RE 6 trailer

Looks like Leon and Chris will both be present in this game! Nice. I gave 5 a miss due to the control scheme, let’s hope this one’s better.

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The last of us trailer

Intriguing trailer for the new upcoming survival horror game from Sony. Judging from it, this will be a much more realistic, gritty affair than the usual zombie/post apoc game.

Of course a trailer is just a trailer – the one for Dead Island was spectacular too, but the game wasn’t all that special.

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Left 4dead Strategies and advice

Here are some strategies and tricks you can use in your playthroughs of the new popular zombie/viral outbreak game “Left4 Dead”

ADVICE
Playing as Survivors

Your health and your possession of a medkit counts towards your score. And with all the game’s multipliers, it’s a word of wisdom worth heeding. Pills, however, have no effect on this, as the health boost is temporary. #

Your score is a function of several things, including health. The difference of 1 or 80 health may not seem like a lot when versus games are several thousand points, but take that 79 extra health, multiply it by a map’s difficulty multiplier (say 1.4 for No Mercy 2) and by 4 for survivor total and that makes a difference of more than 400 points. And so forth.

Survivors grabbed by Smokers and Hunters don’t take Friendly Fire: So let loose your shotgun and meleeing – and consider plain shooting your friend in need, as hitting the tongue will be much easier that way.

Molotovs on Tanks: One molotov kan kill a Tank singlehandedly; when hitting the Tank, it starts a countdown timer, which varies depending on the difficulty. On Expert, the number’s 2.5 points of damage a second out of the Tank’s total health of 100, meaning that, at full health, the Tank will die 40 seconds after impact. The molotov doesn’t do any actual damage.

Turning on your flashlight allows your fellow Survivors to see your silhouette through walls and other objects.

Things you definitely can do:

* Melee (no idea if other weapons are allowed for melee, though. I didn’t risk it.)
* Switch to/pick up other weapons.
* Shoot exploding things like propane tanks
* Use the single handgun – still counts for the achievement
* Environmental damage
* Pipebombs and molotovs #

Here’s the damage chart for regular infected on all the difficulties. Feel free to use it to boast about your skills to other, inferior, players.

* Easy – 1hp
* Normal – 2hp
* Advanced – 5hp
* Expert – 20hp

“He who does not pay attention to the sounds around him might as well play without a monitor” – Chinese proverb.

Every type of Infected has a sound (and music) cue, as they approach, or just before spawning:

* The Horde: Music intensity increases.
* The Tank: 1) Prior to spawning: Grunting/Nostril flaring 2)Ground shaking – special noticeable music ensues (at least when spotted).
* The Witch: Sobbing – high pitch piano notes being hammered, and subtle wailing in the music.
* The Boomer: Gurgling sound, burps, and shouts “BOOM!” – a few very low piano notes.
* The Smoker: Coughing fits
* The Hunter: Screaming/shrieking and growling – but only when it’s crouched!

The Infected can see your silhouettes, when you are …

* Shooting
* Running
* Chatting – voice commands and voice chat – don’t know about text chat(?)

* NOT when you are walking
* NOT when you are jumping
* NOT when you are reloading
* NOT when you are using your flashlight

The Witch is, like any other woman inflicted by PMS, aggravated by people …

* Staring at her for too long
* Pointing the flashlight at her
* Getting too close to her
* Shooting nearby or at her

* NOT by people using the flashlight and not pointing it at her.
* NOT by people talking (text/voice commands/voice chat)(?)

… she presumably builds up anger (imagine a pissed-o-meter), and will at some point be startled.

Hiding in her nearby vicinity out of her line of sight doesn’t seem to calm her down.

This is far from confirmed, but based on observations it looks like the Witch has three states: idle (crying), alert (turns around to look at you), and disturbed (leaps at you and starts slashing away). She might return to idle after becoming alert, assuming whatever triggered her alert state is removed.

When the Witch is startled, it will go after the person who startled her, or, if that person is out of reach, whomsoever within it; if she manages to kill the person, she’ll go back to her idle state, if no one else ticks her off. She’s programmed to leave the map entirely after killing the startler.

Killing the Witch in one hit: The Witch can be killed with one shot of the shotgun, if all the pellets hit, earning you the Cr0wnd Achievement. However, some players report that she has to get up from sitting down, before it works, so wait until she’s started standing up.

Witches and Tanks don’t take extra damage from headshots. #

Playing as Infected
Infected don’t take fall damage

Landing on Survivors from high altitude damages them up to 25 points: Think about using this to your advantage.

Hunters can wall-jump: Keep crouching and use pounce aimed at your destination – and make sure to piss off those Survivors in the elevator.

But, Hunters! Don’t crouch all the time, as your character will make a growling sound, alerting Survivors to your presence.

Boomers can self-detonate: But you have to bind the command explode to a key (do so by “bind [key] explode”. Doesn’t work after Dec 4 update.

Also, you can use yourself as a bomb, if you jump from a building onto a group of unsuspecting Survivors.

Note for “Barf Bagged” Achievement: Exploding on all four survivors doesn’t count, according to personal accounts. It has to be vomit.

STRATEGY
Survivors

Pills: Only use them during or right before battle, as their boost to your health is only temporary.

Melee!: It’s very effective (some believe it to be too effective). It’s great as a panic reaction (rather than shooting in 8 directions), if you meet a Boomer around the corner, or if you get swarmed by the Horde.

Need to reload at a bad time? Use melee to buy yourself the time to reload.

Pistols: Aside from melee, your pistols aren’t to be underestimated. After all, infinite ammo.

Crouch: To avoid drawing friendly fire and to increase your accuracy.

Escaping the Smoker tongue: You have a few seconds to shoot the Smoker, allowing you to escape. Some say that you can escape by turning around yourself in the first few seconds to – regard it only as speculation at this point, though.

Shooting the Smoker’s tongue also works.

Crowd control against the Horde:

* Close the doors – if you hear the Infected behind a door, you can create a hole in it and shoot or throw explosives through it.
* Bottlenecks and chokepoints – it worked for Leonidas. When inside, see if you can make the Horde pass through a narrow passage, lessening the burden and speed of the buggers.
* Make good use of your slimed teammates – so you’re slimed; congratulations, you just became the group’s bait. Use it to your advantage. See the other points about making obstacles and chokepoint bottlenecks, and remember that the Infected will usually if not always go after the bile-covered teammate, even though the other Survivors are nearby; therefore, place the slimed Survivor at the position most difficult to reach – such as behind the rest of the group. You might shoot the Infected passing, while the slimed Survivor melee punches those who manage to reach him. Time to put the long hours of TD to good use!
* 180>360 – having your back against the wall and facing one (180 – sorta) side of Infected is often better than being completely surrounded (360). This also makes it easier to use melee effectively.
* Take cover – like with bottlenecks, any kind of obstacle makes it more ardous for the Horde to reach you, making it all the more easy to deal with them.
* Duck! – Duh! Maximize your damage potential and minimize friendly fire and the number of things you and your teammates have to think about. If you’re slimed, you can’t shoot for shit anyway.
* Run! – the Horde doesn’t care if you have to take a leak at the house you’re in; they’ll keep pressing on. Avoid using too much of your precious time searching for pick-ups, when you could have used the time to advance. Helping teammates in dire need is another thing, though.
* Teamwork – the nobrainer that some people still seem to forget. The team that fights together lives together. Four people working together is way more than four times as effective as four people going Rambo.
On Expert you won’t make it without teamwork.
* Look around you – use your surroundings: Propane tanks, gas tanks, miniguns. Place the tanks to fit your every whim against the Horde.

Avoiding friendly fire:

* If everybody’s squeezed together, and a zombie is approaching, melee him. It’ll knock the zombie back and set you up for a shot; and if it doesn’t, just keep meleeing him until you can shoot him or until he’s dead. Firing wildly in tight corridors and trying to nail a zombie near your teammates is just generally a bad idea. (Melee in general should be used frequently; I see people all the time trying to back up and shoot when they could easily just take a swing and give themselves some breathing room.)
* Try not to shoot at stuff when there’s a teammate behind it. Try to maneuver until you have a clean shot.
* If you absolutely have to shoot at something with a teammate directly behind it, aim low. Let your bullets hit the ground in front of your teammate, and not the teammate himself.
* As for maneuvering, don’t jump around too much. This isn’t Counter-Strike, and the zombies don’t have their own guns. You’ll be doing your teammates a favor by staying in one place and not dashing into their line of fire.
* Crouching when you’re in front is good to let teammates get a shot over your head, but don’t suddenly get up or move around until you’re sure they’re not going to fire again for a few seconds.
* When zombies are surrounding a teammate, shoot the zombies to his side. You won’t get them all, but you won’t be hitting your teammate either.
* Likewise, once a teammate is downed, make sure you actually aim above their body. You can still do a lot of accidental damage even though they’re on the ground.
* When in doubt, don’t try to play the hero and blast a zombie about to take a swing at a teammate from behind. In all likelihood, you may mess up and end up doing more damage to your teammate than the zombie would have.
* Don’t ever get in front of a shotgun. They are the front line of any encounter.
* Switch to pistols when you are behind someone. I got mad and killed a survivor who shot me twice with his shotgun and didn’t bother to pick me up.
* STOP STRAFING!

