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Available on

Xbox Live Arcade!

 

Platform

Xbox 360

 

Genre

Action

 

Publisher

Capcom

 

Developer

Capcom

 

ESRB

M (Mature)

 

Released

September 20, 2011

 

 

- For old-school gamers that are fans of the entire Resident Evil franchise, a nice-looking upgrade that will provide nostalgic (and sometimes frightening) gameplay – good and bad

 

 

- The most ridiculously difficult, frustrating, aggravating controls I’ve ever experienced in any videogame
- If gamers don’t use their ammunition/health supplies conservatively, they may be caught in impassable, no-way-to-advance stages of the game, forced to go back to previous save points
- Great Resident Evil storyline, although a lot of the voice-acting (here’s looking at you, Steve) is laughably bad

 

 

Review: Dead Island (360)

Review: Resident Evil 4 HD (360)

Review: Dead Rising 2: Off the Record (360)

 

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Resident Evil: Code Veronica X HD

Score: 6.0 / 10

 

resident evil code veronica x hd          resident evil code veronica x hd

 

Resident Evil certainly wasn’t the first survival-horror gaming franchise, but it should be credited (or cursed, depending on your perspective) for making the genre specifically the zombie apocalypse survival-horror genre so popular, ranging from those early Resident Evil titles and Alone in the Dark to Left 4 Dead, Dead Rising

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and Dead Island (and even Call of Duty’s Zombies mode).

With the zombie game popularity still high, Capcom decided it was time to reintroduce one of the classic Resident Evil adventures, Resident Evil Code Veronica X, released on the PlayStation 2 back in 2001, as a downloadable Xbox Live Arcade title: Resident

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Evil Code Veronica X HD (they added the HD for the new high-definition graphical facelift). While old-school fans of the original will most likely enjoy the chance at replaying a classic on a modern console, especially with a nice graphical upgrade, those unfamiliar with the control mechanisms of the 2001 version (as was I) will be completely frustrated with the ridiculously difficult controls that make fighting off attacking zombies and especially many of the Boss fights an extremely aggravating gameplay experience.

Reissuing the fourth in the chronicle of Resident Evil gaming releases, Resident Evil Code Veronica X HD is set in December 1998. It’s been three months since Raccoon City has been decimated by the zombie destruction, and Claire Redfield has somehow escaped the city alive. She resumes searching for her brother, Chris Redfield, but is captured by the Umbrella Corporation and sent to an island prison, Rockfort Island. She gets freed from the prison, but once again has to deal with a zombie outbreak along with experimental BOWs (Bio-Organic Weapons).

With the help of the annoyingly irritating Steve (who’s seemingly always causing more harm than good as they both look for a method of island escape), who somehow is charming enough to Claire to initiate a few steamy romantic moments. There is a wacko island ruler that has a most unusual identity crisis, and a few other malevolent forces hell-bent on revenge on the Redfields.

 

resident evil code veronica x hd          resident evil code veronica x hd

 

Overall, the entire storyline is exceptional, giving gamers an outstanding survivor-horror tale – one of the best of the Resident Evil franchise filled with plenty of scares, plot twists and engrossing Boss battles, although there are a few unintentional chuckles along the way because some of the voice-acting (here’s looking at you, Steve) is laughably bad.

Accentuating the solid storyline are the challenging puzzles. Gamers are going to need to pay attention closely to clues along the way, and be able to combine items collected during the adventure, to solve the game’s many perplexing problems. None are too easy or too difficult, balancing complexity and deductive reasoning to ascertain the answer that solves the puzzle. There’s added incentive to complete puzzles and objectives with Xbox 360 achievements, too.

Unfortunately, there are a few disruptive flaws to Resident Evil Code Veronica X HD that survived the zombie hostilities, too. The most egregious is the most absolutely ridiculously difficult, frustrating, aggravating controls I’ve ever experienced in any videogame.

Controlling the characters is either done with the left control stick of the directional pad, with the directional pad being the less terrible of the two. Moving around is difficult enough. Put the pressure of a attacking zombie or two or five or a large and deadly Boss that puts the horror in survivor-horror, and fleeing or fighting becomes such a frustrating “cheap death” enterprise that it will cause literally each and every gamer who plays this game at least a few exasperating, scream-out-loud-in-anger gameplay experiences. And the unresponsive controls are made even worse by the lack of ammunition and supplies gamers will discover around the island.

Limited doesn’t even begin to describe the feeble amounts of ammo and supplies (especially health-boosting supplies) that gamers must deal with. If gamers don’t use their ammunition/health supplies conservatively, they may be caught in impassable, no-way-to-advance stages of the game, forced to go back to previous save points. Nothing causes more fist-clenching, hair-pulling angst for a gamer than to have to backtrack, maybe quite a time distance in gameplay, because there is literally no way to advance if ammo/supplies are used too liberally earlier in the game.

It looks great with the upgraded visual treatment, and has a strong, full-of-surprises storyline along with challenging puzzles that both old-school Resident Evil aficionados and new fans will enjoy. However, the controls are so bad that absolutely everyone that plays Resident Evil Code Veronica X HD would rather be attacked and consumed by a zombie horde than use these terribly inadequate controls. Both the exasperating controls and misuse of resources can be unforgiving and crippling to the gameplay progress, but careful and patient gamers that acclimate to both will find an amazing survivor-horror story with plenty of hours of gameplay.

- Lee Cieniawa
lcieniawa@armchairempire.com

(October 27, 2011)

 

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