Game Over Online ~ Resident Evil 0

GameOver Game Reviews - Resident Evil 0 (c) Capcom, Reviewed by - Father Doogle

Game & Publisher Resident Evil 0 (c) Capcom
System Requirements GameCube
Overall Rating 93%
Date Published Thursday, January 2nd, 2003 at 05:24 PM

Divider Left By: Father Doogle Divider Right

There has been only a handful of times when I’ve been absolutely spellbound by a game; be it for graphics or gameplay or a straight up solid game. In this category of acclaim, I would have to list Mario 64, Soul Calibur (DC), and now Resident Evil: Zero.

I am a huge fan of the Resident Evil series. However, I booted up this title with a non-bias, non-fan boy mindset and was completely floored with my experience. Everyone is up in arms about the graphics; I would have to agree with these testaments. The backgrounds have expanded to smooth animations, bringing the game into a whole new life-like realm. For example, during your exploration, you are convinced that you have to get on top of the moving train cars in order to reach a section of the train. This operation alone is scary, since it seems like the train is moving at break-neck speeds. Oh, but I forgot to mention that it's pouring rain and your character has to move slow and shield their eyes. These fumbled words cannot begin to describe the eye candy on-screen. I seriously dropped my controller in disbelief to what I was witnessing. This is not an exaggeration.

The enemies also have silky smooth animations with only the best collision detection. I like to know when I cap a zombie that it will react accordingly, even in his decay-ridden appendage. The wide array of opponents was given extra thought too. You would think that after five quality games, Capcom would be running short on creative ammo, but the new threats are far from uninspired. The A.I within these monstrosities aren't the brightest crayons in the box, but then again you have to put yourself in the shoes of a zombie or a disease-filled cayenne. What would you be thinking? Wouldn't you want to just suck up Rebecca's blood and not think about being tactical about it? Ok, that was sick, but you get the point.

The partner aspect of the game is nothing short of basic, yet profoundly genius. The slick switching between characters couldn't be any more natural, not to mention the loading time is but two or less seconds (and is covered up by a cool heartbeat transfer transition). The computer (your other character) can be set to watch your back, though many argue that this aspect is dicey. I was hard pressed to see their point. Here's a situation that you will be often put in: Zombies are closing in and you are running low on bullets in your handgun. You hesitate to reload, when a zombie lunges forward finding himself on top of your partner while trying in vain to tear out their jugular. You react with lighting speed and shoot the zombie off almost instantaneously (there is no friendly fire), saving your partner’s life and/or health depletion.

Along with the awe-inspiring graphics, the sound makes the creepy atmosphere that much more pant-wetting. Some of the old tricks are still being used to scare gamers (dogs or birds jumping through windows), but I still find myself jumping at the intense moments. There’s just something about a crazy violin player who is only talented at ripping on one string. Why does that increase the intensity of a situation? I have no idea, but Capcom spared no expense and hired the best one-string violin players, which probably doubled as the people who smashed metal and glass all over the place.

I never complained about the “magic” boxes in every Resident Evil game. I understood that it would be basically illogical (not to mention frustrating) that you could pass on in a game and not have that certain item readily available. It would just plain suck because you don’t know the future and thus not know what you will need to succeed. Well, they have done away with my precious magic boxes and instead put an exchanging function between partners, although you can also just leave items on the ground to pick up later, and you can look up on your map to see where you have placed them in case you forget. This is highly disorganized. It can also be a pain trying to pick up the right item if there is a bunch of other items nearby. Yuck.

Veterans of the series won’t complain about the controls, they’re the same ol’ same ol’. And quite frankly, I wouldn’t have it any other way, unless you want to get all Max Payne on the situation. In rare occasions, combat can be quite difficult because of camera placement. However, the auto aim function and team attack option usually compensates this downfall.

This game is a difficult one. Using most of your resources, even for a seasoned vet, is almost imperative. Since some of the situations you’re put in are team sensitive, you will find yourself restarting the game numerous times to find the best possible way to use or not use your partner. This can be an herb and ammo sucking process so make sure you use your reserves wisely. Luckily I had a sweet strategy guide by my side to give me the skinny on rooms, item locations, and slick tips on how to bypass tough episodes: BradyGames' official strategy guide, I couldn’t recommend it more.

Finding out the roots and causes of the happenings in and out of the Raccoon City tragedy have been an interest of mine for a number of years. It’s fascinating putting together all the pieces of the puzzle that have been brought together in each game. Though I must argue that changing the infamous mansion every single time kind of seems weird. But I can see the point. Who would want to explore the same mansion? The character development is also a treat to watch. The interaction between Rebecca and Billy is a sympathetic one. You want the best for each of them and you want to see an episode of Blind Date occur between them.

Fans of the series rejoice! This Resident Evil has my vote for being the best one to date. The action, graphics, added gameplay, puzzle solving and sound are just flat-out impressive and astounding. My controller-dropping awe to the game’s graphics cannot prepare anyone; you’ll just have to see them. That’s why this holiday season you should spend it inside, shooting the heads off those less fortunate zombies.


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