Mmmm.. So Resident Evil Revelations 2, admittedly I feel like i’m a tad out of the loop nowadays when it comes to Resi games, I didn’t get very far in Revelations 1, and I barely touched Resi 6 (for reasons we won’t get into right now). I did recently finish REmake HD again, but that’s a resi game from another time so i’m not entirely sure if it counts.
And so, here we have Revelations 2, a new episodic title in the franchise – As I understand it, there are 4 episodes to this game, each available for £5, or the whole lot for £20. These episodes, rather surprisingly, are also coming out on a weekly basis rather than the telltale style of waiting until everyone has forgotten what happened on the last episode before releasing the new one.
I guess I’d better start talking about the game itself. It’s very similar to all of the recent Resi games, you run in a mostly linear fashion, you shoot zombies in the head, there is a second character with you (though done in a less clever way than Resi 0), you mostly don’t have ammo problems, there are grenades, you find items to progress and then there’s probably a climax event where you have to survive because everyone talks about that opening sequence of resi4 and so they just can’t let that shit go.
The differences in Revelations 2 (at least in the PC version) is that there is a mysterious lack of co-op – despite there being 2 characters throughout the game, the second character also does not have a firearm but will instead possess a unique ability. There’s also a weapon parts/upgrade system, which is actually kind of cool and works by letting you add parts to your weapon to upgrade it. For some reason also, they have decided to put in a skill tree, I vaguely remember something like this being in one of the other recent games, so maybe this isn’t new at all, but you can spend your bp (exp) to unlock some small buffs – it’s worth mentioning that these aren’t your conventional skills, in that none of them actually straight up increase your health or damage, but rather work by changing the way your abilities work, or add bonus damage in special circumstances. Other new features include the ability to combine items to make new ones, alcohol can be combined with a bottle for the obvious firebomb, or combined with some cloth for a dressing – which is practically a necessity due to the new bleed system. The new bleed system occurs at a fairly low frequency, but will fill your screen with annoying blood splats and make your character drain health (seemingly rapidly) over time, I only got inflicted with bleed once by a large enemy, but it was highly annoying.
An unfortunate consequence of being part of the revelations series, seems to be that the game has kept in the item scouter from Revelations 1 – a laborious way of introducing extra items into the area, provided you scout them out, Revelations 2 does this by forcing you to use your second, defenceless character to point at items so that blind claire/barry can pick them up. Failure to play this shitty minigame of theirs will result in you having less ammo to fire, less herbs to use, etc.
Episode 1 takes place in a prison kind of area, and then a forest, with gameplay divided fairly equally between the Claire / Moira team, and Barry / Little Girl team (yeah, I forgot her name. always a good sign that you’ve made a memorable character and tried your hardest to integrate her into the story OH WAIT.). There is some overlap between the two, which I actually thought was kind of cool – seeing the consequences of one journey affect the next. Unfortunately the game kind of ends just as you start to get into it – the problem with episodic games I suppose. The title runs at exactly 90 minutes for me, though I imagine if you wanted to zerg it you could manage it in 30-45min on your first attempt.
Raid mode is unlocked on completion, which appears to be this title’s taken on the Mercenaries concept – However I remember mercenaries being more… intense, the raid mode in this feels more akin to running a low level dungeon in a PVE mmo on your own. The missions provide you with a linear path and then puts randomly spawning enemies in your area for you to kill, and these zombies (at the start of the mode at least) are the lowest of the low – providing absolutely no challenge whatsoever. So you run around, kill zombies, and then there are chests around the place which provide you with unidentified weapons/parts which you can use on your character, I imagine you can see where this is going. So what we have then, is a character who needs to level up to equip skills/items, we have a gold system, and then we have random item drops, and zombies with levels and life bars above their heads. Welcome what can only be described as a free to play Resident Evil game! …. Except its single player only… and you have to pay for it…
As a final note, many people on steam are complaining about bad frame rate issues and crashes, I didn’t experience any of these, but then again I was using a.. uhh.. ‘offline review copy’ we’ll say. If you do want to purchase this, it might be worth looking into patchnotes and stuff to make sure your experience isn’t marred. Personally, I had no issues running this on high settings @ 1080/60 stable.
Ehhh. The campaign mode of this episode can only be described as ‘adequate’, it’s not particularly scary, the new character doesn’t add a whole lot to the gameplay, and it’s terribly short. Raid mode has some interesting ideas, and would genuinely be a game I would play if it were online and free, but sadly it is neither of these.
It’s a solid modern Resi game, but that sadly doesn’t count for a whole lot nowadays.
Approximate Game Length : 1.5 Hours for this episodes campaign. Putting the estimate for the full game at 6-8 Hours
Actual Worth / Steam Price: £2 / £5 = 0.4
Should you play it : Nothing special. Fans of the series should wait for the inevitable steam sale when all the episodes are out.
ps. Moira’s dialogue isn’t as bad as I anticipated from the early footage, majority of her lines are badly written to the point where it’s comical though, perhaps they are trying to establish shit dialogue as a Resident Evil feature?