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"[Game] Retro Review - Resident Evil 1 - PC/Playstation"

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Sun 16/04/17 at 23:38
Regular
"Braaains"
Posts: 439
In the wake of the release of Resident Evil, I decided to take a look back at the game that started it all. Not the remake, but the original game, complete with bad voice-overs. Yeah. I had no idea what I was letting myself in for.

Something nasty is brewing in Racoon City - and it's not in the least bit surprising. I mean, it's just asking for trouble calling a place 'Racoon City' or any such ridiculously cheerful name. Look at the evidence - Elm Street, haunted by an undead serial killer - Crystal Lake - home to another undead serial killer. You'd be safer off calling a place ' Psycho Chainsaw Wielding Nutter City'. Still, it's too late for the folk of Racoon City who are being stalked and murdered by all manner of zombies and monsters.

Yet while sequels have you roaming the streets of Racoon City, Resident Evil 1 restricts you to a single mansion. This actually works quite well, though there's lot of toing and froing. The game throws you a few curveballs by introducing monsters that weren't there before - so clearing out the mansion is no guaranteed it'll stay clear. Time for some gun-related zombie killing gore, eh?

Oddly, while the modern remake release of the game has all the gore, the original version was actually cut for the UK. A typical example is the intro sequence - which is pretty gory in the US version is completely bloodless in the UK version - all the gory bits have been cut, and for some reason the entire sequence is depicted in black and white. It's more difficult to tell whether or not the actual in-game action has been fiddled with, there's still blood but there have definitely been some changes made. But Resident Evil isn't just about gore and gratuitous violence, is it?

Not entirely, but the gore was a factor in the game's original success on the Playstation. There's no denying that Resident Evil is atmospheric and quite scary in places - but as soon as one of the characters talk, that atmosphere goes straight out of the window. The dodgy dialogue and crap acting do absolutely nothing for the game. 'Jill, you are the master of unlocking' - that's just gibberish. Early it days may have been, and while it's meme-worthy these days, the dialogue still jars.

And then there's also Resident Evil's duff save system. What's the point of making it so that you can only save at certain points, and to add insult to injury, forcing you to find Ink Ribbons before you can save. And there's the depressingly naff inventory system, which forces you to store objects in chests due to your restricted inventory.

It may sound at this point like I'm slamming Resident Evil and, in all honesty, I'd sooner stick with the remake. While there are plenty of third person shooters still around, the original Resi's tank controls make fighting enemies a real rigmarole. Maybe I'd been spoilt by later games, but I gave the game about an hour before I gave up and went back to the remake.

Much as I love zombies and monsters, and Resident Evil's later entries, this first game is a mess. Time may have soured me to it, but the combination of dodgy dialogue, wonky controls, as well as daft locks that can only be opened using special shields sucks all the fun out if it.

By all means, dip back into if you can get your hands on it, but don't expect it to keep you hooked for long.
There have been no replies to this thread yet.
Sun 16/04/17 at 23:38
Regular
"Braaains"
Posts: 439
In the wake of the release of Resident Evil, I decided to take a look back at the game that started it all. Not the remake, but the original game, complete with bad voice-overs. Yeah. I had no idea what I was letting myself in for.

Something nasty is brewing in Racoon City - and it's not in the least bit surprising. I mean, it's just asking for trouble calling a place 'Racoon City' or any such ridiculously cheerful name. Look at the evidence - Elm Street, haunted by an undead serial killer - Crystal Lake - home to another undead serial killer. You'd be safer off calling a place ' Psycho Chainsaw Wielding Nutter City'. Still, it's too late for the folk of Racoon City who are being stalked and murdered by all manner of zombies and monsters.

Yet while sequels have you roaming the streets of Racoon City, Resident Evil 1 restricts you to a single mansion. This actually works quite well, though there's lot of toing and froing. The game throws you a few curveballs by introducing monsters that weren't there before - so clearing out the mansion is no guaranteed it'll stay clear. Time for some gun-related zombie killing gore, eh?

Oddly, while the modern remake release of the game has all the gore, the original version was actually cut for the UK. A typical example is the intro sequence - which is pretty gory in the US version is completely bloodless in the UK version - all the gory bits have been cut, and for some reason the entire sequence is depicted in black and white. It's more difficult to tell whether or not the actual in-game action has been fiddled with, there's still blood but there have definitely been some changes made. But Resident Evil isn't just about gore and gratuitous violence, is it?

Not entirely, but the gore was a factor in the game's original success on the Playstation. There's no denying that Resident Evil is atmospheric and quite scary in places - but as soon as one of the characters talk, that atmosphere goes straight out of the window. The dodgy dialogue and crap acting do absolutely nothing for the game. 'Jill, you are the master of unlocking' - that's just gibberish. Early it days may have been, and while it's meme-worthy these days, the dialogue still jars.

And then there's also Resident Evil's duff save system. What's the point of making it so that you can only save at certain points, and to add insult to injury, forcing you to find Ink Ribbons before you can save. And there's the depressingly naff inventory system, which forces you to store objects in chests due to your restricted inventory.

It may sound at this point like I'm slamming Resident Evil and, in all honesty, I'd sooner stick with the remake. While there are plenty of third person shooters still around, the original Resi's tank controls make fighting enemies a real rigmarole. Maybe I'd been spoilt by later games, but I gave the game about an hour before I gave up and went back to the remake.

Much as I love zombies and monsters, and Resident Evil's later entries, this first game is a mess. Time may have soured me to it, but the combination of dodgy dialogue, wonky controls, as well as daft locks that can only be opened using special shields sucks all the fun out if it.

By all means, dip back into if you can get your hands on it, but don't expect it to keep you hooked for long.

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