House of the Dead 2 & 3 Return Review
House of the Dead 2 & 3 Return box art
System: Wii Review Rating Legend
Dev: SEGA 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: SEGA 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: March 18, 2008 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1-2 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Mature 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

House of the Dead 2 was obviously released before the third installment, and it shows. Even in comparison to the third title, the second game looks incredibly rough. I remember playing this title in the arcade and thinking, 'wow, this game looks amazing.' However, several years later, this game is almost painful to look at. House of the Dead 3 fairs much better, at least looking like a Dreamcast quality title. Since these are older games just being ported to the Wii, it is hard to be critical of their archaic visuals, but it would have been nice if they had been touched up a bit before they were released.

House of the Dead 2 & 3 Return screenshot

As with their arcade counterparts, these games really don't offer a lot of gameplay. If you are fairly skilled, you can make your way through both of these games in less than three hours. Once you finish the story, there really isn't a lot left to captivate your interest. You can play through the training mode or boss battle mode in House of the Dead 2 or the time attack mode in House of the Dead 3, but none of these will really keep you captivated. The training mode is fairly fun though, having you try to complete specific tasks such as destroying all barrels before a timer runs out or save all of the civilians in a walkthrough. Still, you are basically only going to get five to six hours out of this game. You do have the option of playing offline co-op with a friend, but it would have been nice if they had included an online co-op option as well.

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With its fairly cheap price tag (only $30) and arcade perfect ports of these titles, House of the Dead 2 & 3 Return would seem to be a no-brainer (pun intended) purchase for fans of light gun shooters. Unfortunately, with the not-so-accurate Wii-mote aiming and lack of any real reason to play this game for more than five hours, the $30 price tag starts to look a little steep. If you have a Wii and are starving for some zombie shooting action, pick up Resident Evil: Umbrella Chronicles. If you've already played through that one, maybe this game could be worth your money. Just keep in mind that it is fairly short and more than a little painful on the eyes at times.

By Adam Brown
CCC Freelance Writer

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
2.6
Graphics
House of the Dead 3 manages to just look slightly dated while House of the Dead 2 looks so rough it may make your eyes cry bloody tears.
2.5
Control
The Wii-mote doesn't function properly as a light gun supplement. Using the on-screen crosshairs helps this out, but it leaves you feeling cheap.
2.9
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
While being horribly cheesy and ridiculous, the quality is definitely there, and the horrible dialogue really adds enjoyment to these aged titles.
2.5

Play Value
If you've ever played a light gun game before, you know what to expect from this title. It is fairly short and there really aren't any reasons to play it again once you've completed both games.

2.6
Overall Rating - Average
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Experience the popular arcade shooting action at home. Blast the undead with the quick trigger action of the Wii Zapper.
  • Co-op gameplay. Grab a friend and destroy the undead together including Arcade mode and Original mode.
  • Gory arcade graphics. THE HOUSE OF THE DEAD 2 & 3 RETURN retains the rich arcade graphics you love.


  • Screenshots / Images
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