Jump to content

Replaying the Resident Evil series


Recommended Posts

I'm not sure if retro is the best place for this. Some of it, definitely, some definitely not.

I recently bought the ridiculous resident evil humble bundle. I'm sure a bunch of you did as well.

After having a very quick think about which new games to try first, and which to replay, I quickly came to the decision that I needed to play all of them.

Plus one or two that were missing from the bundle.

 

So I started with zero. I've kindly spoilered some minor spoilers which probably wouldn't really spoil your game.

My initial impression is that I do not approve of the floaty widescreen mode, so that gets turned off. And the new controls are wrong and too much like cheating – it really breaks the mechanics that the games are built around – so I played with tank controls.

I remembered zero looking great, but it's absolutely beautiful. The pre-rendered backgrounds are so smooth, the lighting is so atmosphereic, and the animation is great. It's particularly impressive when the train starts moving, bottles start rocking, and chandeliers start jiggling.

I really liked the atmosphere of the train, even if the map is a little too much like a straight line.

The two character system is a bit underutilised.Most of the time I had the two of them running around together. Sometimes they had to split up to solve some fairly basic puzzles. There's a long section where they're split up, and have to send each other items back and forth through an item elevator, which is just a chore. Sometimes Billy decides to get left behind when I go through a door, so that he can get eaten. I remember when this was released, there was a lot of talk of the tension of something happening to one character while you're controlling the other – but that only happened to me when I made a mistake. You're usually just controlling one at a time.

The different inventory system was another thing they made a big deal of at the time. I guess I can kind of see what they were going for. It's good being able to drop items when you find something you need to pick up. But it's just a pain in the ass not not having your magic storage. I spent far too long carrying items just to drop them somewhere else. And I tended to put them in one place for easy access, making the rooms reminiscent of a traditional resident evil storage box and typewriter room.

There are some good enemies. The classic zombies are here. The leech guy is pretty creepy, but it's practically necessary to use molotovs to get rid of them. Other than that, there are a lot of really uninspired new enemies. Big frog. Monkey. Bug. Some of them attack more quickly than I can recover, meaning I struggle to attack them. To me it feels like bad design.

As well as that, some of the bosses are absolute turds.

Spoiler

I'm thinking of the bat. I can't tell where it's flying or where I'm pointing my weapon, and I kept hurling grenades at tiny bats or at church walls. I got there eventually though.

I like the train, it's great. The training centre (a budget pseudo mansion) and the old lab are pretty great locations as well. Then the game feels like it's ending, but doesn't. I just kept going through endless small cramped grey corridors. Felt like it ended then kept going on.

Spoiler

Nice little cameo from resident evil 2's lab, even though the game doesn't let you go in, and can't even be bothered to give you a reason why you can't go in. Just a bit of text.

The story is kind of ...quite bad. Not much happens. A lot of Wesker and Birkin standing around being evil.

Spoiler

The discovery that leech man is actually leech man.

It doesn't really work as a replacement for the first game in a series – if someone was new to it, the story of the 1st game (resident evil) would be spoilt. And frankly I don't think that there's enough story here to really justify the game.

Billy isn't really fleshed out as a character either. He's convicted as a criminal.

Spoiler

We see a movie from his perspective which proves that he's innocent. But then he immediately refuses to tell Rebecca whether he's innocent or not, while we're pretty sure he is. And that's it really, the end. His story feels like it's abandoned and unresolved and he just wanders off at the end of the game.

So overall I think it's worse than I remembered, but not as bad as some people make it out to be. I think? Yeah, Overall I enjoyed it. I'll see how the others hold up.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Whilst brilliant I’m their day, I tried going back to most of them a few years ago and they really haven’t aged well (and turned out a real chore to play)

 

i think they are better left to nostalgia .

Link to comment
Share on other sites

REmake is still excellent - and yes, tank controls come recommended. 
 

Zero is really bad though. Crap enemies, crap bosses, crap item management and the zapping between Rebecca and Billy wasn’t all that interesting. 
 

I guess I’m also doing a replay of sorts, although not a concerted effort in any way - I just grab one when it comes up for sale on Switch. In addition to the above two I’ve also done 4 recently - and it’s better than I remember. 5 next, which I’ll be playing co-op for the first time. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This got me wondering about what would be the optimum versions to play, today, on a playthrough.

Going to be controversial and go for remakes over originals mostly. And ports to modern systems over original hardware, just because I feel that, putting nostalgia for old controllers and media formats aside, it's generally a much better experience is better  So:

 

Zero (Whatever the current version for modern consoles is - PS4?)

Re:Make (PS4)

Resi 2 Remake (PS4/Xbox? - assuming it's on both and no different on either)

Resi 3 Remake (As above)

Code Veronica X (PS4)PS3/360

Resi 4 VR on Quest 

Resi 5 (PS3/ 360?)

