Resident Evil: Revelations 2 Re-Ignites My Love for the Franchise

RE Rev 2Like every other person alive, I loved Resident Evil 4.

But the 5th mainline installment had somehow managed to become a completely different game, and not for the better. Then it got even worse: I thought I would never play another Resident Evil game after Resident Evil 6.

I’ll now admit that I did myself a grave disservice by allowing my ennui to get the better of me and avoiding playing the first Resident Evil: Revelations — a mistake I am told is suffered only by the foolish. But perhaps I will eventually sit down and play it, especially after falling in love with the IP all over again thanks to the excellent Resident Evil: Revelations 2.

This episodic title from Capcom breathes much needed life into this stale corpse of a game series, reminding me why I loved it in the first place.

Right from jump — with the introduction of the game’s characters, tone, and setting — I fell right back into the swing of things, catching up with old faces with new hairstyles and just waiting for shit to get real. Real crazy, that is. And I assure you, it does not take long.

RE Rev 3This time out, the controls actually work in your favor, and the characters and voice acting are a far cry from their cringe-worthy ancestors. The zombies (or whatever the heck they are at this point) are challenging and disturbing. The firepower feels appropriate and concise, and the pacing is pitch-perfect.

The game shows you what is needed to unlock a door or solve a puzzle simply by approaching it (on the normal setting at least), a true blessing. By limiting the number of items needed to unlock those doors or solve those puzzles — and by delivering a much more linear progression structure — Capcom creates a game with less backtracking and less padding on the run time.

So far, I’ve survived four grueling-yet-not-insurmountable arena battles by sheer skill and determination. And damn if those didn’t feel immensely satisfying.

RE Rev 4As usual, resource management is key, though leveling up skills and weaponry is easy and the payoffs are noticeable. Even the secondary characters who don’t use guns aren’t completely useless. Playing as Moira or Natalia, while the AI controls the mainstays, is fun, offering a different play style and resulting in additional items and collectibles.

On top of all of this is a simple yet effective stealth system. Ah, stealth.

I’ve only completed the first chapter and a half, but I’m actively looking forward to everything Resident Evil: Revelations 2 still has to offer.