Remaking a classic will always have its shortcomings. If it completely remakes the source material without changing anything it’s considered a waste of time. If it changes or cuts anything it’s automatically viewed as a disappointment. Resident Evil 3 Remake is a fantastically flawed short experience that fans should try. What you are given in terms of gameplay is amazing but feels like it was rushed out the door before it could fully be realized.
The game follows Jill and Carlos as they traverse the wreckage that was once known as Raccoon City. The biggest draw to RE3 is the hulking terror known as Nemesis, a genetically modified super mutant that only wants to hunt down the remaining members of S.T.A.R.S. Within the first 5 minutes, he makes his presence well known and will sporadically show up at certain parts of the game.
From my own playthrough I was able to beat the game in about 5 hours. I personally don’t find this to be a flaw, but I know that this factor alone can be a make-or-break kind of deal for others. If you’re only planning on playing the game once it will not justify the price tag that it has. You can still play it multiple times to grind out achievements or trophies but that won’t satisfy everyone.
My biggest gripe with the game is the linearity and not being able to properly explore the city. You’re constantly being rushed from set piece to set piece instead of getting to absorb the hopeless atmosphere that it’s trying to create. Your environments feel so smooshed together that it starts to feel like one big hallway leading to arena shootouts with the boss at the end. I didn’t feel I really got the chance to know the characters better and felt like half the game was missing. You won’t be going to the iconic clock tower or even the police department as Jill. While I love the new look of Nemesis, I never felt like he was that much of a threat to me. I always knew when he was going to appear and a lot of the times his encounters made him feel like a bullet sponge.
That being said, the game does have plenty of positives. While I was playing on PC I was able to play at 120 fps with an Intel i5- 6500 and Radeon RX 580 without any dips. The graphics are to the point now where I thought it was actual people and not a video game. Seeing individual strands of hair and the pulsating guts in such detail is a technical milestone. They’ve really outdone themselves with this engine and I look forward to seeing what they do in future projects. Also, the reimplemented dodge mechanic is a very nice and welcome mechanic to spice up the gameplay, where instead of defaulting to letting a knife break you out of the hold of a zombie, you have to time dodges just right in order to escape getting bitten. However, I’m not a big fan of them taking away the ability to break out of the zombies hold with a last-minute knife or grenade like in RE 2 Remake. I had countless instances where I was attacked because I was so accustomed to the systems from previous games. It took a lot of getting used to it but I’m still baffled that they got rid of a system that didn’t need to be tinkered with.
Both Jill and Carlos are easily the brightest spots the game has to offer. They will both crack jokes at the situations that they are in and have great chemistry together. The biggest surprise to me was how much I was enjoying playing as Carlos and how I wish that he had his own separate campaign.
In terms of replay value, this has to be one of the least replayable RE games. No mercenary mode, no alternate stories, or even weird costumes to unlock. The only thing you can do is constantly beat the game and try to unlock the infinite ammo weapons or one costume for Jill. I’m hoping that they’ll add more campaign options in the future as updates to the game or even DLC.
To help soften the blow of the short campaign they also included a completely separate multiplayer game called Resident Evil: Resistance. Unlike Umbrella Corps and Operation Raccoon City, this mode isn’t a complete trainwreck. Resistance plays as a 1 v 4 survival game where one person is controlling the match as the “mastermind” while the other players must survive whatever is thrown at them. Like most multiplayer games, your experience will depend on how well your team actually cooperates with each other. For instance, I would have team members holding on to key items and not bothering to try to finish the objective causing our eventual downfall. That being said, when you have a great team it’s a lot of fun. Being able to work together to beat the mastermind is one of the best moments I had. If you’re trying to enter the queue as a “mastermind” you could potentially wait from anywhere between 10- 90 minutes before you get your chance. The mode shows a lot of promise but it remains to be seen if it will have much staying power or if it will die out a week after launch.