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Review: Resident Evil 5

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the zombies-with-skills dept.

Games 121

The Resident Evil series has been a pillar of the survivor-horror genre for over a decade, with over 40 million copies sold and several books and movies to show for it. Resident Evil 4 was one of the most highly acclaimed games of 2005, and the lengthy development period given to its successor shows how important it was to Capcom to maintain that level of quality. More than that, the gameplay changes made to Resident Evil 5 make it clear that they're not simply trying to replicate success, but to really establish what they want the series to be. For better or for worse, the series is being pushed toward a bit more action, and the co-op element is almost a necessity. Read on for the rest of my thoughts.

  • Title: Resident Evil 5
  • Developer: Capcom
  • Publisher: Capcom
  • System: Xbox 360, PS3
  • Reviewer: Soulskill
  • Score: 7/10

Resident Evil 5 starts you off as Chris Redfield, a familiar face from earlier in the series, as he chases down a bio-terrorism threat in Africa. As you soon find out, there is a New and Improved Las Plagas parasite, which sends its unwitting hosts into a zombified and suggestible state. The new breed is, on the whole, smarter, faster and more dexterous. While some zombies are content to swing their fists or throw an empty bottle at you, others will fight complex gun battles, using cover, deadly accuracy, and aspects of the environment to try and take you out. You'll still meet the shambling, growling hordes you're used to, but there's a much greater range of bad guys than before. They essentially fill any role an uninfected human might in a traditional action game. Newcomers to the series probably won't give this a second thought, but long-time fans may be bothered by it.

Accompanying you on your journey is Sheva Alomar, a young African woman in the Bio-terrorism Security Assessment Alliance (BSAA) who quickly becomes Chris' loyal partner. This is the foundation of the game's focus on co-op play, since a second player can take control of Sheva and work in tandem with you, either locally or over Xbox Live. For solo players, Sheva is controlled by the game's AI, to generally favorable results. Chris and Sheva each have their own inventory space, and you can shuffle items, guns, and ammunition between them as necessary. They back each other up in fights; when a zombie grabs and holds you, your partner can come to your aid and knock the zombie away. If you are close to death, your partner can resuscitate you.

The AI does a pretty good job at being where you want it, coming to your aid when you need it, and doing a respectable amount of damage to your enemies. It has no qualms about running itself out of ammo, but you can give it more or tell it to pick up more off the ground. The one major problem is that you can't really set up a plan with your AI partner. You can't tell them to stay here and cover you while you advance to a different spot, and you can't direct them toward a particular threat. The enemy AI is by turns intelligent and quite stupid. They'll chase you anywhere, scaling ladders quickly or jumping between rooftops, and they'll duck behind walls for cover. Unfortunately, they also have a habit of running up to you and standing still for five seconds before deciding to attack. You can also just run through big groups of some enemies without a scratch. It's probably necessary for the sake of letting the player have a chance to survive, but it's not believable stupidity, and makes it feel like they're just giving you something at which to throw your extra ammunition. Boss AI is almost nonexistent; they usually play out more like scripted encounters. For some of them, this works well.

The difficulty in fighting any of the game's enemies is strictly tied to how you control your character. Capcom made the decision to forbid movement while using your weapon in Resident Evil 5. If you don't like the idea of being unable to "run and gun," you should definitely try the demo first to see how it plays. The effect it has on gameplay is to make shooting your guns something that takes more thought and planning. Firing for extended periods becomes a dangerous proposition because zombies tend to come from all directions. If you stand still long enough, one will eventually come up behind you and attack. It makes situations where you're frantically firing into a group of onrushing enemies all the more tense, knowing that death may be creeping up on you unseen. Oh, and for whatever reason, Capcom decided to prevent you from moving while brandishing your knife as well. I can understand stopping to aim a gun, and maybe having your feet stop moving while actually swinging a blade, but why can't you walk and hold a knife at the same time? Perhaps they just didn't feel it was worth the time to code the changes for an infrequently used weapon. Either way, trying to hit things with your knife is annoying and often useless.

