After all that, I didn’t take my own advice; home with a shitty stomach (as per usual), I’m now 5 chapters into Resident Evil 6. Per Kotaku’s advice, I skipped around a bit and did 2 chapters of Leon, 2 chapters of Jake, and (at the time of this writing – late Friday night) I just finished 1 chapter of Chris.
So after 7 or 8 hours or so, here’s what I can say: it’s not the gigantic turd I’d been led to expect; but neither is it hot shit. It is a weird, frustrating mess, to be sure, but it’s also really ambitious, and I can certainly appreciate that they’re not just recycling the same old crap like other big-named franchises I could name.
Because it’s getting late and because this upcoming weekend is busy, here are some random, unedited thoughts that I’m just going to throw out there:
- you can’t pause, which is ridiculous. no reason for it.
- there is a tutorial to keep you up to speed on how the QTEs work, but not one for how to manipulate your inventory so that, say, you can toss a grenade.
- not scary. at all. the monsters aren’t creepy, and can also be a bit unintentionally funny at times (like the upside-down lobster-monsters in Chapter 1 of Chris/Piers).
- the script is ridiculous; cliche after cliche; there is no context for anything. things just happen and it’s unclear why you should be concerned about them.
- if one character has something to tell the other character, they should have a very good reason for waiting to tell them besides “you wouldn’t believe me if i told you”, especially when they’re shooting monsters.
- the melee controls are awful and inconsistent, and sometimes are hilarious; at least the AI looks ridiculous when they miss on their melee attacks, too, though.
- i was super-addicted to the medallion hunting in RE5; consequently I’m looking at every nook and cranny in RE6, although I’m still missing some (which is annoying, especially when the game shows you one right before a door closes that you can’t open again); more annoying, though, is that the payoff is simply a text description for a story beat. on the plus side, though, the environmental graphics looks great.
- enemy placement is absurd. the 2nd chapter of Jake’s story is in a dark snowy mountain pass with no visibility, which follows a sudden helicopter crash. why are there enemies there? hell, why are there LADDERS there? that whole level is insane.
- i’m fucking done with enemies who won’t die.
- the game is remarkably inconsistent in terms of telling you how you’re doing. some regular zombies die in one shot; other regular zombies take a whole clip to the face. some regular zombies die with one boot stomp; other zombies will override your stomping animation and chew your face off. and forget about boss monsters; there is absolutely no way of knowing if anything you’re doing is working or not. if you stay alive long enough while pumping bullets in its direction, you may end up killing it; or you may get killed by a random zombie who’s suddenly spawned behind you, because the camera is terrible.
And yet, despite all this, despite how nonsensical the story is and how stupid the characters are, and despite the fact that I’ve wanted to give up on the game at least a dozen times today, I’m kinda still compelled to keep going. I don’t know that I’ll end up finishing it, especially with XCOM coming out, but I kinda want to keep pressing on. So we’ll see how that goes.