Yes, it’s that time. Yes, everyone who has access to the internet or has a pen or works for a publication or blog has already posted a review and, with the exception of metacric, most of them say the same thing.
The bottom line is: Resident Evil 6 is a fun but flawed third person shooter.
Unlike my RE5 review which was pages of me just ripping Capcom – deservedly – I’m just going to try this one campaign at a time and try to focus on game-play We all know the story and any suspension of disbelief in this franchise was gone 12 years ago.
Leon’s campaign starts out solidly. There are zombies, and a town. It’s dark. It’s fun to kill them. Unfortunately as character development goes, as with all games since 4 (not movies), Leon is a moron. If you need evidence, he leaves his knife in a zombies head in the tutorial (which by the way doesn’t actually match the chapter of the game it was taken from). Good going there, leave your knife in a zombies head. This certainly convinces me that Leon is an intelligent, trained professional who has actually at this point in the franchise been through five separate outbreak events and has the capacity to learn: Raccoon City, Operation Javier, Spain, Harvardville Airport, and Tall Oaks (because the tutorial actually takes place in China, his sixth time in an outbreak).
The most important thing to remember about Leon/Helena’s game is: Everything must explode, and everything must always be on fire. Think I’m being harsh? These are from different parts of the game, too.
So you go into the subway. Here’s where I started to hate the game (and keep in mind bro’s, this is Chapter 1. Chapter ONE). The game mechanics are so 1989 it’s pathetic. You go in the subway tunnel and there are two tracks – one is blocked by a broken down train. You proceed around the curve and 10 zombies come at you. A train comes by to kill you or them, as often happens in Leon’s campaign – being forced to let something else kill a zombie. You cannot outrun this train, you cannot flatten against the wall, you cannot do anything to avoid it except literally run to the beginning of the subway tunnel, back to that broken train. If you go on the track which is 30 feet from the subway train – no where near in danger – IT KILLS YOU ANY WAY. Because the game was glitched on release.
I deserve an achievement for the “You survived the terrible game mechanics” boss, but alas there is no such achievement. There is supposed to be a button prompt to press, to flatten your body against the wall and let the train come by and smash everyone, if you happen to be on the same side as the train. I’ve seen the button prompt before and even done it a few times, but died anyway. However, about 8 of those 9 times, there was never a button prompt to save me from the train. I had to glitch the game to get past it.
So you get past that part, everything is fine for a while. Next bad game mechanics? You find a gun store filled with survivors. Now, let’s ignore that this gun store is 3 floors full of metallic shutters that don’t open until after you kill the zombies coming in. When you leave this gun store, or right before, a “Whopper” comes in. The “Whopper” is the size of the entire room. Don’t think about how he manages to fit through the door, because it’s physically impossible. Ignore that. So this giant fat attacks you and you can barely see at times because of it, yet he simultaneously manages to fit in a tiny corner and hide from you. Now, granted the camera angles are “improved”, they are still terrible when there’s a gimassive enemy and you can’t even see him or can’t see because of him.
Now the campaign proceeds on a charade in which it tries to seem like the Resident Evils you used to know, through an endless string of references – both pop culture and RE specific. Leon’s campaign is full of out of control semi’s and other vehicles. One of them makes a lovely appearance in time to make an absolutely ridiculous cutscene 100x even more ridiculous. I refer of course to the Walking Dead-game-esque scene where the bus driver decides to floor it to run over one zombie and then gets everyone killed. Despite all of that, despite the insistence of the game through actual spoken dialog where the characters constantly say “It’s just like Raccoon City!” it actually is not like Resident Evil 2 or 3 in the slightest bit and does not make me feel any nostalgia or deja vu. If by saying that they mean, “It’s just like [Resident Evil Operation] Raccoon City!” then yes, they are correct.
After this the game reverts to a straight up combination of RE4 and RE5 for a good chapter or two straight. You descend ever deeper into the depths of the earth. I’m pretty sure you are literally in the mantle of the earth by the end of the section. This is after you get to and through the Cathedral and yea, that thing that Helena said she’d do….never happened, at all. The story was never explained at all, ever. They never explained what happened at Tall Oaks. They never explained the video tape (at least not yet, in Leons campaign). The only thing you know that happened is the bio-attack in China – that’s mostly Leon’s fault, and the other two things. You don’t know why it happened though.
The most frustrating part of the entire Leon campaign is without a doubt the game mechanics, whether its the fact that Simmons is a longer boss fight than Sin or Lavos or even Ruby Weapon, or the fact that the Indiana Jones shit will once again kill you like it did in RE4 and RE5, as if you haven’t dealt with it before. You get killed for no reason by trains, corner raped by badly timed spit from the last boss, take damage for no reason from zombies because they had their arms stretched out even though you kicked them first, or you screw up button prompts even when you hit the button at the right time.
On to the next thing. I hate the graphics. Sometimes this version of MT Framework is absolutely gorgeous, but most times it doesn’t even look as good as RE5 on 360, much less PC. Most of it looks okay but for example the Chinese city in the background looks like ass, as do some views of the player models. I also hate the laser sight. You have to actually switch back to the crosshair to be able to proceed past a certain point in the game.
Oh but there’s more. What is the worst part of the game mechanics (other than the trains) you ask? Call of Duty. Call of Duty MW2 is the worst part of the game mechanics.
There are two separate scenarios in the game where you have to repeat the CoD MW2 Ice Climbing and the button prompts give you absolutely no indication how to do them properly. You have to have a sudden revelation that the proper way to do it is exactly like Soap climbing the ice. It is the most retarded thing you have to actually press buttons to do in the history of Resident Evil, since the rock punching in RE5.
I literally had to YouTube how to beat Phase 4 of Simmons because it’s not implied in the game, even despite the hints when Leon says “Go for the legs” and the fact that there’s a giant lightning rod. You have to figure it out by trial and error, which is how the old games used to be – yes – but in the old games you either died or won. You didn’t run around killing endless zombies while fighting the boss just hoping he eventually died. You also didn’t run the risk of fighting him for 35 min and then dying because of one well placed spit that you couldn’t see, and then getting hit again while on the ground.
And let’s say this. While you can’t lose directly from your partner being worthless like in 5, your partner is undoubtedly more worthless than Sheva. Sheva revived you because she HAD to or you lost the game. Your partner now ignores your well-being entirely and the command buttons are too inconvenient to use, nor do they work.