Dead Rising 2 is a hack and slash zombie based survival game by Capcom.
Zombies are on the loose. In a world where zombies are used as stage attractions, used to be killed to entertain a large audience. You are one of the zombie killers, one of the main performers in the reality show that is zombie-killing. So it's your job to rack up the kills and bring on the thrills as zombie killing monster 'Chuck'. However, after your chainsaw wielding bike-killing stunts, something has gone horribly wrong. The zombies are in revolt. They have escaped from captivity, like a type of zoo-animals and they are now crowding the zombie killing reality city. Your daughter has been bitten in the past, and you don't have an anti-zombie pills, known as Zombrex. So, it's your call, let your daughter die of the zombie disease, or fight the zombies for the Zombrex before the time comes where she will turn.
In the drab structure of today's video games, Dead Rising 2 is a welcome change from the old. It's no longer guns and boring old linearity, there is a multitude of what you can do, what you can choose to do and increasingly inventive ways to kill zombies. You are placed on a time limit to get the Zombrex before your daughter turns into a zombified version of her former self. Chuck isn't going to let anything happen to his sweet little daughter, and he'll do whatever it takes to get the Zombrex his daughter needs.
Naturally, this involves zombie-slicing, leg mutilating and a whole lot of neck biting as you charge into the zombie infested playground. Food gives health, as does drink. You can wear cosmetic items such as hats and you can also pick up practically anything that can be used as a weapon (not everything, because that would be too much). This provides a lot of choice into how to go about the zombies. It lets you choose, do you want to throw cardboard boxes at them and snigger as they stumble back, clearly perplexed by the item that you just threw at their ugly mugs, or do you want to throw a razor blade down the line, severing limbs as it slides through the meaty zombie flesh. Hell, if you felt in the mood, you can even drink a coffee wearing black high heels and wearing a ladies hat while surrounded by zombies. There is so much to do in Dead Rising 2, and the game isn't ashamed to let you loose on it's brain-chomping zombie friends.
The graphics in Dead Rising 2 are good, but they aren't as impressive as games like Crysis, and it requires practically double the processing power of such games. The graphics can be placed to console roots, the shadows are fairly clear, but not particularly defined or realistic. Everything feels a little bit false. But add a little more graphical oomph - and the game wouldn't run on the lower end of computers or the consoles of today. This is due to the artificial intelligence. It's definitely not smart, with the zombies walking into walls to try and get to you in some instances, but damn is there a lot of it.
The only options that you can alter in the way of graphical alteration in Dead Rising 2 are resolution, zombie detail and shadow detail. It's most definitely not a definitive selection of what you want on and off. You can't turn anything off either, just reduce the detail. Usually, I'd call this a lazy console port, but it at least, unlike other console ports, places your system requirements just at the right place. My laptop only just met the minimum requirements, and it ran fine on lower settings, albeit with a bit of slow-down on the busier scenes. The graphics aren't the best in this game, but coupled with the stupendous amount happening in the scene and the ability to run of fairly average computers, the graphics are certainly not too bad.
The sound in Dead Rising 2 isn't bad. The voice acting isn't as bad as some previous Capcom games, in fact, it's pretty easy to listen to and well done. The music in the game is good too, as are the zombie yells, screams and squelchy sounds. If there was anything to criticize in the sound department, it'd be the fact that not all of the characters talk to you, they just stand and look at you while text scrolls across the screen telling you what they are saying. It's a bit of a cop-out when it comes to the sound in the game, but I guess the cost of bringing in a voice actor for every character in the game would generate a tremendous cost, and I wouldn't want a repeat of Oblivions characters who on occasion talked to each other in the same voice with a differentiating accents.
