Graphics:
9.6
Gameplay:
7.5
Sound:
9.3
Control:
7.0
Replay Value:
8.0
Online Gameplay:
8.0
Overall Rating:
7.9
Publisher:
Capcom
Developer:
Capcom
Number Of Players:
1-2 (2 Online Co-op)
Genre:
Survival/Horror
Release Date:
March 13, 2009


While few games have been amassing as much hysteria and controversy recently as Killzone 2, there is one game that's got a fair amount of its own controversy, and that is, of course, Resident Evil 5. Now, for those reading this and shocked by the score, know where this review is coming from. I will make no secrets about my feelings about Resident Evil 4, so I'll be blunt and up front about it: I'm one of the few who thought that Resident Evil 4 was one of the most overrated experiences of the past generation.

Aside from the gorgeous visuals, I've always hated the controls and not having the ability to move and shoot. Having to constantly run away, stop, turn around, shoot a few bullets, and then repeat the same tactic became extremely annoying. The extremely conservative number of ammo you're given also felt unsatisfying, and it's one thing if Leon's hand-to-hand techniques were powerful, it'd have made playing without a gun better, but they weren't. Sure, you could take a few swipes at an enemy, run away and repeat the process, but that made the game extremely repetitive and monotonous. In short, along with GTA: San Andreas, RE4 was personally the most overrated experience of the past generation. So I've been part of the whole 'fix the controls movement' many years before it was brought up with RE5.

So if you've kept tabs on the status of Resident Evil 5 and it's controversy, you can probably predict that I'm not too happy with it, thanks to Capcom's decision to maintain RE4's control scheme, albeit with one tiny enhancement: the ability to strafe. I've been playing Resident Evil 5 for over a month now, and unfortunately, I couldn't shake my gripe with the controls. My first hands-on take featured impressions from my playthrough at E3, and there I regarded that the controls still required you to stop-and-shoot, but that Capcom was looking into working on the aspect for the final release. Clearly, this never happened, and the final release has largely the same control mechanics. And that means…

…shooting off a few bullets, running away, turning around, shooting some more, running away, rinse and repeat. I thought, 'okay, maybe I'll get used to this.' But as the chapters went on, I found myself more and more frustrated with every death and restart. Moreover, I begin to hate the fact that the camera in the game is completely locked on, so you don't even have the option to switch shoulder views or pull it up just a tad. Why is this a problem? Because, as chapter two is evidence, often times you will find yourself in very confined areas where peripheral visibility is important, but alas you are limited to barely seeing what's to the right of the screen. This means, you'll find yourself to be the victim of being blindsided, which can sometimes lead to an unexpected death.

Furthermore, the whole first chapter will prove just how monotonous the constant running around will get. But worst of all, the end of the chapter (the portion gamers played in the demo) is completely pointless, because you didn't even need to kill anyone, the helicopter will appear after a certain amount of time has passed. And I felt as if Resident Evil 5 had a number of these pointless segments. But perhaps the most pointless aspect of the game is the force-fed A.I. assisted co-op.

Now, as much as I love co-op, I equally hate having to care for a partner. Resident Evil 5 commits one major flaw that is extremely common among co-op titles, and that's having to constantly save your partner, in this case being Sheva. Caring for your partner becomes a large burden eventually, as Sheva constantly asks you to save her, to heal her, or to spare her ammo. This becomes extremely tedious when you're fighting off a barrage of enemies and you need to keep moving around to reposition yourself so that your opponents can't attack you. You'd imagine, 'well, it's not that big of a deal, since the game should pause when you've entered the inventory screen'. It doesn't. So if Sheva's been knocked down with enemies swarming, if you try to revive her, be prepared to take a few hits, or possibly even die. And of course, you're forced to save Sheva, because it's game over if she dies.

Like I said, I love co-op, but Resident Evil 5 is precisely how co-op should not be implemented; I say if there is no player to control the second character, there should only be one character on-screen. Either that, or make your A.I. ally not as vulnerable. So if you're going to play through the game, I highly urge you to have a buddy handy, because playing with a friend changes the experience of a computer controlled partner from being a frustrating one, to actually being quite enjoyable.

The co-op will also help you forget about the controls a bit, seeing as how you'll be able to work strategies out, allowing one partner to shoot from a distance, with the other closer-up, and then alternating as you see fit. I will admit that co-op gameplay is certainly the biggest draw of the game, but I wouldn't go as far as to say that it's anywhere near as exciting and engaging as Gears of War 2, and that's largely due to the game's speed and controls.

