Resident Evil : Dead Aim (2003)
Reviewed By LessonNo5
Three years ago, in the summer of 2000, Capcom decided to
try to take its popular Resident Evil series in a new direction.
Thus, Resident Evil: Gun Survivor was born. A first
person shooter set after Resident Evil: Nemesis. To
put it mildly, the game was ill received by critics and rejected
by all but the most hardcore of horror gamers (like me). It
was often called the "poor man's" Resident Evil,
or "Resident Evil for dummies" because of
the comparatively low-grade graphics and gameplay when compared
to the insanely popular adventure series. Capcom also struck
out with shooter games like Dino Stalker. Now, three
years and three attempts later, Capcom releases Resident
Evil: Dead Aim. I'd have to say, I'm glad they kept trying.
Obviously, one cannot help but compare the game to it's predecessors
in it's genre. In that regard, it's apparent that there's
still a lot of work that needs to be done. Dead Aim
is definitely a good start, though.
If you remember back to when Gun Survivor was first
released, you must remember that the version of the game released
in the U.S. was not light-gun compatible. Now that the media
frenzy over video game violence has died down a bit, Capcom
must feel more comfortable producing games that are Guncon
ready. Usually, this doesn't matter much to me because it's
only a matter of time before I become so frustrated trying
to control a character with the Guncon2 that I inevitably
switch to the Dual Shock 2 in a matter of minutes.
In the case of Resident Evil: Dead Aim, however, I
played through with both. The majority of the game actually
takes place in a third person perspective, and switches to
first person only when you're ready to fire. In previous games,
this makes controlling with the Guncon even more difficult.
The controls, while cumbersome at first, quickly become second
nature when played with either. Unfortunately, I found it
virtually impossible to make a one-eighty without stopping
using either method of play. This is an important point, as
tucking tail and running seems to be the best tactic on the
more difficult game settings.
As far as the graphics are concerned, Dead Aim is definitely
not a "poor man's" Resident Evil. It's obvious
this game wasn't just slapped together to keep the genre alive.
The lighting effects alone are worth mentioning. Bruce, the
main character is equipped with a shoulder lamp (think Silent
Hill) that creates some very impressive shadows and reflections.
The only problems with the graphics seem to be a bit of slowdown
when the screen is busy, and little bit of clipping in certain
But, forget all that technical stuff... Let's get down to
brass tacks. What is it about, and is it scary? Well, for
anyone lucky enough to get a copy of Resident Evil Gaiden,
you'll recognize this bit: It starts out on a luxury cruise
ship. Presumably, the ship is owned by the nefarious Umbrella
Corporation and hosts a celebratory party in honor of their
newest accomplishment, the G and T virus hybridization. This
doesn't sit well with ex-Umbrella research scientist, the
androgynous Morpheus. He/She concocts a plan to take over
the ship using cronies, then infect everyone aboard with the
T-Virus. After this, someone must've told him/her that the
plan wasn't wicked enough, so he/she pulls a Dr. Evil and
holds the world ransom with a couple of warheads aimed at
major cities in China and the United Sates. Oh, and they're
loaded with enough of the virus to convert the entire population
into gibbering flesh-eaters. Enter our heroes. Bruce MacGavin
and Fongling are agents from the different countries with
the same goal in mind: Stop Morpheus at all costs. Then they
begin an adventure that takes them all over the ship, and
into an Umbrella facility on land.
In regards to the question of whether or not it lives up to
the great Resident Evil name, aka. "Is it scary?",
is a point of contention. It depends on what you loved about
the adventure series. Let me put it this way, this game does
not have the suspense build-up the other games did. Sometimes
it seems you're playing for a long time with no action, and
then suddenly you enter a room filled with twenty zombies.
A lot of those "Holy crap!" scares more than the
foreboding feeling and tension. The best parts really take
place on the cruise ship, when you say things to yourself
like, "Ok... There's a lady hanging from the ceiling...
That's pretty messed up right there." Some if it is sort
of reminiscent of the movie Ghost Ship. In other words,
if you liked the shock-type of scare, then this will definitely
do it for you.
Personally, I thought this game was nice and creepy. The new
enemies introduced are quite challenging, too. Naturally,
every Resident Evil seems to have a new variation on
Hunters, and this one's no different. It's a good thing the
game includes a wide arsenal of weapons to take care of them,
especially the pesky new Glimmers. The puzzles, on the other
hand, aren't exactly brain-busters. They're certainly challenging,
but nothing that will have to staring at the screen for an
hour wading through collected files and items trying to get
All in all, I had no major complaints with this game at all.
It's a nice solid zombie-killing game that offers something
the other Resident Evil games don't. Namely, a chance
to get up-close and personal with the undead bastards in an
environment free of predetermined camera angles. This is a
must-have for horror gamers and fans of the series.
|THE BEST PART...
|Well, you've got a hot Chinese secret agent with a name
that sounds A LOT like "Fondling".
|Your standard Resident Evil rules apply, but
this is a game with no predetermined camera angles. For
the harder modes, use you ammo sparingly and remember
that the weapons are tools. Use the right one for the
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