Arts

Games: Resident Evil 6's set pieces up there with the best

Some of the more fanciful enemies make Brundlefly look like Brad Pitt
Neil McGreevy

Resident Evil 6 (PS4)

By: Capcom

IT'S time to party like it's 2012 with Capcom's current-gen reheat of the final Resident Evil, where zombies are once again out for your succulence in a cadaverous soap opera that nearly buried the franchise.

Like many horror survivalists, I grew up on a slow-burn of ammo-saving puzzle-solving, and while Resident Evil 4 marked the high water mark for Capcom's undead-busting cash cow, the follow-ups began to sag like a cadaver's backside, and by 6 its crack was scraping the ground.

All brooding terror and claustrophobic sets, the first four stool-looseners had players nailed to their couches, alone, outnumbered and ill-equipped against the marauding undead.

By gunning for the shooter dollar, sixth time around was barely recognizable as Resident Evil. Chucking wave-upon-wave of lively undead types at the player, the slick-as-snot thrill-ride was stuffed with ridiculous set pieces that played out like a montage of boss fights and quick-time events.

Set 15 years after the original Raccoon City disaster, the President prepares to reveal all only to become zombified himself during global bio attacks that whisk players on a whistle-stop tour from China to the US.

While there's much fan-coddling with the return of classic heroes and villains, gone are the Y-front besmirching frights of old, while an AI partner system means soloists are invariably saddled with a big-boobed idiot (an attractive prospect only in the real world, where zombies won't interrupt your incessant winking).

With precious little puzzle-solving or exploration and a focus on beefy gunplay, players are instead funnelled along a series of set-pieces, with some of the more fanciful enemies Cronenberg-esque body shocks that make Brundlefly look like Brad Pitt.

The camera is a stern mistress, an overreliance on quick-time stick waggling takes its toll while onscreen arrows, plentiful ammo and an orgy of hints mean the most brain dead can easily polish off the committee-simmered action.

But if the scares are half-assed, there's no skimping on content, with four individual stories that link up, Magnolia-style, plus a carnival of sideshows.

This re-release includes all of the original's updates and DLC while all four campaigns feature two-player co-op. Better still, the whole shebang runs at 1080p and 60fps, making this the best possible way to experience Resident Evil 6.

Mauled by critics on release, Resident Evil 6 may not be the goosebump-inflating creepshow the die-hard craved, but its mega-budget set-pieces are up there with the best popcorn gaming, kickstarting an anniversary year which will see Resi 5 and the mighty 4 getting face-lifted in the coming months.

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