Review :: (Move) Resident Evil: Chronicles HD Collection

On-Rails Brain Blasting - Move Edition

Written by Super User

Published Tuesday, 17 July 2012 20:00

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Light gun games were all the rage back in the 90’s. Area 51, Lethal Enforcers, Mad Dog McCree, and Virtua Cop all had huge followings, not to mention the mass quarter-munching love given to the leaders of the pack: SEGA’s House of the Dead franchise and Namco’s Time Crisis series. I myself have fond memories of spending long afternoons in the arcade, virtually blasting bad guys, saving the world, and spending a considerable amount of my paycheck in the process. Eventually arcades began to fade off into obscurity as console and PC gaming became a more satisfactory solution, allowing us to get our game on without the vapid expense, or the constraints of business hours. Nowadays, with consoles putting a greater focus on motion controls, it seems only natural for the light gun rail shooters to get a bigger push, and what better way to do it than by meshing it with popular franchises?

Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles first saw the light of day almost five years ago on the Wii. Back then, the Wii hadn’t quite lost its footing amongst the core audience, so this sounded like a good fit. As it turned out, it was more than a good fit, as the game was well received by both critics and fans alike. Offering easy and intuitive controls, along with a whole new perspective on the franchise cannon, Umbrella Chronicles was a crowd pleaser, so it came as no surprise when a sequel followed just two years later.

"Resident Evil Chronicles HD is easily one of the best choices among the Move-enabled games available today."

Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles was very much like its predecessor in the fact that it was an on-rails shooter, and again provided a new perspective on Resident Evil history. It even bettered The Umbrella Chronicles in a lot of ways, including more-polished visuals and quite a few control tweaks. However, it didn’t sit quite as nicely with the critics as Umbrella did, most notably due to the handy cam-like presentation (NOTE TO DEVELOPERS: shaky camera work is almost always a bad thing). Nevertheless, the game did complement the franchise, and both are usually listed as among the recommended titles for the platform.

Flashing forward a few years, Sony has entered the Wii realm with their own motion controlled offering: Move. Bearing a lot of similarities to the Wii, Move can facilitate pretty much anything that the Wii can, only with more precise controls, and a much beefier piece of hardware to power it. Now both games are available on the PS3 (digitally, by way of PSN) in the form of Resident Evil Chronicles HD, essentially a port of the two with, as the title implies, a new coat of paint. If you missed it the first time, this is certainly the best option now.

Covering events from Resident Evil 0, 1, 2, and 3, as well as some unique material made specifically for these games, experiencing the series like this is a must for any fan of the franchise, or the on-rails shooter genre as a whole. Iconic scenes, such as the infamous zombie dog jumping through the hall window in Resident Evil 1, are back, only this time you’ll see it head-on. I don’t know if I can honestly say that the scare factor is the same, but it is still a real treat to see all of these moments from a new angle, not to mention the story that is spun by mixing parts and pieces from several titles, as well as offering bookend material between the existing stories which help flesh out the history.

The controls see a nice bump with the accuracy of Move, but beyond the shinier eye candy, nothing has really changed. Those of you who did play these games on the Wii and had issues with the mechanics won’t find any respite here. In fact, just the jump between the two games makes the differences in how each one controls very apparent. Unfortunately, since nothing else was changed, the shaky camera that plagued Darkside Chronicles also returns. It’s an irritant, for sure, but not bad enough to overshadow the rest of the package.

Final Focus

Little bothers aside, I had a blast with both games. They look great on the PS3 (especially Darkside Chronicles), and playing through some of the best sequences the series has to offer from a whole new perspective is quite fun. There’s plenty of collectibles to find, and weapon upgrades in the second game help keep things interesting as you proceed. However, if you have already finished these in their non-HD release, there’s little reason to come back unless you are a die-hard fan. On the other hand, if you haven’t given these games a spin, now is the time. Resident Evil Chronicles HD is easily one of the best choices among the Move-enabled games available today.

 


Pros
+ A whole new perspective on the franchise cannon + Environments feel fresh, even though we’ve been there before many times + Visuals look a lot better than the original release + Retains everything that made the Wii version a favorite...
Cons
- ...and unfortunately it also retains the shaky camera work in Darkside Chronicles - Little here to bring back those who’ve already played through the Wii release

Final rating
8.1 / 10
Comments
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Game details
(Move) Resident Evil: Chronicles HD Collection
Release date : 2012-06-26
Platform :
Publisher : Capcom
Developer : Capcom
Gameplay : Shooter

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