I love the Resident Evil franchise and will always jump on the latest instalment of their brand of survival horror, enter Resident Evil: ORC.
I was skeptical when I first saw the coverage of Capcom’s newest offering because it introduces yet another set of characters into the doomed events of Racoon City. Initially I was onboard with the premise and decided to give it a try. After only about thirty minutes I was disappointed at what could have been a great experience!
I won’t go into depth on the narrative, we all know how the events unfolded in RE:1/2 and this title sits within that narrative. What immediately grabbed me was the lack of ‘tone’, for a better word. RE1 scared the pants off of me as a child, and yes video games have evolved since then, the Call of Duty revolution happened and what people want from games seems to have changed from industry perspective but RE:ORC appears to be the bastard child of two genres, action-shooter and survival horror.
Thinking back to RE1 the diegetic sound was great, eerie piano music being played by Rebecca echoed through the halls of the mansion, stunning audio work. RE:ORC simply doesn’t use any of its predecessors conventions. Instead we’re presented with a non-diegetic audio score that wouldn’t seem out of place in Splinter Cell.
Way back on the PS1 the AI wasn’t great but it was what we expected it to be, RE:ORC seems to have slipped back to 1996 and has poor AI on both enemy and NPC’s. That is almost excusable because being a true narratologist I was interested in the story, the story of the characters involvement in the Racoon City incident. Instead of being presented with a deep history of each of the mind numbingly dull faceless characters they only touched on a few points (I won’t spoil it for anyone!). I found that often the AI characters got in my way whilst moving and often walked into the path of on coming bullets, not what you need in a firefight!
It ‘looks’ perfectly acceptable. The Labs and streets, and the maps in general, were obviously thought about before being thrown together but on the whole this title doesn’t deserve its namesake! Capcom should have gone down a Devil May Cry route and turned this into a new franchise and developed it further. It would be much stronger without such big boots to fill.
Overall 4/10, and thats because I almost feel dirty saying bad words about Resident Evi
- Expands the RE universe
- Different to other RE titles
- TOO different to other RE titles