Bang for you buck.
Dead Rising 2: Case Zero is an absolute steal at only 400 MS points. Capcom could've easily made this an 800 or possibly even a 1200 point arcade title, but it's priced extremely cheap at only 400. This is a sign from the company who brought you the first Dead Rising, a sign that they want to get this small taste of zombie huntin' goodness to every possible gamer out there so they can get pumped for Dead Rising 2. And as far as I'm concerned, mission accomplished, because I can't wait to see what crazy weapon combinations I can make and the ridiculous outfits I can wear in the upcoming sequel to the 2006 hit.
Dead Rising 2: Case Zero takes place two years after the events of the Willamette incident in the first game and three years before the upcoming sequel. You play as Chuck Greene, a famous motocross star who has escaped the zombie outbreak in Las Vegas with his four-year old daughter, Katey, and has made a pit-stop in the backwater Las Vegas suburb of Still Creek. Katey was bitten, and was infected with the zombie virus, which Chuck treats by giving her a medicine that prevents people from turning into zombies for a 12 hour period called zombrex. While Chuck is checking out the seemingly deserted town, another survivor drives off with his truck, which is full of the zombrex he needs for Katey. He finds some in an ambulance in the quarantine area, where he overhears a radio transmission saying the military is arriving at 2100 to clean up the town. He finds a beat up motorcycle that he decides to fix up, so he and his daughter can ditch town before the army arrives and it's too late.
Dead Rising 2: Case Zero isn't a demo, it's a game on it's own. It has a different setting than Dead Rising 2, a different plot, and sets up the events for the sequel. It offers the same gameplay from the first Dead Rising, you will find weapons laying around the games environment and use them to kill zombies, you will find survivors and escort them to safety, and you will complete missions vital to story progression. Aside from that you'll be looking for motorcycle parts to fix up your bike, and it is your primary goal in the game. There are also some changes and new features, the most prominent being weapon combinations, which replace the photography gameplay mechanic from Dead Rising and give you a PP boost when you use them in combat. Where Frank West shines as a war-time photo journalist, Chuck Greene excels as a handy-man. There are obivous combinations, as is evident at the start of the game when the first two things you see in front of you are a baseball bat and a box of nails. You can also combine a bottle of whiskey with a newspaper to create a molotov cocktail, or you can take an innocent looking paddle and combine it with some badass chainsaws, to make a badass...er paddle-saw. And then there are combinations you wouldn't even think could be possible. You could combine a car battery with a leaf rake to make an electric rake to make some zombie toast (yeah that's right, I just said zombie toast, my attempt at being hilarious so you don't leave), OR, you can combine a bucket....with a power drill, to make a drill bucket. Yep. A drill bucket. You stick it on a zombies head, and it bucketdrills it in the face. So anywho, there are approx. 9 different weapon combinations in Case Zero, and if being totally enthralled with making these ridiculous combinations and the way they're used to kill zombies with isn't enough, seeing the dozens more in Dead Rising 2 should have anyone pretty pumped.
This being a short downloadable prequel to DR 2, you will only be able to level Chuck to level 5, which you can carry over to DR 2 along with any earned combo cards, which denote different weapon combinations and give you an xp boost when you use combined weapons to kill zombies. You can replay the game at your leisure, and carry over clothes and combo cards found, money earned, and experience gained which makes grinding possible. There is one physcopath battle at the end, which is one of my few gripes with this game. Not the fact there is only one, which is understandable, but by how clunky and frustrating the battle with Jed the Mechanic was. I was constantly taking cover to recover my health, while Jed would get in cheap shots preventing from doing so. I also found it odd that guns did less damage than melee weapons did, which seems like they want melee to be your focus in the fight, and honestly I would rather use a shotgun. An obvious improvement is the abliity to walk while you aimed range weapons, and the aiming system has been greatly improved from the first Dead Rising. The AI also seems much more intellgent, and much less frustrating to guide to safety.
And so I feel like I should close this review, which feels much too long now. Case Zero is well worth your money, and is a great package and preview for DR 2. It offers the same gameplay you will find in the sequel, just not everything you will see and in a shorter time frame. There are many improvements from Dead Rising 1, and the weapon combinations are a very welcome and rewarding addition to the gameplay. I highly reccomend anyone looking forward to DR 2 check this out, the asking price isn't much and offers plenty for the low cost.