At a Glance: Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City
Posted by wastelander75 , 06 January 2012 · 252 views
Resident Evil Windows 2012 zombies spoilers Capcom PS3 survival horror third person shooter Xbox 360 Raccoon City alternate history
City of the Dead
"The living dead had taken more from us than land and loved ones. They'd robbed us of our confidence as the planet's dominant life form. We were a shaken, broken species, driven to the edge of extinction and grateful only for a tomorrow with perhaps a little less suffering than today." - Max Brooks, World War Z
They are relentless. They move in the shadows, in the places just beyond the corner of the eyes, and when you turn to look you see nothing. Brutal, relentless death. They hate, they hunger, they kill. No matter what we do to try to stop them, it's nothing but trival expense, eventually clawing and breaking through our defenses, one after another. For them it's war, a war of attrition, a war we are losing. Badly. Terror gives way to despair, despair gives way to hopelessness. Death has claimed this city, claimed the lives of its people. Its soul. There is nothing but darkness here. And that darkness is alive, feeding on our fears, feeding on our flesh. To fight the evil of the undead, that's the easy part.
But to fight the evil that beats in the hearts of living, breathing men.......that's what scares me the most.
Every Day I'm Shufflin'....
Warning: Certain spoilers have been removed
The next chapter in the long running Resident Evil franchise is setting itself up for a return to where it all began, in the doomed city of Raccoon. But don't expect to relive moments though the eyes of the familiar, but from a vantage point of less than noble creatures. This time, you get to see the world through the eyes of the bad guys. "We certainly don’t want to spoil anything about the story but Operation Raccoon City will let players experience the events of Resident Evil 2 and 3 from a completely new viewpoint," says Producer Mike Jones. And that experience includes having the ability to rewrite history. "Sure you can do things like (spoiler removed)," Jones goes on to say, "but you’ll also be able to see parts of the story you didn’t know about or the background of events you’re already familiar with... 'go behind the curtain' so to speak. So this game not only allows you to diverge from the canon but simultaneously expands on the past stories of 2 and 3."
The main change to the experience, one that was set in stone since the beginning, is the step away from the survival horror experience for a more personal third person shooter experience. It was a decision that Capcom Producer Masachika Kawata knew was a risky choice to make, but something that made sense to the overall feel of this particular chapter in the series. "With Operation Raccoon City," Kawata says, "we started from a place where we said, "Okay, we want to make a shooter, not a survival horror game." At the same time, we want to keep some of the same emotions that you get when you play the game. So even though it feels like maybe it's been a slow progression, it really hasn't been a deliberate thing, where we're making the series more shooter-like. This time we definitely wanted to make a shooter."
Mr. Kawata is aware of the.....rather divisive decision among the fan base, but challenges those same fans to give the title a chance to show its muscle before making a decision. "You can't please everyone," he says, "there's been a lot of feedback from core fans, people who've played Resident Evil all their lives, since the PlayStation days, saying they want us to go even more towards the core, very deliberate pacing of those games. On the other hand, there's been a lot of feedback saying, "We want to see an even more shooter and action-focused experience." And there's really no way to answer all of those requests in one game. And so by creating these different experiences, we think that certainly some people's expectations will be violated, but that's, in our minds, a good thing, and it will hopefully get people to play something that they weren't expecting."
In the game itself you play as various Umbrella Security Service personnel, each one unique in their weapon specializations, perks and powers, and even their motivations as to why and how they ended up here in the middle of a zombie outbreak. "Playing as a team is vital to your success in Operation Raccoon City," Jones says. "There will be some key campaign moments where certain skill sets will benefit the team and where coordinated use of each character’s special abilities can mean the difference between life and death; especially since certain classes are better equipped to deal with our new infection mechanic and blood frenzy states not to mention all the different enemy types."
A Pound of Flesh
"Competitive multiplayer is where the team gameplay really shines," Jones explains of the online components of Operation Raccoon City. "Putting together your squad with carefully chosen classes, skills, weapons, etc. depending on the game type and who you’re up against allows for more tactical decision making and strategic gameplay than the series has seen so far." On top of this, expect the same experience to permeate through to the handheld 3DS title that will hit at the same time. "That will be a more atmospheric RE experience a lot of our fans are craving," Jones says. "So we think the franchise has grown and there’s even more Resident Evil to go around now that it’s 15 years strong."
Although Jones remains optimistic that both titles will do well, Mr. Kawata was quite frank on the limitations that handhelds can have on the Residern Evil experience, yet is positive that the team can pull off both titles to success. "It's always a battle against the restrictions that the hardware imposes on you," he says. "You're always trying to squeeze every bit out of it that you can; that's always a tough hurdle that you've got to climb over. At the same time, those restrictions force you to be more creative. They force you to really execute on the ideas and make your ideas more and more interesting within those frameworks. The ability to work within those constraints and still make a really interesting game is one of the directives of a video game creator. If you can't do that, then it's going to be really, really difficult to make a video game."
Looking back at the entirety of the Resident Evil franchise, Mr. Jones sees Opeation Raccoon City not just as another title meant to shake up the fan base, but as another evolution to the series, an evolution that has happened before. "There has been a bit of an evolution... I don’t think there’s any denying that the leap that RE4 took really jolted the series forward," he says. "Operation Raccoon City has been about doing something new...challenging a true “shooter” type of gameplay in the RE universe. That being said, we’ve been very meticulous about recreating the Raccoon City world, its characters and creatures and those stories, those events are things every hardcore Resident Evil fan can’t get enough of. Seeing those things re-imagined in a brand new game is really exciting."
As a parting thought to fans still on the fence about the title, Mr. Jones hopes that they at least give it some thought before making a decision. "We think RE fans will love it and shooter fans will have a blast. We’re also really excited about the 4 player co-op and competitive multiplayer modes. But we also have more traditional type RE games as well...coming out on 3DS very soon."
Me personally, I'm just wating to experience the decision to (spoiler removed).
Resident Evil: Opeation Raccoon City is on track for a March 2012 release.