kalmis's Dead Rising (Xbox 360) review

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Should not have played this

The early Xbox 360 zombie killing simulator took its time to come top of my to-be-played pile. After playing Case Zero it would have been better to be kept there..

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For some reason I had an impression that this game didn't have lot's of a story. Even after playing Case Zero earlier which had a nice and short tale. The protagonist Frank West goes to investigate small city of Willamette. Roads have been blocked but Frank has been smart boy and rented a helicopter. When getting closer it is clear that there is something seriously wrong with the town. Zombies. When starting to investigate this closer on the local mall he comes across hesitant people who clearly know what is going on. As well as the cause of whole incident. Frank dwells further into digging more info and helping out the survivors. No doubt story is like page from Romero's classic movie .

One game of Dead Rising last 72h in-game hours. This time is divided into number chapters which act as the main story line. Aspect of exploration is included where Frank gets scoop tips which usually resolve investigating a incident and/or rescuing bunch of survivors. These survivors are NPCs who have not been zombified. It is players task to escort survivors to safety or fend of the crazed advisories. Yes escort missions, the culmination of what is not fun in the videogames. This is no doubt the worst aspect of game play. Survivors can not defend them selves and always go on about their own pace. Survivors must be escorted to the mall's security room which acts as a hub for the survivors and the start point of most of the main story line. Safety place also holds one the few save spots. Frank can save his progress only on bathrooms and or on this safety hub. What adds insult to the unfortunate save mechanism is the psychos. These are non-zombified NPCs that have gone mental. These act as games boss levels and range from challenging to ..well challenging. 

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Besides the controls which also has some issues. Shooting which is required for many of these psychos is kind of broken. Frank can not run and aim. Jumping and the running is not very smooth either. Frank is equipped with a camera as well and taking pictures of zombies and other incidents will net experience points. Same goes for each kill and escort mission. Levels gained from experience give more health and inventory items. As well new attack moves

These faults have been often said to be fault of game being a Japanese game. Odd game mechanism and save method aside, this is still a fun game. That is if you can bear it. Graphics are well done with big zombie count on the screen. The endless number of items can be used as weapons. These all make correct looking death animation. The mall is relatively large location and it is nice stumbling upon new store and discovering new weapons. Frank can also change his appearance by looting clothing on games many stores. Cutscenes are created by using ingame engine and look decent. Not the best looking game but really downward ugly either. Framerate stays constant despite all the zombies. On audio part voice acting is good quality. Even with the funny fake Japan-American setting. Music is mostly mall muzak. Except for the park which always seem to playing something generic rap/metal bologny.

On length and re playability Dead Rising is unique in sense that once the 72h is played the game can be continued keeping character experience level and gained perks. First 72h is not too long and player can not finish the side missions (i.e. scoops) in one run anyway. Annoying amount of 20G achievements which are spread all over the side quests and efforts. Putting weight on multiple play troughs.

I did the mistake of playing later version of this franchise before this title. Case Zero is in all ways superior to Dead Rising 1. Even on the shorter length aspect. Length of DR1 also deflated my interest on Dead Rising 2. This is just seems to work better on the shorter games. Roll on Case West.

Other reviews for Dead Rising (Xbox 360)

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