Review by Augustus4

Reviewed: 03/14/07

MINI CHAINSAWS help get it an 8/10

Okay so Dead Rising is the game based pretty much off all those movies were people have had to survive millions of zombies and it shows it pretty well. Ever seen one of those movies were one of the people dies and you've said "WTF? That guy's an idiot, if that we're me I wouldn't get killed." or "Come on you jackass run, run like your actually getting chased by millions of people who want to eat you either alive or dead." well now you can see if all the smack talk is true. In Dead Rising you take control of Frank West a freelance reporter who's trying to get a scoop about the outbreak in Willamette and ends up at the Parkview Mall trying to get his story and save his life from millions of undead in only 3 days.

Graphics: 7.5/10
This is a tough category in Dead Rising to review because D.R. has HD sort of quality during cut scenes with the background faded and the characters very highly detailed. However outside the cut scenes D.R. seems to have Xbox quality graphics, but somewhat higher. The weapons and food all look fine and all the food that you can't actually pick up but is just there to show you what it is looks fine even though it's just pictures of food pasted onto geometric shapes in a sense. For example in the grocery store the rows of food look like pictures slapped on to scenery but don't necessarily take away from the game. I'm fine with the graphics because I believe the developers made them look the way they do so that they don't slow down the gameplay because of how many zombies you'll find on screen at one time. The graphics are tough to define because even if sometimes they don't look necessarily good at one point you'll then find a statue or something that looks amazing (for example the servbot in the toy store in paradise plaza). The graphics overall are on the minimum for the 360's capabilities and are there so that the game doesn't slow down.

Sound: 8/10
The sound in D.R. fits what you would assume. There is mall music which even though in most malls is incredibly annoying, in D.R. it's there for atmosphere, to help you feel more like "your in the game". The moans of zombies and the whirrs of chainsaws all help the game and the sound never cuts out. Also, like in most zombie movies, there's the intense music, the "sweat down the forehead" "race against time" music which helps mix it up and feel like you’re in one of those movies. The sound however though with some weapons and things is repetitive and annoying after hearing it over 3 times. For example the Katana, this sword makes the sound you expect to hear in say a Samurai movie and even though the first time you hear it you might say it's awesome or feel it helps the gameplay but after hearing it 3 or 4 times you will want to throw that weapon away if it wasn't for the power it offers. If D.R. had just a little more variety with sound in certain cases it would help with the overall game, not asking for much but maybe 2 or 3 different sounds per weapon. Btw Frank curses all the time as does most of the people completely using that M rating, way to go guys! Ha ha.

Gameplay: 9/10
Right okay then D.R. seems to have originality going for it in the gameplay department. D.R. offers tons of weapons from guns to swords to even shopping carts and books as both offensive and supportive items and not only that but when all else fails whip out your trusty god given hands to smack some undead ass. However after a while you can feel the gameplay is repetitive because you’ll be doing the same attacks over and over and using the same weapons over and over even though you don’t have to but you probably will because they’re the only good weapons and the easiest attacks to pull off. The gameplay does mix it up near the end where instead of taking out zombies you have to take out Special Forces soldiers and remote operated helicopters. D.R. also mixes up the gameplay with different types of clothes and hair colors so that you can customize Frank in the way you want. And then there is the achievements. Tons of achievements making complete use of the 360’s achievement capabilities. It will take you anywhere from 10 minutes to the maybe even 6 hours of gameplay just to unlock an achievement which will also in turn unlock anything from a new weapon to new clothes. Not only that but you can also combine foods and drinks to make beneficial potions to help you or maybe even hurt you. The problem with D.R.’s gameplay is that it doesn’t have to be repetitive but it seems like the makers lean you to making it repetitive by using the same weapons and attacks and combining the same foods. If you could also combine weapons to make even better ones, like say combining a mailbox and a katana blade to make a halberd like weapon to help you kill more zombies, then it would help take out some of the possible repetition. Another annoying thing is that the clothes aren’t beneficial, for example a ammo belt doesn’t give you more ammo with guns making it’s only use seem a little more useless in turn making you strive for it less. A lot of the weapons attack the same even though they’re different, like the laser sword and the ceremonial sword. D.R. changes up the gameplay with different environments however there seems to be only 3 types: a lot of zombies, no zombies, or average amount of undead. Taking pictures too helps change up the gameplay and adds to it quite a lot. Overall Dead Rising has all the basics of good gameplay down but doesn’t take it further when it seems like it could not to mention the 3 day time limit can also help to it feeling repetitive. You don't have just 3 days, with unlockable modes D.R. can help pull you into the game with such modes as infinite mode where there is no 3 day time limit and you have deteriorating health. However yet again a problem with infinite mode just like in the other parts of the game you can find it quite boring or even repetitive. The time limit in infinite mode seems to drag on and even though you can kill tons of psycho's to help keep you entertained you will find yourself sometimes just waiting around, like in the other modes, and will be turned off to playing dead rising for a while.

Control: 7/10
And here we come to the crux of the game. The controls in D.R. are either on the mark, or closely off. In terms of the weapons the game can become repetitive with either pressing X, holding X down, or pressing A then X, not much depth but it gets the job done. My problem with this game is the hand to hand controls. Most people find the moves they can do and only do those even though there is over 15 moves to do. The problem is that too many of the hand to hand controls mesh together making it nearly impossible to do the move you want without doing a different move that could cost you some health or precious time. There are even moves to do when you are grabbed by a zombie however most of the time these don’t work or you yet again don’t do the move you want. Also some of the moves you can’t do without stopping and that can turn you off to doing those motions. Overall without the hand to hand problems the game should get a 8/10 for control but with those problems it brings it down to a 7/10.

Overall: 8/10
Overall D.R. is a one of a kind experience which I believe is well worth a buy for any action/adventure game fan. The amount of weapons, healing items, and customization goes pretty deep. Also with the extra modes to unlock and achievements to get too D.R. can keep you entertained for a good long time. However to most fans they’ll find it doesn’t go deep enough and may even find the 3-day limit annoying and repetitive.

Rating:   4.0 - Great

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