82 of 91 people found the following review helpful
on 7 April 2009
The Resident Evil series has come a long way since the original burst onto the gaming scene back in 1996. The graphics have improved, the cut scenes have become more cinematic, the character models have become more expressive, the plot has become more complex, and the voice acting has... well, pretty much stayed the same. But the series has also lost some of its freshness along the way. Resident Evil 4 did a lot to rebuild the series' credibility, combining the very best graphics that could be squeezed out of the Gamecube with a decent plot and pulse-pounding action.
So, here we are in 2009, and it's time for Resident Evil 5 - a game that's been several years in the making, laced with controversy and burdened by sky-high expectations. Does it live up to them?
Taking place in an unspecified African state, Resi 5 follows series stalwart Chris Redfield (now looking like he pours steroids instead of milk over his cornflakes in the morning) as he's sent in to investigate a potential bioweapon outbreak. Needless to say, it's not long before things go wrong, and he's soon fighting off hordes of angry villagers and mutated bioweapons as he tries to uncover the truth of what's going on.
Astute readers will notice I never used the word `zombie' anywhere in there, which brings me to my first gripe about this game (don't worry, there's plenty more to come). I sort of understand Capcom's reasoning for making their enemies more intelligent and hence, more threatening. Resi 4 began this process with the Ganados - semi-intelligent villagers infected with parasites that make them highly susceptible to suggestion, capable of using simple weapons, and therefore effective killing machines. The problem is that zombies are at the core of what Resident Evil is supposed to be about, and removing them is a bit like having a strip club where none of the women actually take their clothes off. It's just not right.
And this pretty much sums up Resident Evil 5 as a whole. It's dropped so many elements from the original that the two games have virtually nothing in common now apart from their titles. Gone is the puzzle solving (apart from a few rudimentary switch-flicking affairs), gone is the exploration and the excitement of unlocking new areas, gone are the tough choices between carrying weapons and key items, and gone is the subtle tension of finding out what lies beyond the next corner. Instead, what we're left with is a highly linear third person shooter with unsatisfying controls, uninspired boss fights and frustrating gameplay mechanics.
Oh yeah, and you've brought a friend along for the ride.
I've always been against the concept of a partner in the Resident Evil games, for all the reasons I highlighted in my Resident Evil Zero review - it kills the tension, it serves no purpose from a dramatic point of view, and it frustrates more than it helps. Not content with making this mistake once already, Capcom set out to do it again in Resi 5. Sheva Alomar is a BSAA agent sent to help you, and forms your backup for the majority of the game.
This sounds like a great idea, which is only hampered by the fact that she's a complete idiot. Her AI often prompts her to target distant enemies, ignoring the mutant dog that's busy chewing her leg off. She also seems to feel so attached to you that she insists on standing DIRECTLY IN FRONT OF YOU during every battle, lending new meaning to the expression `friendly fire'. Lastly, she's incapable of prioritising her weapon use, meaning she'll happily blast away at super-tough bosses with her trusty pistol, despite having an arsenal of grenade launchers and assault rifles at her disposal.
But Sheva's not the only character to annoy. Chris' long-time partner Jill Valentine pops up for about five minutes, only to wander off again with a vague "You're the only one who can stop him" explanation. Really, Jill? Maybe you could increase my odds of stopping `him' by - oh, I don't know - helping me out? Considering I just saved your life and everything? No?
Perennial baddy Albert Wesker also makes an appearance, this time serving as the game's primary antagonist after years of lurking in the shadows. It's a welcome addition, since everyone knows he's pretty much the best villain of the series, and yet it seems like something's missing. He doesn't seem cool or menacing anymore - he's become a pantomime villain.
The inventory system is another big gripe for me. Resi 4's briefcase, while far from perfect, was at least a decent stab at creating a realistic depiction of a character's carrying space. Resi 5 completely abandons this system, instead relying on the simple grid system from the first game. So once again we're left with the ridiculous situation of a herb taking up exactly the same amount of space as a rocket propelled grenade launcher.
I really wanted to like this game, but it just keeps turning me away. The story is lacklustre, simplistic and uninvolving. By the end, I had no more of a clue what was going on than I did at the start, and felt cheated an unsatisfied. Like a bad sexual experience, Resident Evil 5 always feels like its building up to something great, but never quite gets there.
