Survive the Biggest Horror Yet (E3 2012)
Resident Evil 6 is shaping up to be a title with something for every type of horror fan. With 3 lengthy campaigns that offer completely different gameplay experiences, the October 2nd release will be the one to beat.
The RE6 demo on the E3 showfloor offered a good chunk of gameplay, with all three scenarios available to play. I took Leon and Helena for a spin first, and later I tried a bit of Jake and Sherry's section, so I saw a completely different style of gameplay in each campaign.
First off, for those expecting Leon's campaign to bring them back to the style of the series before Resident Evil 4, keep on dreaming. The control system of both RE4 and RE5 is back, but it's used in a more scripted style in this section, adding tension and slow-pacing to create an atmosphere that makes the player press on to see exactly what will happen next. Resident Evil 6's environments were dark and heavily scripted, and characters weren't able to run or ready their gun for the sake of story. Leon and Helena start out not knowing each other, and again, Leon meets another woman he can't trust, but he has to, as the new woman in his life claims to have answers he needs. Since his partner is so mysterious and has just killed a zombified president, Leon presses through a scene where a dinner party was supposed to have occurred when the two see a mysterious man. The men coughs and has symptoms of an infection, but the two press on and help the man find his daughter, who later succumb to their infection in true Resident Evil style.
Jake and Sherry's gameplay is definitely the most action-packed Resident Evil campaign yet. Almost feeling like a mercenaries mode campaign, enemies often come out of nowhere and the two characters are constantly on the run, beginning the campaign. Resident Evil 6's combat is even faster as enemies can be defeated only using melee and the enemies themselves start out with guns similar to the ones in later parts of RE5's campaign. Item boxes are everywhere and contain items such as remote mine traps. When dying (which is definitely how I ended my playthrough), the characters go through a state similar to Left 4 Dead, where they can shoot before they bleed out.
Throughout both Resident Evil 6 campaigns the action never seemed to stop, and even the menus couldn't separate the player from the action. The inventory system is slick and appears as an overlay in the game's environments. There seems to be more space for items, compared to the 9 that each player was allowed in RE5, which should lead to players to be well prepared for more situations or even keep the same inventory without having to constantly quit and equip the right weapon.
Also shown off behind closed doors at the Capcom booth was a new addition to the Resident Evil 6 campaign: the ability to play certain sections with 4 players. At certain points in the campaigns, characters with cross paths such as the one shown off, with Leon and Helena meeting up with Jake and Sherry. This scene happens in China with Leon wondering questioning Sherry's purpose for being there. The reunion is interrupted as a huge monster comes by and the 4 must engage in battle with it. This monster had a contraption on its back that would trap one person and the other three must save the person captured before they were crushed. In situations such as this, the game will prompt the player before beginning the scene to determine the matchmaking; players can play against A.I., a random player, or if the timing is coordinated properly, friends. The mode is meant to be more random, so it's harder to encounter friends in order to give the other characters a feeling of uncertainty when teaming up with them. At certain points, the teams may even switch, with Jake teaming up with Helen as the four get separated by a train after the boss battle.
The RE6 campaign looks better each time it’s shown, but modes such as Crossover that allow replayability in the campaign as well as multiplayer have only been hinted at through pre-order sheet and store listings, so we'll have to wait to find out more about that. Still, Resident Evil 6 seems to be shaping up to be the biggest and most varied horror game yet.
Akil is a big fan of video games and music, specifically fighting games and R&B. Other interests include game design, and comedy. His background in game design combined with his unique worldview and sense of humor makes him someone to follow.
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