All sorts of Survivor advice:

* In a finale, if you stay close to the weapons table, quickly picking up the same/another weapon from the table with a full mag is instant reload – very good for tanks on Expert if you want to keep the autoshotty going without reloading.
* Don’t forget about your explosives! And dont be afraid to use them either. If a boomer hits 3 or 4 of you and theres still other bosses around, throwing a (one) pipebomb is not a waste!
* If you are using a shotgun and run out of ammo, take the time to press the reload button before starting to block mobs with melee. It only takes a second until the animation starts, but being able to thin out the mob 6 seconds later is worth it. AKA Melee Reload.
* When using the automatic rifle, aim for the heads – thats instant kill and rewards you with head explosions! If you hit the body instead it will usually take around 6 bullets to slow down a common infected. If you cant aim that well, the autoshotty is probably more effective against common infected.
* When using the autoshotty, shoot slowly. Its tempting just to pump 10 rounds into a rushing mob as fast as you can, but those 10 shells can do double the damage if you wait a bit between shots for them to come closer and catch more pellets.
* Autoshotty vs. crying Witch: Go for it; if you’re lucky you’ll do over 1400 damage in 2 shells. If everybody has tier 2 weapons and lines up correctly, you can kill her without even letting her get up.
* If the tank has brought a teammate down and you have enough health to not be slowed down, quickly go in and melee the tank from behind. If you did it quick enough the tank is likely to loose interest in the incapitated guy and will chase you without delivering the finishing blow. Be sure to have a route to run away from him though, because hes chasing you now and at least one of your teammates should help the incapitated guy up. Being able to navigate through the levels while running backwards helps too.
* In case you want to know how the Director works, start a local singleplayer game, enable sv_cheats 1 and set director_debug 1 – this should also explain why wasting time is not a good idea. #

* If you have any weapon aside from the shotgun, you can afford to shoot from far off. 90% of the time there is no excuse for you to be closer to the zombies than the guy with the shotgun. #

* It’s best to let your teammates take care of themselves, for regular infected. It’s great that you are embracing the team aspect, but too often I see people dashing in front a shotgun blast, or putting half a burst of buckshot into my back, to kill a zombie I’m facing. Learn the shotgun’s spread, and you can easily shoot things running up to teammates without risk. Of course, on Expert’s 20 dmg a hit, killing zombies heading for teammates is much more important.
* Also, while melee is great to set up a shot, fucking shoot the thing! Too often do people just melee the same 3 zombies instead of blasting them and moving on. This also causes the above hero routine, and wastes time and possibly health. Not to mention having several zombies NOT dead, when you’ve assumed your teammate deal with it.
* Oftentimes, it’s best to shoot a pounced hunter instead of knocking him off the teammate. He might get an extra slash in, but it’s better than giving him the chance at NOT dying and pouncing away. It also runs the risk of blasting the teammate when they stand back up, trying to hit the hunter. Not so much an issue with tier 2 weapons, but it happens to me quite often. #

* I’m glad there are folks talking strategy like “don’t strafe and/or jump around” but I take it a step further. When I shoot, I pretty much always stop and always crouch. If I had my dream team of Survivors they would all do this. In fact, the only time anyone would move is when no one is shooting. The only time anyone would shoot is when no one is moving.
* “This isn’t Counter-Strike and the zombies don’t have their own guns.” That’s a very important thing to realize. Even in Versus, standing still (or rather, ducking still) while you are shooting stuff is the best strategy.
* The Hunter’s ability to pounce on people is so lax in its collision detection that no amount of dodging about is going to prevent it. In fact, I believe this is why melee was made to be as powerful as it is: Because dodging is simply not in the skill set required for a good Survivor. You need to have pinpoint accuracy and lightning reflexes, and the ability to keep moving so long as your three teammates are still with you.
* The only exception to the rule of not running AND shooting simultaneously is when a Tank is running right for you. In that case you should probably have your teammates a bit more spread out and thus your shots aren’t nearly as at risk of hitting a teammate in the first place.

* More tips: When Tanks come during finales, switch to shotgun, if you have the chance to get to the weapon pile. You can switch back after it’s done but nothing takes apart a tank like a team of shotguns.

* You can hand off grenade weapons just like you can hand off pills.

* ALWAYS announce before you intend to throw something, and what you’re throwing: Not doing this can gimp your entire campaign on Expert.
* ALWAYS say your relative location and the mob’s type before you start talking details:
Whether the mob pounced/strangled/vomited on you, or you’ve got a witty self-aggrandizing explanation, save it until the important stuff is known.

“SMOKER BEHIND HES STRANGLING ME WITH HIS UGLY TONGUE HELP FUCK FUCK FUCK GOGOGOGOOGOGOGO” – Acceptable
“Smoker above us, help!” – Good
“Fuck guys, melee this shit off me! Hunter on me! Look behind you, idiots!!!” – Bad
* Learn your role, and play it well: Some players are just better at landing 10 consecutive headshots with an AR, or never incurring friendly fire with their shotgun. Your group’s strength increases dramatically the more versatile you become. While the shotgun is amazing, having three people with shotguns isn’t, unless it’s temporary (for killing a tank, cr0wning, etc).
* Don’t be afraid to restart: If you’re trying your hardest to finish a tough campaign, nothing can hinder you more than beginning the 2nd chapter with no health packs or health.

The discussion on versus “speediness vs. exploring every nook-n’-cranny” mentality reminded me about how I decide whether or not to explore for extra stuff in Versus:

1. Are you ahead of the group/someone is catching up? If not, keep fucking moving. If yes, go to 2.

2. You have some time to spare, check out that shack/closet/room! But wait, use your ears for a moment and listen; do you hear beyond the door:

-a shit-load of horde infected chattering
-the distinct idle babbling of a boss infected
-crying
-Masculine growling and grunting

If yes, ignore that fucking area or scream for you buddies to get over there faster, cause’ you’re in deep shit. If you don’t hear anything beyond a couple shamblers, then by all means, take a peek and go to 3!

3. Door’s open, so with your flashlight out, make a quick sweep across your field of view. See anything that clearly looks like some freebies, or something highlighted in blue? Congratulations, you’ve done something productive! Grab that shit and yell to your friends about your amazing discovery of painkillers on a bedroom nightstand.

On the other hand, did you find jack shit, but you’ve got a hunch there might be something further into the room, possibly in that closet? Fuck that shit, in the time you spent towards wasting a couple of infected and scanning the room, you’re buddies have already caught up by now, and are probably ahead of you. Whatever you can’t see beyond your flashlight range is dead to you now and any more time spent oggling the scenery is more time for b00merM@ster69 to spawn behind a telephone poll and vomit up Bill’s ass. Keep fucking moving.

Lastly, no more than 2 players should be actively searching for goodies. More eyes on ceramic bathroom counter #58 is less eyes on that Smoker that’s been following you for the past five minutes.

Happy Noodle Boy posted:

Playing expert with no Mic etiquette:

* Is there someone in front of you? No? CROUCH because chances are they’re behind you. This is especially important if you’re all in a closet/bathroom fighting the horde in the finales or elevator or whatever.
* Never, ever, fucking EVER cross ahead of them. Almost all FF incidents I’ve seen come from someone clearing zombies in a corner and some idiot trying to get to the other side by walking in front of them.
* Are you 100% sure of where you teammate are? No? MELEE first, then shoot. Especially in close/confined areas where a random shot might cost someone their health.
* Horde/scary music playing/Boomer incident? Two things:
1) FIND A CORNER/WALL, CROUCH AND MELEE until you know where your teammates are.
2) STAND FUCKING STILL. The zombies don’t shoot/snipe/rocket you. You don’t need to strafe/zig-zag your way. With everyone standing still you can shoot zombies sneaking up behind someone without being worried of shooting them.
* RUN FROM THE FUCK AWAY FROM TANKS. They WILL kill you if you get hit. Light them on fire and run, they will die from it in about a minute without needing to fill them with lead. The only instance where I’ve seen you need to fight/kill a tank is in No Mercy in the sewers where sewage seems to put out molotov fire.
* Take your time moving through. Unlike versus, it’s ok to take your time getting to the safe house. Move into a corner/new area, plop down and clear it without running like a maniac. Once it’s safe, move on. Keep and eye out for Special Infected coming from behind or the roof. speaking of special infected…
* If someone gets caught and you’re too far to melee free them… SHOOT. I’m not 100% sure on this, but they receive little to no damage from you when they’re tangled up by a smoker and you can free them that way.

It’s mostly common sense but for fuck’s sake people; be wary of where your teammates are. I would not be surprised, if there were a graph for damage received in Expert, and 70-80% of it came from friendly fire.

Infected
Take out the stray sheep: If a Survivor strays from the flock, be ready to grab him with a Smoker.

If the Survivor’s down, move on to the next one: Tanks pounding away on a Survivor already on the ground (alive or not) is aggravating to experienced players, because it’s a waste of precious clobberin’ time.

All sorts of Infected advice:

* As a Tank, punching cars/trees around is the fastest way to kill the survivors. Even better that on the first map of No Mercy you can punch the red car in their direction and there’s a good chance they’re going to shoot it, set off the car alarm and alert the horde.