Resi 6 - skip

Resi 7 - PSVR

Resi 8 - PS5

 

I don't know if there is a difference on the modern ports between PS and Xbox but I've gone for PS as a default as that's what I played them on and I know they are fine. 

 

Ok so I guess you can just play them all on PC too, but Resi has always been a console game to me and I'd always rather play it on a console setup, sitting on a comfy sofa in front of a big TV. I haven't played the VR mods for 2 and 3 Remake (the only ones I know for sure are available - are any others?) But would stick with my recommendation to stick to the official console versions because in my experience, while VR mods are often fun as a novelty, I normally find myself preferring to play the original non-vr versions, in general. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, dumpster said:

Resi 6 is great fun, don't skip it!

Bit of a flippant remark on my part, as I've only played the demo and only briefly!  But what I experienced of it made it become the only core series game I haven't played to completion. (Erm, and 8 actually, which I haven't got round to yet - although I liked the demo of that one). 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Resi 6 had many issues that were subsequently fixed in the PS4 era re-release.  On PS4 it's fast, 60fps, and has 5 characters, each with a shorter story.  It's not the best game in the world and it's not especially like Resident Evil, but I've argued before that it doesn't deserve the hate it gets.  If they had released it with a different name it would be considered a great game.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I must confess the only REs I've completed were 4 and 5, started 1 several times on various platforms but for whatever reason just ended up getting pissed off with the tank controls and item management, two things that are doubtless deliberate design choices so I can't really complain. 

 

I did fire up RE1 Director's Cut on the MiSTer recently, that's the version with Dualshock support, not that it makes much difference to the tank controls. I know it's better to play one of the remakes as they don't force you to find ribbons for saving, but at least on the MiSTer PS1 core there's a ton of cheats you can use for RE which might make it good for a quick run through just to see the game without getting too pissed off. 

 

4 is still amazing, completed it on the Wii which is a lot easier with the Wiimote than a pad. Tried to replay 4 and 5 on PC with keyboard and mouse but it just doesn't work, the way the camera moves just doesn't feel like when I played it on 360 at release. Might try it on PC with a pad as they're both 60fps and have all the DLC. 5 is much more a big action film kind of thing, forget 4 and just enjoy the fun, although the CPU co-op might get annoying. I liked how you could replay sections you'd completed so you could farm for upgrades. 

 

Generally speaking as I get older I find I don't want a stiff challenge as much as I did 20-30 years ago, or at least I don't have the time to get over difficulty spikes, so Resi is probably not the game I should be playing. Yet I picked up the 2016 remakes of 1 and 0 on PC the other week for a few quid. Time to play it again for an hour or two before giving up in frustration again. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 12/09/2022 at 23:08, dvdx2 said:

i think they are better left to nostalgia .

I disagree :)

On 13/09/2022 at 10:54, Yasawas said:

Ever the contrarian, I really enjoyed Zero playing it years after release. Clunky controls and pointless character-swapping mechanic aside I found the big budget cheesiness a pleasing throwback to the 90s.

I know what I've written looks mostly critical, but I did mostly enjoy it. It's just that what I like about the game is that it's resident evil, and there's not much to say about that. Plus because of my awful personality I have to criticise everything and am bad at being positive.

13 hours ago, Anne Summers said:

This got me wondering about what would be the optimum versions to play, today, on a playthrough.

Going to be controversial and go for remakes over originals mostly. And ports to modern systems over original hardware, just because I feel that, putting nostalgia for old controllers and media formats aside, it's generally a much better experience is better  So:

 

Zero (Whatever the current version for modern consoles is - PS4?)

Re:Make (PS4)

Resi 2 Remake (PS4/Xbox? - assuming it's on both and no different on either)

Resi 3 Remake (As above)

Code Veronica X (PS4)

Resi 4 VR on Quest 

Resi 5 (PS3/ 360?)

Resi 6 - skip

Resi 7 - PSVR

Resi 8 - PS5

 

I don't know if there is a difference on the modern ports between PS and Xbox but I've gone for PS as a default as that's what I played them on and I know they are fine. 

 

Ok so I guess you can just play them all on PC too, but Resi has always been a console game to me and I'd always rather play it on a console setup, sitting on a comfy sofa in front of a big TV. I haven't played the VR mods for 2 and 3 Remake (the only ones I know for sure are available - are any others?) But would stick with my recommendation to stick to the official console versions because in my experience, while VR mods are often fun as a novelty, I normally find myself preferring to play the original non-vr versions, in general.

I'm going in nitpick mode now.

Code veronica was rereleased in a sort of remastered but not much state on the PS3 and 360. As far as I can tell, it's backward compatible on newer Xboxes, but from a quick google it looks like the PS4 version is the PS2 version with no enhancements. There wasn't a PC release. I'll be playing on 360 anyway.

When I play a game on PC the experience is no different to playing it on a console. Sat in front of A TV, on a sofa, with a wireless controller. How I start them might be a little different but playing them is identical. PC games have had really good controller support in the last 14 or so years, it's exactly like playing on Xbox. I think the last game I played that didn't have automatic button mapping and prompts was the elder scrolls oblivion.

