Resident Evil CODE: Veronica
Capcom know that they have done something right, they keep it going.
A prime example, after realising the hype that Street Fighter 2
caused, they starting churning out more and more Street Fighter games.
The same can be said about the Resident Evil series.
For those unfamiliar with Resi evil games, there’s always a plot
and you have to solve puzzles to progress through the game.
Through the game you have to face up to an array of mutants
including ‘undead’ zombies, and the game is played in a 3rd
person view perspective. We’ve
had the original, directors cut, Resident Evil 2 on all three platforms,
Resident Evil 3 Nemesis and now Resident Evil Code: Veronica (which
carries on where Resident Evil 2 left off).
It has to be said that this new Resident Evil is a definite cut
above the rest, I’ll explain why.
placing the first of 2 CD’s into the Dreamcast, I sat back thinking that
the game would be over in around 5 hours (yes Resident Evil 2, I’m
looking at you). How wrong I was. You’re
treated to a screen displaying “This game contains scenes of explicit
violence and gore”. I bet
this screen (which also happened to display blood splattered across some
stairs) was put in to make you more eager and excited to play the game as
opposed to warn the kiddies out there.
Anyway moving on, something hit me.
it wasn’t the Dreamcast logo that pleased me, nor was it Capcom’s
logo. It was the introduction
cut scene, which happened to be quite cool, consisting
of a few cut scenes from the actual game itself.
This cut scene wasn’t long, but it did throw some sort of
anticipation to play the game because it was so fast paced.
The orchestral music also played it’s part, I never knew that I
could enjoy this kind of music, but it has to be heard to admired; fast
paced, with short pauses in the right spots to let the sound effects from
the cut scenes spill through i.e. some kind of mutant growling.
After being blown away by the cut scene I moved onto the game
time, something really big hit me. It
was the FMV, I was amazed to see something
in parallel with a Hollywood movie.
After some brief vocal narration to set the scene and clear up the
previous games it started. There
are 2 problems here, firstly I want to keep this review shorter than the
Britannica Encyclopaedia yet want to express my desperate desire of the
FMV. I wont give to much away
as you need to see the FMV first hand to experience the ultimate
pleasure.. nuff said. Basically
Claire Redfield has been caught in this Umbrella facility.
While one of the officers are talking about her capture, you see a
flashback of her trying to escape from the facility.. I won’t say any
more. What I must comment on are the dynamic camera angles which make you
feel you’re right in the action. This
is definitely the best FMV I’ve ever seen….ever.
The people look so real, the skin tones, Claire’s lips, her
gorgeous eyes, everything is brilliant!
Sound effects are top notch, and the music kicks in at the right
times to create the effects that you are actually watching a movie.
After experiencing 5 minutes of paradise, the FMV cleverly
integrates itself into a cut scene. The
graphics within the cut scenes look mighty meaty, they’re sharply
rendered, smooth and something that PSX and N64 owners can only dream of.
swiftly to the game, my first impression was “Blimey, I’m actually
controlling her, is this the game?” Yep, the graphics look so cool that
I thought that the cut scene was still running! This time round, Capcom
have harnessed the extra horse power the Dreamcast offers.
The environments are actually 3D instead of pre-rendered;
they’re made of polygons this time.
I must stress how effective the lighting is in the game, you see
light reflections off Claire, her lighter will cause dimly lit areas to be
is outstanding detail in the game. Claire’s
hair will swing when she turns around.
Cockroaches roam some floors (no that's not a cockroach in the
picture, its a big horrible tarantula that probably drank some
miracle-grow). Flies hover
around in the air. Yucky
stains line toilets. You
actually feel immersed in the rooms, instead of feeling like you’re in a
pre constructed shoebox. Weather
effects make an appearance
e.g. rain which splashes realistically on the ground with convincing sound
effects. The camera angles
have improved from the old Resident Evil games.
Due to the 3D environments, you get better views of your character,
and some cleaver tricks have been utilized to make encounters with nasty
things even nastier. Some
other nice additions to this game include the health viewer on the VMU
screen which displays your characters health status instead of you having
to juggle through your inventory (character menu screen).
is the ‘dodgy’ control system from the old Resi games to contend with,
but once you’ve got the hang of it then you don’t notice the problems,
except when sometimes you’re in a awkward situation and don’t know
which way your character will walk if you press the up on the joystick.
