Monday, 11 February 2019 10:45

REVIEW: Resident Evil 2 (Xbox One)

Written by Melekharn
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I’m usually a massive fan of zombie games. Zombie mode on Call of Duty; Dead Island; Left 4 Dead; all great games in their own rights. Typical run and gun; aim for the head, on to the next. Simple. I’ve watched my brother play plenty of Resident Evil games while growing up, but the horrible camera angles really didn’t do it for me. I can only described them as side scrolling Zombie shooter; No thanks.

When Resident Evil 2: Remastered by Capcom was offered up, it had been made fairly well known that I enjoy zombie games to the rest of the team. My mind raced back to the days of watching my brother play, but since I had nothing else on the table, I decided I’d give it a shot.

Unlike most remastered titles where the developer might just give the graphics a fresh new look, Capcom have rebuilt Resident Evil 2 from the ground up. Gone are the days of the awkward camera angles as you now control one of two protagonists from a third person perspective. This alone changed the way the game played and opens everything else up to new possibilities as maps, back drops and character models have now been reimagined. It is almost a whole new game. Game play now takes place in a wonderfully detailed and highly immersive world with players controlling either Leon S. Kennedy or Claire Redfield in their own separate story arcs.

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Compared to the original, the remaster Resident Evil 2 is now a suitably dark and much sinister game, with the bulk of game play taking place in near pitch black. This has allowed Capcom to make wonderful use of objective source lighting in this remaster, as players will have to fumble their way through incredibly detailed map with little more than the beam from a flash light. To make things even creepier, the further your torch has to shine, the more the light disperses and the harder it is to see what is hiding around the corner, perfectly mimicking real life.

Since the new play style and thanks to the having an R18+ classification, zombies have been completely overhauled and are now probably the best zombie models I have ever seen in a game. In complete contrast to the original game, motion capture provides realistic character movements while gruesome details provide a suitably fearsome appearance. From exposed muscles and sinew, to glazed-over eyes, these are the zombies you’d expect to see in a blockbuster horror film.

On top of the huge changes to graphics quality, Capcom have remastered the audio in Resident Evil 2. Zombies no longer groan in the boring and outdated manner of old, but instead boast gargled, rasping voices as if their throats were filled with fluids. Voice acting has also taken great strides, with the characters fluidly communicating with each other instead of the broken audio was that once. In the eerie silence of the game, every sound effect is exaggerated, further emphasizing the sinister feeling to the game. While playing in absolute darkness with my headphones on, I found myself jumping at the slightest of sounds. A small spark from an exposed electrical wire; a can being knocked off a bench and even the sound of a spent bullet casing rolling across the floor – in the near dead silence of the game, everything sounded all the creepier.

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I only have one thing I wasn’t particularly keen on with the game, and that is how much you need to do to kill a basic zombie. There were occasions where I would unload a full magazine into a zombie’s head, only for him to get back up and start lumbering after me two or three minutes later. There were other times where a simple knife to the chest would suffice. Killing zombies is a little hit and miss with this version of the game, and with the limited ammunition I was encountering, certainly made for a much more challenging experience.

Overall, I have to rate the game quite highly. The third person perspective was a much welcomed change to a game that has effectively become a cult classic. Capcom have done a marvellous job reimagining Resident Evil 2, faithfully recreating a world that players can now readily explore from every angle. The lack of lighting, combined with any unnecessary sound effects and music being removed has completely changed the way the game feels. Throw in some horrifically detailed zombies, and you have yourself a game that well and truly suits the horror genre.

The Good: 

* Incredibly real zombie models
* Remains true to the original||
* A genuinely scary game

The Bad:

* Killing zombies is touch and go
* No obvious direction for missions
* A genuinely scary game

Additional Info

  • Review Score: 4.5 / 5.0
  • Release Date: Out Now
  • Platform: PC, PS4, XBOX ONE
  • Developer: Capcom R&D Division 1
  • Publisher: Capcom
  • Genre: Action / Adventure