The characters are bland and wishy-washy. And worse, they never have any time to interact with each other. Sheva has the potential to be interesting, but we're never given much insight into her character. Chris, likewise, remains stoically silent throughout most of the game, squandering golden opportunities to use what he learned in previous adventures to his advantage.
Overall then, Resident Evil 5 failed to light my fire. It displays the occasional flash of brilliance, but nowhere near enough to live up to its predecessors.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 18 October 2009
Where to start, well we can discuss the various levels of uselessness that your companion Sheeva possess. As well as standing in your line of sight during combat she also seems to have no real effect on the storyline. Further to this she can carry a fair amount of equipment but will only use her pistol. She's a bit of a pain...
Plenty of weapons though, the reason for this is because Res 5 is a shoot em up, nothing more. Although is is a retarded shoot em up as Chris Redfield can neither move and shoot or move and reload or move and reselect weapons. As shoot em up characters go this makes Chris really quite tame and draws away from the game's role. The level's set design are good and the storyline pans back to previous game as it unfolds. Glad i kept the reciept as i'm going to sell this ASAP.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Resi 5 looks good and sounds good, but despite all the prettiness and bells and whistles the gameplay, I'm sorry to say, is rather mundane.
The Plagas virus from Resi 4 comes back and is infecting African tribesman and shanty town locals. Chris Redfield returns with his new partner Sheva to find out just who is pulling the strings this time. Gee, do think it will be Wesker...again?
There is very little in this game that is fresh. 90% of it is simply lifted from Resi 4 (dilapidated villages, grotty, rusting facilities, mines, yadda-yadda-yadda), though none of the atmosphere that made it so re-playable is present. Bringing the action out of the darkness and into the sunlight was a big mistake. There is also a disappointing lack of interesting weapons and upgrades cost too much, considering how little gold and treasures you encounter during the course of the levels (there is unfortunately no Cockney Merchant). Plus you never really feel the power of the upgrades.
Having played through the game twice I was rewarded with a few paltry unlockables. As well as being a criminally short and easy game there are not many reasons to trudge through it again.
A minor disappointment. I'm just glad I didn't pay full price for it.
Graphics A Sound A Gameplay B Lasting Appeal C+
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 17 September 2014
You play as Chris Redfield, former member of the S.T.A.R.S. Unit and now part of the an anti-bioterrorism group (BSAA). Arriving in Kijuju, Africa, you team up with your partner, Sheva Alomar, embarking on a hunt for a bio-organic weapons dealer. Things only get worse as Albert Wesker makes a surprise return and makes it his business to confront Chris. The race is on to stop the spread of bio weapon technology and put Wesker's plans to an end.
The hatred between Chris and Wesker is the core element of the story, and it does its best to keep this confrontation in the spotlight. The events surrounding Kijuju are a little tame, providing underdeveloped story arcs and one dimensional characters.
G R A P H I C S & S O U N D
Built on Capcom's MT Framework 2.0 engine, RE 5 looks absolutely gorgeous. Even though the game is silhouetted against daytime environments a majority of the time, but the dusty plains of Kijuju are vividly designed. The lighting is spectacular, allowing shadows to splatter over any surface. The atmosphere plays a pivotal role, restricting level design to create isolation and a sense of unease. The variety of environment types is impressive, ranging from spooky marshlands to laboratory complexes.
Character models are detailed and well crafted, displaying realistic muscular definition. Enemy designs are just as creepy: axe-wielding villagers, crazed shamans and ugly parasites pave the way ahead. Animations are much smoother, running feels more natural, especially when tight corners are to be negotiated. Sound design is strong, thanks largely to the chilling moans of countless infected freaks.
Voice acting is hit and miss, making it feel like the characters are pantomime performers. However, the melodrama is kept to a minimum.
G A M E P L A Y
The controls have been pulled straight from RE4, but they feel tighter and more responsive. The stop and shoot gameplay mechanics remain intact, keeping that urgent gameplay factor many have adopted from the previous game. It's always wise to give yourself plenty of room when taking on groups of enemies, and to consider your position during mass confrontation. The inventory can now be accessed during live gameplay, which will ramp up the tension if you wish to switch to a different weapon. The selection of weapons is what we've come to expect from past Resident Evil games, but each of these is effective for different combat situations.
