Resident Evil has, no questions asked, one of the most impressive histories in gaming. Since it’s inception on the original PlayStation to the soon-to-be-released Resident Evil 5 and everything in between, Capcom almost never lets down its ravenous fans who are craving some horrifying zombie action. Emphasis on almost.
While there have been games to reach legendary status, there have also been duds. Resident Evil: Survivor tried its hand at first person shooting, and failed. Resident Evil: Dead Aim tried the light gun thing, and failed. Resident Evil: Gaiden tried making handheld gaming scary. And failed. All the games mentioned eventually got it right. RE4 nailed the art of shooting (though not in first person), RE Umbrella Chronicles was a great light-gun game, and RE Deadly Silence made the Nintendo DS a dual screen fright fest. But there is one terrible game that has yet to have anything good come out of it. Resident Evil: Genesis for the mobile phones. Ugh.
Genesis’ story is based off the original with several similarities and differences. The similarities include all of the key points you’d expect. Raccoon City, zombies, zombie dogs, zombie monsters, zombie zombies, Arklay Mountains, and a giant mansion to explore as S.T.A.R.S. member Jill Valentine. So far it sounds like Resident Evil! That’s a good thing. But the differences aren’t subtle in the least. The mansion in the original is replaced with a new one that bears some slight similarities to the original, but the layout and way you explore it is totally new. And where the hell is Chris? Albert, check. Barry, check. Jill, check. Chris? Makes no since. But fresh ground, along with human flesh, is always a good thing, right?
In this case, no. Not by a long shot. Rooms in this mansion are way too big, you have to examine everything in every room so you can get random items to use at random times in random puzzles. But that wouldn’t be so bad if the controls weren’t so unbearable. The view is set up in an isometric angle, creating the illusion of 3d, and you move your character with the E, S, D and F or the trackball (don’t use the damn trackball) along with W, Space, or clicking the trackball for your action button. A standard layout, so it should work, right?
And again, in this case, no. The movement is classic RE “Tank” style which doesn’t work well at all with the isometric view. Movement is also grid based. Meaning push E, move forward one spot. Press S or D and your character rotates in the same spot, then you press E to move. It’s pretty bad, but you get used to it eventually.
And shooting! Man, shooting is horrible. Well the actual shooting itself is easy and kinda fun. Once you’ve aimed at a zombie a little gauge comes up with the very top notch filled in red. Hit the red and get a head shot. Otherwise try again. It’s the aiming that really gets you. The concept of moving a point on the grid-based layout with the trackball is pretty cool, but the execution is lacking which makes aiming a lot harder than you may think. This leads to several annoying deaths which is exceptionally frustrating if you forgot to save so that way you get to start way back where you were and then walk all the way to where you died with the horrid controls just to try again. Fuck that.
And you move so slow. Remember I said the rooms were way too big. It takes what seems like an eternity just to walk from one side of the mansion’s main room to the other. And you’d better make sure you check every item along the way, otherwise you’re gonna be backtracking. Very slowly.
As far as graphics and audio are concerned, they both suffice. Environments have a small amount of detail and character sprites are all basic, containing only a few frames per animation. But everything is easily distinguished and it doesn’t hurt your eyes to stare at. For sound, the background music is creepy and the effects are enough. Nothing is going to blow your mind, but it gets the job done.
Now for entertainment value. I spent 10 dollars on a game I wanted simply because it was Resident Evil. I knew it would be bad, I just didn’t know how bad. You’ll play it every once in a while when you’re taking an abnormally long dump or if you find yourself sitting in an autoshop waiting for your oil to get changed, but it’s not worth the 10 bucks at all.
Resident Evil has another down to add to its roller coaster history. $10 dollars is an inexcusable rip-off for a game that does almost nothing right. Don’t buy this game unless you really want to see just how bad a Resident Evil game can be. If you buy it for any other reason, you’re just feeding this undead cash cow Capcom is trying to capitolize upon. Maybe the next mobile Resident Evil game they make will be decent. I doubt it, but it’s nice to dream.
- Resident Evil
- Graphics and sound
- New mansion
- Story is just a bad retelling
- Where is Chris Redfield?
Overall: 4.5/10 (Bad)
Story: 5.0/10 (Pathetic retelling of the original)
Controls: 3.0/10 ( Hand cramping madness, aiming sucks)
Graphics and Audio: 6.5/10 (It works)
Entertainment Value: 3.5/10 (You’ll get frustrated really quick and be done with it)