January 20, 2012

Demo Report – Resident Evil: Revelations

Demo Report Resident Evil Revelations
Waking up in the cabin section of a derelict ocean liner, Jill Valentine expresses a feeling of déjà vu, which I certainly share in as the opening of the Revelations’ demo feels very much like a homecoming, stirring some equally pleasant and terrifying memories. The gloom of ruined rooms is occasionally broken by the shimmer of essential supplies, and also the continual arrival of humanoid biohazards that are largely featureless, save for the spiky limbs slapping out at players before these creatures close in for a more intimate attempt at feasting on Jill’s blood.

Clutching the 3DS and lurching forward through the ship is a very intimate experience, bringing back unnerving sensations and a slower pace of traditional horror the mainline series has largely moved away from in the pursuit of high-grade action. Entering a dining hall where food is rotting on tables and a strange vapor hugs the floor finds me several shades hesitant about the prospect of moving forward any further, and it’s rather terrific being gripped by that feeling of apprehension again.

Demo Report Resident Evil Revelations
The demo offers a very short taste, allowing space for players to dispatch a few monstrous biohazards of varying size and stamina before reuniting Jill with her partner and triggering the ending cinematic cliffhanger that leaves us all waiting for the game’s release on February 7th. For some reason that escapes me, Capcom has limited the number of times you can load the demo to thirty. Dying doesn’t count toward that count if you don’t exit back to the home screen, which is good, because despite the low enemy count I died quite a few times along the way.

Thankfully, my repeated deaths owed no blame to the controls, which work rather spectacularly with a single analog pad – we’ll have to wait a little longer to see what difference two can make. But in the meantime, Capcom’s solution should serve you well – pushing forward or backward on the analog pad to move through the ship and pressing the same pad on an angle to readjust your perspective.

On the chance you haven’t previously read about the game, Revelations still abides by the stop and aim approach to weapon use the series is known for. Aside from some initial hesitation, I found the single analog movement very functional, and didn’t catch myself moaning the absence of a second pad just yet.

Revelations offers quick and convenient access through the controls, using the d-pad to switch weapons and face buttons to use secondary weapons like the knife or grenades as well as life saving herbs. The touchpad allows access to inventory management, as well as the supply scanner picked up along the way, which allows players to search the area for hidden supplies.

The difficulty came purely from claustrophobic rooms, where three enemies within a tight space required quick thinking, in so much as you need to toss a grenade and lay down some shotgun shells before said biohazards get the jump on you – and even then you can rapidly tap Y to try for a second chance at survival should one of them pin Jill down.

If you’ve ever been a fan of the earlier entries in the series, it’s definitely worth booking some passage with Revelation’s demo. The atmosphere alone justifies checking it out while we wait to see how the full release comes together in February.

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