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Operation Raccon City: A blueprint for ruining what's fun about multiple genres
on April 18, 2012
My star rating speaks for itself for the most part, so I'll just attempt to justify it.
The game has bugs in the very first level, in what should be one of the most polished and epic parts (where you see Birkin)
The cover system at times is unresponsive, or I can't take cover behind things I should really be able to cover behind.
Many reviews label enemies in this game as "bullet sponges". They're right. In a level you have to fight 3 Mr. X's. Their only weak spot seems to be the head, and I can probably mathematically prove that I put enough bullets into one of their heads to easily fill its volume and more. There's suspension of disbelief, and then there's, "Ok I've been shooting at this thing for about 3 minutes, why won't it die?" This was only on Normal difficulty by the way.
The game is designed around co-op, given how the team mates specialize to help make a "squad", but local co-op isn't in the game. WHAT? The AI is terrible. They'll give you first aid... some times... when they feel like it. They'll never revive you. They get themselves into stupid situations and get themselves killed, but you'll need to revive them if, for no other reason, than you need them as a diversion so the big baddies won't take turns knocking you to the ground in an inescapable chain of death. Yeah I'm bitter.
There are no vehicles, no interesting objectives in missions, what should be epic zombie battles can quickly get annoying if you get infected with a virus several times in succession, since this means you will turn into a zombie and die because you probably ran out of antivirus, and the computer is too dumb to pick some up and heal you.
Little things like this make the game feel grindy and chorish. The weapon unlock system takes FOREVER given how short the campaign is. This is exacerbated by the fact that the levels aren't interesting to replay given how long each individual level is. I tried to farm points but all I could think at the level select screen was "Oh god this level again?!" with every level I highlighted.
The enemies have a glazed look over them which is... odd, but it isn't game breaking. What's worse is the only resident evil characters I remember seeing in the game are: Mr. X, Hunk, Birkin, Nemesis, Leon, Claire, Sherry Birkin. On the outset this sounds like a lot... except for you interact with them in extremely boring ways. Hunk is just kind of "there" in your first mission, Birkin is buggy as hell. What should be an epic first encounter feels like, "Oh god not this again!" Nemesis is a "boss fight" where you sit behind cover and pump like 20 clips of ammo into his head until he "gives up" so you can put something in his head. You run from or kill Mr. X, and well anyone who followed the game knew about Leon. I'm very let down by the way they handled that. It's outbreak, Raccoon City! There should be carnage in the streets, Tyrants mowing down zombies, Nemesis fighting Mr. X, Leon popping out with a rocket launcher to say hi, the U.S. military doing whatever they can just to get a foothold through the carnage but being easily overwhelmed.
Mayhem, objective based combat, and lots of interesting zombie moments should have littered this game, but what we got were perfect boxes withing boxes which describe our levels. Sometimes infinite enemies will pour in, sometimes you have to kill your way though (with little help from the game), sometimes you peek around the corner and the zombies and military are playing drinking games just waiting for you to show up so they can double team you for god knows what reason.
If I haven't made my case, I don't know what will.
So let's do a quick recap. The weak cover system, bullet sponge enemies, and lack of interesting objectives make this a terrible third person shooter. The lack of real horror moments, cheap mechanics, and no interesting use of RE characters make this a terrible game in the RE series, not even deserving to be called a "spin off" game. No local co-op despite the game's design around it, and a terrible AI ensure this game fails at basically whatever genre it was trying to be. They should have payed me to play this game.