Resident Evil 6 is finally upon us. Over the last week I’ve been playing the game whenever I've had moments to spare, and I'm still a long ways from completing what Capcom has to offer this time out. Seriously, the game is massive; I’ve only finished one of the game’s four campaigns after roughly 10 hours of play. That’s why I’m not doing a proper review; I just haven’t seen everything yet. But I have played the game long enough to point out what it does right and what it does wrong. So here we go.
Bang for your buck.
As stated above, Resident Evil 6 is a huge endeavor. The title comes with four campaigns to play – three available to start and a fourth opening up when you finish the others – all of which can be played solo or cooperatively with a buddy or stranger online. So far I’ve logged roughly 10 hours into the game and have only finished the game’s first campaign – Leon. For those keeping score, that means one campaign in RE6 is longer than all of Resident Evil 5.
It appears Capcom took the criticism of RE5’s length to heart, providing a new Resident Evil that spits in the face of modern games that offer up a 6-hour campaign and call it a day. Oh, and I still have The Mercenaries mode and Agent Hunt mode to play once I finish all the story campaigns. So much content, so little time.
You can move and shoot now.
This is a big one. While moving and shooting is nothing new for 99% of modern games, for Resident Evil it’s a big deal. Not only can you strafe and fire this time out, but you can also dive onto the floor and continue shooting from a prone position, as well as slide and shoot to remain mobile during the tougher boss battles. The controls in Resident Evil 6 remind me a lot of how you handle Isaac Clarke in Dead Space 1 & 2. Things are a lot more fluid this time out, and while not perfect, the tank controls of old are long gone. Thank God.
Zombies are back.
I know a lot of people were upset when the Resident Evil series shied away from zombies with Resident Evil 4. Even RE5 stayed clear of the classic monsters. Well, for Resident Evil 6, zombies have returned; at least in Leon’s campaign.
The zombies this time out attack in large swarms and have the ability to run (terrifying!). It also takes a massive amount of ammunition to put them in the dirt for good. All in all, it’s good to have classic zombies back in Resident Evil.
Leon’s campaign is RE4 redux.
Like I mentioned previously, I’ve only finished Leon’s section of Resident Evil 6. With that said, fans of the now-classic Resident Evil 4 will be happy to know Leon’s campaign in RE6 plays a lot like that fantastic GameCube title from 2005. There’s a creepy atmosphere for the majority of the campaign, and you even have to do some light puzzle work to progress forward. Sure, there are still plenty of bombastic action set pieces, but they are offset by a slower, scarier pace for the majority of the experience.
The game is beautiful.
You probably can see how pretty RE6 is by looking at the screenshots in this article. The game is truly a gorgeous beast. While every pixel is not perfect, and there are some wonky cloth physics here and there, the rest of RE6 is pure, unadulterated eye candy. At times your significant other or roommate might even mistake RE6 for a movie when they casually pass by the television.
Loading screens come too often and last too long.
Here’s one of my few gripes with the game thus far. There are far too many loading screens interrupting dramatic, blood-pumping moments. They also last for far too long, leaving you twiddling your thumbs in anticipation of getting back to the action. Maybe I’ve been spoiled on Max Payne 3, which didn’t have a single loading screen. That’s possible. But it doesn’t change the fact that the loading screens in Resident Evil 6 quickly become a nuisance mere moments into RE6’s first campaign.
Too many creature gauntlets.
There’s a reason the first campaign took me nearly 10 hours to complete: there’s a good amount of padding going on. In order to extend the longevity of RE6, Capcom decided it was a good idea to throw in a bunch of creature gauntlets to extend the length of each campaign. You’ll frequently be tasked with “survive the [insert monster name here] attack” mission objectives. Some times these make sense, other times they feel like cheap excuses to stretch out the campaign. Overall, this hurts the story’s pacing.