There is the 180 degrees turn, to help you get away from a herd of
zombies quickly which is nice.
of the characters is much smoother than before.
Capcom have made use of motion capture to make sure that the
characters move realistically. The
enemies look much meaner than before, you can have up to 10 zombies on
screen at once creating total havoc if you’re out of ammunition.
The bandersnatcher must be one of the scariest looking enemies with
a semi visible pumping heart and a stretching arm that makes that guy from
‘fantastic 4’ look amateur! No
really, you’re first encounter with the Bandersnatcher during a cut
scene will have you running for cover.
There’s plenty of blood in the game, and a nice choice of weapons
to let you shred the zombies to bits.
You can have a gun in each hand (Nicolas Cage from Face Off?) which
is really cool as you can aim each gun at a different enemy!
plot this time round has been developed with much more thought, it’s
very engrossing. I’m not
going to give much away as I don’t want to spoil the game for anyone.
You get to control 3 different characters during the course of the
game. There’s a newie
Leonardo DiCaprio look-alike who Claire runs into it.
This guy obviously has a crush on her,
and tries his best to impress her.
The cut scenes help to construct the plot immersively with style. A well designed cut scene I remember is when Steve jumps
through a window John Woo style to rescue Claire,
the camera then momentarily freezes (Matrix style) and then shows Steve
shooting like hell to kill the freak who’s holding Claire.
He even finishes the enemy (I won’t tell you what it is..) with..
a Kick! (trying to impress Claire, you see?)
There are moments in this game where you’ll crap your pants, and
no joke, moments where you’ll really feel like crying with emotion.
is the obvious puzzle solving to do like any other Resi game.
It can sometimes be frustrating when you have to do something like
find some piece of metal to open a door
when you know that the grenade launcher you’re carrying should be able
to blast it open. However, this game blends lots of action, adventure, horror
and puzzles seamlessly. The
difficulty curve is well set, the early puzzles are simple whereas when
you get to the end of the 2nd cd things are much harder.
are numerous bosses in the game, and they are all freaky and bed wettingly
frightening in their own ways. The
Tyrant is a mean invincible looking human-figured mutant. During your
first encounter with him he’ll just watch you pump his chest full of
(well. he’s just come out of a
ya know!) However on your second encounter with him he’s got some sense,
and you’ve made him angry cuz you’ve smudged his makeup (okay.. just a
joke) so now he has a devastating claw that will have your blood dripping
completing the game which will take some time first time round believe me,
having killed the bad guy (actually bad girl) you get to unlock the battle
mode. Here you can choose a
character and blast through a random arrangement of rooms from the game,
annihilating zombies, hunters and other mutants then finally killing the
boss with intention to clock the fastest time and best rank.
This bonus mode helps soup up the game’s lastability as there are
3 characters to compete with, then you can unlock Wesker (from Resident
Evil 1) and a cool version of Claire wearing shorts, sunglasses and high
heel boots. This game is the
definitive Resident Evil game; set over 2 CD’s
you won’t be finishing this in a hurry.
If you like Resident Evil games then you’ll love this to bits. If you have a Dreamcast you’ve got to get this.
If you love good games then you’ve got to get this.. sorted!
Comments, suggestions or questions? Faz@dreamcastsource.co.uk
"A seamless blend of plot, action, puzzles and adventure! Resident Evil has just got bigger and better"
will state now, for the record, that I am a HUGE fan of the Resident Evil
series! Resident Evil 3 was always my favourite, and when I bought a
Dreamcast with CV, I thought that would change. This was not so…
don’t get me wrong, RE:CV is one AMAZING game! But somehow, it doesn’t
seem the same as the others. In my opinion, the replay value of this game
is lower than any of the others. While it certainly is the longest of the
lot, it simply isn’t a game I would go back to often, as I have done
with RE3. Despite this, everything else is amazing! The storyline is the
most adult to date, and the graphics are really a gem in the Dreamcasts
crown! They are up there with Shenmue, detail-wise! Character in this game
is important, and Capcom have definitely succeeded in making this game one
with PLENTY of character! You will be filled with emotion from start to
9/10 - Despite it’s lack of replay value, CV excels in telling a great story and evoking emotions in the player!
36 original screen captures by Faz
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