Those who loved Resident Evil 4 will love Resident Evi 5, but if you don't enjoy caring for a partner frequently, you may find yourself frustrated in some bits. Furthermore, the story is also pretty enjoyable, so if you're a devout fan of the franchise, there's a solid reason to engage into RE5. And again, this is simply coming from someone who did not enjoy Resident Evil 4 either, so I am not saying that Resident Evil 5 is a bad game. The bottom line is that if you absolutely loved RE4's gameplay, I am certain you'll love RE5, as well.

Now, to me, certainly the best part of Resident Evil 5 is the amazing graphics engine. Resident Evil 5 is a proper next-generation game. Immediately, you'll notice how absurdly stunning the lighting is, showing us a sun so hot that you can almost feel its burn emanate through the screen. Character detail is laden with attention to detail, complete with superb looking physiques on all characters, including the possessed, as well as incredible facial detail and nice animation. On top of all that, the high quality texture detail and the silky smooth image clarity really makes Resident Evil 5 one of the best looking games this generation has seen. The only flaw I could mention is the occasional framerate hiccup during very tense moments, but it isn't that common.

The audio work isn't far back from the audio, either, with a haunting presentation that'll make good use of a 5.1 setup. You'll hear sounds and noises from all around, from growls to taunts, in addition to other miscellaneous sound effects. Cut-scene sounded particularly good, and the voice acting isn't terrible, either, although some of the voice actors with accents can be a little hard on the ears. Cut-scenes are unraveled accompanied by a tense little background number to set the mood, with the ambiance reverbing all of the sounds accurately. I will say that I would have liked for the guns to have sounded punchier.

Resident Evil 5 is not a bad game. And despite the score, which I usually equate to a rental, I'd still recommend a purchase for those who loved Resident Evil 4. Ultimately, if you're looking for a shooter similar to Gears of War, you'll find yourself sorely disappointed with Resident Evil 5. Despite people claiming that the control scheme makes for a more tense and frightening experience, I find that it only made for a more frustrating, limited, and redundant experience. I dislike gameplay mechanics being forced onto the gamer, and so I found myself disagreeing with Resident Evil 5's gameplay. Capcom would've been better off giving us the option of classic or new controls. If Capcom issues a patch for the game with new controls, we will gladly retract and revise this review to reflect that.

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iPwn_3G
iPwn_3G
12 years ago

I totally agree even though I only played the demo.

Akuma_
Akuma_
12 years ago

the original Resident Evils, did all this so well though.

i feel that resident evil 4 just changed up the whole formula to the point where the whole "stop and shoot" thing cant be done anymore. which is a shame, cuz it was a great part of the game.

Resident evil 4 is MEANT to be the best in the series but i COMPLETELY agree with arnold, its overrated, the originals were the best. i havnt played 4 extensively, and i dont plan to.

simply, dont try to fix, what isnt broken.

Godslim
Godslim
12 years ago

no way resi 4 is the best resi games easily

ZubraZap
ZubraZap
12 years ago

Cute one Arnold.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
12 years ago

All I can say is Arnold told no lies, this game is probably going to come down to whether or not you can deal with the control scheme. I'm happy to see the sound and graphics score high. Also when this sucker hits I bet it's going to cause a stir because even though I really liked RE4 and it's predecessors, it does feel a little like they are forcing a few things on us this time.


Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 3/12/2009 8:31:27 PM

Robochic
Robochic
12 years ago

Got a call from ebgames my game is in but they won't let me get it till tomorrow 🙁
I loved RE4 so i know i'll love this game, the demo was great. I don't have a beef with the controls but like arnold said if you like the controls in RE4 then u'll love them in RE5. i can't really say much until i pick it up tomorrow.

ZubraZap
ZubraZap
12 years ago

All I can say is I keep coming back to read his reviews! What is wrong with me!?


Last edited by ZubraZap on 3/12/2009 8:31:10 PM

packiepa
packiepa
12 years ago

I agree, i was going to purchase this game so i downloaded the demo from the psn and i found the controls to be all over the place, so i then downloaded it from xbox live to see if it was any different but it was the same.. The controls are retarded!!!

ZubraZap
ZubraZap
12 years ago

Your the Albert Wesker of the review world Arnold. Your probably a cool guy in real life though, I saw bitchin' silver 350 on the road today. Actually make that two of them on the same road!

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
12 years ago

Was one mine…? 😉

Rino
Rino
12 years ago

Arnold I've been following all you articles and allmost all of them are good and this one is only your point of view regarding the tank controls some may like to play like that, then the time will show to us how will RE5 will be on the eyes of the fans of the resident evil saga. I will pick up the collectors edition tomorrow and I think will be a great game. Have fun and thanks for your feed back on all your reviews.


Last edited by Rino on 3/12/2009 8:43:10 PM

ArnoldK PSXE
ArnoldK PSXE
12 years ago

I'm glad people are reading the review as opposed to just bashing me, especially reading the most important bit about this NOT being a bad game.

