By CHRIS GAINOR
Resident Evil has come a long way from the Survival Horror genre the series created for console gaming. As Resident Evil 4 dramatically changed the series, Resident Evil 5 is a true sequel to the previous.
While there is nothing revolutionary brought to the table in Resident Evil 5, it does bring several developments to the table from other games. The game does bring a bit of a conclusion to the overall storyline from the series.
The storyline stars Chris Redfield, from the original Resident Evil, and a new partner Sheva. Together they are investigating a possible spread of a bio-terrorism weapon, Las Plagas, capable of creating controllable zombies in a fictional African country.
As the pair races to find the mastermind behind the weapon, they uncover a underlying conspiracy to infect the world. The storyline seemingly ties up the overarching storyline from the previous games. This includes where Umbrella began their research on viruses for zombies and a conclusion to the series largest villain, Wesker.
Resident Evil 5 features large detailed maps great for exploration. Maps range from shanty towns in the harsh desert to marshlands and the classic Resident Evil experimental laboratories. Maps contain various collectibles including treasure, for upgrading weapons, and emblems to unlock new costumes.
The maps seemingly demand multiple runs through to be able to find all that they contain.
While the game is realatively short Resident Evil 5 does provide options to encourage additional trips through the game. Resident Evil 5 provides a relatively short campaign ranging from eight to ten hours.
The game has four difficulties, amateur, normal, veteran and the unlockable pro. Amateur is amazingly easy while pro features enemies providing near, if not fatal attacks even from simple zombies. Infinite ammo for a weapon becomes unlocked after beating the game and fully upgrading that weapon.
The series staple The Mercenaries mode, a race to kill off as many zombies during a limited time, is also unlocked after beating the game on any difficulty. Resident Evil 5 also provides leaderboards to compare times in various maps of the storyline and scores in The Mercenaries mode. Capcom, the developers behind the series, has announced there will be an additional deathmatch type mode to be available as downloadable content in the coming weeks.
There are two main devices that prevent Resident Evil 5 from being a truly outstanding game. The first being the controls of the game. While Resident Evil 4 provided the same type of controls, it was a great step forward for the series to provide better aim.
That was 2005, since then there have been great strides in perfecting the over the shoulder camera shooters such as Gears of War.
The second issue of the game provides is the terrible AI partner for the forced cooperative play.
I often found my partner stuck in buildings or watching as zombies approached without firing. I often found my partner being more useful as a pack mule carrying my various supplies. This problem does have a simple remedy though, find a friend to play with.
While Resident Evil 5 will not please fans of the beginning of the series, it is a wonderful stand alone game.
With a high replay value and an enjoyable gaming experience Resident Evil 5 is worth playing.
I highly recommend picking it up but remember to bring a friend as you traverse the heart of Africa hunting zombies.