RE 5's newest draw is the ability to engage in offline and online co-op play. Offline play will require a lot more attention from players, with regards to their partner's well-being and the amount of ammunition they will have in order to survive. It becomes an interesting dynamic throughout the game, which essentially leaves it in your hands to get the most out of your partner's skills. Furthermore, it will be your job to give your partner herbs or health spray if they are low on health. RE 5 is fast paced game, and it will not hesitate in throwing a vast number of enemies at you. The game will provide some thrilling action sequences and scripted encounters, constricting levels and providing alternate routes to take when trying to take down enemies.
The boss battles are excellent and truly large scale affairs to deal with. It is critical to manage ammunition and to provide Sheva with plenty of firepower, as these encounters are about endurance and gaining as much of an advantage as possible. There are also action-packed vehicular sections, which let you unload bullets upon enormous and fend off crazed enemies in pursuit of you.
Things turn sour when Sheva's A.I. begins to work against your progress. Sheva will not employ tactics or strategy, but rather stick close to you and get in the way of your shots. It's annoying aspect of the game and can easily affect a more demanding gameplay situation.
O V E R A L L
RE 5 excels in its presentation, rising as one of the best looking games this generation. The story isn't deep, but it brings together some of the series' strongest characters. The gameplay is fun and boasts a chunky campaign. It's sad to see the Resident Evil abandon its survival horror roots in favour of action, but it can become a promising change.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 28 February 2011
Resident Evil used to be scary, what happened? Maybe it's just me. I suppose if you have never played any of the other titles you may find it a bit scary. If you want to feel the fear on your PS3 you would be better placed buying Dead Space which is the scariest game I've played in years.
Resident Evil 5 is a very good game and I do recommend it. Enjoyable from start to finish. Great graphics and everything you would expect from the game (except the fear). The Mercenaries mode is the best thing about it.
I have personal issues with the franchise these days though, I've played them all, maybe I'm just jaded. Everyone loved Resident Evil 4 on PS2, I'm sure it was voted best PS2 game of all time. It was good but I wouldn't go that far. See, that game is where it all started to go wrong for me. Maybe Capcom were trying to distance themselves from the below par movies, who knows?
What's wrong with Resident Evil these days is that they have dropped the zombies and the puzzles are crap. Not that zombies are particularly scary, it's just that they belong in this game. I don't like the mutants that have replaced the zombies. Resident Evil without zombies is like a George A. Romero movie without zombies. Its just wrong. I don't care about different strains of the virus resulting in different monsters, I want to headshot zombies. End of story.
The Lickers make a return in this game which I thought was a hint that things would go back to normal in the next installment. Maybe not though, I'm hearing this is the last installment.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 3 June 2010
I loved the original Resident Evil games on the PS1, they had the atmosphere and they were gripping with their gameplay and the story lines. Even though the cut-scene acting was pants and the fact that you couldn't skip them was a pain. Resident Evil 3: Nemesis was by far the best, the difficulty level was set so perfectly that even though it was tough it was not so tough that it was a chore to play. Then things went a lttle downhill, the FPS on rails effort with the light gun was nothing less than rubbish then Code Veronica on the Dreamcast was too difficult, I then skipped Resident Evil 4 since I didn't go for the PS2.
So years later I have a PS3 and when I heard that Resident Evil 5 was coming out I couldn't wait, that atmospheric horror could only have got better. The trailers all over the web showed a cool storyline and some great graphics but it was all a big shroud for what is basically a shooting game.
Don't get me wrong though, there are some puzzles within, just waiting to be figured out. But they are so simple its laughable. In one of the later stages of the game you need to collect symbols to place into a hole in the wall which then lets you progress through to the next stage. There is nothing to work out, just get your timing right and pick up the piece, head back to the hole in the wall and go and get the next piece - simple(s).
And thats it, great story, great graphics and sound but run around and kill or be killed and don't worry about thinking. So long as you conserve your ammo and pick your battles wisely, sell all of the gems you pick up you'll get to the end with no problems.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 8 January 2010
I was lucky enough to buy RE5 for the PS3 for a very low price, second hand. For the price paid it is extremely good value but, having played practically all of its predecessors on various consoles and throroughyl enjoyed them all, the 'glitches' in the game which prevent the series reaching perfection need to be addressed, my patience is wearing thin. In fact, some are in addition to RE4 (which I had on the Wii and is a superior game).
