Resident Evil Umbrella Chronicles Review
Resident Evil Umbrella Chronicles box art
System: Wii Review Rating Legend
Dev: Capcom 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Capcom 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Nov. 13, 2007 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

Seeing that UC is essentially an abridged retelling of RE's previous terror-fueled tales, you'll have the opportunity to play as several of the series most famous zombie-poppin' protagonists. Jill Valentine--sporting both her S.T.A.R.S. garb as well as her ready-for-battle, skin tight tube top--, Chris Redfield, Ada Wong, Rebecca Chambers, and Albert Wesker all join the virus-fighting fray. And despite the action unfolding from a first-person perspective, cutscenes and in-game third-person animations--like Ada taking down bloodthirsty baddies with a player-triggered flip kick--allow ample opportunity to ogle your favorite zombie killers.

Resident Evil Umbrella Chronicles screenshot

Of course, you can't have the familiar cast without RE's trademark, cheese-slathered dialogue; longtime fans might appreciate Capcom stubbornly sticking to the cult-status-achieving bad banter, but newcomers will likely respond with a sarcastic "Yeah, ya think!" upon hearing Chris Redfield casually utter "We're in trouble." when facing a cluttered corridor of brain-hungering bad guys.

UC's many weapons--shotguns, automatics, grenade launchers--can be upgraded with ammo-adding and power-punching stats. You'll be thankful for this as you fight your way through all sorts of T-Virus infected foes. Sure, you'll be stacking those run-of-the-mill walking-dead corpses like cord wood, but UC also brings plenty of variety to the blood-spewing buffet. Small annoyances--leeches that stick right to the camera, flocks of eye ball-pecking crows--, mid-size menaces--it wouldn't be Resident Evil without packs of drooling, infected doberman pups--and bigger badasses--giant spiders, snakes, and a shark that makes Jaws look like a guppy--all offer fright-filled encounters. Plus, some of the series' most iconic bosses return to hinder your progress; the aforementioned Nemesis and Tyrant, complete with pumping heart on the outside of his chest, are just as terrifying as ever. The familiar fun continues as nearly all the action unfolds in classic RE stomping grounds. The train from RE0, RE's mansion, and RE3's Raccoon City streets will all be heavily decorated in blood and guts by the time your play-through is complete. We just wish RE2, Code Veronica, and RE4 were included in the macabre mix. How awesome would it have been to silence RE4's chain saw-wielding crazies in UC's in-your-face first-person perspective? It also would've been nice if UC's visual and audio presentation were ramped up a bit higher. The game looks good, on par with RE4's graphics, the sound track is appropriately eerie, and weapon effects are ear-popping, but after experiencing the polish and production of recent Wii offerings (we're looking at you Super Mario Galaxy), it's hard not to hold UC to a higher standard.

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Everything we love about this game only gets better when you factor in its cooperative play mode; playing alone is creepier, but having a bloodthirsty buddy by your side really ratchets up the fun factor. At its heart UC is still an on-rails light-gun game, albeit one with several genre-evolving traits, so it's inherently hindered to offer an entirely fresh next-gen experience. But what it sets out to do, it achieves with near flawless execution, offering visceral, gory, balls-to-the-wall fun for any Wii owner, especially those with a love for this classic franchise. We love Nintendo's long line-up of mini-game fair, but we've been dying to get some blood on our Wii-mote-clenching hands, and, despite its minor flaws, UC nicely fills that void with its blood-soaked brand of zombie-crushing combat.

By Matt Cabral
CCC Freelance Writer

Features:

  • Using the Wii Remote as a gun, players can experience breathtaking combat against a horde of zombies and various creatures in dynamic first-person perspective.
  • Certain weapons can destroy environments and items. Shoot objects and watch them splinter, explode, and disintegrate.
  • Interactive paths - choose various routes and pathways through the game, allowing for multiple levels of replayability
  • Multiple weapons, including pistols, submachine guns, rocket launchers, the trusty knife, grenades, and many more.
  • Classic locations from previous Resident Evil games in full 3D, including the mansion from the original and RE 0, and elements of Raccoon City from RE2 and 3.
  • Umbrella's stronghold, a new location, holds many secrets to events throughout the RE series
  • Returning characters from many RE games, including Billy Coen, Rebecca Chambers, Chris Redfield, Jill Valentine, and Carlos Oliveira.


    RATING OUT OF 5
    RATING DESCRIPTION
    3.5
    Graphics
    Not the Wii's best, but on par with RE4: Wii Edition.
    4.5
    Control
    Nice, fluid implementation of the Wii's motion-sensing tech.
    3.5
    Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
    Creepy music and power-packed weapons. Cheesy dialogue will be appreciated by longtime fans, but may make newcomers cringe.
    4.5

    Play Value
    Decent length for this genre. Plus tons of replay value for fans looking to unlock all the series' secrets. Co-op is a blast!

    4.3
    Overall Rating - Great
    Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.
  • Screenshots / Images
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