 

9 hours ago, Vimster said:

 I know it's better to play one of the remakes as they don't force you to find ribbons for saving,

Yes they do :)
That's not why they're better.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, chris on the moon said:

I disagree :)

I know what I've written looks mostly critical, but I did mostly enjoy it. It's just that what I like about the game is that it's resident evil, and there's not much to say about that. Plus because of my awful personality I have to criticise everything and am bad at being positive.

I'm going in nitpick mode now.

Code veronica was rereleased in a sort of remastered but not much state on the PS3 and 360. As far as I can tell, it's backward compatible on newer Xboxes, but from a quick google it looks like the PS4 version is the PS2 version with no enhancements. There wasn't a PC release. I'll be playing on 360 anyway.

When I play a game on PC the experience is no different to playing it on a console. Sat in front of A TV, on a sofa, with a wireless controller. How I start them might be a little different but playing them is identical. PC games have had really good controller support in the last 14 or so years, it's exactly like playing on Xbox. I think the last game I played that didn't have automatic button mapping and prompts was the elder scrolls oblivion.

 

Yes they do :)
That's not why they're better.

Thanks, have edited my list because I didn't know about that one. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The Resident Evil series is a bit of a mess as to identify the best versions to play, as so many of them were made artifically too hard for their western release. This was a typical Capcom thing at the time to counter game rentals. Game renting wasn't allowed in Japan, but a real "issue" in the US and many publishers adjusted the games to make them harder than the should be. 

For example, you know that auto-target on R1 thing? That's present in all the PS1 Biohazard games and a fundamental part of the character action, but it was removed in the US/PAL version or RE1 to make it artifically harder. I think RE2 you can turn on auto mode in the menu's and it's actually a proper part of RE3.

 

Code Veronica is super fucking hard, unless you play the Jap version, where all of a sudden it becomes well balanced and fun. I recently replayed the Japanese version with an English language pack on the Dreamcast and it was awesome. 

 

The best version of RE1 is Director's Cut Black Label. Play that! Not the Green label one as that as completely different music. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Kevvy Metal said:

The Resident Evil series is a bit of a mess as to identify the best versions to play, as so many of them were made artifically too hard for their western release. This was a typical Capcom thing at the time to counter game rentals. Game renting wasn't allowed in Japan, but a real "issue" in the US and many publishers adjusted the games to make them harder than the should be. 

For example, you know that auto-target on R1 thing? That's present in all the PS1 Biohazard games and a fundamental part of the character action, but it was removed in the US/PAL version or RE1 to make it artifically harder. I think RE2 you can turn on auto mode in the menu's and it's actually a proper part of RE3.

 

Code Veronica is super fucking hard, unless you play the Jap version, where all of a sudden it becomes well balanced and fun. I recently replayed the Japanese version with an English language pack on the Dreamcast and it was awesome. 

 

The best version of RE1 is Director's Cut Black Label. Play that! Not the Green label one as that as completely different music. 


This is just incredible trivia. I also had no idea that game rentals weren’t a thing in Japan, but thinking back to when I lived in Yokohama I do now realise that Tsutaya had nothing of the sort!

 

 

The auto-aim could be enabled in Resi 2 by changing the control type to C or D, if I remember rightly. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Resident evil (2002 remake)

 

Now This is the good stuff.

First, a shocking fact. This remake is 20 years old. When this was released, the original resident evil was six years old. It's a remake of a six year old game! Imagine a remake of a game from 2016!

This was also my first resident evil game. It came out when I was 15, and it's a 15-rated game. I'm 35 now.

Once again I disapprove of the new widescreen mode and new controls. Unfortunately this doesn't even share the same control scheme as zero which is weird and terrible for the first couple of hours.

But that's a minor niggle, this game is incredible and I love it.

The environments are sublime. I could talk about how the mansion is the main character, or say the locations are iconic, which would seem trite and hackneyed, but it's basically true. Each area feels so unique, so imaginative and perfectly crafted. It's so atmospheric, it feels like a real place to me, despite how ridiculous that would be.

And each area is tied to its gameplay purpose, its puzzle. There are so many memorable set pieces.

The graphics are beautiful. The lighting in the pre-rendered backgrounds is great, and there's an impressive amount of detail. The drips and reflections in the aqua ring, the dust on the carpets, the shiny floor tiles, the light from behind the fans in the lab. It's fresh and engaging and doesn't feel 20 years old at all.

Nice use of Dutch angles too.

The music's also great, as is the sound design. The voice acting is, unfortunately, also mostly good and sensible.

The combat is pretty balanced. There's a good range of useful and satisfying weapons, and the defence weapons add an extra bit of reassurance.

We have the classic enemies as well. Nothing too bizarre or irritating. And the zombies that just lie there waiting once you've downed them are some of the most unsettling things in a video game. Because the crimson heads are horrifying too. The way they get back up again!

