Frank West is the protagonist of Dead Rising. He is a photo journalist who, upon hearing of "something big" happening in Willamette, Colorado, takes it upon himself to investigate. Frank soon finds the city infested with the undead and voluntarily strands himself in the Willamette Mall to dig deeper into the mystery of their origin. Frank has no prior combat experience, but appears to be a fan of professional wrestling and is familiar with the use of firearms, having "covered wars" in his past. As a result Frank is trapped inside the Mall for 72 hours, where he must defend himself from the zombies that litter the stores and hallways. Frank is one of the few characters in the game who tries to help the other survivors escape, in some cases carrying or leading people back to the safe haven on the roof of the mall. As Frank gains experience his attacks become increasingly flamboyant and cartoonish - reflecting the humorous side to both his personality and Dead Rising in general.
Frank West was designed by Keiji Inafune, also known as the designer of the Mega Man franchise. Inafune wanted Dead Rising to have an American aesthetic instead of the typical Japanese characters and environments that feature heavily in other Capcom games. Frank West was, as a result, designed to be a generic looking American photojournalist with a very simple personality. Throughout the game Frank is mostly relaxed and easygoing, although occasionally he is overwhelmed by his struggle for survival. Frank is seldom shocked or disgusted at the grisly scenes that he finds throughout his adventure. He remains even-handed, offering help to everyone, even those who attack him. During his time in the mall Frank sets about finding the source of the Zombies, but is often obstructed by other survivors who either need help - or have been driven psychopathic by the breakdown of law and order as a result of the zombie outbreak.
Frank West begins Dead Rising wearing a black leather jacket and green khaki pants. He has a white shirt, and short brown hair. Players can customize his appearance by looting one of the many clothing stores throughout the Willamette Shopping Mall inside which the game is set. However, Frank is never seen without his trusty camera, which can be used to take pictures of survivors and zombies for Prestige Points, or PP (essentially experience points).
Frank also seems particularly taken with Isabela Keyes, a latino woman who has also been trapped in the Willamete Mall. Throughout the game Frank encounters her several times - as both friend and enemy.
Frank West somehow stumbles into Valve's zombie franchise Left 4 Dead 2. He leaves his final words behind via Graffiti to Otis on a wall in "The Passing". It appears that the zombies were too fast for him and he ran out of film.
In an interview with Destructoid, Seth Killian reported that Capcom believes the West loves Frank and that they will try to add him into as many crossovers as possible, showing how he has gotten into games such as Lost Planet 2. He is also a popular request to be added to Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds, although unfinished data for his character has been found on the disc. Eventually, he was added in Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3, the retail follow-up to Marvel vs. Capcom 3.
Tatsunoko vs. Capcom
Frank is among one of the new characters that was added to the western release of Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All Stars announced at the Tokyo Game Show 2009. His special attacks involve the use of various items including a baseball bat and shopping cart, as well as the ability to summon a zombie a la Jill Valentine in Marvel vs. Capcom 2. One of his attacks, the Real Mega Buster, has him dress up like Mega Man and blast his opponent with a Mega Buster blast.
Dead Rising 2: Case West
Dead Rising protagonist, Frank West, will be teaming up with Dead Rising 2 protagonist, Chuck Greene in an all new DLC video game! Players will not need the Dead Rising 2 game disc to play the DLC for the new game. Capcom is releasing this on December 27, 2010 for 800 Microsoft points. Players will get to be both, Frank and Chuck, as they mow through millions of zombies. Features include:
- Offline and Online Co-op
- Over 2 hours of Story mode
- Extra Survivors
- And much, Much more!
The game will take place in, Phenotrans' http://www.giantbomb.com/frank-west/94-715/facility. Where Frank and Chuck have to uncover some Phenotrans' "murky dealings". Chuck and Frank are going to be making combo-weapons together and cutting through zombies to find the truth that they are seeking!
Dead Rising 2: Off the Record
Dead Rising 2: Off the Record, a reinterpretation of the events that happened in Dead Rising 2, features the return of Frank West as the main protagonist. According to the game, Frank became famous after the events of the original Dead Rising, but has had problems and now competes in TIR to make money for himself. The game is set on Fortune City, but bigger than the one in Dead Rising 2. The story is also different, with new missions only for Frank. Some other new features are:
- Co-op with the 1st player as Frank, and the other one as Chuck
- More enemies and Psychopaths
- More combo weapons
- More items and vehicles.
Finally, Frank's camera returns! You can take pictures of those, funny, scary, exciting, etc... moments for more Prestige Points(PP)! However, you can also gain PP from defeating zombies with crafted weapons like in Dead Rising 2: On the Record (aka the original Dead Rising 2), for those times when the zombies get just a little too close for comfort.
Quotes, By The Famous Frank West
- "I've covered wars, ya know."
- "It doesn't sound like civil disobedience. It's too quiet."
- "Zombies, huh? I had a feeling you'd show up..."
- "It's Frank. Frank West. Remember that name 'cause the whole world's gonna know it in three days when I get the scoop."
- "Fine. I'll just get my information from some place else, thank you very much!"
- "Um, Officer? Officer? Can I talk to you for a minute? I mean... Look. What did that woman do? This seems a little...extreme."
- "Sure... I help you as long as you tell me what's going on around here."
- "Her asshole brother caused the zombie outbreak."
- "It's not like we're unarmed. We've got your smelly perfume, don't we?"
- "Yeah, uh, I don't think they had zombie infested malls in mind when they wrote those regulations, kid."
- "Yes but its all being taken care of. My buddy Chuck is handling it now."