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
12 years ago

A fine testament to the community regulars. 🙂

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
12 years ago

Nice to see an honest review, IGN as usual sugar coated the entire review. I'm still going to buy it because it's RE but I won't be happy!

NightHawk17
NightHawk17
12 years ago

I believe the problem is most reviewers will just give the game a pass just cause it's an established franchise. I understand the game is fun in co-op, but the purpose of a review is to ell the value of a game/product. I need to know will it be worth my $65 even once i finished the story?

As of now my answer is no

coverton341
coverton341
12 years ago

7.9 What is wrong with you??!! Are you blind, crazy sick in the face???

Ok there is your bashing for the review.

I do what I can with what I have.

On a serious note, thank you for a true review and for leaving the name out of the score. I think I may rent this one and depending on how that goes I will purchase or not. I enjoyed RE4 but it became trying in some parts. If the "infected" people move faster then it could become a bigger pain in the ass. Also what you are saying about the co-op is disturbing to me. I.E. I also hate having to babysit a computer. I debug software for a living I don't want to babysit another bunch of 1's and 0's for fun.

Well, again thanks this is my first and most trusted word in honest video game reviews.

Oh yeah one more thing. 7.effing 9 what are you daft?

YesterdysRising
YesterdysRising
12 years ago

Well, I just have to say that I love reading your reviews. I usually buy games according to what you guys say. I think you tell it as it is and really explain what is good and bad. I also feel like you don't give scores based on what you were expecting, you just base it on what the game is. I like that because you can't always expect some innovative new experience out of games. Even if it's old news, if it's good, it should be scored that way. I read IGN's review just to see what they say but they are usually all over the place and I don't agree with most of them. As for RE5, you said it's good except the controls. Which from the demo, I can understand. It's something that is hard to get used to. I wish they would allow you to change it and from feedback people are giving, I think they will eventually put out a patch to allow you to do that. Although, even if they don't, I think it will be something worth getting used to, especially since I will be buying it tomorrow at Toys R Us and getting a $20 gift card, plus I get a discount for working there 🙂 I really have no reason not to give it a go.

Scarecrow
Scarecrow
12 years ago

Hehe, the ammo problem is one that has always haunted RE sadly…

Anyway can't say I fully agree or disagree with the review.

The story should count a lot towards the review.

But yeah can't disagree 'till I play it

creepypete
creepypete
12 years ago

RE4 was and is a game that STILL blows away 90% of the crap they are releasing today. It's a near perfect game, and after just playing through it again on the Wii edition, it makes me sad to look at the fps crap they try and pass off for entertainment.

ZubraZap
ZubraZap
12 years ago

Honesty hurts sometimes. Simply the most RAW reviews on the net. Why I'm a PSXE fan. The review isn't stopping me from buying RE5 lol!

Cheers @ Ben, dude yours is the Blue one right?? I would pefer a blue hue over the silver ones I saw today any day!

Ben Dutka PSXE
Ben Dutka PSXE
12 years ago

No, Arnold's is blue. Mine is silver…but I have the kick-ass burnt orange interior. 😉

dveisalive
dveisalive
12 years ago

Wow only a 7.9! I guess the game sucks???? lmaol! I just viewed gamespot.com and they gaved madworld a 7.5 why not 8?

Alienange
Alienange
12 years ago

Although I'm sad that you did not feel the greatness that was RE4, I do agree with what you are saying now. I know it was only the demo, but my god man! I watched Sheva pound my chest more than anything else! Babysitting is horrible in real life, what makes them think it's fun in games? I wasn't impressed, and now that I've read your review I'm going to pass. And I looooved RE4.

slayerkillemall
slayerkillemall
12 years ago

great review arnold,i agree with you 100%
and about the control options i wished the same thing back in re4…btw,what took you so long? 🙂

ZubraZap
ZubraZap
12 years ago

Just got off the phone with Gamestop in Casselberry and they are freaking doing a Midnight sale! I can grab a copy from them at Midnight tonight! Cheers to all!

ZubraZap
ZubraZap
12 years ago

Its actually 10:49 eastern time here in Orlando lol!

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
12 years ago

I want to feed you cheese and strawberries.

bxshotboi
bxshotboi
12 years ago

like every1 else believes this is a good review these are the types of reviews us gamers deserve since like limited virgo said ign uasually sugar coats the games they are in favor of as well as many other people who write game reviews and unfortunately i cant get re5 until my income tax hit the mailbox 🙁 and i did really like re4 so i probably will like re5 even though i found the demo a bit annoyin

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
12 years ago

Don't worry, i find all demos annoying

Alienange
Alienange
12 years ago

I find all demos annoying too! Thank goodness I'm not the only one. Every time I dl one I'm thinking "this time it'll be good." … delete.