The good: Fans will not be dissappointed. Zombies are actually faster now signalling the game's move towards an all-out action game rather than suspenseful horror/thriller (although I have read some hate this move). Vast array of weapons, unlockables and extras which extend the longevity of what seemed a shorter game than RE4 on story mode. Fun dialogue and tongue-in-cheek melodramatic dialogue between levels, some grotesque creatures to wince over. Big move is co-op mode which is a superb extra, ability to heal colleague/friend Sheva is nice touch. Online mercenaries is a positive move.
Character cannot attack enemies behind him. Turning is like turning an oil tanker
Interaction with Merchant has gone - I loved this feature on RE4.
No case upgrades - why they omitted this is madness. The ability to carry more and thnk about item placement was a real fun way to perfect the game.
Character gets in the way of the fight sometimes - camera needs to be slightly higher & over the shoulder.
As above but worse with Sheva who insists on standing on the very right of the screen
Health needs to be seriously SORTED OUT! Standing like a mincer spraying on deodorant, very casually whilst being attacked by 8 zombies and close to death is absurb and the single most frustrating element of the whole series.
Graphics 'depreciate' in co-op. They look quite poor for the PS3's capabilities and then excellent on solo.
Lag with online play, but not too bad I might add.
Havent accessed all extras but seem identical to format on RE4
RE4 controls superior in general - movement of character slicker.
Too short on campaign/story mode.
Do buy the game though, it's an essential purchase. Just annoyed that some things added to the frustration of the game.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 24 August 2009
Really good to read some of the other views before commenting - mixed emotions for this game, but general feeling of dissappointment creeping through...
Which brings me to my thoughts on the game - probably like most reviewers I am a massive Resident Evil fan - the whole series right back to the first...the mansion...the first Zombie, slowly, menacingly turning to look over his shoulder...
I still have all the games and I think its one of the best game series ever - and its last effort RE4 wasn't just an amazing game, it was a milestone in gaming evolution - and arguably the BEST game on PS2, EVER!! So rarely has such a game and its developers been under such monumental pressure to deliver again....and somehow improve on perfection....
Which is ultimately where Resi 5 falls down...as a stand alone game it is good, action packed (albeit far-removed from its predecessors in its theme and atmosphere) and very good looking...but...and I played it through to check...it fails to deliver anything in terms of evolution - in fact in many areas its actually not even as good.
The only real new addition is the partnership play, with your ally Sheva Alomar - now reading some reviews some have been particularly scathing as to general ai and atmosphere-killing - of which some may be a bit over the top. The partnership does at least offer something new - the gameplay has a different edge - you are now looking out for someone else, as she is you, and can elate and frustrate in equal measure. Yes as per previous comments she does sometimes tend to wander into harms' way - either the barrel of your shotgun or a nasty, recently burst open dog!! or start firing at some distants target - sometimes giving away your position too soon....but all in all I don't think its too bad. You will find yourself genuinely smiling at the critical moments where she either bails you out of a clinch, resusitates you just in time or (with Rifle equipped - shes a better shot than you!!) pull off some cracking, arse-saving shots. You will also struggle not to smirk when you engage in (considerably improved/broadened) hand to hand, land a lovely haymaker, only for her to then follow up the attack on your target with a teeth shattering spinning kick - seems almost unfair!! But really once a lot of the initial charm starts to wane you realise that as the game progresses, lazily, the opportunites for co-op work (door opening, assisted jumps, work while being covered) start to become less and less frequent, so by the last few levels Sheva ends up becoming nothing more than a good looking and highly athletic pack-horse for all your ammo and supplies!!?!
But this is seriously after all this time in development etc, the only thing I can find that its genuinely new about the game. Everything that Resi 4 had strived to achieve and improve - gameplay, plot, innovation, story, characters, atmosphere and brave new ideas - Resi 5 turns up like a long lost half-brother with no real close resemblance, no real clue, just the same surname!!
