Resident Evil 2 Review!
Pros:Solid story, new characters, improved health animations, way ahead of its time.
Cons:Reduced scare factor, zombie lunge attacks can get annoying.
With a city in ruins, Leon Kennedy and Claire Redfield seem to be the last survivors in Raccoon City after zombies inhabit the town. What will it take to bring down the Umbrella Corporation and escape the city alive?
After the ultimate scare that was Resident Evil, it was to be expected that Resident Evil 2 would up the ante. This game’s mechanics truly stick to the first game while fixing anything that you might not have liked about the original. It expands on the original story and adds new characters, flawlessly expanding the horror story of Resident Evil.
Soon after the events in Resident Evil, both Leon Kennedy and Claire Redfield enter the city unknowingly of the zombies that have taken over. After the discovery, they team up for a short time. The soon departure from each other is caused by a truck crashing into their police cruiser, causing an explosion that separates them. They both make their way to the police station and eventually come to realize that most everyone is dead. Leon encounters a young woman named Ada Wong looking for her boyfriend and Claire comes across a little girl named Sherry Birkin, who immediately runs away from her. Leon and Ada come across a woman and follow her until Leon becomes wounded. Ada then follows her on her own and she is revealed as Annette Birkin, the wife and Umbrella co-worker of William Birken who founded the G-Virus and also the mother of Sherry Birkin. In order to protect his life’s work, William injected himself with the virus and mutated int o a dangerous creature. Around this time, Claire is reunited with Sherry down in the sewers but finds out that Sherry’s father has implanted Sherry with embryos to produce offspring. They all escape from the sewers, heading towards Umbrella’s secret facility. On the way, Birkin attacks both teams, Ada being seriously wounded. Annette reappears, exposing Ada as a spy sent to steal the G-Virus (the boyfriend that she was looking for was an Umbrella employee). Annette is killed by her husband and Claire concocts the vaccine that saves Sherry from mutating. Leon and Claire (along with an unconscious Sherry) get to the train platform and Sherry is saved from the mutating embryos. The final form of Birkin attacks the train but is finally defeated and the trio escapes the facility.
The gameplay of Resident Evil 2 is almost the exact same as Resident Evil’s, having two playable characters. Each character has an item that comes with them, Claire having a lockpick and Leon having a lighter which causes slight difference in the story approach. Ammunition and healing items are still limited so the mechanics of true survival horror are still enlisted where you really have to decide where and when to use them. In this game, you are able to push off zombies a lot sooner than you were able to in the first game. A new feature is that Resident Evil 2 introduces new scenarios. For example, when you are playing the Leon A scenario, the events of the Claire B scenario coincides and vice versa (Claire A and Leon B coincide). Certain actions taken in the A scenario affect the B scenario, like weapons being left behind and unlocking certain areas. Other modes include The 4th Survivor, Extreme Battle, and the Tofu Survivor (yes&hell ip;you play as a piece of tofu). There are a few different zombie models in this one instead of the two or three you saw in the previous game. A new ranking system has also been introduced. Finishing the game in a certain time and under certain stipulations unlocks the other modes and infinite ammo weapons.
One thing that is different from the original is that the graphics have been updated. The cut scenes look more real and have better animations. The playable characters now show their injuries externally so you aren’t relying on pressing the inventory button. The characters slow down into a limp and eventually start to drag themselves whenever they are near death. The environmental details still pop out heavily and the new animated cut scenes add so much flair to the game.
The music in the game is still completely terrifying. When certain enemies pop out at you, the music intensifies until you leave the area. The voice acting has improved and doesn’t have a tacky feel to it anymore. It’s not entirely serious but it is not nearly as bad as “You were almost a Jill sandwich!” The actual words of the dialogue are nothing too impacting but they carry a certain amount of significance.
Resident Evil 2 took everything we loved about the first one and totally improved on it. Being able to actually see where your health is at is really an improvement. The updated graphics make things stick out and the music is still dark and chilling. This game expanded on the story and brought in new characters that you still see in today’s games. People who have only played the recent Resident Evil games might not be as fond of Resident Evil 2 as I was but it was one of the games that made Resident Evil so popular now. The scare factor is still there but isn’t as shocking as the original. Don’t let that fool you though. Resident Evil 2 is still a thing of nightmares.
(The score of reviews of classic games are based off of how the game was when it first came out)
Also make sure to check out our First 24 of Resident Evil 2 and see how it all begins!