I really like the ability to examine items, which is missing from most other games. A fun little feature that makes things feel a bit more corporeal.

The puzzles are pretty easy again, though the amount of times I've played this might be a reason why they're not challenging.

Similarly, I think the story must be good, but I'm so familiar with it I can't tell.

Coming straight from zero, it strikes me that Rebecca acts as though she hasn't just been on her own little adventure, and she refers to Umbrella as the local pharmaceutical company who is the biggest tax payer. She neglects to mention to Chris that she's just found out exactly what Umbrella do and who Wesker is. Pathetic lack of retconning, it doesn't make sense at all.

This is also the game with Lisa in it :(

For my first playthrough I selected the difficulty that was in the middle, and it turns out that this is easy mode. That explains why I had so many herbs and ammo, and why my save file was green. They've also added a very easy mode. I can't imagine playing with the new controls on very easy mode would be any kind of experience at all.

Oh well, Jill gets a go on hard mode next. What are her shoulder pads even for?

20220914135936_1.thumb.jpg.641201d4b49f61fc5a1459545f9720bb.jpg

Meet Barry, deliberately don't do the broken shotgun puzzle, Sandwich joke, poor Barry, etc etc.

I think that this is the best old-style resident evil. While there are a lot of improvements, it's still utterly faithful to the original formula. It's undeniably resident evil, compared to a lot of the later games.

I had a lot of unexpected waits while this game loaded. I'm not sure if this is an issue with the PC version, the new versions in general, or there's a problem with my hard drive. In any case there are a lot of pauses that I didn't get on gamecube.

I've got fond memories of deadly silence. As well as the new version with silly touchscreen minigames (eg. Crow Knifer), the original is in there too with skippable door animations and instant loading.

I've got less fond memories of the Saturn version with its funny exclusive bug men, and my Saturn telling me that it was broken and that I couldn't play resident evil.

I'm sort of tempted to try the director's cut, which I've never played. Maybe there's a playable beta out there too? I don't know.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Zero is the true crap RE game. 
RE6 is only crap if you don’t like fun and you are no fun. 
 

REmake is a good start! I’d do - 

 

REmake

RE2 

RE3

Code:Veronica 

RE4

RE5 (in coop)

RE6 (in coop) 

Revelations 1

Revelations 2 

RE7

REmake 2

REmake 3

RE8 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

RESIDENT EVIL DIRECTOR'S CUT

 

Instead of moving on to 2, I got my PlayStation out because I'm being weird and obsessive, apparently.

To begin with I have to make the initial adjustment and accept how bad a playstation looks on an HDTV, and how the ps1 pad sort of hurts my thumbs a bit.

First we get the FMV title screen, and then the classic opening cinematic. I've seen it plenty of times and think I remember it well, but it still manages to surprise me. I love b-movie cheese and this is classic cheap trash. Why not watch it again?

Or check out the original uncensored Japanese colour version on youtube? That's a real eye opener!

I particularly like how each character is announced, like it's a fighting game. Jill wearing obviously fake clothes. Rebecca doing some sort of Japanese cute girl pose. Wesker looking a bit like a bored Andrew Eldritch.

And we get the infamous voice acting. It's been memed to death but I still manage to enjoy how perfectly dreadful it is. There's not a natural line of dialogue to be found.

When I get control of the game, I'm initially surprised how smooth and fast everything is. I always remember games from this generation being slow and clunky. Probably because they were in 50hz, and they actually were far slower than they were supposed to be. I'm playing an NTSC version now.

I'm very glad the quick aim is here. I don't feel like ammo is too limited so I have fun rushing about and blasting everything.

The graphics obviously feel a bit primitive. I can't really see much detail on the models. Here's a photo of what a conversation between Chris and Rebecca looks like on my TV

20220917_102748.thumb.jpg.cdd1fb9ff98e2bdc5fc3f3e552e3d9a1.jpg

The pre-rendered backgrounds are a bit bland. Especially since I want to compare them to the remake, to the sequels, and to other PlayStation games like the final fantasy series. It's mostly fine. The trees look quite bad. And I've never understood the texture in the caves. Are they meant to be bricks? They're a bit much. (Not my screenshots. I might have stolen one from google and the other from a youtube video)

screenshot.resident-evil-i-1996.640x480.1997-10-01_59.jpg.428a87ed5208f7565942582dae32af29.jpgcaves.PNG.199b0891c2b9cfb861ba9798a03e676f.PNG

But then I remember this game came out in 1997. Development apparently started in 1993. Yes, this looks worse than Resident evil 2 or final fantasy 7, but compared to earlier games it's fine.

I remember the loading times as being really bad on the PlayStation, but either I've got more patient or they're not that bad when you know what to expect. They do grate a bit when I forget something that's fifteen load screens each way though.

I quite like the aesthetics. The menus etc. They're very basic and pixelly, they feel like a continuation from the last generation. The menu sprites look almost 16-bit. Sort of a Snes plus plus. You can see it in the ridge racer menus too. It feels more retro.