To give some examples...1) Story - Resi 4 was an engaging, deep story line, creative, kept you guessing, with new twists at every corner - Resi 5, the story is vague and bog-standard...bad guy, mystery, ANOTHER new bioweapon, mystery, good guy track down bad guy and stick it to him, with some athletic packhorse following behind soaking up bullets. And thats it. Really. 2) Characters - with a couple of key good guys from the series returning - especially the one and only Chris Redfield - we should be off to a good start...but he very quickly drops straight into the stereoptype abyss - ridiculous rippling hollywood muscles, with the odd muttered macho guff...thats about all he does....unlike in Resi 4, Leon Kennedy was a welcome return and they actually grew and developed his story, the bad guys actually had a story and were genuinely loathsome and you even cared about his relationship and interaction with Ashley...but even though, with the big hook being "co-op/partnership play" - RELATIONSHIP should be everything - but its not - throughout the game Chris and Sheva have very little interaction at all, no real feel of bonding or partnership, she simply becomes more and more bland - along with the rest of the other bland one-dimensional characters. 3) Enemies - this is where Resi 4 really made its mark - the Ganados were a true and acceptable evolution of the Zombie, at first they were a genuinely tougher challenge, the bigger bosses were all genuinely diverse, clever and well realised and each needed a different approach to take them down - each encounter a genuinely thrilling event....but Resi 5's offering is a bit...meh...almost apologetic...we now have the Majini...the next step...well not really...so they can ride motorbikes and fire guns...great, but its all just the same again really - by 1/2 way through once your fighting ones wielding AK47s (really) it forces the game to feel different far away from the primitive danger and raw,animal agression of its predeccessors. The big boss battles...even worse...mainly just a batch of squirming tentacle meatbags, with no real strategy than to keep filling with lead - at one point they start revisting old foes (smacking of desperation) such as the ogre from Resi 4 and Lickers!!?? Even the final battle, seems really by the numbers - dissappointing. And finally 4) Atmosphere - which is I guess is too many the key factor - this is survival horror after all. As mentioned previously Resi 4 was brave - it didn't just replicate the eerie, quiet "whats round this corner" feel - it managed to improve on it - no mean feat - the enemies were livelier and much less shuffly and decomposing...but the FEELING was the same, that indescribable, nervy expectancy...absolute brilliance...but this is where Resi 5 really loses it - its not just the partnership that spoils it, yes this takes away the "all alone in an unimaginably dangerous environment", but thats not the only thing - there are just no scares, no suspense, the enemies/monsters are not at all unnerving, and by the time your simply wandering from gunfight to gunfight, exchaning automatic fire from behind walls (really) the whole Resi feel is gone - as others have said it just doesn't feel like a Resi game.
So in conclusion - its not a bad game, plenty of bangs and excitement for your buck - it will probaly be more dissappointing to people who always play Resi games....bizarrely although it has lovely graphics, boombastic sounds and effects and plenty of (admittedly addictive) goodies to unlock and weapons to upgrade (also very addictive!) The game itself itself is no real evolution from Resi 4 which is an enormous dissappointment - perhaps a wasted opportunity - or perhaps proof that Resi was SUCH a great game, even with all the additional graphical sheen and gimmickry, it was impossible to improve.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 25 March 2009
After 13 years and 7 main entries in the series, Resident Evil finally draws to a close. The question that needs to be asked is does it end with a whimper, or a grand finale?
Taking place in 2009, several years after Chris Redfield and Jill Valentine stormed the last Umbrella stronghold in southern Russia, Chris returns to the scene as he hunts down known terrorist Ricardo Irving alongside his new partner, Sheva Alomar. I won't reveal too much, as a lot has already been said by other reviewers, however what I will say is that the ending to the saga is something that you won't want anyone to spoil for you, especially if you've been waiting for this installment since the end of RE4.
Gameplay is always a debated topic amongst games. The new edition is co-op play in the main story, both on and offline. Many will find the feature of a second character strange, especially since Resident Evil was always about finding yourself alone in impossible situations with very little to defend yourself with. The good news is that Sheva allows a nice amount of variety in how you must play. Whether it's sniping from afar as she takes out enemies up close, or assisting you in moving a particularly large wooden crate, she rarely becomes a pain and if you're playing with a friend then you will more than likely see co-op as a welcome addition.
