Sunday, 13 November 2011

Ooh,it has zombies!

Dead Rising 2: Off the Record.My first thought?Excitement over another zombie game.I am a zombie freak,I love the games and the movies.This is why I always head into new zombie games with a childish glitter in my eye and an evil giggle on my lips.Imagine my disappointment when I realised that what I had was in fact,not really new...



The Game:
So the game starts with a cut scene that serves to give you some idea of what's going on,namely that Frank West has managed to go so low as to appear on TiR.Immediately I raise a skeptical eyebrow,isn't it a bit much to start the game off in pretty much the same manner as Dead Rising 2?I pushed on regardless as you're at least playing a different reality game in this one...Then after a bit of marching around and intrigue that basically serves as a tutorial for Frank's camera things go a bit pear shaped and zombies start to overrun Fortune City...um...just like in Dead Rising 2...Ever the optimist when it comes to the zombie genre in general though,I chose to ignore this and revel in the joy of smacking the walking dead to bits with miscellaneous items.That is until I exited the safe house area in the exact same manner as I had in DR2,and then experienced what I believe may have been the exact same cut scene I had seen in the pharmacy in DR2...which was also the very first place the storyline guided me to in DR2.Clearly,if you enjoy Dead Rising simply for the story,you will more than likely be disappointed by this latest effort.

Protagonist:
Now obviously the draw for Dead Rising 2:Off the Record was the return of protagonist Frank West and his legendary camera.I actually heard many complaints that the photography aspect wasn't a feature in Dead Rising 2.So shutter happy fans will be glad for this "re imagining" of the game.Personally,the first thought I had upon seeing Frank in his spandex outfit at the beginning of the game was "my,we are a big lad aren't we",and kudos to the programmers for realism,it sort of shows.Frank is not the most elegant of movers.In fact,watching him run rather puts me in mind of a distressed penguin.The down side to this is a combat style that feels a bit sluggish,the upside is he appears to pack quite a punch.Another thing I noticed was that his voice acting seemed a little inconsistent,at times he sounded gruff,and at others his voice was clear and a bit younger.For all this I did enjoy running around as Frank,especially when he swung a guard rail around and took out groups of zombies.



Weapons:
A large draw for me in the Dead Rising games is the ability to pick up just about everything in the game and smack a zombie with it.There really is nothing quite like wielding an electric guitar to make sweet music with on the body of your foe.Dead Rising 2:Off the Record doesn't seem to expand much on the repertoire of usable items,although I may not have found all of them.It does appear to add a few new options to the list of combined weapons though,not that I'm sure how many as weapon combinations aren't something I go after obsessively,I much prefer the "pick up and bludgeon" strategy.

Survivors:
Dead Rising 2:Off the Record sees a few more survivors to be potentially collected,that is,if you ever collect them.In the initial stages of the game the only reason I know there are potential friends dying is because they splash it over the centre of my screen,"Someone has died!".This really only serves as an irritant to me,it obscures my view of the flying body parts and fountains of blood.Don't get me wrong,I'm sure the survivors are meant to serve some purpose,I just don't see it.However if you're playing the game properly,or like someone who isn't a bit psycho,you'll be glad to know that they have in fact added a few new people for you.For me they were just a few new people who followed me around for a while and then got eaten by a swarm of zombies because I didn't want to go back and help.



All in all,Off the Record is only really worth your time if you have yet to play Dead Rising 2,or just REALLY love to kill zombies and don't really care if the rest of the game fails to deliver.

6/10
And I'm being generous for the zombies

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