The sound effects are a little bit off, or rather they sound very video-gamey. Blasting zombies heads off makes a funny whiff sound. Tappy-tap footsteps, strange blasty guns. The background noise of the dogs outside just sound a bit sad and hungry rather than spooky. I quite like it though. Video games nowadays tend to try so hard to sound realistic, they don't sound like video games any more.

I like the music. I think it's cool and effective, and the beginning and ending themes sound like something out of an anime. All very 90s. I can tell I'm playing the version with the original music.

As I play through the puzzles, I wonder if there are differences because I'm playing the director's cut, or whether it's different to what I expect because I've just finished the remake. After a while I decide that I'm playing the original game.

I get to the end, and crap, Barry's dead and the mansion doesn't explode. I've accidentally got a bad ending and can't go back to fix that.

So that's it, game over. I'm tempted to play Chris' story, but I decide that I've just played the same basic game about three times. If I want to see the proper ending and hear Chris say “he's sleeping with the ultimate failure”, I can probably just go on YouTube, and it doesn't really matter about the re-arranged mode – I'm definitely not playing this again.

So, I start a new playthrough as Chris, Advanced mode.

The shuffling of the items isn't as drastic as I expected, but, oh dear, this is much more challenging. It's often quite cruel and annoying really. I'm repeatedly eaten by a snake and decapitated by hunters. Oh god, the hunters. They're everywhere. There are bits where they've replaced three zombies with three hunters. If more than one gets close to me I'm finished, I have no time to raise my weapon.

Ammo and healing items feel much more scarce, especially with how many enemies are now crammed into small spaces. At one point I found 18 magnum rounds in one room and I feel joy. But they're used up in no time.

Despite the difficulty, I made it through and finished the game.

 

In my opinion, this game isn't really worth playing over the remake. The remake isn't like a re-imagining or a reboot. It's just similar enough to be the same game. Everything is there, but better.

But I really, really enjoyed playing this as a historical artefact. I love the simplicity, the naivety, the goofiness.

What I really like is that it captures a moment in video game history that was over so fast.

It feels to me like the game was made in an era when so much about video games hadn't been defined, where there was a lot of new power and things could have gone in a lot of different directions, and resident evil is sitting on a ledge. There was less of a set idea of what a 3d horror game was. What games looked and sounded and played like. But we know now and aren't going back.

 

It must have been really exciting and impressive to play at the time. It looks quite bland compared to later PlayStation titles, but this came out in 1997 after years of development. Toy story didn't come out until 1996. 3D graphics were moving so fast. The first person videos with the hunter running through the courtyard and the zombie walking through the door must have looked like the coolest thing ever to some people.

And it must have been great to experience it fresh, without any preconceptions. To explore the mansion, discover the story, and wonder about what (if anything) was coming next. What kind of series Resident Evil was going to be.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's funny how, through the use of pre-rendered backdrops and polygon characters , Resident Evil was so atmospheric and, apart from comparisons with Alone in the Dark, pretty much completely unique. Brilliant in its day.   Similar to say, Ridge Racer in that it's one of those Playstation games that really stood out, this was a new generation of games you couldn't even imagine on previous gen hardware.

 

Then, in 2022 you play Playstation games on the Duckstation or Beetle emulators.  Ridge Racer, along with all the entirely polygon based games, looks pretty incredible all scaled up to 4K.  Meanwhile Resident Evils incredible pre-rendered backgrounds look dreadful, and the hi-res polygon characters are revealed to be so basic.  

 

Resident Evil is another example of when a remake or remaster makes the original completely redundant. You might play for an hour for nostalgia purposes, or to see an important moment in the history of video game development.  But if you're just playing for fun, the GameCube and Playstation 4 remakes are literally the same game in every respect, only better.  Those incredible backgrounds are a horrible indistinct highly compressed mess on PS1 with no way to upscale or improve them.  

 

On 15/09/2022 at 20:30, Kevvy Metal said:

Zero is the true crap RE game. 
RE6 is only crap if you don’t like fun and you are no fun. 

 

Totally agree.  RE6 has flaws, but it's just a big silly explosion of a game and it makes me laugh.  Zero is spoiled by the 2 character setup, it seems crowbarred in unnecessarily, and all you do feels very forced.  Suddenly, you can't go through a door without one of you standing on a button while the other stand on another button. Just because. 

The train sequence is great but after that it's so uninspired and phoned in.  

 

Just to add as well, Resident Evil 4, as mentioned, is outstanding in VR. But having said that, I don't think it is the definitive version of the game, UNTIL you have played through the original.  RE4VR is incredible, my game of the year, no question, but the magic of Re4VR is that you are inside the world of that game you loved years ago. This allows you to overlook a number of issues in the VR version, the main one being that RE4 (non VR) really benefits from those tank controls.  In VR the ability to run and shoot at once is way more natural, but makes the whole game incredibly easy.

