Review by blueninja4444
"Nothing is More Satisfying than Co-op Zombie Killing Perfection"
Ohh boy, here comes a big one! Resident Evil 5... Man! We have come such a long way from March 22, 1996, when the very first Resident Evil game came out on the original PlayStation system. Resident Evil has become, since then, something of an unstoppable juggernaut. This game has already come out to standing ovations and overwhelmingly positive reviews, so what can I do here? I'm no fan boy, but the last thing I could ever dare dream of doing is proving everyone wrong and telling you this game is "bad" because it's far from it. In fact, it's near perfection! I'm someone whose played Resident Evil from the first one to the fifth and current one, and if you're gonna read a review for Resident Evil 5, let me make up your mind for you and show you just how epic it can be, even after coming off the back of the great Resident Evil 4! Throw in something new to the series like co-op and the already over-popular Sheva Alomar character and you got the proverbial icing on the cake! Read on, fellow Zombie Slayers....
Graphics: 10 / 10
Ok there's one thing you never had any doubts about and that would be the graphics! I've seen reviewers attempt to give Resident Evil 5 a less than perfect score in the graphics department, then they turn around and hang a poster of Sheva on their wall, give me a break, this is one beautiful game! Sure graphics are composed of more than just polygons, you have other things to consider to, like the animations, frame rate, and so on. But guess what? Those are all top-notch and practically flawless too!
Maybe I spent too much time playing Resident Evil on the PlayStation One and Nintendo DS, but regardless this is one of the most impressive games visually I've seen on the Next-Gen systems, and it's really apparent in the cut scenes. The cut scenes are smooth, beautiful and awe inspiring. The best part is, if you ever want to watch them again there's an option in the main menu to replay any cut scenes you've already seen. And I have to ask myself, "Why are there so many unrealistic animations in this game?" like Chris helping Sheva up to the roof of a bulding by tossing her ten feet in the air while she does a front flip. Well either way, there's plenty of blood, gore, and freaky monsters you never imagined possible. It's everything you could ever expect from a new Resident Evil title. Trust me.
Sound: 9 /10
"Fear You Can't Forget" is Resident Evil 5's intimidating tag line, and fear in video games can sometimes be best accomplished with sound. I'm a little disappointed that Resident Evil 5 took a few steps backwards from the sounds we all knew and loved to hate. Squeaky floor boards, people crying off in the distance, and stuff like this that made the original Resident Evil games scary as can be don't seem to be here this time around. Sure, this is 2009 and next-gen technology and I'm sure they've got better ways to scare us now than with Sound Effects like in the PS1 days, but if you're a fan of the originals, like me, you'll probably miss them.
Aside from gripes of memories long gone, everything else here is great. The sound effects are flawless, the BGM is very impressive, and the voice acting is better than ever. Did you ever wonder what the sound of a shotgun blast to the face of a zombie sounds like? Well wonder no more, because these sound effects are true to life! You would know if you killed zombies like Chris Redfield.
Controls: 8 /10
Here's where we take a step backwards. Resident Evil has always prided itself on overly complicated controls. Why? I don't know, it's just their thing! So let me get this straight? I gotta hold in L1 to aim my gun, R2 to shoot while aiming, X to reload (only while aiming) and then I gotta press L2 to ready my knife for melee? And then I gotta press R2 while my knife is ready to melee? What was wrong with pressing just X to melee? And come to think of it, why can't I just shoot from the hip or blind-fire like in Gears of War? You have to manually aim before you can shoot, which is inconvenient.
Well, it takes some getting used to, but once you like the controls they stick with you for life, like riding a bike. I'm sure you could do some customization as well, such as invert the axis', but you've probably seen much worse control schemes, no doubt.
Story: 9 /10
Honestly, I'd be lying if I didn't admit that as soon as a cut scene starts Resident Evil 5 and it's story have my utmost attention. Nothing could ever drag me away from one of these cut scenes. Your house could be on fire, you phone could be ringing, your girlfriend could be nagging and none of it would take you away from the intense Resident Evil cinematic. When a cut scene starts you know it's going to be something off-the-hook epic! Is it the nerve-racking introduction to the next boss? Is it you discovering Alpha squad was murdered in a brutal fashion? Is it something else gory and Resident Evil-y? Ya just never know, and that's why you're glued to the screen when the story starts going.
