Resident Evil 5: Review, LE Review

I’m a bit late with this/last week’s blog entry, so let’s hurry up and get started:

New Games

Madworld (Wii)
Resident Evil 5 Collector’s Edition (360)

Resident Evil 5 is me splurging and Madworld is a birthday present from my Aunt. Also, while they haven’t arrived yet, I was naughty and bought the collector’s editions of Lunar and Lunar 2 for the PSX (aka PSOne) on ebay. I got them both for $130, which could be a good deal as I’ve seen sellers trying to get over $100 for each game at times.

Other than that, I’ve basically just been resisting the urge to dive into DLC on both the Wii and 360. I’ve been eyeing some virtual console games for a while, such as Ogre Battle, and Super Mario RPG, but have so far not done so becaus of the dire straits of my Wii’s memory. At the moment I have single digit free blocks and I uninstalled the voting channel and the Check-Mii Out channel. I currently have a few WiiWare and a few VC games on the system itself with much more on the SD card.

I finished Tomb Raider: Anniversary on the Wii a few days ago so I finally feel ready to complete Underworld. As such, I’ve been looking at its DLC and while the price doesn’t put it in the must buy category for me, I’m still interested, especially if I get the retail box at Gamestop. I know they’re just download cards but I wouldn’t mind having the Tomb Raider: Underworld -Expnasion Pack box on my shelf.

As for what I have my eye on next, well, there’s the Samurai Shodown Anthology in April, but I’ve also been looking at getting Deus Ex: The Conspiracy, the PS2 port of the classic PC shooter since I’m more of a console player than a PC gamer (same reason I own Half-Life on the PS2) as well as the sequel, Deus Ex: The Invisible War. They’re both pretty cheap on ebay but at the same time, they’re not games that I must own at this very moment.

Resident Evil 5 Review

Click on the link in the title above the video to read my full review of the latest in the long-running, Resident Evil series.

I’ll just summarize a few things right here. Simply put, this game is not as good as RE4. Looking back, I consider RE4 a masterwork and I looked forward to RE5 building upon the quality of the title. While RE5 does indeed build on certain aspects of RE4, it has also shifted its focus almost completely on action and makes sacrifices in doing so. You no longer have a deep fountain of backstory provided by dozens of notes and files, and the story itself seems to have atrophied to fit the game’s new action-focus.

As the game meant to bookend the current storyline in the series, the game does incredibly little referencing of prior games. The viruses of each game are mentioned in a memo, and characters’ bios mention things, but this is no celebration of the series the way Metal Gear Solid 4 was. In fact, the game leaves what I consider to be the biggest loose end danging in the wind; the fate of Sherry Birkin. After all, Wesker himself (in Wesker’s Report) muses that there’s something about this little girl.

Resident Evil 5 Collector’s Edition

RE5

 

This review will cover the Xbox 360 version of the game. The edition includes:

  • Resident Evil 5
  • Bonus disc
  • Tin Case
  • Chris Redfield Figurine
  • TriCell Messenger Bag
  • Africa necklace
  • BSAA Patch
  • Box

Resident Evil 5: The game itself. I’m not 100% if the label on the disc matchest the regular retail version since it says Game Disc on it to differentiate itself from the Bonus Disc in the set, something that wouldn’t be necessary in the normal version.

Bonus Disc: An extra disc that includes a half-hour documentary on the making of the game that is fairly interesting, followed by a much less interesting slideshow of images, an even less interesting trailer for the CG film, Resident Evil: Degeneration, and last and most certainly least interesting, a trailer for the third of Paul Anderson’s horrible Resident Evil films, Resident Evil: Extinction.

Tin Case: The now standard tin CE/LE box for the game, similar to the case for the PS2’s RE4 Premium Edition. Unlike most LEs, however, the tin case isn’t the package for the edition itself and thus doesn’t have the title on the front, nor the summary and features on the back that you see on the back of most every game.

Chris Redfield Figurine: While the Tin Case is where most CE’s would end, this figurine is where the trinkets begin. This figurine is a few inches tall, painted, not particularly pretty, nor useful for anything. Much like the Altair figurine in the Assassin’s Creed LE.

