NOTE – I’ve amended this review since repeating the chapters I needed to receive the ‘good’ ending. The additional review is at the bottom in italics and could be considered spoilery.
Revelations 2 sits squarely in the middle of my feelings towards the Resident Evil series. It neither scales the heights of 1 nor hits the lows of 5 & 6. Sometimes the mixture of well used nostalgia, a solid control system and AI that isn’t utterly useless tells me that Capcom know what they’re doing. Maybe I can trust them to move the series in a better direction?
Hold that thought, because parts of this game also make me wonder if they’ve just stumbled on the good parts, as I’m left with a feeling of disappointment upon completion of the fourth episode.
That disappointment stems from three main issues.
Each episode so far has quite neatly given us an hour of each pairing. A solid amount of time that generally progressed the characters tales and gave us a big fight at the end. Pretty standard but pretty pleasing. Here however Claire and Moira’s chapter, which I was looking forward to more from a story point of view, lasts less than half of that. Though I’ve no complaints about the game play I found it anti-climactic. The mystery of Moira’s ‘death’ is very abruptly dealt with. I wasn’t expecting Shakespeare, this is the franchise of the Jill sandwich after all, but more than what I was presented with.
Remember that quick time event in Episode 3? Nope? I didn’t. Well, here’s a little something for you; it determines what ending you get. I wasn’t aware of multiple endings, so when I finished both chapters and was presented with my second disappointing ending of the episode I wondered what the hell was going on. A quick Google and it turns out I’d got the ‘bad’ ending, by not shooting Uroboros-Neil with Moira. So a QTE that barely registered as I’d put my controller down in celebration to watch Neil bite it (yes I know that’s a mistake), affected the overall ending of the game. Grrrr. Annoying, and now I’ll go back and try to do it properly*.
Because I didn’t do things right and received the bad ending I didn’t get the heroic ending I was hoping for and was instead left with a massive ‘we’re setting up a sequel!’ sign. It’s frustrating when so much is done well.
I’ve seen plenty of reviewers complain about the environments throughout the game. Granted they’re not mind-blowing and pretty generic, but if the setting provided in Barry and Moira’s chapter doesn’t make you squeal with delight I’m not sure what would please you.
As I’ve mentioned, the controls have been refined to very pleasing point now. Healing, swapping items and dodging all fall to hand easily, and though the tank controls had their time and place I love the now default ability to move and shoot at the same time.
It could easily sound like I’m on a downer over this game. But believe me I’m not. I just wanted more after its promising start. The Revelations sub-brand is proving itself dependable. Here’s hoping that the next numbered entry can build on its successes and learn from its missteps.
When all’s said and done though, we got to see Barry say this:
That’s worth it alone right?
*I did go back! First of all I repeated the Claire/Moira chapter in Episode 3, and successfully changed the ending. It turns out I’d actually been too quick and made Claire get the gun to shoot Neil before Moira got a chance.
Following that I repeated the Barry/Natalia chapter in Episode 4, and the ending was FAR better. Helicopter? Check! Magnum? Check! RPG? Check! Heroic slow motion? Check! Foreboding final scene? Check check CHECK!!!
This is a proper ending for a Resident Evil game. I’m not happy how I ended up at the right place, but I’m pleased now I’ve got it. Negating 2 of my 3 larger disappointments it raises the game above the original Revelations, so second only to the Raccoon City based trilogy.