With the control scheme in this game, it's a case of if you still enjoy the original versions of Resident Evil 4 then you will love this. For those that don't like the idea of standing still to aim and shoot, I urge you to at least give it a few hours before making a final decision. The problem is that RE5 doesn't do anything ground-breaking in terms of how it plays; it retains the interactive cutscenes from it's Spanish-located predecessor, and leans towards frantic action over horror, but it doesn't give anything new to the genre. However, the action is fast and as a result - for me at least - it never bothered me having to stop to fight. I've played RE since the beginning and it really is more like a little tribute to the original game than a cheap shot at modern day gaming.
The amount of weapons in games are constantly expanding, and RE5 is rolling with the times in this area. Multiple variations of handguns, SMGs and shotguns are the basic artillery that you will find yourself handling in the opening chapters of the game, with more firearms coming to your disposal as you continue your journey.
Graphically it's hard to think of anything that can surpass the visual delight that is RE5. The sun beaming down onto the small wooden huts of an African village, the glow of a flame bouncing around an other-wise dark cave, the locations look incredible. The artistic design is something that truly should be praised. The appearance of everything in the game shows that the past 4 years have been a time for dedication from those working at the Capcom studios. In an era where graphics are constantly improving to push the abilities of HD to its full potential, it's very satisfying to know that this truly may be the best available for both PS3 and 360.
The poorly acted dialogue that has existed throughout the Resident Evil series remains in the last installment, though less recognisable than before. Cliches can still be found left, right and center, but again it's something that adds a little bit of character and personality, and has helped make RE what it is all these years. The sound effects are incredible, particularly when it comes to screams and shouts from the rapidly approaching enemies, and what music does exist in the game has been carefully chosen to suit the location around you.
The standard Majinis you will face share a lot in common with their Ganado counterparts, but whilst they may be the majority of enemies you face they vary in size, strength and weaponry. In addition to the other new enemies that ambush you along the way, a few favourites from past games make an appearance, but much like the plot, should be left to experience. Needless to say they keep the action varied and pacy.
RE5 is seen as a big departure from the series in two main areas: the first being that a lot is set during the day, with the sun bearing down upon you. The second being that it isn't generally terrifying. However, before you jump to any negative conclusions, the daytime aspects are actually used to particular effect. There are still dark caves and sewers, typical locations from past games, but the use of day allows for good contrast so that you can truly appreciate each new locale. With regards to the fear factor, I honestly never found RE4 to be particularly frightening, so to me it's not a huge departure from the game I loved 4 years ago. Several moments will have you jumping out of your skin as you try to run for your life from...well to say what would be spoiling a particularly excellent moment in the game. I'll just say that RE5 still has some spine-tingling moments, and the fact it isn't as scary as the original RE simply shows how the series has evolved from a survival horror to an action horror genre.
Whilst a large handful of people will play the demo and decide against playing the finished version, I recommend at least experiencing the game for a few hours. Resident Evil 5 is more than willing to reward long time fans of a much beloved videogame series. After the 12-20+ hour story (depending on your difficulty), a wealth of extras - that won't be disclosed here to prevent spoiling anything - open up for you to play. If you have enjoyed the series as long as I have, it's my belief you will find peace when you finally bring the decade-long plot to a conclusion.
In answer to my original question, Resident Evil 5 goes out with a loud, defiant, and very grand finale, and will be remembered for a long time to come.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 25 March 2009
Not a huge fan of RE, but I played RE4 and liked it very much, I think Capcom has done a good job on RE5 because I was so worried when I played their RE5 demo.
I have to say this game is not disaapointing at all, much better aiming and smoother than the demo. The cutscenes are amazing , their attention to detail is excellent, haha...you can even see Chris and Albert's pores clearly! Overall, I will give it a 5, the game is fun, smooth, intense, co-op, action packed movie style, and with high replability.
The improvements would be
1.Chris and Sheva should talk a bit more during gameplay, well I think so.
2.DO NOT COPY DMC3 and make Wesker look like Vergil with Matrix sunglass
I hate Capcom when they copy their another best selling game.
3. The only pazzle in Chp4 is boring and again copy !! so please come up with something new.
Anyway, the bad points are minor and do not affect the overall gameplay, so I highly recommend it,and have fun!!!