TriCell Messenger Bag: Its a relatively small messenger bag bearing the TriCell company logo ironed on. The bag itself isn’t of the greatest quality and I doubt that it would last long should you actually put it into regular use.

Africa Necklace: A small, Africa-shaped, pewter pendant at the end of a rubber-like rope. Nothing much more to really say about that.

BSAA Patch: A patch like the one worn by Chris and Sheva in-game. I guess you could call it a game prop or costume but its just uninteresting.

Box: Yeah, its a cardboard box to put all your junk in. There really isn’t anyting else like it that I’ve seen. Unlike say Assassin’s Creed that stuffs everything into a small tin box, this is a much cheaper, thin cardboard box. What’s annoying is that the box isn’t even sized to fit the items inside (its bigger), so everything inside is loose.

Wow. One of the most anticipated games of the year gets one of the worst CEs around. For $90, a full 150% of the cost of the game on its own, you basically get a bunch of useless trinkets. Unless you really like cheap messenger bags, cheap jewlery, cheap figurines, and patches on your clothing, then you are almost certain to be disappointed with some, most, or all of this set.

I continue to hold that figurines are the stupidest additions one could add to a CE. These things are awful. Most of the time they don’t even look like who they’re supposed to, instead looking more like a bad cosplayer or something. If it was a quality action figure then we’d be on surer footing.

The necklace and the messenger bag are gaudy at best and cheap at worst. There’s nothing inherently wrong with a messenger bag, I like them myself, but I don’t know anyone that’s really thinking, I wish the Resident Evil CE comes with a messenger bag. The necklace itself also doesn’t feel particularly related to the game. Yes the game takes place in Africa but the pendant itself doesn’t really do anything to show people who see it that its referring to Resident Evil.

I can’t really say too much about the patch. Its a patch. And it looks like the one Chris and Sheva wear. If you like sewing patches on your clothes or your bag or something, then maybe you’ll like this. Most people I know don’t really do that, so the patch will sit in its box destined to forever go unused.

What really makes this whole package feel cheap is the fact that its thrown in a box that is not accurately sized for it. The box itself is cheap and hearing everything shaking around inside doesn’t exactly scream quality.

The bonus disc includes a decent making-of documentary along with an uninteresting art gallery and trailers for the two most recent Resident Evil features, Degeneration and Extinction. The trailers feel like they’re just there to fill up space on the disc since Degneration was released prior to the game and doesn’t star any of the characters in RE5. The Extinction trailer feels even more out of place considering that many fans of the games dislike the movies and Extinction doesn’t even bother to pretend that its following the games anymore and just goes off to be a generic zombie movie on its own somewhere. The two trailers make this feel less like an RE5 bonus disc and more like an advertisement for the Resident Evil movies that no one bought enough of so Capcom’s trying to sell them to you again. I really have a hard time believing that there wasn’t more material related specifically to RE5 that could’ve been included instead of the two movie trailers. Why not the trailers for the game? A history of Resident Evil? A translation of Wesker’s Report II? A Wesker’s Report III?

At $90, I’m not sure I would recommend this to anyone. Generally speaking, I don’t think anyone interested in the series itself is too interested with patching up his clothes or wearing gaudy accessories. The whole thing is presented horribly and the trinkets included were surely manufactured by the lowest bidders. Honestly, if they had released the game in the tin case with the bonus disc (yes, even with the movie trailers) for only $10 over the regular price it would’ve felt like a standard deal. Adding so much extra stuff with so little real usefullness or interest in addition to being packaged horribly for an almost unheard of $30 extra just feels like a rip-off and a skip-over, even for the biggest fans of the series. You know a CE is bad when the gray market value on ebay isn’t much higher than the retail price. Hell, there are buy-it-now listings for less than retail.

And there we go, an RE5 themed blog. Next week I’ll proably have review Tomb Raider: Anniversary or MadWorld (which is #$@*ing awsome!) and maybe do an LE Review double header with both Lunar games. I’ll also try to post the next one on time.