Published on September 29th, 2010 | by Kyle Spencer, Editor
Dead Rising 2 Review
Dead Rising 2
Release Date: Sept. 28, 2010
Developer: Blue Castle Games
Genre: Action, Adventure
Platforms: Xbox 360 [Reviewed], PS3
Grab your sledgehammers and your sexiest two-piece outfit you can find, because Dead Rising 2 is finally here. You are Chuck Greene, a motocross guru, who was the center star of a game show that threw zombies into an arena and motorcyclists would attach different weapons to them and kill zombies for cash prizes. Chuck then finds himself inside Fortune City trying to clear his name, after being blamed for the zombie outbreak in the heart of the city. He fights through different areas of Fortune City to clear his name, and keep his daughter, Stacey alive, who is infected with the zombie disease and a daily dose of “Zomberex” is needed to keep her alive. He has three days to clear his name, save his daughter, save survivors throughout the city, and kill psychopaths before the military comes to clean up whats left of the ruined city.
If any of this sounds like something you have played before, then you are right. Dead Rising 1 features some of the very same elements that this game offers. If you are going into Dead Rising 2, expecting ground breaking new things then you will be disappointed. The game starts Chuck off in a safe room, that requires your to crawl through a ventilation shaft to reach a security office exit into a mall inside of Fortune City. You will earn experience points based on the kills you perform, killing zombies with the different weapon combination’s you can come up with. A woman, who is part of an organization called C.U.R.E., calls missions to your through a walkie-talkie that Chuck has in his possession. Each mission is timed, but thankfully they are timed far enough apart that you do not feel rushed. Survivors are held up in many different area’s of the city, but some do require a little more work, much like the first, into getting them to follow you.
(ohh what do I do now?)
The AI in this release was much better than the previous. It seems that when escorting survivors back to the safe house, they are free to run, while zombies will focus on you and not them. It is extra helpful if you arm the survivors with something as well, because keep in mind their items will not break. mini-boss / psychopath battles are just as challenging as they were in the first as well. There will be many instances within the game that you will have to square off against some random psycho’s, but they are a bit fewer than in the first. No 10 guys in yellow rain coats, throwing bombs at you, now you got looters, and defenders all loaded with items found throughout the city.
The save system has also been tweaked. If you remember the first game, you had to save your progress in the bathroom’s of the mall, which were very slim to find. Now this time around you still have to save in a bathroom, but there are a great amount of them to find, and after big moments in the story progression, it will prompt you to save. Dead Rising 2 does answer a lot of Dead Rising 1’s major flaws, but the biggest upgrade to the series, is the massive Weapon combinations. Throughout the city your will find various objects ranging from Road Cones, Spray Paint, Pitch forms, a box of nails, and baseball bats, and you will take these items and match them up (with a proper object of course) and create an ultimate bad ass weapon, that will give you more PP points to level your character up. Nothing to me seems more satisfying that sticking a pitchfork into the chest of a zombie, lifting them off their feet, and pulling the trigger on a shotgun that is taped to the bottom of the pitchfork and blowing the zombie into 20 different pieces.
(Guitar Swinging has never been so fun)
The game does have a lot of re-playability to it. Yes the load screens are way to long, and the frame rate does drop enough times that it becomes noticeable but the game is down right fun to play. There is online co-op finally, something else that the first was missing. You must already be in game progression and own the radio transceiver to call in the aid of a buddy or random online play. Hit right on your directional pad, choose the buddy you want to invite, and simply call them to join you. You’ll both be playing as Chuck, but with the wide assortment of clothing throughout the game, you can certainly create your own unique version of Chuck Greene. The main drawback to playing in co-op is that for starters, if your joining someone’s game, you can not save your story progression, just the host. The second major flaw is that no one can save their progress, otherwise you will have to re-invite whoever you were playing with back in, because the game will drop players trying to save, regardless of who is saving. I’m sure that will be addressed in a patch, but for right now it is a bit of an annoyance.
The competitive multiplayer can also be a bit fun, but is not the core of this game. You will square off against 4 other players on a Terror is Reality stage and go through different zombie mini-games to declare a winner. You will use antler on your head to flick zombies in the air, use the American Gladiator style roller balls to mow zombies over, and then use motocross dirt bikes with blades on the handle bars to kill the most zombies. Winners will earn money that can then be carried over to your single player adventure. The modes are fun to play a few times, but I can not see myself sitting there for hours playing this, where a majority of the fun is tied to the single player.
Dead Rising 2 is a fun game. Plain and simple. It delivers on most of what we expected from the title, and despite the sluggish framerate, co-op hiccups, and extra long load times, this game is worth the price. You will find yourself playing the single player, saying to yourself “I can do that on my next playthrough”, and “I have to remember where that is for when I play through this again”. I do not remember having that sort of feeling going through the first one. This time, with the improved AI, more time to explore, and more of an interesting story line, I feel more compelled to play through this game multiple times. With the addition of Co-Op, I don’t see why you wouln’t.
[xrr label=”Rating: 7.5/10″ rating=7.5/10]
+ Awesome weapon combos
+ Great Gameplay
+ ITS GOT CO-OP
+ Better save system
+ High Re-Playability
– Framerate hiccups
– Co-Op needs a patch
– Long Load times