Review – Resident Evil 6

Resident Evil 6 is available now on Playstation 3 and Xbox 360.

Zombies are everywhere these days. No, I don’t mean in the apocalyptic, ‘the end is nigh’ sense, I mean in terms of entertainment. It’s as if the entertainment industry thinks that zombies are the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow for consumers, as there seems to be a new zombie game/movie/ TV show every other week, and so they’ve become something of a mascot for the entertainment industry.  Nowhere is this the case more than with video games, and while the Resident Evil series is as old as console based games themselves and it wouldn’t be a stretch to say that it was the father of all zombie video games, it certainly has come a long way and made a remarkable amount of progress along the way.

Resident Evil 6 is the first Resident Evil game that I’ve really had a foray in, and it certainly doesn’t disappoint; it plays like an interactive movie and with 3 separate campaigns, each with its own distinct characters that overlap one another, there’s plenty of plot to keep you entertained and as you’d expect from a Japanese game the graphics are exceptional.  Now I’m certainly not a big fan of Japanese games as in my opinion many of them maximise one aspect of the game (like the graphics) while putting minimal effort into the other parts, like gameplay. Resident Evil 6 on the other hand manages to be a good all-rounder, managing to balance the various aspects of the game like graphics, gameplay and story while still managing to be fun to play

The campaigns in Resident Evil 6 are exciting and the story really gives you an apocalyptic feel where everything is hopeless and you save some survivors only to watch them get killed 5 minutes later. It certainly paints a particularly dreary picture of the end of the world and the dead are indeed numerous, so much so that they can easily swarm and overwhelm you. In situations like that riddling a zombie with bullets isn’t really going to cut it, not mention the fact that the zombies bodies sway all over the place like a sapling in the wind, making getting that all crucial head shot that much more difficult. It is in these situations that hand to hand combat really becomes your saving grace, and it certainly is entertaining; while punching and kicking the zombies that attack you doesn’t sound all that entertaining, it’s when they’re staggered and your character has a chance to go in for a coup de grace like tripping a zombie and then coming down with an elbow from the sky right into its face that this game really shines. Nothing is more satisfying and stress relieving than crushing a zombie’s skull with a roundhouse kick or elbow drop.

There are a variety of zombies in the game, from your run of the mill zombie complete with unsavoury expression and groaning noises and then you have your special zombies like a giant fat zombie that can withstand a pretty significant barrage of bullets and the zombie with inflated vocal chords that screams at you. You’ll never really be fighting the same thing all the time as the more powerful special zombies will keep popping up to chew your face off keeping you on your feet and mixing things up.

As far as criticism for the game goes, sometimes the characters can have strange and unrealistic movements, particularly their heads while talking, which I’ve noticed in many Japanese games like the Final Fantasy series, where their heads will bob as they talk which seems pretty unnatural. As well as this certain plot elements can make no sense, such as why Leon is so willing to run across the zombie thick countryside with Helena to this weird Cathedral while never really making a good effort to express his desire for there to be a good reason he’s doing this instead of escaping. These are minor points and easily overlooked.

While I’ve given this game a good review it is still just another zombie game, and those of you who are particularly tired of playing them might find the $79-$89 price tag more than you can chew, but this game is pretty damn good for a zombie game and I’d recommend you shop around and look for a good deal, pay attention to those trade and save sections, because this game is fun, and worth having.

Review by Mat Lowe

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