Dead Rising. Capcom (2006) XBox 360

dead rising boxart

I know what you’re thinking. This isn’t retro. How dare I play a game from 9 years ago.

But you know what? I wanted to revisit this…

Otis

It seems strange to start a review on a secondary character. But you will grow to hate Otis, this guy is a DOUCHE. He will call you constantly, and if you have the temerity to get attacked by a zombie, he will call back and harangue you with “Don’t cut me off like that, it’s rude!” DICK.

The one saving grace to this utter turd-encrusted-douchebag, is that in Infinity mode, you can beat him to death with your bare hands.

Frank

For somebody who gets as little screen time as Otis, it is amazing how much more you will dislike him over Frank. But Frank… Man he is a prick of the highest magnitude. I honestly can’t think of a main character I have disliked more. I can’t put my finger on it, but I wanted Frank (and me by extension) to fail.

Even here you want to punch Frank in the face!

Even here you want to punch Frank in the face!

The Story

Remember Dawn of the Dead, that “biting” satire/horror about consumer culture? (pun intended)

That is basically the premise of the game, with added crap about Terrorists, Genetically Modified cattle, and Zombie bees… I don’t know, but basically you run around a mall (SHOPPING CENTRE) rescuing survivors, killing Psychopaths, and attempting to uncover the truth.

THE FUCKING AI

Right, so Otis, and Frank are dicks, the AI is worse. The AI is bad especially for 2006., IT IS ATROCIOUS. Most of the game is spent escorting survivors from A to B. This should be a fairly straight forward process, but my god is this toe-curlingly frustrating. It can take you 10 minutes to move somebody 10 meters. Survivors will run in a straight line, even if that path includes 30 flesh eating zombies.

Male survivors can handle most weapon types, but I usually give them a gun, it gives them range, and they stand and shoot. If you give them a close combat weapon, they’ll usually stand there and get eaten.

The women… They can’t do shit. Sorry equality/feminism, but the woman in Dead Rising ARE infact, useless. Only the “frumpy” ones can use (minimal) weaponary. The rest of the woman, you have to hold their hands, or carry them… Yes… If you don’t hold their hands, they cry. But remember, we can’t say this is an issue, because GamerGate was about ethics in journalism, not a misrepresentation of woman.

Due to the AI, you won’t want to reply the game, and you certainly don’t want to attempt some of the achievements like, “Rescue 50 SURVIVORS”, or “Frank the Pimp” (escort 8 ladies at once), as they are not worth attempting.

You can make some cutscenes somewhat sinister with your clothing choice.

You can make some cutscenes somewhat sinister with your clothing choice.

The text

The text is totally illegible. Don’t bother trying to read it unless you are 2mm from the screen.

Even on a HD Projector the text is awful. The added bllom on my camera doesn't help...

Even on a HD Projector the text is awful. The added bloom on my camera doesn’t help…

Infinity Mode

A big disappointment in Dead Rising is a lack of proper sandbox mode. I wanted to just run around and kill zombies, no story, just zombies.

What we do have is “Infinity Mode”, which despite it’s name, isn’t infinite. Here you get a full mall to explore, with limited food supplies. Every 100 seconds your health will delete by 1. So assuming you are not bitten (and have 10 health bars), you need to eat every 16 minutes. Since the food found in the mall doesn’t restock, you have to go and kill survivors and psychopaths to get food. It is fun in the short term, but it gets old really quick.

There are achievements for 5 day survivor, and 7 day survivor. This isn’t hard to do in the sense of the challenge of the game, but FUCKING HELL IT IS BORING. 1 day (game time) is 2 hours (real time) if you don’t include loading times, so yesterday in 11 hours, I got the 5 day survivor achievement, before giving up and committing suicide.

I survived 5 days

I survived 5 days

To do this, you have to go kill the daily spawn of psychopaths, collect the food, and then wait. Sound fun? It isn’t. Boredom is your worst enemy here.

Psychopaths spawn in certain places at 12-7, and 7-12. I can get round the mall and kill everyone by 02:00, meaning I have 17 game hours (close to 90 minutes) of nothing to do. I watched Community on Netflix, but you can’t relax, as every 14 minutes you need to go feed Frank.

I really think they should have adjusted the clock for this. If it was an hour = 1 day it would have been much more fun, as it is, you are prone to severe spouts of boredom.

I tried to stand here for 24 hours, but I discovered I didn't have an adequate food supply...

I tried to stand here for 24 hours, but I discovered I didn’t have an adequate food supply…

Overtime Mode

Like most games that run out of ideas, Dead Rising adds the military/men with guns for the last quarter of the game. Can’t think of ending? Government Conspiracy solves everything.

I like that there are 6 endings depending on your actions, and where in the plot you got to. Overtime Mode is the canon ending to the game, but doesn’t really make any sense. I dunno… It was quick easy conveniant story telling…

Conclusions

The game is actually pretty fun the first time you play it, killing zombies with pretty much everything in a mall IS fun, the story (while starts to drag) keeps the game going, and you have a little free time to explore and find secret survivors, awesome shops.

HOWEVER, the time limit is too strict at times, and the atrocious AI is more than a little game breaking. Meaning that overall Dead Rising simply isn’t that good.

Pros: Has moments of genuine fun, exploring the Mall is fun

Cons: Otis, Frank, the AI, lack of replay value, last quarter of the game

63%

Isabelle actually said "Quit horsing around" BEST COINCIDENCE EVER"

Isabelle actually said “Quit horsing around” BEST COINCIDENCE EVER”

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