Value for Money / Longevity
At £20, it's fairly cheap for a video game. I haven't played it that long before writing this review, so I cannot confirm that it is a long game, but I can already begin to confirm just by what I have played so far that it is likely to be endlessly replayable simply because of the nature of the game. There is also a cooperative mode where you can play with friends and also a multiplayer mode which I have yet to try. There is enough that the game provides you with, so the value for money really boils down to whether or not you like the gameplay. If you like the gameplay, fantastic, this will blow you away with Value for Money. If you don't like extra-gory third person zombie action, then the value for money and longevity may struggle a little for you. If you loved the first Dead Rising, you should jump at this opportunity, if you prefer point and click adventure games, stay away, it's not worth your money.
Difficulty and Complexity
This is a fairly punishing game, but that's not to say it's hard. The game is actually fairly easy to play, and that's one of the reasons it's so fun to play, but there aren't checkpoints that save themselves as there are in many other recent games, but instead you have to go to a save point to ensure that your position is saved. The save points aren't really that clearly marked either. They are restrooms, and it can be infuriating to have to slash and slice through the zombie hordes to get to the point where you can save your game because the door-bell has gone and your friends are waiting. Of course, you can forget to save regularly, and upon the death of your character, be left stranded at the beginning of the game, screaming to yourself "I SAW A TOILET, WHY DID I NOT TAKE THE OPPORTUNITY?" Other than that, the game is actually fairly easy to get to grips with and it's a real blast for anyone who has a reaction speed that means they can notice the zombie chewing on their eyebrows before they get to the brain.
I haven't really experimented with the Multiplayer modes as of yet, so to judge them would be unfair. There is what seems to be a competitive multiplayer mode and a cooperative multiplayer mode. My interest lies solely in the latter, and it looks quite simple to set up, with a drop in, drop out interface. You can even initiate coop missions from inside your single player game. It doesn't get much less complicated that that. I have not assessed the quality of how the multiplayer modes play as of yet.
Dead Rising 2 is not a children's game, as you may have guessed from seeing various screenshots, videos or looking at the title. Here are some of the content that may cause younger viewers to recoil in zombie-faring fear.
There is a lot of violence in Dead Rising 2, as you'd expect from a game about killing zombies in increasingly inventive ways.
There are sharp objects that you can throw at zombies, they usually either take a limb off or get stuck in the zombie, which dies in visually apparent agony.
Chainsaws chop zombies in half. The sequences are usually fairly graphic.
If the zombies get to choice, they begin to gnaw and your face/arm/crotch. You must shake the mouse frantically to get released by them, when you stand, you are usually extremely bloodied.
Everything produces extrodinarily large blood splurts in this game.
The language in this game is fairly limited for a game of such violent content. The height of the language is 's**t' or 'b*tch', and even then, it's infrequent.
Nothing particularly graphic. Some of the ladies wear skin tight costumes, and there are 'peep-shows', but the character does not enter unless told to. It's optional.
The character can drink alcohol, there are consequences to getting drunk as you cannot hit straight and you throw up as the zombies approach, so it is not glorifying drinking in any way.
This is a fairly adult game, but I'd give it to a teenager, because with today's television, they've already seen it all anyway. It's a fairly violent game, but the rest of the content is fairly tame. An easy to recommend to anyone 15-16 and up. No younger than 13, no matter the maturity on this one.
It may be slightly dodgy in it's port from the Xbox 360, but it's really still a great game at heart. The gameplay remains the same from the Xbox 360, and the possibility is there to play the game with an Xbox 360 controller. Large amounts of AI, pretty good graphics and fun gameplay make this an easy-to-recommend to the viewer that likes other zombie games or the movie-viewer that likes the shopping-mall-zombie-films. It's not a great port, but it's definitely not bad.
Minimum System Requirements
2.4GHz Core 2 Duo Processor/2.2GHz AMD Athlon X2
Nvidia Geforce 8800/ATi HD RADEON 3850
2.0-2.2GHz Core 2 Duo/2.6GHz Pentium Dual Core. 1.8GHz - 2.0GHz AMD Athlon X2
1.5GB RAM (XP) - 2GB RAM (Vista/7)
Nvidia Geforce 7600GS/ATi HD RADEON 3850
Review can also be found on Ciao under same username
Conclusive rating: 4/5 stars