Resident Evil Archives Preview: Survival Frustration

When Resident Evil hit the Playstation in 1996 it launched a franchise that sold more than 40 million games worldwide. Perhaps now's a time to introduce all of those soccer mums to the classic.

What Is It? Resident Evil Archives is the original Resident Evil remake released on the GameCube in 2002, which featured new rooms, areas, items and creatures not seen in the 1996 Playstation original.

What We Saw I watched the introduction and ran around in the mansion for a bit.

How Far Along Is It? It's complete.

What Needs Improvement? Controls and Camera: That horrid combination of clumsy controls and awkward fixed camera is back, reminding me that I didn't, in fact, love everything about the original Resident Evil. What a buzz kill. I know it's a port, but couldn't they have at least tried to tweak controls.

Stand and Spin: Yes, I know I'm beating a zombie horse, but man does it suck having to spin slowly toward a target, remaining rooted to the spot, as you try to draw a bead on them and blow their heads off.

What Should Stay The Same? The Story: Classic survival horror fare. This is the original, and it hold up well.

The Enemies: The zombies shamble, the bosses come back, the dogs terrify. I still love the mix of enemies in this game.

Pick a Path: For those who haven't ever played Resident Evil, you're in for a frustrating treat. Get used to the controls and you'll want to play and replay through this title, checking out all ten different endings.

Final Thoughts It's nice to see such a classic appear on a platform that has the highest potential for a new fan base. There are more than 50 million Wii owners out there, and I'd bet plenty of them have never even heard of Resident Evil. Too bad they didn't fix the camera and controls though, I found it too frustrating to replay. Perhaps I'm spoiled.


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