 

Resident Evil 4 is about running away, turning, shooting. Running back, turn, shoot.  In VR you glide around, as if on a flying carpet, facing any direction you want and moving and shooting at the same time. Bosses go down without any strategy at all, just keep shooting their backs until they fall. The gameplay of the VR/NonVR versions is very different.

 

Re4VR is a real landmark moment for video games.  But replacing RE4 in your playlists, (going straight to the VR version instead) means you miss out playing the best videogame ever, and therefore won't appreciate the magic of being INSIDE that same game when you play it in VR. 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 15/09/2022 at 18:31, chris on the moon said:

First, a shocking fact. This remake is 20 years old. When this was released, the original resident evil was six years old


I had to look this up as I just didn’t believe it. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of the early stuff, always getting the import release on launch, (even if I had to muddle through puzzles in Japanese)


Resident evil was one of first imports I picked up (a US NTSC version from CEX of all places) - what an amazing game 

RE 2 & 3 were Jpn versions (Biohazard) , as was the directors cut - same, totally amazing

RE4 and 5 where US versions - 4 was ground breaking, brilliant to play, 5 was a bit of a let down

never picked up 6 until years later - didn’t click at all and felt the direction changed

7 & 8 - hated the new direction and I wouldn’t really even class them Resident evil games. They don’t look like RE games or play like them, for me anyway.

 

the Gamecube RE remake was very nice and the graphical update was unbelievable. The ps4 1080p version is nice 
 

The latest two Remakes of 2 & 3 are excellent, a real return to form (that’s the way 7 & 8 should have been made) and sort of make the early versions a bit redundant, although I do have very fond memories of those two games

 

always meant to track down the abandoned version of 2. I know there is a semi playable version out there

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, dvdx2 said:

always meant to track down the abandoned version of 2. I know there is a semi playable version out there

 

I've tried this out today! It's not a full game but there's a lot more there than I expected.

I thought it was just a few unconnected rooms, but basically the whole game was rendered and mapped out. It follows the same structure as RE2 - police station > sewer> factory > labratory. Except the places themselves are totally different. The lab seemed very similar to the one in the final release so I did wonder if bits of it were put in there by modders, but apparently not.

You can run around the whole map and there are one or two items and locked doors, but the puzzles don't feel fully implemented and it really doesn't flow well as a game.  I got lost immediately - too many places to go. The zombies are total bullet sponges and are hard to run past. You also can't save, so it's really not realistic to try and play as a normal game. I managed to play for a little bit, but couldn't find a gun for Elza so I didn't get very far before just going through the areas in the debug menu.

I managed to trigger a couple of cut scenes, and there's an intro video that uses text over still images. NPCs were following me around in a couple of areas and made a couple of comments, but they disappeared pretty quickly and I wasn't sure where they came from.

There aren't many different types of enemies.There's an area called alligator pool that doesn't have any alligators in it. But! There are zombie gorillas! They can kill me but I didn't manage to kill any of them. I managed to warp to a weapon room and find a machine gun, and fired 200 rounds in or around one gorilla, and that didn't do much.

 There are medicine vials instead of herbs, and saving is done on computers instead of typewriters, so you get to see that.

I found a room with Tifa from FF7 in it, and a room that wasn't finished.

I can see why they abandoned this and re-started work. The police statoin is a big modern building and doesn't feel interesting or inspired. Looking at some of the maps, they feel a bit more like maps of real world locations than video game maps, if that makes any sense.

Verdict : don't play it, it's not really a game. There are a couple of playthroughs on youtube, maybe try one of those. Predictably one has an obnoxious prick talking over it.

Screenshots below.


 

Spoiler

a

3.jpeg.f4524934d81616b834d5f9ce57799423.jpeg14.jpeg.64f2457b0d5aaab5241d8a11dd5507fc.jpeg15.jpeg.1e3a43dac7839082e3eee54e31326dcb.jpeg20.jpeg.5e98c0db47f74ac23040858eb2e5b3fd.jpeg27.jpeg.09e304e67ed98e466265abb0e31dfeb4.jpeg32.jpeg.e7477b4ad93712d4914c0fcbae15f445.jpeg34.jpeg.ffc110691fdd5cac7a0a4bdc5c20cf9c.jpeg40.jpeg.13ac899b99855848ddc862aca44835ad.jpeg

z

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Resident Evil 2 (1998 except I'm playing the gamecube version from 2003)

 

It feels to me like resident evil knows where it is now. After the slightly awkward first game, 2 sets the standard of what resident evil is. For better or worse, it's this.

When I start I feel like it must be at least fifteen years since I played it, but everything feels extremely familiar. I probably played it a lot.

Live action video has gone out of fashion, so for the intro we get some great for 1998 CGI. It's decent, in that way where everyone looks like a horrible weird doll with glassy eyes and plasticky hair.

The voice acting, too, is perfectly acceptable for a late 90s video game. Leon sounds a bit whingey, but all the performances are masterful compared to those in the first game.