* Also always drag your victim away from the direction they’re moving in, not towards it. I’ve seen a lot of pubbies not do this, and it’s just frustrating.

* As a Smoker in No Mercy is, consider pulling people OFF the roof by the gas station lift.

Most people spawn above them, where all the zombies come from, but by pulling one Survivor off the roof effectively, you either fuck him over or slow down his buddies, when they try to cover their friend, as they run all the way back to the ladder.

The counter to this is the ground level door you can open up from the inside. Get someone to hold out in front of it, while moving towards open it, so you won’t have to run all the way to the ladder.

* Wait for it!: Especially as a smoker, you’ll generally only make one final appearance before executing your plan against the survivor. Make sure you’re mounting your attack from the correct location, that you’ll inflict maximum damage, and if possible; let some other people know!
* Ride the rush: In order for an attack to be successful, with all four survivors sticking together, you need a distraction. Whether it’s the director or your team’s boomer, attacking during a rush is much more effective.
* Go for the kill(s): If the survivors have any chance of completing the mission, and you’ve got one of them down twice, finish them off. They’ve already proven one incap won’t slow them down. (Exception should be made when playing as a tank, unless near a safe house).
* Don’t sit there, they’re healing!: I’ve played in a lot of versus matches, and especially in higher difficulties, the team of survivors will go down without using a single health pack; they just didn’t have the time. If you have a chance to disrupt a team’s healing session, it’s possible you could make a game-changing move.

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Cold Fear

Cold Fear was an atmospheric survival horror game released by Ubi soft for playstation 2 in 2005. There are currently PC and Xbox ports available.

Cold Fear

Story

In Cold Fear you play as Tom Hansen, a sailor in the U.S. Coast Guard who has been sent in to investigate a mysterious Russian frigate in the middle of the ocean. As Hansen, you find out that the boat is occupied by hostile Russian soldiers and by alien creatures that use humans and other life forms as hosts, to feed on and to use as protection from the environment. The aliens are a threat to Hansen from both inside and outside their host bodies. His investigation leads to the mystery of the ship and its lethal cargo.

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Gameplay

Cold Fear plays like any other game of its genre, but its play mechanics are most reminiscent of those of Resident Evil 4. In Cold Fear, players can assume a behind the shoulder camera angle, much like Resident Evil 4. However, unlike Resident Evil 4, players can choose between a fixed camera angle or a behind the shoulder camera angle. Also, unlike Resident Evil 4, the player can move while aiming a weapon. The game employs many scare tactics, as well, like those found in Resident Evil and Doom 3. For example, when opening a door, a creature may jump out at the player, or while talking to an NPC, a creature may just burst out of his chest. And unlike Resident Evil, Cold Fear employs a stamina bar, which decreases as the player does certain actions, like running, which means you’ll be taking constant breaks to make sure Hansen is rested enough to proceed.

The conditions on the deck of the ship can change how the player can control Hansen. Since the game takes place in the middle of the ocean during a huge storm, there’s bound to be a lot of movement of the vessel as it bobs up and down through the rough seas. The cargo ship continuously banks left and right while you’re walking on deck, making it more difficult to aim and walk a straight line. In some instances, the ship rocks so much, and to such a great degree, that Hansen gets knocked down and sometimes sent overboard. There are also many environmental hazards, such as swinging electrical wires and crates hooked up to ropes, which are also affected by the swaying of the ship, and can easily crash into the player if he or she isn’t careful. Waves crashing on to the ship’s deck may also damage the player’s health.

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Weapons

  • .45 handgun
  • AK-47
  • spear gun
  • shotgun
  • M39 grenade launcher
  • flamethrower
  • MP5

Cold Fear’s advertising campaign created some striking visuals and fake scientific websites describing the strange parasitical organisms that appear as the game’s enemies.

concept art

Cold Fear screenshot 2

fake scientific research photos made for the game’s viral advertising campaign

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Pressure: The best game you’ll never play

PRESSURE is a first-person underwater disaster/survival horror simulation, slated for a Q3 ’09 release, that seeks to deliver a cinematic experience that is never played the same way twice.

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PRESSURE takes place in the deep-sea facility Belisarius, a secret zoological research lab over two miles beneath the surface of the Pacific Ocean. The game begins with the player going about business as usual in Belisarius until, inevitably, disaster strikes. The world of PRESSURE is inhabited by gargantuan underwater monsters lurking in the dark and murky waters around the lab, many of them large enough to devour a man in a single gulp. From whale-sized sharks to Lovecraftian horrors to bioluminescent serpents hundreds of times your size, the game’s array of monsters is far more unsettling than most horror games can boast, and anyone with a fear of water and what lies beneath may have trouble playing this game in large sittings. After disaster hits the lab, the player must then utilize every resource at his disposal to stabilize or ward off the threat long enough to save the facility or make an escape, with any other survivors. Throughout the game, several fully-destructible areas will take realistic levels of damage and will increase the danger accordingly. The way in which the lab becomes damaged is not pre-determined, so depending on the circumstances you may have to deal with anything from small but dangerous leaks to explosive decompression and subsequent destruction of various chambers, blocking normal passage through the area. Your primary tools are simple weapons, ranging from deep-sea suits and harpoon guns to neutralizing chemical foams and shock grenades. Most of your weapons are ultimately useless against the bigger baddies, though, and in those situations your best bet is just to run, hide, or swim as fast as you possibly can.

One of the game’s two core design philosophies is change. The game is meant to be played multiple times, rather than most games which seek to deliver the majority of the content in a single playthrough. Some plays will be very short, some will take hours. And because the game is never quite the same on any two playthroughs, coming back for a second game is a much more appealing prospect. One of the most interesting differences is the way the game begins: the player has a choice of twelve different professions within the facility, including head of security, medic, electric engineer, and biological technician. These will affect not only your starting abilities (physical strength, stamina, weapon accuracy, capability with tools, etc), but also the tools and security clearance you start the game with, and where in the facility you’ll begin play. A technician will have repair tools to help restore certain areas of the lab to limited functionality, but his skill with any kind of defensive weapon will be almost nonexistent. On the other hand, a security officer makes a tempting choice, with his firearm skill and good physical strength for moving obstacles and using nearby objects as improvised weapons, but his lack of skill makes some tasks more tedious and even potentially hazardous, in one example where a rookie squad member blew himself up using a highly-pressurized underwater welding kit.

The disaster itself is also dynamic and randomized. In once example developers shared, the player, a diving and undersea demolitions expert, had just enough time to wake up from his bunk and step out the door to see a huge whale-sized creature crash headlong through a three-story glass window and flood the main area, resulting in a desperate dash for survival by not only the player but all the nearby staff, one of whom even shoved the player off a ladder in an attempt to scramble up past him. Yet developers also said that sometimes, the player might go about their daily routine for over fifteen minutes before any real danger arises. There are over 40 different tasks, some unique to the player’s profession, some general-purpose, and over 100 objective locations. This helps raise an atmosphere of suspense and unease as the player finds himself wondering when disaster will finally hit. It also helps put the player in a variety of situations: the same disaster of sudden decompression plays out very differently when you’re a scientist working with over lab specimens than when you’re a mechanical engineer tightening bolts in the guts of the facility, surrounded by spewing steam and rattling pipes, or a diver welding with a tiny, flickering torch, back to the open sea in the cloudy darkness around the lab.

Even the nature of the disaster is different each playthrough. Sometimes a gigantic sea monster will attack the facility directly, other times the danger is less immediate or obvious. Maybe a horrible beast is lurking in the darkness around the facility at night, devouring anyone who dares head into the water. Maybe the strange new aquatic lab specimens have broken free and are wreaking havoc from inside. On rare occasions, the developers said, the danger won’t even involve sea monsters at all. A systems failure or explosion could cause plenty of damage to the facility without the need of humongous creatures. Then again, disasters can also strike multiple times, so just because you’ve started to seal a potentially-catastrophic leak doesn’t mean you won’t have a tentacled horror the size of the Eiffel Tower bearing down on you a few minutes later. Developers say there are over 120 possible “catastrophe events” that are dynamically combined or linked, and this doesn’t even count the numerous dynamically-destructible areas, which can lead to flooding, gas leaks, oxygen depletion, explosive decompression, fires, lockdowns, electric hazards, and other life-threatening situations. You never know where you’re going to be when disaster strikes, or what that disaster’s going to be.

The other core design philosophy is choice. The player always has a choice of action, and assuming the player’s character has clearance to the various areas of the lab, Belisarius can be roamed freely at any point in the game. Even when passages lose oxygen, erupt in flames, or become completely destroyed, there will always be a way to get through, and sometimes this is unavoidable. In one example, the player had to reach the remote mining area, connected to the main lab via a long glass tube and a mined shaft which runs under the ocean floor. The tube had been destroyed earlier when an explosion rocked the facility, and the tunnel was filled with fire and acidic smoke. Lacking protective gear that wouldn’t be eaten away by the caustic environment in the tunnel, the player instead chose to head through open waters to get to the airlock of the mining area. Swimming through murky waters with almost no visibility proved to be a bad decision: about halfway to the destination, an immense shadow passed just at the edge of the player’s vision. The scene ended with a frantic chase with the player scrambling in a panic towards the airlock as a nightmarish creature pursued him with its toothy maw gaping wide, threatening to swallow him whole. In the end, the monster was faster.

