When a sequel learns from the mistakes of the past and actually attempts to resolve the major complaints of the first, you have to really admire that. The original Dead Rising was an interesting title that showed a lot of promise, but was bogged down by the many quirks, bugs and bad design choices that kept it from being great. The basic idea of Dead Rising is you are put in the middle of an endless swarm of zombies and have to survive for about 3 days, usually until the army gets here and rains hot fire on the entire area. The first game took place in a giant mall, with Frank, the world’s toughest photographer. The sequel takes place in a Las Vegas like setting, with casinos and shopping centers to keep you busy as the new lead character Chuck Greene. The game has some neat new features and improvements over the first, so I’m going to run them down bullet point style.
- Chuck can combine certain weapons he finds to make new weapons, like duct taping chainsaws to a paddling ore. They are not often elegant, but they are usually fun!
- Online only coop is available! Drop in and out of friends games, helping them defeat bosses or just messing around and having fun!
- Terror is Reality is a complete 4 player online mode, where you can play American Gladiator type games with zombie and earn cash for your character to use in the other modes.
- Vehicles play a larger role with Chuck being a motocross star and all. Motorcycles are great because you can trick them out with weapons! You can also buy cars as well.
- Survivors are now not completely worthless. They push away zombies and avoid being eating really well. You don’t have to nanny them as much and are more fun to deal with.
- Survivors also show a little green door icon on the HUD to inform you when they are in range to leave an area with you, without leaving them behind.
- You can skip conversations. Yes, no longer will you suffer the Otis syndrome of being stuck on the phone while he babbles on. Hit Y and skip that shit.
- You can check your watch from the pause screen, perfect for not getting your head ripped off while you find out where to go next.
The stuff that hasn’t changed is you can still run around the world trying on stupid clothes and outfits, then having whatever you wear appear in the games real time cut scenes. Leading to strange stuff like this:
You can also spend your time wailing on zombies with random objects, like park benches, umbrellas, tricycles, fireworks, buckets, shower heads and more. Most weapons have multiple attacks, including a heavy attack that either does something useful or funny. Plunging a shower head into a zombie will result in a shower of blood from the stumbling zombie. You never know what is going to happen and the game usually makes it worth trying. The game does a great job of rewarding creativity and encourages you to explore, which makes some gamers uncomfortable with the way the game forces strict time limits. During your adventure, you are constantly under the clock. Every 24 hours your daughter needs a shot of zombrex, during the day multiple missions can be going on at once, each with a ticking timer waiting to expire. You can blow off all these times of course, even saving your girl if you just want to run down the clock messing around. But you can’t finish the game without completing certain missions and the game plot stops. Most gamers don’t like to face defeat like that, but the game is designed to be replayed often and at any time. If you die, you can restart the story, keeping your character (and certain events open) from the last game. So if you can get used to the dynamic, the game isn’t a cruel as you think.
Dead Rising 2 is going to keep you busy, most of the problems have been fixed and the addition of coop and online just adds to the incredible value. If you check out the PC version, you can also easily mod the game to stop all timers, increase weapon durability and do some goofy stuff like skateboard with a swordfish or use a rocket launcher that shoots out dildos. It makes up for the fact that the game doesn’t ship with a sandbox mode.Last 5 posts by Brian Jones
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