First thing to do is leg it through the streets, which have actual groups of zombies! More than the engine could handle in Re1. Five maybe?

Yes, everything is more. There's more ammo. More weapons. More enemies. More blasting.

It definitely feels like more of an action game and less of a creepy and atmospheric horror.

It's tense, it's bright, it's colourful, it's exciting. The graphics are way ahead of RE1. The player and enemy models are much more detailed, and the backgrounds are hugely improved. It's how I remember this kind of game looking.

You get some decent weapons pretty quickly. Then there's also that special joy in upgrading the magnum and shotgun. The loud evil crack of that super shotgun as pixel blood splatters out of a whole room full of zombies, the recoil launching you back into the previous screen.

The police station is a great location to begin in. Again there's lots of character and atmosphere in the place. The sewer, factory are less interesting, but the lab is pretty cool. The maps are tightly designed and small, but also more linear than in other games.

Most of the enemies again are really solid, and we have the introduction of the classic lickers.

I feel like some of the bosses kind of suck though. The elevator one in particular is a pain in the ass since I can't see where it is or where I am. Mr. X is creepy in the way that he makes surprise entrances through walls and shut doors, but he isn't as much of a constant problem as he may be in...certain other games.

Moreso than resi1 I get annoyed with the camera angles. I can't see enemies and am getting jumped by stuff from off screen. There's also one room where you are beset by roaches. They annoy you and freeze your character and there's nothing you can do about it. I don't understand from a gameplay perspective why it's there.

The story basically makes sense. It's fine. A little bit stupid maybe, but that's 1998 Japanese sci-fi action horror video games for you.

This time I play Claire A Leon B. I like the way things work out this way around. For years I didn't realise you could do this. I thought it was always Leon A, Claire B. Probably because the discs were unhelpfully labelled “1” and “2” when they were really just disc Leon and disc Claire.

And it's over pretty quickly! A short game with a some replay value is pretty appealing to me. I enjoyed it, but it's so familiar to me I don't feel like I can judge it. Feels like a great fun way to spend a few hours, even though I know pretty well what's coming. Gameplay wise though, the mechanics feel very well established at this point and are starting to get a bit tired.

It wouldn't be the first game I'd recommend to someone who'd never played a resident evil game. It wouldn't be the last either. Time to play something a bit more recent next.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I didn't play these back in the day. I did play 2 on the Dreamcast recently. It's great but save system made me give up.

I reckon I'll retry it on an emulator with Dave states.

I've got resident evil.1 remake on the PS4, again save system was just too annoying. I might try that on a game cube emulator with save states

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nice idea. Hope you get through them without burning out.

 

I didn't play Resident Evil (1) for the first time this year, but I bought it on Switch and got into it for the first time. Instead of fighting with the controls, I worked with them, rather than succumb to being confused with all the dead ends, I approached it like a point-and-click adventure... and where previously I'd shot everything down, burned all corpses and promptly ran out of consumables, I figured out some paths I'd clear this time and fled other enemies (to varying degrees of success).

 

Came away really liking it. :) In fact, I've been keeping in mind to fire it up again to do a Chris file in October. 👻

 

Disappointed to see 2 and 3 aren't available on Switch. :( 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

GameCube or Dreamcast ports are generally considered the best for RE2.

 

Both apparently have some graphical upgrades over the PS1 version. Differences between them as far as I know are that DC shows your health/ammo status on the VMU and has a couple of extra difficulty modes, while GC is the only version that lets you skip cutscenes.

 

Some people say the Dreamcast graphics are "sharper". I presume that's just because of the potential for 480p VGA output compared to the GC's 480i. I can't imagine the pre-rendered backgrounds lending themselves well to 480p though.

 

GC wins for me for the comfy controller.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Resident Evil 2 (2019)

 

I've been meaning to replay this for a while, since I got my last graphics card. I played this a lot when it came out and remembered it being brilliant. I voted it as one of my top 20 games in the rllmuk top 100.

But for some reason I've been off replaying it. Was I scared?

I watched the intro film in awe, wondering is this real, how my computer is capable of this sorcery. I've just been playing older games and have jumped a few generations. There seems to be a few more polygons on screen.

Now we can meet the main characters, and

1.jpg.2d6048a860366aca8e871c72186f1bb1.jpg

whoops, looks like I left the 1998 novelty model on. I turn it off, and now I can meet the main characters.

2.jpg.67ad283956a82f06b8e5967a207dc98c.jpg

Who the hell are these berks? They've had some major redesigns that I'm not that keen on. And is it just me or do loads of female player characters look like this now? It's a bit like the new “white dude with shaved head”.

4.jpg.1d2fb50561861924fe27887536c9f48d.jpg

Visually the game looks pretty incredible, but I'm also reminded of every TV drama of the last decade. “It's resident evil for the netflix generation!” I tell myself. And then I get angry because nobody is talking or dressing like I think people did in 1998. And and and don't they know USB dongles really weren't really a thing back then!?

