Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City

For the first time in longer than I can remember, I purchased a video game and completed it in the same day. The game in question? Resident Evil: Operation Racoon City. I have some pretty mixed feelings about this game.

As the name of my blog might have indicated, I'm a sucker for anything when it comes to killing zombies. I was weirdly excited about the fact that I was able to play through a large portion of Dead Island before firearms were even an option. If you think this is weird, sit down and discuss your zombie plan with me sometime. I made a hobby out of telling guys in bars why their chosen firearm or local megastore hideout was the reason they would be dead within five minutes. As huffy as they got about being schooled by a girl, very few of them were able to fault my logic. When it comes to zombie killing goodness, Resident Evil: ORC definitely filled this need for me. I will admit that it was mostly enemies from previous games (with one exception that I won't ruin for anyone), but considering the fact that the game occurs during the same timeline as Resident Evil 2 you can't really fault them.

What really bothered me about the game was that it didn't feel like a Resident Evil game. We've been complaining for years about the fact that you can't move and use your gun at the same time in Resident Evil and to some degree I came to miss that. With this game it seems like they made more of a push toward the "I won't buy a game if it doesn't have multiplayer modes out the wazoo" crowd. I'm a bit of a loner when it comes to video games. I like playing by myself. If I'm terrible or amazing, it doesn't matter. I don't have to listen to twelve year olds talk trash because I'm a girl... which may sound like a little thing, but there comes a time when you find yourself telling a mouthy twelve year old to come back when his balls drop and he no longer sounds like a little girl and you just shake your head at yourself. I will say that since those days I've become a lot better at not engaging with the ignorant trolls who think that it requires a penis to operate a video game controller. But I digress. The game basically plays like Left 4 Dead co op with a little Gears of War mixed in for good measure. I haven't touched the multiplayer non-campaign modes yet. I will say they did a good job giving you an even mix of male and female characters. It doesn't really matter one way or the other, but it is nice to have the option.

My criticism doesn't mean that I didn't enjoy it, but I will say that if you are expecting the experience we have come to love from Resident Evil games I would simply wait for Resident Evil 6 and hope that they move away from this squad based first person shooter action. It's a far cry from the beginnings of the survival horror genre. These days Silent Hill - no matter how convoluted the stories get - has the market cornered there.

So what's next for this gamer girl? I'm spending the next few hours playing Alan Wake: American Nightmare and ruminating on the role of fathers and husbands in video games. It's been a topic on my mind since I started noticing the predominant role of father figures in video games and a distinct lack of women in similar roles. I also have Silent Hill Downpour to play through and the I Am Alive demo to check out.

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