I just finished Resident Evil: 5 for the… 5th? maybe 6th? time. Why do I keep playing this game so much? I have no idea. It all started when my older brother rented it from blockbuster in 2009. He forgot to return it for a long time, thus was charged with the full price of the game. From that point, we decided to make the best of it, and play the mercenary modes, unlock the unlockables, play on harder difficulties, do the Extra downloadable missions, and so on. In between our cooperative playing, I completed it once on my own (just to see what would happen if I gave the A.I. version of Sheva the silliest weapon combinations). Then, my best friend and I decided to have a go at it. Now… my wife and I have beaten it once and are currently playing the DLC and Mercenaries Reunion. Sheesh, for a game I don’t like that much… it really has a hard time escaping my life. I guess it really doesn’t get old.
I’ve always had the opinion that RE:5 is a crappy game. I actually dislike it. The story is pathetic and boring, and I always skip the cinematics. The character control is almost never short of annoying – the way they sluggishly move around in the heat of combat and can’t move when firing have to bend over when picking up things. The boss battles SUUUUUCK. In fact, towards the end of the main story, more parts suck than are fun, and the parts that are fun don’t last very long. The characters are complete bogus too. Chris is ridiculous looking and will seemingly stop at nothing to save the world. I don’t know if he’s brave, or just an absolute moron. Sheva is completely flat… but not in her chest and rear – which is what really matters to gamers and game designers, apparently. And this Wesker fella is not all that fun to hate; he’s just kind of tiresome and a nuisance. So much about this game is a nuisance, in fact. So much to get frustrated with.
But I never get so frustrated or annoyed that I shut off the game. Why? I think it’s because of this aspect that the game does right – the basic combat situations. Everyone wants that beautiful zombie game where you just go around blowing away zombie heads with a shotgun, and, despite some reluctant hoop-jumping, this game has that. I think it’s the monster designs and the complexity of the their differentiating needs of how to be killed that makes the combat very thrilling at its best moments. There’s the twisty heads that require flashbangs, the running dogs that require speed and reaction time, the big black dudes that require a powerful shot, the shooting zombies you have to take cover from, the chainsaw guys that you have to constantly run from, the zombie-archers you have to snipe, tar-worm monsters that have to be burned, the lickers that should be destroyed before they close in on you, the giant insects that require great accuracy in a system of shooting specific locations… Yup, we don’t just fight zombies anymore, but any weird creation the makers could come up with (what a ridiculous idea – a zombie that knows his way around an AK-74). Only a third of these creations have anything to do with zombies; like, what is that crazy giant ogre boss in the tribal area?? That’s not a zombie! But with all these different killing tools at your disposal at all times, it becomes quite fun to creatively and effectively move through the levels. The inventory also helps to keep things interesting – collecting treasures, selling things to make money, upgrading the weapons, buying new crap, organizing them in your little tic-tac-toe board of slots… As much as I hate the thought of knifing open all those barrels just for some ammo, it really wouldn’t be the same game without it.
What makes RE:5 an overall good experience is two-fold. The first reason is the combat experience that I explained in the previous paragraph. The second is the cooperation. Like I said before, I dislike, almost despise this game, but, I find it hard to think of a game that does co-op better. The way you are your partner take on different roles and aid each other is near-perfect in RE:5. The hard part is deciding which one to be when I’m playing with someone else. Do I want to be little miss sexy-ass, or the muscle-bound freak? Well, I guess it’s not that hard of a decision.
I’ve been playing RE:5 for years now. I don’t know why I do this to myself. The game is wretched. But it’s fun… in a caveman sort of way. I probably will not stop having runs with it anytime soon. Maybe one of these days, I will invest in Resident Evil 6, but wouldn’t that just be more of the same? Honestly.
My rating for 2009’s Resident Evil: 5 for PS3 is…
Based mostly on replay value and cooperative experience, I would admit, yes, it is a good game.