 

Anyway. I start actually playing the game and oh god I'm having a horrible time. It's brutal and gory. People are dying in horrible ways and hordes of zombies are staggering inexorably toward me. They're really tough and take quite a few accurate shots to take down, and I'm struggling with the controls more than I thought I would. I can't wait to get some good weapons and start blasting them away, and making the place safe. But that doesn't happen. I'm scrabbling around barely surviving with minimal ammo, and the zombies keep coming back. To make matters worse, my character has a disappointing aversion to stomping on heads. I'm stressed, scared and feeling victimised. After a while I reflect, and decide that even though I feel like I'm doing terribly, I'm still progressing and haven't died yet. The game does a great job of making you feel like you're just barely scraping through.

You can also tell that everyone is having a shitty time because they're constantly effing and jeffing and grunting. Your character reacts to zombies a bit like a streamer or youtuber, saying things like “what's your problem!?” “Seriously?!” “Fuck you!” and then grunting a bit more.

There's a great part of the game where Claire is carrying Sherry and grunting, and Sherry is also grunting because she's having a shitty time too.

 

I start to wonder if the big prick with the silly hat was in both scenarios, and here he comes to wreck the day. Mr. X is a really effective, powerful, scary character. He also takes the well balanced gameplay crashes a train through it. I can't make those accurate shots to incapacitate a group of zombies if I'm running away. Nor can I take advantage of the licker's blindness, silently creeping past. I'm going to run, and they're going to slash me. I'm endlessly running around like pac man without the power pills. Sometimes I have one place I want to go and Mr. X appears right in front of it so I have to make a pointless little circuit where I get hurt and achieve nothing. There's an achievement for finishing within a certain number of steps, which just isn't going to happen. Mr.X a pain in the ass, and makes me wonder if I'm actually having fun. It's like he's telling me that I'm not allowed to play the game.

 

There are a few rooms that Mr. X and the other enemies won't enter, which makes the invisible walls very obvious. I find that in this type of game where things look so realistic, and everything is so consistent and smooth, the inconsistencies and bits that don't make sense stick out a lot more. I start to ask questions like “if I'm getting bitten so much, why don't I turn into a zombie?” and “what is this thing even supposed to be?” It's a useless synthesiser that turns the power back on by changing the pitch of the...electricity? It's a fun little puzzle though. Same deal with Ada's magic make-electricity-go remote.

5.jpg.74bd0a36b53fd3342e247b8cffa4844d.jpg

 

The environments are pretty great. The police station seems pretty faithful if you haven't just played the original RE2. It's a bit more different than the difference between 1 and its remake. The sewer and lab are massively changed, and unfortunately follow in the resident evil tradition of the first location being much more interesting than the rest.

 

The story is mostly in tact, though the tone of it is very different. The nastiness is ramped up. Umbrella are experimenting on orphans now which seems like a major addition.

The orphanage is playable too, there's a short stealth section where I have to hide from Mr. Walrus. I loathe stealth. Thankfully this is quite short.

3.jpg.1d14b1acc29f647e49cf8dcd2c267927.jpg

The bosses are quite difficult and annoying. You repeatedly shoot the weak points, or do something to trigger a cutscene. I guess that's normal for bosses. There are quite a few where I really can't figure out how to avoid the attacks at all, and just have to keep healing. The Birkin transformations are cool to watch this time.

 

I complete my first runthrough doing absolutely terribly and managing to miss out on at least 1 weapon, maybe 2. I had the key in my inventory the whole time but forgot to use it. I somehow earn 2 more achievements. I do much better with the second playthrough and more guns, but still do pretty badly. Apparently I finished the game on hardcore mode in 2019, but don't feel like another run through now.

I think there's slightly less of a difference between the A and B scenarios on this game than the original. Again it's fun to see another perspective even if the mechanics don't fit together in any way that would make sense.

 

I had a quick go on one of the extra game modes too, the ghost survivors. It's brutally difficult. Utterly ludicrous. I can't be bothered with the 4th survivor or the tofu survivor, so I think I'm done.

 

I think this is a good game. It's well-made and well-designed for the most part, and It's very compelling. But is it fun? I spent a lot of time playing it feeling horrible. I felt like I wasn't allowed to play the first half of the game because I was always running away.

Is this the same game as resident evil 2? No, it's a completely different game. But is it in the spirit of the original? Also no. Is the story and setting the same? Just about, but the tone is way off. I really missed the cheese this time around.

To me, this is the kind of remake that doesn't fully replace the original. It's just too different. Of course I'd recommend this over the original for anyone who can't cope with old games and is horrified by the idea of having to manually save using an in-game item, but resident evil 2 just isn't the same as resident evil 2. But either resident evil 2 is much better than no resident evil 2.

Next up, a resident evil game.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. Use of this website is subject to our Privacy Policy, Terms of Use, and Guidelines.