The player has a choice of action too, and this can affect many aspects of play and determine the overall time it takes to beat the game. You can choose to run like a coward, leaving everyone else stranded. In an example we saw, one player was near the deep-sea submersible when things really hit the fan, and, forsaking the rest of the lab and all the people in it, he killed a nearby supervisor with a computer tower, stole his access card, and took off towards the surface with the sub. Even though the sub was swallowed by an eyeless, beaked whale-monster, the developers assured us it was possible to win this way, resulting in a game that only lasts a few minutes. On the opposite end of the spectrum, you could have a very long game in which you attempt to save key survivors, recover valuable documents, and stabilize the facility long enough to attempt a safer escape. Of course, if the sub blows up early on or you’re on the opposite side of the facility when terror strikes, it’s going to be a longer game even if you just try to save yourself and escape. Perhaps the most nerve-wracking option is to simply horde air and supplies and wait for rescue, which is usually an option of last resort when most other actions would mean certain death.

You can meet up with other survivors, but if the nature of the disaster is severe enough, you’re far more likely to just find waterlogged corpses. Sometimes the other team members are more capable than yourself, and every profession has a purpose. There are times when you must escort unconscious or less-capable team members through hazardous areas or past potential monster attacks, but failure never means a game over. Even if every person you escort dies (heck, even if you kill them all yourselves), you can still finish the game. It’s up to you to determine what winning means in any given situation, and how to achieve that. Maybe you just want to be an agent of chaos and help destroy the base – that’s an option too. No matter what you choose to do or how good you are at it, if you’re alive, that means you can still win. And even if you do die, you can still avoid a bad game over if others survive because of your actions anyway. Whether drowning in the inky blackness of the open ocean or dragged under a broken glass floor by horrible, monstrous tentacles, your death does not have to be in vain.

Death is frequent, however. Because even the longest games will probably only last a few hours, expect to die and restart a lot. Sometimes it’s almost impossible to avoid. In the demonstration we saw, the player took the role of the Captain himself, and was killed right when the disaster started. He was walking to the main deck when he turned to look out the window into the murky blue and saw a huge fish with a knifelike grin charging at the window. He stood in frozen fear for a moment before the thing rammed the window, rupturing the compartment, flooding the area, and killing the captain instantly. When the first blowout, fire, or leak occurs, lots of people usually die, and sometimes you’re one of those people. It can be annoying, but it also adds that much more tension to the pre-disaster game, knowing that if you don’t stay on your toes and out of trouble, you could be dead before you even know what hit you.

In short, PRESSURE offers a unique and terrifying playthrough every time you start a new game, and the sheer amount of possibilities promises that each game will be an unpredictable experience, never knowing what terrors might be coming, or when, or from where. The game’s system links together a series of events which work together to provide a cinematic, dynamic experience of increasing danger, lulls of false safety, and explosions of pure catastrophe. The constantly-changing environments and randomized layout of the facility and its personnel, along with the unforseeable and nightmarish dangers which lurk in the dark waters beyond, make this game an adrenalie rush of horror the likes of we’ve never experienced before.

And it’s not real.

Pressure is a brainstormed game concept born on an anonymous imageboard, which has captured the imagination of everyone who has read it. So much so that an effort to make the game a reality, or at least bring it closer to that level has started with the creation of a collaborative wiki for all those whose imagination has been captured by the concept can add their grain of salt to the project.

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Let’s hope they’re successful, since the game sounds awesome! 🙂

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Awesome environment interactivity in Alone in the Dark 5

The new Alone in the Dark is set to have an amazing array of interactive options for your player to modify the scenery in creative ways, check out this demo version to see how you can break objects apart, pick up pieces, light them on fire, tip over objects, control them with fine detail, etc…

Alone in the Dark

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Resident Evil: Degeneration trailer

The trailer for the upcoming Resident Evil movie (Yes, that’s right, movie not game) from Capcom and Sony is out. It’s going to be a full 3d CG affair, none of this Mila Jovovitch wallhack nonsense.

Apparently the movie will be on blu-ray only so it will be playable in a PS3.

Nice to see Claire back, at any rate!!

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Resident Evil 5

Rumour has it that the next resident evil (Controversial due to the fact that it seems to be set in a 3rd world country) is in fact located in Haiti.

This makes all sorts of sense when you consider Haiti is the “home” of the zombie.

By the way, if you haven’t seen it yet, here’s the resident evil 5 trailer from E3 2007

It looks neat, but I can see why it might be considered controversial!

Resident Evil Biohazard 3 Series 5 Claire Redfield Leather Jacket Ver (Biohazard 2 Ver) Action Figure

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Left 4 Dead

The Game
Left 4 Dead is a multiplayer co-op surival horror game being published by Turtle Rock Studios in close partnership with Valve software, to be released before the end of 2007. The premise behind the game is that the rabies virus has mutated into a new, more virulent strain and caused a pandemic outbreak, infecting most of the world’s population. You and three other players are the “lucky” few who are immune to the virus. The rest of the world has been turned into mobs of bloodthirsty murderers, hellbent on killing you on sight.

These mindless killers aren’t your traditional shambling zombies however – they’re not even undead, instead very much alive and just as easily killed as a normal person. They are very fast however, and semi-intelligent when it comes to their attacks. Think 28 days later type of zombies.

The Players
A game consists of 8 player slots, 4 survivors and 4 boss infected (which we’ll cover in a moment). The survivors play out like your traditional FPS; they’re armed to the teeth, but must work together in order to advance. Rambos will quickly meet with an untimely demise, and failure to cover all potential angles of attack will be costly to the party. At the beginning of the game, the four survivors appear in a sort of safe area, where they can gather weapons, health packs, and explosives. When ready, survivors head out with the intention of reaching an evacuation area to be helicopter-lifted to safety. Standing between them are hordes upon hordes of infected, and the boss infected players.

Besides playing out like a traditional fps, there’s also some subtle nuances to playing as a survivor. Each player can grab a medpack, useful for restoring the health of either your teammate or yourself and staying in the game. Occasionally a survivor may get knocked to the floor and start to “bleed out”. When this happens, the remaining teammates have a limited amount of time to clear out the zombies beating on the player, and then help them get up. While bleeding out, players are limited to just the use of their pistols.

Should a player die, the game is not necessarily over for them. A player can be revived either at the end of a map in the next safe room, or teammates may occasionally come across their lost comrade hiding away in a closet or locked room further along in the level.

Campaigns are composed of five maps, and will take approximately an hour to finish. So far Turtle Rock Studios has shown one entire campaign publicly consisting of a romp through a hospital, subway, and building complex. The atmosphere is varied throughout, but most locales tend to be very dark and atmospheric.

The Director
In what might be considered the most revolutionary aspect of Left 4 Dead, zombies aren’t spawned from spawn points like a traditional FPS, instead Turtle Rock Studios has implemented a system called the Director. What the Director does is monitor the stress levels of each individual player and reacts accordingly – pummeling players with waves of zombies after a lull, then toning it down a notch, letting things settle, then ramping it back up again. What you get is a series of peaks and valleys in the action and games which are completely different each time, keeping the players guessing.

The Director also manages the in-game music, playing soft and creepy music when there’s a lull in the action, and ramping it up when the infected horde attacks.

The Boss Infected
The other 4 players in the game can opt to play on the infected side. This gives them access to four special infected, each with their own talents and abilities. Boss infected are very fragile, and can be taken down in a matter of seconds (with the exception of the tank boss) to focus fire. As such, your primary goal as a boss infected should be to attack the survivors at the most opportune times (mobbed by regular infected, separated, etc.).

The Boomer

This fat sack of methane has the ability to projectile vomit up a concoction of blood and bile which serves as zombie heroin. Upon landing on a survivor, all infected in the immediate area (plus some spawned adds) will swarm said player. With their vision hindered by the blood, it’s up to the remaining teammates to cover the puked upon, and make sure they don’t get overwhelmed. When killed, the boomer explodes in a blast of methane which harms all survivors near to him, so make sure to kill this one at range.

The Smoker

The smoker’s special abilities include releasing a cloud of smoke that obscures the survivors’ vision, plus a prehensile tongue the smoker can use to grasp a survivor around the neck and drag them over to him, hanging the player on the edges of building and debris, or just separating the player from his teammates.

The Hunter

The hunter is the stealth/agility unit. Able to leap 50 feet up in the air, pounce upon unsuspecting survivors, and even go invisible when standing still, the hunter is a master of hit and run. It’s also paper-thin, so as mentioned, players must remember to only attack at the most opportune of moments. The pounce attack is particularly vicious, it’s very frightening to have something suddenly scream at you, pin you to the floor, and start wailing on you with open fists.

The Tank

This walking hulk can not be voluntarily chosen by players, instead the Director will randomly choose a player to assume the role of the tank periodically throughout the campaign. This beefy monstrosity takes a bit more concentrated firepower to take down than the other infected. The catch however is that you can’t bide your time and sneak up on the survivors with this one; he has an aggression meter which slowly starts building up for as long as he’s not within sight of the survivors. He makes a huge amount of noise as he approaches (making any form of stealth impossible), so this one is your “run in guns a’ blazing” kill machine.