Sometimes I feel like the Resident Evil story is overly complicated, but at least they were nice enough to include text based stories about the past few Resident Evil games. I mean this game does throw some weird stuff at you. What's a Majini? Who is Albert Wesker? There's so many plot twists and confusing questions, you'd expect Solid Snake to be somewhere in this game. But I mean that in the most affectionate way possible.
Gameplay: 10 /10
All the polish in the world can't help a game if the game play is sour, but luckily, Resident Evil 5's gameplay is epic in every sense of the word, and nothing short of addicting! If you haven't played Resident Evil in over a decade, you might be surprised how much it's changed over the years. No more goofy puzzles to solve, I guess Resident Evil just decided to leave that to Silent Hill. It seems like just yesterday we were controlling some blocky version of Chris, moving statues around in the right order, or placing colored diamonds in the right spot to unlock doors.
Now Resident Evil has become more of an assault on zombies. But don't mistake it for just another shooter, like Killzone, Resident Evil does it smarter and does it scarier. One of the things RE5 does that no other game does is transform your dead enemies. You could be killing a simple Majini drone, watch them fall on the floor, and you think "Yeah, I'm the bomb!" but without warning that dead zombie's face opens up and out comes this huge, killer bat-like monster that has a life of its own. There's more examples of this fear-inducing tactic, and only Resident Evil could pull something this clever off.
There's a healthy variety of enemies, weapons, and location in this game. The variety keeps things fresh and keeps you coming back for more. The enemies come in all shapes and sizes from simple zombies, to the demon dogs we all know and love, to the more bizarre, such as a one eyed chainsaw wielding freak. Luckily you got weapons from the basic pistol to a pump action shot gun to a sniper rifle. And no, this entire game doesn't take place outdoors, that wouldn't be very Resident Evil-like. Wait until you see some of these odd locations!
If you play this game solo, you'll be very impressed with your new AI partner, Sheva Alomar. She is responsive, a great help, and you can issue orders with her. But the real meat and potatoes of this game is playing co-op with a buddy, for the first time ever in the Resident Evil series. There's so much that can be accomplished in the game play area simply by having a buddy, real or AI, including swapping weapons around, hunting for vital items together, teaming up on certain enemies, giving each other ammo, reviving each other on the brink of death, and the list goes on. It may not be vintage Resident Evil but it deserves every bit of the perfect ten!
Longevity and Replay Value: 10/10
No matter how much money you pay for your own copy of Resident Evil 5, you can sleep well at night knowing it's an investment that paid off! You will never get tired of Resident Evil 5 and it will continuously be praised as one of the greatest games of all time. You can finally put Resident Evil 4 away, knowing you've found something better that still says "Resident Evil" on the cover.
Where to begin? I mean, if you really think about it, it's amazing just how much replay value and longevity is added to a game like this when you throw in co-op gameplay. This game features both online and offline co-op! You can play with your best friend, right there on your couch, with the horizontal split-screen or you can play with a complete stranger using online play!
There's also all kinds of mini-tasks you can do like shoot all of the BSAA emblems hidden in the game to unlock up to three outfits for Chris and Sheva. Yes I did say Sheva... And Yes... They are revealing, what else did you expect? This game also supports PS3 trophies which can help you unlock certain items for the PlayStation Home application. There's multiple difficulty levels and much more to inspire you to come back and play the game, time and time again, with new friends or alone. Resident Evil 5 will be a classic for years to come, and you'll still be playing until the inevitable RE6!
There's no surprise here, no matter what little gripe you could come up with, no matter how many nagging complaints you would think of, it just doesn't detract from the Resident Evil 5 experience. This game is beyond good, it's great! Co-op zombie killing perfection! There's not much I can say now to persuade anyone, just go get yourself a copy of Resident Evil 5, you will not be disappointed with the nearly perfect game! A must buy. Period.
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 03/25/09
Game Release: Resident Evil 5 (Collector's Edition) (US, 03/13/09)
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