SerendipityDeus
SerendipityDeus
12 years ago

Today I got my tax returns, I already noe wat I'm getting t/m, RE5 and an extra controller! Lol

Anonymous
Anonymous
12 years ago

Your review is excellent, Arnold. More reviewers should display more honesty in critiquing video games. I will still get the game since there's really nothing else on the way that interests me. I, too, didn't enjoy RE4 but I did enjoy the RE5 demo. Time will tell if I'll enjoy the rest of the game.

bxshotboi
bxshotboi
12 years ago

great that ur so optomistic as long as we can admit the flaws of a game wen we play it through

Jamaican_Heat
Jamaican_Heat
12 years ago

I think i must be the only one who totally disagrees with the review. A 7.9 seems wayyyy to low for a game to get mainly based on controls and the game has always had these contols and no one really complained this much before. The game should have been at least an 8.5, I dont understand why the replay value is only an 8 with all the unlockable things, new game plus and mercenaries. The co – op makes you want to play over and over again with other people, and now there is a deathmatch for DLC. I see plenty of reasons to play this game over again.

ZubraZap
ZubraZap
12 years ago

Doesn't Anderson Cooper have a segment called "keeping them honest"? LOL! I just picked it up..

Alot of cheers tonight you can thank Bacardi..

CHEERS TO RE5 AND PSXE/PSXE READERS!

Alienange
Alienange
12 years ago

Woah

LimitedVertigo
LimitedVertigo
12 years ago

In case anyone was wondering here are the figures for RE in Japan.

[PS3] Biohazard 5 – 319,590
[360] Biohazard 5 – 79,157

I got them from Qj


Last edited by LimitedVertigo on 3/13/2009 1:45:37 AM

LegendaryWolfeh
LegendaryWolfeh
12 years ago

Man, i got the collectors edition, becuz my gamestop had a few left, (yes i got a midnight launch) and i have to say, this is probably the greatest behind the scene making of ANYTHING EVER. it was really detailed and thorough 🙂 i havn't played the game yet. lol probably gonna get on home and use my re5 game disk to play that arcade that you can only play with if you have the game

JackieBoy
JackieBoy
12 years ago

Gonna buy my copy of RE5 today – will trade KZ2 for it (except gorgeus visuals, it was another dumb play-and-forget shooter with no replay value for me:). And I will play it all night.

Greetz!

Banky A
Banky A
12 years ago

Woah =D

Skatejimmy5
Skatejimmy5
12 years ago

A very fair review. I played the demo, and it was nice, except for the controls. Which means I may rent it someday, but I'll most likely never buy it.

Great job, Arnold!

Shatterday
Shatterday
12 years ago

So I just had a bright idea. I don't really like the controls for driving a car that is manual. So from now on, whenever we rate cars that are manual, we have to use a scale of 1 to 8 instead of 1 to 10.

Dipshits.

ArnoldK PSXE
ArnoldK PSXE
12 years ago

The only dipshit here is you, because your logic is terribly flawed. Cars are also available with automatic transmissions, giving the buyer flexibility in their purchase.

Nevermind that you're comparing apples to oranges.

Shatterday
Shatterday
12 years ago

I like oranges 🙂

Alienange
Alienange
12 years ago

Arnold pwns another one!

tanner1
tanner1
12 years ago

Arnold cant agree nor dissagree with ur review cos i havent played the game however, i found res 4 and gta san andreas 1 of the best gaming experiences of my life with vice city being the best. Maybe if u dont like a genre u should let someone else review it cos the game didnt have a chance

www
www
12 years ago

Am not surprised,after playing the demo couple times i realized it felt like the same ol' Resi 4.Tank controls made it kinda repetitive,run turn shoot-run turn shoot.
I was really looking forward to this now my minds turned states.

Diggity Dan
Diggity Dan
12 years ago

I loved RE4, and while the game frustrated me, I still defended the controls.

But after I played the RE5 demo, I felt a little differntly. I could no longer live with the control. I just felt like my feet were made out of concrete.

It seems that games have improved controls so much since RE4 that RE5 feels like a dinosaur now.

dirdiggler
dirdiggler
12 years ago

I could careless if everything about this game sucked as long as its 2player co-op its a 100% purchase. FINALLY A CO-OP GAME…

smileys_007
smileys_007
12 years ago

The controls on RE5 are the only bad aspects or cons of the game. But besides that, RE5 is a very good game. I agree with Jamaican_heat. The score should have been at least 8.5, RE5 doesn't deserve a score lower than that.

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