The Witch
The 5th type of boss infected is not playable, but instead makes appearances sporadically throughout levels. The witch looks like a normal infected, but is typically found screaming and writhing in pain on the floor. Capable of one-shotting players and laying waste to your whole party in a matter of seconds, the trick is to avoid her completely – the players must turn off their flashlights and tiptoe silently past her in order to avoid confrontation. If she turns on you however, the players must down her ASAP or risk a whooping.

Gameplay

Setting & Levels

Gameplay takes place in urban cities, small hamlets, wooded rural settings, shopping malls and other such locations. Four players take control of the four main characters of the game, “The Survivors”, who subsequently play through the levels fighting off the Infected, which are humans who have been infected with a mutated form of rabies. Each level has the players fighting towards a goal, such as escaping by helicopter. (The helicopter has to be called in by radio. During the final wait for rescue, players must face a final onslaught of the infected.) [2]

There will be four scenarios with around five maps each in the first release of Left 4 Dead.

Damage, Dying & Checkpoints

Check points also provide a re-spawn point for downed Survivors. As long as one Survivor manages to reach a check point, the others will appear again on the map in closets or in other “trapped” situations. Survivors don’t die instantly from too much damage, however. They are first knocked down, but can continue to fire with their pistols until helped by another Survivor. Movement speed is affected by injuries, slowing damaged Survivors down until they are helped by health kits or pain medications. Left 4 Dead will have full friendly fire that can’t be switched off. This keeps the challenge of the game up. [2]

Playing as the Infected

Four subsequent players can join the server and take control of the larger, more powerful Infected with unique abilities amongst the other AI Infected. Since only one Boomer, one Smoker and two Hunters are allowed at any one time, players have to select their preferred Infected and wait for it to spawn. Players can also control the tank, but it’s only spawned a few times during each scenario. A special alert gives Infected players the option to start playing as the Tank when it does spawn.

The infected have the ability to see survivors through the walls at a certain range if the survivors are running, with the flashlight on, or talking. Otherwise, Survivors are not visible through walls. The Infected can also see in the dark, unlike the Survivors.

If a player playing an infected dies in less than about 3 seconds after spawning he/she is immediately respawned. Infected spawn in front of the Survivors and can, if they stay still, see a marker for their likely path of advance so they can set up ambushes.

Throughout levels, Infected-only ways up buildings are marked with symbols. These can be climbed and used for ambushes, especially with the Infected immunity to falling damage. [2]

Team Coordination & Communication

The Survivors can communicate by automated voice commands that are accessed by quick menus. They will also sound off automatically when doing such things as reloading or spotting Infected. Over 1000 unique lines have been recorded for each Survivor. [2]

Survivors will also be able to see each other through walls as colored outlines to make it easier to find each other.

AI

The AI in Left 4 Dead allows the game to be played by fewer than four players, by making the other survivors bots, these bots will follow one of the player-controlled survivors. The Infected bosses will also be played by the AI, if there is less then four players on the infected team. The AI in Left 4 Dead is allegedly so convincing that survivors won’t be able to distinguish between bots and real players in the role of the infected.

The Director

The AI also features a dynamic system for game drama, pacing and difficulty called the “director”. Instead of fixed spawn points for enemies, the director AI places enemies in different positions, creating a new experience each time. It will also balance action and moments of tense calm. [2] When the AI Director feels that players have been facing a particularly intense battle it will slow down the tide of enemies. After a sufficient lull of action the director will send more enemies to increase the drama again.

Award System

Left 4 Dead will include Steam’s in-development awards system, which records players’ accomplishments and mishaps. There are different awards for the different “teams” in the game:

The Survivors

The Survivors receive merits for accomplishments such as completing a Scenario without using any health items or the flashlight. Survivors will also receive awards for doing things such as helping a downed survivor get back up, or by saving them from the infected.

The Survivors receive demerits for mishaps such as shooting a teammate, or killing a boomer near teammates. Survivors will also receive demerits for walking into friendly fire, or purposely causing one’s death without giving the rest of the survivors any benefit from it.

The Infected

The Infected receive merits for accomplishments such as killing a survivor, or poisoning a survivor. The Infected will also receive awards for helping other infected kill a survivor by making a combined attack on a survivor, or causing a swarm of infected to kill a survivor.

The Infected receive demerits for mishaps such as harming a teammate, or killing a teammate. The Infected will also receive demerits for walking into friendly fire, avoiding the survivors for a certain period of time, or purposely helping the survivors.

The Survivors

 

 


The survivors. Left to right: Francis, Zoey, Bill, Louis.

There are four playable human characters in the game, each with a different and unique appearance to make it easier to identify which character you are looking at when you aren’t close enough to recognize the face. Each player is randomly assigned a character when they join the server and, to prevent arguments, each character has the same abilities and may use the same weapons.

Francis Barrels
The tattoo-covered biker.
Zoey Coen
The teenage daughter of a wealthy family.
Bill Calhoun
A Vietnam veteran with combat skills that have helped keep him alive.
Louis Parker
An assistant manager at a local retail electronics chain store.

Weapons

The main weapons in Left 4 Dead are divided into two tiers. The first is available to everyone when the scenario starts. Weapons in the second tier can be found throughout the maps and at the end of the scenario, just before the final fight. All weapons can be used to bash Infected with in close combat, pushing them back. The weapons have been said to resemble those of Counter Strike Source, but with increased recoil. There is no information on the amount of ammo that is given to the players when they acquire each of these guns, as well as if there is a way to distribute them to other team mates.

Main Weapons – First Tier

Each survivor has the choice of starting with one of either weapons, but they can switch or restock ammo on checkpoints.

  • Pump shotgun deals heavy damage to an enemy or many at once. Holds 7 or 8 shells and can be shot without reloading all shells.
  • Uzi submachine gun deals light progressive damage. Holds around 30 cartridges and has enough accuracy to shoot at medium range.

Main Weapons – Second Tier

Each survivor has the choice of switching their first tier weapons to one of these on later checkpoints.

  • M16 Rifle in the game can be viewed as a more powerful and accurate version of the uzi.
  • Sniper Rifle in the game is extremely powerful, is the most accurate, and is still mildly accurate without having to use the scope.
  • Semi-automatic shotgun in the game can be viewed as a more powerful version of the Shotgun that does not require a pump after each shot.

Secondary Weapons

Each survivor starts with a handgun, and they can be restocked on checkpoints.

  • Handgun is mainly used as a support or emergency weapon. If a second handgun is found, they can be dual-wielded. When a survivor is knocked down the only weapon that can be used is the handgun, but accuracy is greatly diminished in this state.

Tertiary Weapons

Each survivor has the choice of carrying only one Molotov Cocktail or Pipe bomb.

  • Molotov Cocktail Burns anything its fire touches and kills most infected that come into contact with it.
  • Pipe bomb Extremely powerful and dangerous to use due to the size of its explosion and its ability to kill all survivors nearby.

The Infected

 


 


The Infected are Left 4 Dead’s name for what are essentially zombies. The zombies in the game are based on the zombies (who are ordinary civilians that are infected with a form of rabies, making them ravenous and psychotic) from the 2002 film 28 Days Later, which the game takes a lot from design-wise.[3] The zombies, as opposed to the slow, shuffling types associated with Night of the Living Dead or Half-Life, are fast and can pounce, creating quite a formidable foe. They will however go down with a well-placed gunshot, meaning they can be dealt with easily on their own, but in great numbers are difficult to handle. In addition, there are five mutated Infected who have their own special abilities and are more powerful than the regular Infected:

The Boomer
A hugely obese Infected that can projectile vomit at The Survivors, blinding them and attracting swarms of nearby Infected to them. When Boomers die they blow up, creating a large amount of damage and exorbitant amounts of gore and viscera.
The Hunter
An agile Infected who can climb walls and jump over rooftops, similar to Half-Life 2’s Fast Zombie. If the Hunter stands motionless against a wall it will turn invisible. It can then pounce on a survivor, pinning them down on the floor and slashing at them with its claws, rendering the victim powerless unless The Hunter is killed by a team-mate or knocked off its victim. It is extremely weak, and can only sustain minor gunfire before dying. The Hunter can also retreat, and slowly heal itself.
The Smoker
A zombie with a long, whip-like tongue that can drag Survivors away from their team-mates and use its tongue as an organic noose to strangle Survivors when it is perched from a rooftop. Similar to Half-Life’s Barnacle, or Resident Evil’s Licker. When in danger, it can leave a haze of black smoke, distorting the Survivors’ vision.
The Tank
A huge, muscular zombie capable of throwing large items such as cars or blocks of concrete. Its slow movement is countered by high strength and toughness. To prevent the tank from camping away from the survivors for too long a frustration timer is set when the survivors are not in sight. When the timer runs out the tank becomes uncontrollable and begins stomping and thrashing giving away its position and becoming vulnerable to the survivors.
The Witch
The only mutant infected that will not be available to players. They are passive upon discovery by the players, but react with hostility to flashlight beams, physical contact, and gunfire in the vicinity. It will be able to kill a player in one hit, and has almost as much health as a Tank, making them the most dangerous of the infected. She has the resemblance of average infected, and can be heard crying to give the players a chance to avoid or attack her.

