Review by redalert62386
"What could have been *shakes head*"
When Resident Evil 5 was announced, there was always the question of "Is Capcom going to be able to top Resident Evil 4?" My short answer: No. There are a couple things RE5 does better than it's predecessor, but with the gameplay being nearly identical, it's not the same kind of experience you got when playing RE4 for the first time. At times, it was like I was playing RE4 in HD, only with a partner. And at other times, I felt like I wasn't playing a Resident Evil game at all. The story to RE5 is, unfortunately, a simple one. It's basically a save the world scenario, with a few interesting flashbacks involving important characters. If you were hoping for a crazy twist or revelation, as I was, you're going to be disappointed. If you don't realize who the mystery woman is shortly into the game, then I don't know what to say to you.
A major problem I have with the story is that it could have been so much more. Once you beat the game and skim through unlocked files, you see that there is a lot of interesting stuff there. So why in the world didn't Capcom include some of this stuff in cutscenes? Nobody wants to read all that crap! I do think the story in this game is better than the story in RE4, but that's only because it's more related to earlier stuff in the series, and Wesker is always cool. But the story was still extremely disappointing.
The gameplay is a mixed bag. I understand why they kept the same style from RE4. If it aint broke, don't fix it right? Well, sometimes. With such awesome graphics, it's a shame the gameplay feels so dated at times. I got used to the controls, but all I got to say is thank God there is a quick turn. Everything from RE4 is here, including reaction commands, the laser on the guns, and the over the shoulder look. The online and co-op greatly help out in the gameplay department. It damn near saves it! Playing with an AI Sheva is fine and isn't as bad as I thought it would be, but there's nothing like playing with a real person and feeling the anxiety to try and make sure that person is ok. The online isn't perfect though. If somebody wants to join your game or vice versa, you can't just jump in to where that person is. Instead, you have you wait for a checkpoint or the person playing has to restart their game. I don't know about you, but I didn't restart ever. I didn't want to, and I doubt anybody else did either, unless it was their friend wanting to join.
There were a few things I hated with this game. In RE4, it was the escorting Ashley missions. In RE5, there were a few more things. I hated all of Chapter 4. The puzzles were both stupid and redundant. By the third time, I was thinking to myself "Really, I have to do this BS again?" Also, the whole dodging the beam level, I hated that as well. Another thing, I hated the fact that Capcom decided to give enemies guns, and then implement this lousy ass cover system. It was one of the many things they did that made the game not feel anything like a Resident Evil game. This is not Gears of War or Uncharted. This is freakin' Resident Evil. And lastly, the game was not scary. At all. I understand going towards a more action oriented direction, but this is still Resident Evil, and we still need to be scared at SOME point in the game.
Oh and one last (last) thing. The boss fights...why? Why in the hell did we have to fight that same damn Uroboros multiple times? I thought that bald headed dude was pretty scary and looked awesome, and then...he transformed into the same damn thing we fought in Chapter 1! The rest of the boss fights were rip-offs of RE4 boss fights, and except for the setting, the final boss fight was disappointing.
So with all these shortcomings and hated things, would you be surprised to hear me say that I still liked the game? Despite all of that, the game was still fun, and it can be damn addicting at times. Also, if this game wasn't online, it would have been traded in with the quickness the second I beat it. The only reason I'm considering playing through the game again is because I only plan on playing it with friends and others online. Also, The Mercenaries Mode after you beat the game provides massive replayability, especially in duo. Getting extra characters and their different costumes is cool incentive to keep playing it, and it's just plain fun to go against the odds of a crap load of enemies swarming you and coming out not only alive, but blasting through all of them. The main game should have been more like The Mercenaries. You feel tension and anxiety in Mercenaries that's just not there in the the main game.
Another good thing about the game, that really should go without saying, is how awesome the game looks. The graphics are some of the best I've seen, and definitely some of the best fire effects I've seen in a game. The flamethrower was awesome, abeit underused! Great characters models, and also decent voice acting throughout the game. From a technical aspect, it's Grade A. Unfortunately, I can't say the same thing for the game overall. I still liked it and thought it was fun and addicting, but after all the hype and awesome trailers, it's a big disappointment.
Reviewer's Score: 7/10 | Originally Posted: 01/05/10
Game Release: Resident Evil 5 (US, 03/13/09)
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