NINTENDO DS REVIEW: RESIDENT EVIL: DEADLY SILENCE

A map appears on the top screen. It's really handy when you're exploring or backtracking. There is also an indicator that shows when you're hurt so that you can search for some health. It doesn't act as a radar to show you where the monsters are. That would take all of the fun out of the game. Getting creeped out by the anticipation is one of the best aspects of the gameplay. It's very gory at times, with images of severed limbs, disemboweled bodies and blood caked on the walls and furniture. The only way you'll know that a monster is approaching is by hearing them. The DS's stereo system is good enough to allow you to discern which direction it's coming from.

In the Rebirth mode you will have more action and less exploring and puzzles. If you want the full effect, play the original mode first for the suspense. The Rebirth mode reminds me of House of the Dead. It's more like a monster shooting gallery. What it lacks in finesse and atmosphere it more than makes up for in action. There are tons of monsters and you've always got a steady supply of ammo on hand. The Rebirth mode also has new puzzles and makes good use of the DS's touch controls and microphone. When confronted by some monsters you will assume the first-person perspective and will have to touch the screen to activate a knife. This weapon will slice through the creatures as you slide or prod your finger on the screen. The microphone also comes into play here. In an attempt to revive one of your teammates you will have to blow in to the microphone to resuscitate them.

Using the Wi-Fi system you can play with up to four players in either a co-op or competitive mode. In the competitive mode it's a race to finish each level. The co-op mode offers team play that is more in keeping with the storyline. The only problem with these multi-player modes is that you can't see the other players' characters. They are represented by colored stars so that you can see they are there but you can't see any of the corresponding action. You probably won't get as much replay value out of the multi-player mode as you might think. I still felt as though I was playing it alone. The replay value will mostly be found in the two different versions of the game as well as the two playable characters, Jill and Chris. Chris is stronger and can take more hits but Jill is more skilled at picking locks and can carry more inventory items. There's no reason not to replay the game as both characters, though the majority of surprises will be revealed the first time through.

At first I wasn't all that impressed with the graphics until it dawned on me that this was a Nintendo handheld system. Which leads to comments such as "The graphics are good, considering…" The backgrounds are a little on the low res side but the overall 3D characters and environments are rendered nicely. The creatures are definitely fodder for nightmares and the ambient music will assure that you don't play this game alone in the dark - instead, play it with four people alone in the dark.

Features:

  • ClassicMode - The original, high tension Resident Evil that features 80% exploration/puzzle solving and 20% intense battle elements.
  • Rebirth Mode - Features a high octane game style that is 80% intense battle and 20% exploration/puzzle solving.
  • New Enhanced Controls
  • Microphone Function - Solve puzzles and even resuscitate your injured teammate by blowing into the microphone
  • Multiplayer Play - Join up with 2-4 friends and scream together playing in a specially created mansion map
  • Bonus Mini-Game - Ward off hordes of the undead in the Master of Knifing mini-game

By Cole Smith
CCC Senior Writer

Rating out of 5
Resident Evil: Deadly Silence (DS)
4.4
Graphics
When you consider how big the game is and that everything is rendered in 3D, it's pretty damn impressive.
4.0
Control
One of the least intuitive control systems of all time - but it's for your own good...and you'll deal with it.
4.5
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The ambient music, groaning and footsteps are great. The voiceacting is some of the corniest ever but it's better than text.
3.8
Play Value
Even if you just play the original and Rebirth modes you'll get your money's worth.
4.4
Overall Rating - Great
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.
2
Resident Evil: Deadly Silence Preview

How about calling it "Resident Evil: Silent But Deadly"? Or maybe not. by Vaughn Smith

January 18, 2006 - The year was 1996. The system was PlayStation. The developer was Capcom. The game was Resident Evil. And the horror....lest we forget....the horror. Resident Evil not only begat a franchise which has captivated gamers for ten years now but the game singlehandedly created a genre that we now call Survival Horror. Technically Infogrames' Alone In The Dark series did come first, but Capcom's game, if I can quote a popular song these days, had it going on.

Ten years later almost to the day, Capcom is set to release RE: Deadly Silence, a DS exclusive remake of the original Resident Evil. From what we've been told players will be able to enjoy two iterations of the game. For purists Capcom offers the original RE in all of its bad acting glory complete with the original puzzles and FMV sequences in Classic Mode. For those looking for a new twist on an old favorite Rebirth Mode will feature updated controls, more enemies, new puzzles that make use of the DS hardware and the ability to slash away at enemies with your knife.

Rebirth Mode is of course, what everyone is talking about since most of us have played the original game to death, as well as the incredible GameCube remake and sadly there are no surprises left. In this mode, the top screen will track your health and ammo supply, while the bottom touch screen will feature the action packed gameplay and the inventory. As mentioned your knife will play a larger part in the offensive scheme of things and players are given the ability to slash away at enemies via the DS stylus. The DS microphone even comes into play during events where players will have resuscitate injured characters by breathing into injured characters. RE aficionados will also recognize updated game mechanics ripped from later incarnations of the game such as the 180-degree first introduced in Resident Evil 3: Nemesis and the quick reload and knife button from 2005's (and CCC's Game of the Year) Resident Evil 4.

Up to four players will be able to mix it up in two different multiplayer games; one featuring co-op play and the other competitive play. While playing cooperatively, players will help each other solve puzzles in an attempt to escape from the mansion together. Playing competitively will pit player against player while they struggle to kill the most monsters in a bid to earn the most points. We hear that killing a monster before your comrades will cause some problems for them, although we haven't been able to confirm the exact nature of this gameplay mechanic.

Only a couple of weeks left to wait as Deadly Silence is scheduled for an early February 2006 release. Watch for our indepth review soon!

By Vaughn Smith
CCC Site Director

Review Rating Legend
1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor
2.5 - 2.9 = Average
3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
3.5 - 3.9 = Good
4.0 - 4.4 = Great
4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
5.0 = The Best