GUI

HUD

The player’s HUD will allow them to see how much health, ammo, and equipment they have left. The players will also be able to see the name of their teammates, the picture of whom a teammate is playing as, the amount of health and equipment each of the other teammates have, as well as if they are in danger, downed, or dead.

Awareness

The game will feature full body awareness in which the players will be able to see their own bodies when they look down. This is very useful for players when they are in areas where they want to be close to an edge, when they are downed they will know where their body is facing, and will help player hide themselves.

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Resident evil 1 (Biohazard)

Resident Evil ( Biohazard) is a survival horror video game by Capcom and is the inaugural title in the Resident Evil series. It was originally released in 1996 for the Sony PlayStation and has subsequently been ported to the Sega Saturn and PC. A Director’s Cut was also released.

In 2002, a remake of the game was released for the Nintendo GameCube featuring new graphics, voice acting and many significant gameplay changes. A Nintendo DS port of the original was released in early 2006.

It was the first game to be dubbed a “survival horror”, a term coined by Capcom to promote the title. Whether it was the first game in the survival horror genre is disputed.

 

The original game opens on the evening of July 24, 1998 in the fictional Raccoon City where a number of grisly murders have taken place on the outskirts of town. Victims were attacked in their homes by a group of assailants, who left evidence of cannibalism. Local law enforcement sends in the S.T.A.R.S. Bravo Team. After contact is lost, the Alpha Team is sent out to find Bravo Team and to continue the investigation. Alpha Team locates the downed Bravo Team helicopter, but there is no sign of survivors; only a severed hand is found. While searching the area for further clues, Alpha Team is attacked by ferocious dogs, which kill one of the team’s members, Joseph Frost. Alpha’s helicopter pilot, Brad Vickers, suddenly lifts off and abandons the team. Pursued by the violent dogs who killed their colleague, Alpha Team is forced to seek refuge within a nearby mansion, believed to be abandoned.

With the dogs roaming the outside of the building, the four remaining Alpha Team members (Jill Valentine, Chris Redfield, Barry Burton and Albert Wesker) are besieged within. A gun shot rings out, to which the player’s selected character moves to investigate. At this point, the player takes control of the character and begins to explore the mansion. One of the first discoveries to be made is a member of Bravo Team, Kenneth Sullivan, being eaten by a zombie. The character eventually finds the mansion to be riddled with puzzles, traps and horrors; anything but abandoned. Scattered documents and files suggest that a series of illegal experiments and criminal activities were being undertaken on the property by a clandestine research team, under the authority and supervision of pharmaceutical conglomerate Umbrella Incorporated. The creatures roaming the mansion and surrounding region are the results of these experiments, which have exposed the mansion’s personnel and various animals and insects to a highly contagious and mutagenic biological agent known as the “T-Virus” (hence the Japanese title, “Biohazard“).

 

The opening scene from Chris's scenario in the original PlayStation version.

 

 

The opening scene from Chris’s scenario in the original PlayStation version.

After navigating a series of tunnels, passageways and buildings, the player discovers a secret underground laboratory containing detailed records of the Umbrella Corporation’s experiments. In the lab, Albert Wesker reveals that he is a double agent working for Umbrella and releases the “Tyrant T-002”, a giant humanoid monster created through prolonged exposure to the T-Virus. Upon release, the Tyrant immediately impales Wesker on its elongated claws. The player then apparently slays the Tyrant. A self-destruct program is triggered soon after. After the player calls for a rescue chopper, the Tyrant bursts through the roof of the lab onto the chopper landing pad and attacks. Suddenly resistant to bullets, the Tyrant is finally slain when the chopper pilot, Brad Vickers, drops a rocket launcher and the player uses it to completely destroy the creature. The player escapes in the chopper and the game ends.

The ending sequence varies depending on choices made by the player as he/she explores the mansion. So long as the player escapes with both teammates, the ending plays out as described above. Rescuing only one or neither teammates changes the outcome.

 

The same scene from the GameCube remake.

 

The same scene from the GameCube remake.

Overview

Unlike subsequent Resident Evil games, the first game had a live-action opening and endings in the style of a B-grade horror movie. The opening footage in Western releases was significantly re-cut to exclude much of the gore. Although Capcom had intended to include the complete and uncensored version of the intro in the later releases, only the PC, some North American and European Sega Saturn releases, and the German and French PAL PlayStation Director’s Cut releases contained the original FMV.

The gameplay environment consists of polygonal 3D characters placed over prerendered 2D backgrounds. As such, the game relies on pre-determined camera angles as opposed a real-time camera. As a result, the game uses a “tank-like” control scheme. Instead of the player moving the character in the direction pushed on the control stick, the character instead moves forwards by pressing up, backwards by pressing down and will turn on the spot by pushing left or right directional buttons. Many of the series’ detractors have criticized this control scheme, claiming that it is confusing and unsuitable for a third-person action game. Fans, however, defend it, arguing that a conventional third-person control scheme would be limited and unwieldy when used in conjunction with the prerendered camera angles prevalent in the majority of the series’ titles.

These often imaginative camera angles are used to convey an ominous, cinematic feel to the player, claimed by the developers to have been impossible to achieve with standard 3D technology of the period. The prerendered backgrounds would also allow the developers to add a level of detail previously impossible for 3D technology of the time.

The player fights enemies by arming the character with a weapon. When attacking, the player remains static and can turn their character and aim their weapon level, up or down. Initially, the only weapons available to the player are a combat knife and a Beretta 92FS, but later in the game, more weapons become accessible to the player such as the Remington M870 and a Colt Python. Ammunition for firearms is severely limited.

The player must survive by fighting against the various monsters that populate the mansion. The most common enemies in the game are zombies, which are slow-moving and easy to outrun, but hard to avoid in tight corners. During later sections of the game, the player must also fight against zombie dogs (known as “Cerberus”), Hunters, Chimeras and Web Spinners, as well as small enemies such as crows, wasps and adders. The player must also fight against bosses such as a giant snake, a mutated plant, a giant spider, a giant shark, and the Tyrant.

Health is restored by using first-aid sprays or healing herbs. Of the two, healing herbs are more common and restore a portion of the player’s health, while first-aid sprays are more scarce, but will restore the player’s health completely. There are three types of healing herbs available: the Green Herb for restoring health, the Blue Herb, which cures poison, and the Red Herb, which can’t be used by itself, but will triple the healing power of a green herb when mixed with one. The player can mix herbs for up to six usable combinations.

The player must navigate through the mansion by picking up various keys and items which are integral to the game’s progress, while solving puzzles along the way. The player has a limited capacity for carrying items and this enforces the need to carry only essential items in order to have space for new items. As such, boxes are available for the player to store any item for later use.

The player can save progress by locating a typewriter and using an ink ribbon to save gameplay data. Ink ribbons are available in a limited quantity, forcing the player to think carefully about whether they have made enough progress to justify saving the game. This method has also been criticized by many, but designer Shinji Mikami defended this aspect by arguing that it increases the tension in the game.

There are also various documents available which provide the solutions to certain puzzles or simply further divulge the plot.

Cast

Playable characters

Resident Evil has the player take control of either Chris Redfield or Jill Valentine. There are differences in abilities, items and supporting characters, resulting in a unique scenario for each character. Successive Resident Evil titles utilized a similar template, including a male and female lead in each release with few exceptions. Notably, Resident Evil 0 has players control both protagonists simultaneously.

  • Chris Redfield – Chris is stronger than Jill, making him more resistant to enemy attacks. He can carry six items and starts with a knife. He needs Old Keys to unlock doors where Jill can simply use her lock pick. Chris’s supporting character is Rebecca Chambers, who will render primarily passive assistance to the player (medical assistance and puzzle-solving).
  • Jill Valentine – Jill’s scenario is the easier of the two, as she has a higher carrying capacity and has a lock pick that serves as a substitute for the “Old Keys” in Chris’ scenario (as well as the “Sword Key” in the original release). Jill’s supporting character is Barry Burton, who will render primarily offensive assistance to the player (combat assistance and rescue). Jill is also able to locate a grenade launcher, a weapon exclusive to her scenario. Despite her great capacity for holding items, she is physically weaker than Chris.
  • Rebecca Chambers is also playable for certain portions of Chris’ scenario, provided the player encounters her at a certain point and undertakes tasks in a specific order. Due to these requirements, a player may complete the game without having taken control of Rebecca at any point during gameplay. Rebecca is equipped with the S.T.A.R.S. standard Beretta 92FS or “Samurai Edge” pistol, and is unable to retrieve further weaponry and certain items. She has six item slots and her exploration range is limited. The player may take control of Rebecca at two separate points in Resident Evil. Rebecca is the youngest member of STARS, at only eighteen years old, and serves as the team’s medic.

The character who is not chosen vanishes mysteriously early into gameplay, leaving the player to explore the mansion alone. In order to unlock the passage leading to the cell, three MO Disks must be collected by the player and then inserted into terminals located throughout the lab. The cell’s door can only be unlocked by activating the self-destruct mechanism or by using Wesker’s Master Key.

