. Throughout the levels you can find all kinds of goodies to help keep those pesky zombies at bay, such as pepper spray, wrenches, lead pipes, and of course, my personal favorite, the shotgun. The drawback is you can only hold four of these items at once including each character’s personal item. This is why it’s important to make sure to give extra items you want to keep to your teammates. The puzzles in the game were somewhat irritating, but nothing too difficult. They mainly consisted of wandering around to find all the pieces, mixing them together a bit, and then finding the right location to use them in. Also, there were the puzzles where you had to find the door codes and such. Typical Resident Evil stuff. Nothing revolutionary. The cut scenes were pretty cool, some really reminded me of the movie “Dawn of the Dead.” I also found few glitches.
The only drawbacks I found in the game were the health meter and the saving, The health meter was confusing because it kept changing every time a zombie bit you and I could never really tell how much health I actually had left, which is never good. The way to save is you have to find a computer terminal, save, and then you’re brought back to the main screen. Then if you wish to access the saved material it is deleted. That’s right. If you save and go back to play and then you die, all the things you went through in that scenario up to that save point are deleted. This was very annoying. Still not sure what I’m talking about? Play the game and you’ll know…oh you’ll know.
Overall, Resident Evil: Outbreak was a nice place to visit, but I wouldn’t want to live there. Basically saying, it was a lot of fun to play, but nothing too special that I would consider buying or playing again after beating the game. But if you’re a zombie fan give it a try!
Reviewer: Sara Drapp
Look for Resident Evil games at the Undead Shopping Extravaganza.