Resident Evil 6 Review for PC

Resident Evil 6 Review for PC

RE6 Reconsidered

Resident Evil 4 may have changed the world of video games, but unfortunately, other franchises made the best use of its ideas. Dead Space, Alan Wake, and even Gears of War were far more innovative than any Resident Evil game since. As a result, recent RE games have had to put up with a fair amount of criticism.

Oddly enough, last year’s Resident Evil 6 wasn’t an attempt to return to form. Instead, the game doubled down on pretty much everything people criticized about its predecessors. With this game, Capcom sent the world a message: Resident Evil is going to keep going in the direction it’s headed. Deal with it.

Resident Evil 6 Screenshot

Critics were not pleased, handing out scores in the high 60s and low 70s to this AAA title. Some fans were downright livid. But now that RE6 has arrived on the PC, it’s time to reconsider this hasty reaction. Is RE6 really a letdown?

Not quite. With four separate campaigns stretching twenty-plus hours in total, enjoyable zombie-killing gameplay, and pretty graphics, RE6 has much to recommend it. But the critics did have a point: RE6 is a middle finger to the series’ diehard, old school fans, and it fails in some very basic ways.

I might as well start with the big question: Is Resident Evil 6 even survival horror? The obvious answer is no—if RE4 was an action-inspired take on survival horror, RE6 leaves the genre behind entirely.

You’ve probably already heard about all the features of RE6 that completely and utterly destroy the mechanics that created tension in previous entries. You can run and shoot at the same time, there’s a dodge ability, puzzles are few and far between, your PDA will tell you exactly what route to take to your destination, and there’s adequate ammo. Many of the cutscenes are absurdly action-packed, with a person or vehicle literally dangling over the edge every five seconds in between explosions. It’s as if Michael Bay directed a zombie movie.

Resident Evil 6 Screenshot

And even when the game changes this formula, it doesn’t reach into the franchise’s rich tradition to create moments of intense fear. Instead, it explores different action clichés, shoehorning in vehicle chases, a cover system, and even stealth.

It doesn’t do this well, either, thanks mainly to the controls. Connecting with a melee attack is a crapshoot. Dodging isn’t as fluid as it should be. The cover system is awkward. Menu navigation is hell, despite the fact that the game places little emphasis on inventory management—and despite the fact that the game doesn’t pause. It’s the worst of both worlds: clunky controls paired with shooting-gallery gameplay. Whereas clunky controls induce panic in older RE games, they just make an action game annoying.

And if you hated the multiplayer focus of Resident Evil 5 and Operation Raccoon City, this latest installment will do you no favors. Once again, the entire experience is oriented toward co-op, with the exception of the final campaign, which was designed for single players on consoles (but was soon patched to include optional co-op as well). To be fair, the mandatory A.I. partners are much more competent than they were in RE5, and the interesting new “Agent Hunt” mode lets you play as an enemy in someone else’s campaign. But the tension of being alone with zombies is still gone, replaced by bizarrely frequent situations in which a door, object, or simple puzzle is too heavy or complicated for one person but easily manageable for two.

Resident Evil 6 Screenshot

Even some of the small annoyances are still around. Headshots are finicky; apparently the developers are not aware that a zombie’s head is a weak spot, not a bullet sponge. You can vault over some objects but not others, seemingly at random. Checkpoint placement is frustrating, forcing you to sit through cutscenes every time you play certain fights. There are periodic difficulty spikes that will make you want to crack your keyboard in half. And the quick time events are back with a vengeance: You won’t just “press X to not die”—no, you’ll need to toggle between two buttons rapidly, mash a single button, or time a button press precisely in order to communicate to your character that you’d prefer not to be eaten. And you’ll need to do that a lot .

If you follow the Resident Evil plot for some reason, good luck, because the campaigns all cover the same timeline with different characters, and it’s rather difficult to sort out what the heck is happening. The twists and conspiracies are as ridiculous as they’ve often been. “Intricately stupid” may sound like an oxymoron, but that’s what this story is.

The overall trend here is this: If there’s anything at all you don’t like about recent Resident Evil games, that thing won’t just make an appearance in RE6; it will pop up over and over again, as if just to annoy you. But oddly enough, the fact that Resident Evil 6 can be a big, bloated mess of a game doesn’t completely ruin it. It’s the proverbial train wreck. You can’t help but watch.

The simple fact of the matter is that killing zombies and watching explosive cutscenes is fun. Even if this game can do absolutely nothing to emerge from the shadow of Resident Evil 4, it always has that.

Resident Evil 6 Screenshot

The luxury of four separate campaigns really lets Capcom go nuts. Traditional zombies return, and we also meet the J’avo, which are similar to the monsters from Resident Evil 4 and 5. Some of the J’avo mutate as you destroy their limbs in a twisted take on Dead Space. The sound effects are sickening, the kills gory. You may curse the controls—or yearn wistfully for a simpler, better Resident Evil—as you slaughter your way through rooms and rooms of these creatures. But you will enjoy yourself nonetheless.

And the environments here are nice, especially on the new PC port. From the very beginning, Resident Evil has been known for its graphics—the original game used pre-rendered backgrounds to create a level of detail people hadn’t seen before—and RE6 lives up to the series’ standards.

What we have here is an incredibly long, incredibly flawed, and yet paradoxically engaging experience. I can’t say you should go to Steam right now and pay $40 for this game. But sometime down the line, when you have a long weekend with nothing to do, you might notice it on sale and pick it up. And you won’t quite regret it.

Resident Evil visuals are always a treat. 2.2 Control
An action game needs more fluid controls than this. 4.0 Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Nice, gruesome sound effects. 3.5 Play Value
Very long and very flawed. 3.5 Overall Rating – Good
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.

Review Rating Legend
0.1 – 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 – 2.9 = Average 3.5 – 3.9 = Good 4.5 – 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 – 2.4 = Poor 3.0 – 3.4 = Fair 4.0 – 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • Horror on a global scale.
  • Multiple characters and intertwined storylines.
  • Solo or co-op.
  • Zombies make a return to the Resident Evil series, but they can now run, jump at players, and even use weapons.
  • New enemy creatures known as J’avo.

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