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Enter the survival horror

This classic game is available for the PC as well, but seriously, the PC release sucks in terms of video quality and its heavy incompatible with today’s Operating Systems. Wouldn’t it be nice to run this game in 32 bit and high resolutions? You are a lucky one if you still own the good old PlayStation Version of Resident Evil. But how to run a PS One game on a PC? No problem at all if you use the PSX Emulator. Truly one of the best PS One emulators ever released. With this, you can enjoy your old PlayStation games in all possible screen resolutions. Combined with different screen filters and shaders (f. e. comic shader) you gain an awesome video quality. I recommend you to use a gamepad for playing so you can lean back and enjoy Resident Evil the best. Don’t forget to raise up the volume of your speakers. I also advise playing at night when all lights are turned off.

Technical realization

Primary developed for the PlayStation, the consoles graphic power and hardware resources were very limited. So decisions and compromises had to be made to gain the best results for a believable survival horror game. For its year of release (1996), Resident Evil had fairly high detailed 3D polygonal characters, objects and smooth looking animations. This amount of detail could only be achieved by implanting pre-rendered images as background in which the 3D polygonal actors get placed. As a result, 3D rendered objects always slightly pop into the eye compared to the 2D background.



The 3D actors move in third person view from one screen to another while every screen has different predefined camera angles and views. It’s the only game within the Resident Evil Series that uses intro and outro movie cut scenes with real human actors and environments instead of 3D computer animations. The music Soundtrack is gripping and fits the horror theme of the game very well. Every area has a different music theme and some areas dont have any music, which is a simple but effective method to raise the excitement. Also the weapon fire sounds are well done. Creature and environmental sounds fit well also, they deliver an intense ear experience. In conclusion it can be said, that the video and audio quality - compared to its year of release was very good.

Story

Arklay mountains, Raccon forest. The plot starts at July 24, 1998, after the alpha team locates the bravo team's helicopter, but there are no signs of survivors. While searching the area for further clues, the alpha team get's attacked by mutated dogs. Alpha's helicopter pilot panics and takes off alone, so the alpha team is forced to hide within a nearby mansion. They believe it is abandoned but soon they notice that isn’t true. Surrounded by deadly traps and creatures, the remaining S.T.A.R.S member search for a way out of this nightmare. More and more they reveal the dark secrets of the mansion and a pharmacy group called umbrella corperation.

Gameplay

When starting a new game, you can choose between two characters. Both have different abilities and a slightly different scenario. Jill Valentine can carry 8 items at once, her personal item is a lock pick and she can handle chemicals. Chris Redfield can carry only 6 items at once, but he has higher vitality, his personal item is a lighter. The game starts in the main hall of the mansion. Taking a breath, the remaining team members realize that one of them is missing. A gun shot rings out. It’s supposed to be a gun shot from a missing team member. You get the order to search for Berry or Chris (depending on your character choice). So you enter the dining room and search for clues.



While examining the area, you will meet the first zombie. You better run back to the main hall for a report, but maybe you’re tough enough and fight him. Back in the main hall you notice that everyone of your team disappeared. So you continue your search alone inside this great mysterious mansion. At the beginning you just own a knife, a pistol with 15 rounds and a health spray. While making progress you will soon find stronger weapons like the shotgun and the grenade launcher.



Your actual health status is indicated by a electrocardiogram. Green means everything is fine. Red means you are about to die. To threat your wounds, you can use health sprays or herbs. There are 3 different types of herbs: green, red and blue. Every herb has different abilities. It is possible to combine those herbs to get a much more effective healing result. Each character has a supporting team member. Chris is supported by S.T.A.R.S. member Rebecca. Jill is supported by S.T.A.R.S. member Berry. These characters help you in several important situations like a boss fight or a puzzle.



There are a lots of locked doors, so you have to find the right keys to unlock them. On your way through the mansion you have to solve several puzzles and riddles. Some of those puzzles are dangerous and deadly because a trap gets activated if you fail. The difficulty of those puzzles shouldn’t be to hard for a player with some intelligence. From time to time you will find several documents that reveal interesting details about the story, some documents also give you clues about riddles and puzzles. To survive, you need to examine carefully the environment to avoid traps. Sometimes it is also necessary to combine or carefully investigate items to get a clue about their usage.



Zombies and dogs are the most common opponents appearing. But later in the game you will also meet deadly B.O.W’s. (Bio Organic Weapon) with the ability to kill you with one strike. You also have to fight gigant creatures like a snake, a spider, a plant, a shark and at last the Tyrant. The whole game you are forced to save your ammunition because there is never enough of it to kill all the enemies you meet. Sometimes it’s a good idea to flee or avoid foes. You also should try to save the powerful ammunition for perhaps upcoming boss fights.



If you want to save the game progress you have made, you will have to find an ink ribbon and a typewriter. Ink ribbons are limited, so take care and save only when it’s really necessary. Typewriters can normally be found in save rooms, those are the only places without enemies and traps. While you can’t carry all items found at once, you have to store them into item boxes. Those can be usually found ialso nside save rooms together with a type writer.



Depending on the decisions you make and how fast your progress is within the game, your partners may survive or not, also you will gain a positive or negative game ending as a final result. If your play trough was good and fast enough you earn a special key that unlocks a secret room with a new outfit for Chris or Jill in the next play trough. For the first time you probably need around 10 hours to beat one of the scenarios. The next time you might be faster, because you already know how to solve the puzzles. If you are really fast you might unlock the rocket launcher with endless ammo. Good luck!

Negative aspects

  • A slow, sluggish input and character movement
  • Items cant be dropped (an item box is allways needed to drop them)
  • The camera angles (sometimes you don’t the see foes and probably run into a crowd of zombies and die)
  • Aiming and shooting can be really annoying (Sometimes you accidently run into the next screen and the  target gets out of sight)
  • The voice acting sucks mostly and is laughable sometimes

Remake

2002, Capcom released the remake of Resident Evil. It got exclusive released for the GameCube (a release for the Nintendo Wii followoed some years later). This Remake has a lot of improvements in gameplay and story and especially in terms of video quality (high detailed character models and environments, some scenes are close to photo realistic). There are complete new and also extended areas (like a graveyard and a crypt). It is also possible to play this game on a GameCube emulator for PC. I recommend the Dolphin emulator software. The game runs with good performance and compatibility ( if you have modern hardware). The Resident Evil Remake is overall really nice, good job by Capcom.

Final words

Resident Evil is an awesome game, it is one of these classic games that everyone should have played at least once. The horror atmosphere is unmatched. I still get scared when one of those Zombie bastards lies on the ground, appearing to be dead but grabs and bites me. The gameplay is unique and challenging. You are feel lucky after beating the game because it’s such an challenging and intense game. I like to play it over and over again, just for its good gameplay and excellent horror atmosphere.
 

Btw: Beating your last playtrough time is also a nice motivation to play again.

 

 


(Dittler) - [13.01.2013 - 20:05]
[5271 reads] 

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