I don’t usually do this but…

…I’m going to do a computer game review.

Somebody who didn’t really know what to get me for christmas bought me Resident Evil Archives: Resident Evil for the Wii. It was basically a ho-hum, played that already PS1 port, but I stuck it in the machine christmas night and BAM!! I was hooked.
It is the first Resident Evil game, and it is a PS1 port, but wow! It’s hard to tell if they’ve retained the pre-rendered backgrounds or not, I suspect it is actually rendered in true 3D (due in part to the excellent use of light and shadow) but it retains the fixed-angle shots of the original, as well as those door-animations. Those SCARY door-animations. Yes, it’s scary. The feeling that you get when the screen cuts back to the game, the camera is looking back at you down the corridor and you can hear the unmistakable groaning of a zombie is indescribable. You point your gun before realising you have only one bullet left. Do you go back through the door? Do you try to run past it? You can’t even see where it is!
All this was missing from Resident Evil 4. It was fun, but in the final analysis it was just Tomb Raider with zombies. It wasn’t scary at all and I’d nearly completed it in the time it’s taken me to barely unlock the ground floor doors in this one. You see, that’s the other thing about RE 1&2, they were HARD. There is never enough ammunition, or herbs, and number of times you can save the game is strictly limited. I’m finding it hard-going, spoiled as I am by limitless saves and one-button quicksaves. And do you know what? I’m liking it.
It’s easy to suspect that your fondness for the games of yesteryear is tainted by nostalgia, but it’s nice to be proved wrong. A faithful scene-by-scene remake of the original, and it couldn’t be better. I don’t know if RE2 has been reworked in this fashion but if it has, it’s definitely on my list!


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