Supporting characters

  • Barry Burton – In Chris’ scenario, Barry only appears in the opening scene and disappears in the beginning, with Wesker presuming him dead. In Jill’s scenario, Barry helps throughout the game. Barry often shows up whenever Jill is in need of help. For instance, he kills the first zombie in Jill’s scenario, and gives her ammunition on two occasions. Wesker threatened to kill Barry’s family unless he killed the other S.T.A.R.S. members. In the original version, depending on the player’s actions (such as waiting for him to replace a lost rope or seeing Enrico with him), Barry survives to help Jill at the end of the game or gets killed by one of the monsters. In the GameCube version, Barry aims his revolver at Jill, but she thwarts him and, depending on a choice made by the player, may or may not give him his gun back.

According to the original Resident Evil instruction manual, Barry is very much a ‘family man’, and in one scenario presents to Jill a photograph of himself with his wife and children. He has experienced family troubles at home, which explains the stress he often exhibits throughout Jill’s mission. He also utters some of the game’s most infamous dialog; he claims that Jill is the “master of unlocking”, and when Jill is almost flattened by a descending ceiling from which Barry helps her escape, he claims that Jill was almost a “Jill sandwich”.

  • Rebecca Chambers – Chris meets her either when she is attending to wounded Bravo team member Richard, or when Chris first enters the mansion infirmary. Rebecca appears during portions of Chris’ scenario which call for her expertise, such as mixing chemicals or playing the piano, and can heal Chris at certain points. She also becomes a playable character provided the player undertakes tasks in a specific order.
  • Albert Wesker – The S.T.A.R.S. team’s Commanding Officer and Alpha’s team leader, Wesker will make sporadic appearances throughout gameplay, usually to advance the plot. Early into the game, Wesker will vanish mysteriously, leaving players to fend for themselves. In the GameCube remake, Wesker will assist Chris in combat.

Most of the missing Bravo Team members will make minor appearances throughout the game and are often critically injured or already dead. In the Director’s Cut release, the GameCube remake, and Deadly Silence, Forrest appears as a reanimated corpse. In the GameCube release, Richard Aitken plays an extended role in both scenarios if the serum is delivered to him before his death. Although only Rebecca or Barry will escape with the player character, in the canon of the series, it is known that both survived the “mansion incident”.

Further information: List of minor STARS characters in Resident Evil

Enemies

The following is a list of creatures the player faces during the course of the original game. The main enemies in the game are known as Bio-Organic Weapons or B.O.W.s; creatures that were infected with the T-Virus and transformed into monsters as result. There are also creatures in the game (such as crows and adders) that underwent secondary mutation as a result of the viral outbreak in the mansion, although they’re not technically considered B.O.W.s. This includes the infected research and security personnel wandering the mansion.

  • Zombie – Previously members of Umbrella’s Arklay research team, but infected by the T-Virus during the course of their activities. Hosts show complete loss of memory, extremely heightened aggression and severe tissue deterioration. A lone zombie will not pose a significant threat to the player (especially when equipped with a firearm), but larger numbers can quickly overwhelm the character.
  • MA-121 Hunter – As described by Spencer Mansion’s keeper, the Hunter resembles a hairless gorilla with elongated claws and green skin. Initially appearing after the player’s return to the mansion from the garden, Hunters are agile, strong and highly aggressive.
  • MA-39 Cerberus – Dobermans injected with the T-Virus. These creatures were deemed a major success by the Umbrella Corporation, due to their increased strength, speed and aggression.
  • Crows – These crows have been infected with the T-Virus and, as a result, have become extremely aggressive. They are difficult to shoot and dangerous if the player is already critically injured, but otherwise present only a minor threat.
  • Plant 42 Tendrils – A mutated plant that was exposed to the T-Virus. Found in the mansion’s greenhouse. Not particularly dangerous, the plant will simply strike out at detected movement.
  • Web Spinner – Large tarantula-based B.O.W.’s, noted for their ability to jump and spit venomous acid. The Web-Spinner was deemed a failure, due to the fact that it couldn’t be properly adopted to a specific mission profile.
  • Adder – Poisonous snakes that infest the area surrounding the mansion. Much like the crows, the snakes are another accidental by-product of the T-Virus leak. These snakes are poisonous and aggressive.
  • Wasp – Created when a nest within the mansion’s rear guardhouse became exposed with the T-Virus. These wasps are about the size of a fist, extremely aggressive and produce toxins within their abdomens.
  • Sharks – Sharks that underwent infection with the T-Virus. Found in the Guardhouse Basement/Aqua Ring, these sharks have not responded to the effects of the T-Virus as positively as Neptune. Despite that, they have nevertheless been deemed a successful creation by the Umbrella Corporation.
  • Chimera – B.O.W.s located in the underground lab. Created by combining T-Virus-infected human DNA with T-Virus-infected fly DNA. The Chimera is extremely aggressive, but due to the fact it has the intelligence of a fly, it has set attack patterns. They nest inside vents and wait for enemies to get close, then strike. Although capable of incredible agility, the Chimera was deemed a failure, due to being physically weak. The Hunter, with similar abilities and far greater physical strength, was officially chosen to replace the Chimera.
  • Crimson Head (GameCube remake only) – An unforeseen side effect of prolonged T-Virus incubation within a human host. After a zombie is supposedly killed, the virus within the host’s body continues to mutate until the brain receives a “jolt”, and the zombie is revived. Once revived, the zombie’s muscular tissue is reinforced, allowing it move at high speed. The extremities also mutate, creating claws on the hands and feet. The host becomes even more aggressive and capable of sustaining massive damage. The Arklay research team labeled these mutations ‘Crimson Heads’, due to the severe blood seepage through the host’s skin that becomes apparent after mutation. The incubation can be stopped via destruction of the head or by burning the corpse.

Bosses

  • Yawn – A giant python-based BOW with venomous fangs. It earns its name due to the fact that appears to be yawning before biting its prey. It is found in the attic of the mansion, and then returns later on in the game, in a different room.
  • Crimson Head Prototype 1 (GameCube remake only) – The first Crimson Head created by the Arklay research team, the first Crimson Head subject was found to be more aggressive than the Crimson Head creatures that followed it, killing several researchers. It was sealed inside an elaborate puzzle-lock, in a coffin beneath the mansion’s cemetery.
  • Neptune – A shark-based BOW. Much larger and stronger than its counterparts.
  • Plant 42 – A giant carnivorous plant that was created by Henry Santon. It occupies two entire rooms of the mansion’s guardhouse, and its roots have grown into every inch of the building.
  • Black Tiger – A giant Web Spinner, that has responded far better to the T-Virus. The Black Tiger is able to capture large prey in its webs.
  • Lisa Trevor (GameCube remake only) – The daughter of Spencer Mansion’s architect, George Trevor. Lisa is a living testament to the cruelty of the Umbrella Corporation. She was taken prisoner alongside her mother, Jessica, and both were infected with numerous incarnations of Umbrella’s various viral weapons. Jessica succumbed to an early version of the Progenitor Virus, while Lisa mutated into a horrific creature. She is encountered three times and is completely invulnerable to the player’s firearms until the last encounter.
  • T-002 Tyrant Umbrella’s most prized BOW. The Tyrant is the driving force behind the Umbrella Corporation’s continual T-Virus research. A controllable, agile and extremely powerful creature that rogue S.T.A.R.S. operative, Albert Wesker, unleashes on the player in the later stages of the game. The Tyrant will mutate into a ‘Super Tyrant’, increasing its threat profile significantly, after undergoing its ‘limiter release’ phase. It is named as T-002 as the first was, some time before the Alpha Team arrived (possibly only a day), discarded as a failure and is a recurring boss in Resident Evil 0.

Reception

The PlayStation game was a best seller in North America. The game received mixed reviews from critics. For example, GameSpot praised the game [1] [2] while Computer Gaming World gave a more mixed review for the PC version (in which the violence was unedited, see below) in explaining that they “tried to hate it with its graphic violence, rampant sexism, poor voice acting and use of every horror cliché however…it’s actually fun.” [3] In total, according to Capcom’s Investor Relations website, the original Resident Evil has sold 2,750,000 units. [4]

Concerning the GameCube remake of Resident Evil, it has managed to sell 1,250,000 units in total. [5] GameSpot said about the remake: “Capcom has nearly perfected its craft and created the best Resident Evil ever” [6] And IGN mentioned at the time that the remake was “The prettiest, most atmospheric and all-around scariest game we’ve ever played” [7]

Development

English localization

 

A scene from the uncut intro. Chris smokes a cigarette.

 

A scene from the uncut intro. Chris smokes a cigarette.

The original PlayStation version of Resident Evil featured several considerable changes between its original Japanese release and its English-language counterparts. Many of the more violent scenes (such as an image of half-eaten corpses, and Joseph being mauled by the Cerberuses) from the live-action FMV were removed, including scenes featuring Chris Redfield smoking a cigarette. These were done so to comply with SCEA’s censorship standards. The original Japanese PlayStation version also featured two vocal themes performed by J-Pop artist Fumitaka Fuchigami that were not in any other versions of the game. The game’s difficulty setting was also increased in its English release in order to make it harder to complete the game in a single rental. The auto-aiming function was disabled and the numbers of ink ribbons found by the player were reduced. Capcom also planned to eliminate the inter-connecting item boxes for the North American version and this was actually implemented in review copies of the game, but was eliminated due to negative feedback from play testers and game reviewers.[8] This feature was brought back in the GameCube version as an unlockable difficulty setting known as “Real Survival”.

