A great title that worth your money despite its shortcomings
Resident Evil5 manages to execute the already well executed format of the series in a different way and refreshes the experience by adding new elements and aspects .
The good : Stunning visuals , extremely amusing and varied gameplay , fabulous pacing and momentum , remarkable voice acting, engaging story , deep puzzles .
The bad : Inventory menu , devoid of fear .
First of all let me initiate this review by stating that Resident evil 5 is a tremendously wonderful title , those of you who were disappointed by the demo should certainly give this game a try (a rent is a must ) .
The latest entity in Resident Evil series while does not deliver an experience we’d come to expect from the franchise , manages to establish itself as one of the most qualified games in the current generation of consoles .
Resident evil 5 is probably the most fleshed out game in the series regarding the level of details and attention to the game structure , level design and story . Suffice to say that the story of the whole saga including the origin of Umbrella corporation , Bioterrorism Security Assessment Alliance (BSAA), Biological Organic Weapons (BOWs), S.T.A.R.S , the previous protagonist and heroines , group of eleven and so forth reviews via the in game cut-scenes , flash backs and text documents .
The game follows the step of its predecessor in almost every aspect (it kicks off exactly alike RE4 ; you first encounter with a zombie , kill him , jump out of a window , see yourself surrounded with numerous zombies , fight all of them desperately till invisible hands of god come to your help ) but dares to introduce brand new set pieces at the same time . Manning a turret against hordes of majini bikers , riding a boat , using various turrets against bosses , managing stealth attacks , holding yourself on a boat , ………… and even taking cover behind walls !!! “Awe C’moooooooon, now every one is trying to imitate me “ said a source who prefers to remain anonymous!!! .
Undoubtedly the most important alteration in gameplay structure is presence of a new ally called Sheva Alomar . Many gamers were [ and still are ] concerned about having to escort someone throughout the entire game .
I am proud to say that Sheva does NOT need your escort and ironically she is an incredibly supportive character . In other word Sheva is not president’s daughter of RE4 ; she is a smart and coherent character that except for a few sessions does not need your help /support/escort whatsoever and can even survive with her mere knife when she is out of ammo .
Sheva never gets in your way , never makes you stop for her , never takes damage from your attacks [neither melee nor projectile ] , never stands in your way and block your shots , never asks for ammunition but hand you some if you are in need, never stops checking on your health status , never misses a shot , never leaves items and loots behind if you happen to miss them ……………………….. In short SHEVA NEVER LETS YOU DOWN .
Even though her AI is not perfect and some weird reactions and insignificant bugs here and there leaves you surprised , Sheva is the most intelligent side kick we have seen in a video game thus far .
Another new added component of gameplay is cover mechanic . Before you start worrying you should know RE5 is not Gears of War and you can not take cover behind any wall or object at any wanted time . At points were the threat of being shot [or exploded ] is present , you ‘d always find a piece of cover . Taking cover feels a bit awkward at times but it is a nice constituent nevertheless .
As we all know Resident Evil without quick time event sequences is not resident evil and thus RE5 includes many of these scenes that fortunately have been implemented pretty well . I admit that I really loved the magnificence of these sequences specially in the very last mission .
Puzzles in RE5 are much better than Find the plate to open the door kind of things we used to see in previous games of the series . Do not get me wrong ! , you still need to find wicked plates to open some doors but except for a case in which you have to find your way through rays of lasers, most of the puzzle are cooperative and requires both Chris and Sheva to solve . The cooperative nature of puzzles are really pleasing and it is even more fun while playing co-op . For the first time you can play RE with your buddy online or off ; in this mode you have to collaborate with your partner as best as you can since you‘d fail otherwise . Technically the co-op has no problem and split-screen does not affect the frame-rate at all .
For the most part RE5 plays the same as RE4 although some minor changes have been made concerning the control scheme . Through one of these changes you can now display/vanish the useful map in the top right corner of the screen by pressing a single button . The game features 4 different control types, none of which feels any better than the third-person control scheme debuted with games such as Gears of War but it gets the job done nonetheless .