Japanese voice acting for the game was recorded, but ultimately unused.[9][10] The released Japanese version uses English voice acting with Japanese subtitles, as does every Biohazard sequel released in Japan.

Director’s Cut

An updated version of Resident Evil for the PlayStation, titled Resident Evil: Director’s Cut, was released in September 1997, 18 months after the original release. Director’s Cut was produced to compensate for the delay of the sequel, Resident Evil 2, and was originally bundled with a playable demo of that game.

The main addition is the inclusion of an ‘Arranged’ mode featuring new camera angles, different item and enemy placement, a more powerful handgun and new default outfits for Chris and Jill (as well as Rebecca). The original game is included as well, with a new “Beginner” setting where the amount of ammunition uncovered by the player is doubled. One of the new features in the Director’s Cut, a zombified version of Bravo Team member Forest Speyer, was later kept in all later re-releases and in the GameCube remake.

A second release of Director’s Cut (known as the Dual Shock Version) was released in Japan and North America. The Dual Shock Version featured support for the Dual Shock controller’s analog controls and vibration functions, as well as a new symphonic soundtrack by Mamoru Samuragouchi, replacing the original soundtrack by Makoto Tomozawa, Akari Kaida, and Masami Ueda. The Japanese version of the Dual Shock Version came packaged with a bonus disc that contained downloadable save data and footage of the Japanese dubbed version of Resident Evil and gameplay footage of Resident Evil 1.5 (the canceled version of Resident Evil 2).

The North American and European releases of Director’s Cut were marketed as featuring the original, uncensored footage as seen in the Japanese releases. However, the FMV sequences were unchanged from the previous western releases and were still censored. Capcom claimed the omission was the result of a localization mistake made by the developers and offered the uncensored intro as a free download from their website as an appeasement. The French and German PAL versions of Director’s Cut feature the uncensored FMVs, in colored versions.

PlayStation 3 users can purchase and download Resident Evil: Director’s Cut for play on the PSP. As of April 2007, the game is only available in Japan, Hong kong and Taiwan stores.[11]

Ports to other platforms

Ports of the original Resident Evil were produced for the Sega Saturn and PC, each version containing platform-specific exclusive content.

The Sega Saturn version added an unlockable Battle Game minigame in which the player must traverse through a series of rooms from the main game and eliminate all enemies within them with the weapons selected by the player. This minigame features two exclusive enemies not in the main game: a zombie version of Wesker and a gold-colored Tyrant. The player’s performance is graded at the end of the minigame. The Saturn version also features exclusive enemy monsters, such as a re-skinned breed of Hunters known as Ticks and a second Tyrant prior to the game’s final battle. Exclusive outfits for Jill and Chris were added as well. Some Sega Saturn versions in North America and Europe contained the uncut full-color intro, Kenneth’s head scene, and the original bad ending for Chris. [8]

The PC version features the uncensored footage from the Japanese version, but the opening intro is now in full color rather than black and white. Support for 3D accelerators was added as well, allowing for much sharper graphics. Two new unlockable weapons are added, a MAC-10 for Jill and an FN Minimi for Chris. New unlockable outfits for Chris and Jill are added as well.

A Game Boy Color version of Resident Evil was planned, but cancelled by Capcom, citing that the port was of poor quality.

GameCube remake

 

GameCube remake.

 

GameCube remake.

In 2002, the original Resident Evil was remade for the Nintendo GameCube as part of an exclusivity agreement between Capcom and Nintendo that spanned three new games (which also included Resident Evil 0 and Resident Evil 4). Shinji Mikami has stated that the remake is “70% different from the original.”[9].

The game is notable for its nearly photo-realistic environments, all of which are pre-rendered. The remake features all-new graphics and sound, and also incorporates gameplay elements from the later installments (such as the use of body language and the 180-degree turn), introduced a new running style which was also used in Resident Evil 0, and several new areas and rooms were also added to the game, including a graveyard and a cabin in the woods. The overall plot remains largely unchanged. The original live-action FMV segments are replaced by CG versions, and the voice acting was completely re-recorded with new actors. The script was rewritten to have a more serious tone and improved translation, as opposed to the cheesy B-movie dialogue and “Engrish” script of the original. Gameplay mechanics are largely the same although most of the puzzles have been changed and the player can equip a defensive weapon that can be used when seized by an enemy.

Additionally, the remake features many unlockable modes, secrets, and various endings not found in the original. It also restores the George Trevor subplot, and splices other main characters of the Resident Evil plot, such as William Birkin and Edward Ashford into the game’s story.

Deadly Silence

 

Resident Evil: Deadly Silence

Resident Evil: Deadly Silence

An enhanced Nintendo DS port of the original Resident Evil, titled Resident Evil: Deadly Silence was made to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the series. Deadly Silence includes a “Classic Mode”, the original game with minimal enhancements and touch-screen support, as well as a “Rebirth Mode” containing a greater amount of enemies and a series of new puzzles that make use of the hardware’s unique features.

The game makes use of the dual screen display with the top screen used to display the map, along with the player’s remaining ammunition and health (determined by the color of the background); while the bottom screen displays the main gameplay, and can be switched to show the player’s inventory. The graphics were mildly enhanced, and the game also include updated play mechanics from the later games; the 180-degree turn first introduced in Resident Evil 3, along with the knife button from Resident Evil 4. The updated controls are applicable to both Classic and Rebirth modes. Dialog and loading screens can be skipped as well. The live-action footage was still censored (even in the game’s Japanese release), however the scene showing Kenneth’s decapitated head was kept.

In “Rebirth”, new puzzles are added which make use of the system’s touch-screen to solve them. “Knife Battle” sequences, viewed from a first-person perspective, are also added in which the player must fend off incoming enemies by swinging the knife via the stylus. One particular puzzle requires the player to resuscitate an injured comrade by blowing into the built-in microphone. The player can also shake off enemies by using the touch screen and performing a melee attack.

The game also includes wireless support (LAN-only) for up to four players with two different multiplayer game modes. The first is a cooperative mode in which each player must help each other solve puzzles and escape the mansion together. The other is a competitive mode in which the objective is to get the highest score out of all the players by destroying the most monsters (with the tougher monsters being worth more points). There are three playable multiplayer stages and nine playable characters (all STARS members are playable, with the exception of Joseph, Edward and Brad).

Trivia

  • The inspiration for Resident Evil was the earlier Capcom game Sweet Home. Shinji Mikami was initially commissioned to make a horror game set in a haunted mansion like Sweet Home.
  • The idea of using zombies as enemies came from George A. Romero’s Living Dead movie series. Earlier ideas for the game proposed paranormal enemies instead of living creatures.
  • The design on the back of Chris’s alternate costume is a reference to an album by the rock group Queen entitled Made in Heaven. Other references to the album appear in Resident Evil 2, CODE: Veronica and Resident Evil 0. In Resident Evil 2, the ‘Made in Heaven’ design is also seen on the back of Claire’s vest. In Resident Evil: CODE Veronica, the back of Claire’s jacket reads “Let Me Live”, the third track off ‘Made in Heaven’. In Resident Evil 0, Billy’s tattoo reads “Mother Love”, the fourth track off ‘Made in Heaven’. Fans of the series use these occurrences to justify the theory that there must be a hidden group of Queen fans working for Capcom.
  • Barry’s line, “Here’s a lockpick. It might be handy if you, the master of unlocking, take it with you.” was named the worst game line ever in the January 2002 issue of Electronic Gaming Monthly.
    • There is a minigame in Resident Evil DS called “Master of Knifing”, whose title is inspired by the line.

The following details are from The True Story Behind Biohazard (1997, Capcom):

  • Resident Evil was initially envisioned as a first-person shooter until it was decided that playing from a first-person perspective was not scary enough.
  • A series of documents, known as Trevor’s Letters, were proposed for the original game, but not included in the final version due to the fact that they revealed too much of the game’s plot too soon. They were later restored in the GameCube remake with a few differences due to the retroactive changes made in the new version.
  • Two characters appeared in an early draft of the game’s storyline as Jill’s and Chris’s supporting characters. Gelzer, a muscular Caucasian man with a cybernetic eye who was scheduled to hold an entire roof up at one point of the game, and Dewey, a thin African-American man modeled after Eddie Murphy who would’ve served as the comic relief. In the finished version of the game, these two were replaced by Barry and Rebecca respectively. The name Dewey was then used for an unrelated member of S.T.A.R.S. (Bravo squad pilot Edward Dewey).
  • The two horror themed levels from Timesplitters Future Perfect appear to be a homage to the original Resident Evil (the first level being a mansion filled with zombies and other creatures, the second being a lab for creating zombies). The main weapons on these levels also appear to be a homage (the Shotgun, Flamethrower, Magnum and Spear Gun featuring predominately).

Article courtesy of Wikipedia

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