The inventory system has seen drastic changes and unfortunately it is not as good as it sounds . each character has nine and only nine slots to carry items and weapons and space upgrade is not available . All inventory management is done in real time which sometimes add to the intensity but more often the inventory just does not work that well . Numerous times I found my inventory (and Sheva’s ) full while in desperate need of say a herb but I did not want to discard a package of shotgun ammo just for a pesky herb . So unless you manage your inventory slots pretty well and learn the proper way to exchange your items with your partner , you’d be in lots of trouble .
You’ll need to finish/reload the mission in order to gain access to the inventory organization menu where you can upgrade your weapons , change the place of items in your inventory , trade weapons and African treasures (Have you seen blood diamond ? ) and transfer useless stuff in your storage .
Some of the improvements such as being able to buy/upgrade your weapons freely without having to find those shady dudes!!! and the fact that you can assign weapons and items to D-pad for instant access are welcome . I should mention that there is no longer a single typewriter around and saves are done automatically as you progress .
Due to considerable power of the current generation of consoles the environments in RE5 are enjoyably varied . Dusty desert, rusty factories , lush jungles , never ending rivers , sea side , ancient African tombs, tribe villages , underground tunnels , high tech facilities are amongst the environments you’d get to see while playing .
The game never cease throwing one enjoyable and stylish sequence after another at the player but regrettably none of them are scary or socking . This incredible action-oriented game lacks the fear factor . There are very few oh, snap parts in the game where you feel somewhat overwhelmed by the foes , however they by no means can be considered scary . To make things even less scary the game features a so-called dying mode ; as the name suggests whenever you lose all your health the character goes into dying mode and can not do anything until the other partner revive him/her .
This being said the action feels quite intense (specially during the second half of the game ) because of large groups of enemies attacking you from all directions . One thing is for sure , RE5 is a challenging game in a good way and makes you release adrenalin even on the easiest difficulty setting .
Thanks to Capcom ‘s advanced engine , the game is an absolute looker both technically and artistically . Everything in the game looks fabulous and the level of visual details are quite impressive . Lighting , particle effects and explosions are simply jaw-dropping and regardless of the level of activity on the screen the game renders smoothly all the time .
I played the Xbox 360 version installed on hard-drive and never witnessed any frame-rate drop or pop-in issue during the entire game . The loading times are so short that makes you wonder how could all of these elegant objects and textures be loaded in such a short time .
Another stunning aspect of the graphics is the quality of cut-scenes . The high quality of cut-scenes instantly reminded me of Metal Gear Solid 4 which was result of terrific look , exciting actions /martial arts and plausible voice acting . The in-game music is pretty good and makes the action profoundly exciting .
Similar to most of Capcom games , RE5 has plenty of replay value . The first thing would be Mercenaries mode which resident evil fans are already aware of . In this mode you need to kill as many enemies as possible before the time runs out . Unlockable documents , 3D figures , costumes , weapons , maps , screen filters and so forth are also enough reasons to keep you busy for long time to come .
For the record , All of the upgraded weapons , items , remained ammo , costumes , skins transfer to a new game and unlike Dead Space can be used in higher difficulties .
Despite the huge departure from the franchise’s original formula , Resident Evil 5 is a magnificent title on its own . Lack of fear elements and emphasis on combat may annoy some longtime fans and satisfy the others but it is safe to say that you won’t regret playing this game .
Gameplay[8.0] : Annoying inventory menu , unique control and some bugs never stop you from enjoying the game .
Graphics [9.5]: Simply spectacular visuals turn this biohazard into a safari .
Audio and music[9.0] : Amazing voice acting coupled with appropriate music .
Replay value : The Mercenaries mode , multiple costumes , two playable characters , dozens of unlockables ………. What else do you need ?
Story and atmosphere [7.0]: NO SCARE WHATSOEVER , plausible story with a payoff in the end .
Length [9.0] : Beating the game for the fist time takes somewhere between 12-15 hours .
Overall : 9.0
PS I apologize for the poor quality of images taken by a cellphone , I just wanted to show you some previously unseen footages :)