That said, Capcom didn't balance the stationary firing restriction with more responsive aiming. Even at the highest level of sensitivity, the controls are quite clunky to use when enemies are surrounding you. They did implement a button combo that flips you 180 degrees, and this helps to some extent. However, it's still fairly slow, and you almost always need to spend extra time finding your target after spinning around. Worse is when there are zombies to your right or left; button combos that flip you 90 degrees to one side or the other would have been quite welcome, but you're not given that option. Many similar games have implemented a tracking system for nearby enemies, either as dots on a mini-map or arrows on a HUD. Not so in Resident Evil 5; you're often forced into simply panning slowly around the room to see if anything is heading toward you.

You'll also get to deal with a several types of enemies — such as dogs, spiders, and some bosses — who sometimes move more quickly than you can track them. They don't pose a huge threat to your character by themselves, but they often grab and hold you, allowing other, more dangerous enemies to get close. Those have their own associated problems — for one, a few of the more difficult enemies will just outright kill you if they get within melee range. While this makes sense from a realism perspective, it can be frustrating given the slowness of the movement system, and the requirement that you stop to deal damage. Add to this the huge amount of damage some of them can take, and you end up with regular enemies that feel tougher than the end-of-level bosses.

The boss encounters themselves are hit and miss. Resident Evil 5 makes gratuitous use of Quick-Time Events both during fights and in cut scenes. As the boss prepares to smash you with some tentacled appendage, you'll have a window of a second or so to press a button or get killed. This works decently when you're actually able to control your character, and it's used as part of a normal fight. In one of the later chapters, you get to fight a giant spider that's hanging onto a big, circular platform. As you attack the legs holding it in place, you dodge the ones that are free to swipe at you. It's a lot of fun. Unfortunately, many of the other QTEs are simply distracting. It's used continually in cut scenes to, presumably, keep the player engaged as the game characters are forced into decisions about fighting or dodging. But there's no real consequence to those actions; it's either linearly continue the scene or die (and start again very close to where you died).

One thing you'll notice is that many of the boss fights are just variations on a theme: chase bad guy, catch bad guy, watch bad guy turn into nigh-invulnerable, many-tentacled super zombie. But he has a weak spot! Some of these fights work better than others, and there are more original battles scattered throughout the game as well. For example, a battle with a hulking monstrosity that looks like a troll from Lord of the Rings is unique, but quite simple. The fight scenes with the mastermind who's orchestrating all these events (or, as I call him, "Neo") are more complex and interesting, but tend to suffer from QTEs that rely on fast movement, which is not the game's strong point.

The game ships with over 50 cut scenes of varying length. They're quite impressive to watch, and fans of the Resident Evil story won't be disappointed. They do an amazing job of developing the plot and tying the various levels together in a logical way. The scenes are framed and rendered in such a way that they look like movie footage shot by an actual camera, and it's done well. Monsters, characters, and explosions all look amazing. The story itself isn't high drama, but it's entertaining and serviceable — it's what you'd probably expect from a high-budget zombie flick. The big plot twist is depressingly predictable, but it sets up a cool fight. The settings and scenery during actual gameplay are excellent as well. You're taken through modern slums, primitive villages, underground labs, and a variety of other locales. There's quite a lot of detail, and Capcom took care to make everything colorful and interesting to look at.

Resident Evil 5 is a game that gets much better when you have somebody to play with. As I mentioned earlier, the AI is reasonable, but it doesn't compare to having another human to watch your back or help you kill something. The movement and aiming issues become much less problematic when playing with a friend, since you can stand back to back and limit the area one person has to cover. Once you've defeated the main campaign, you also open up Mercenaries mode, which can be played solo or with a friend. Much like in the previous games, you're dropped into a level with plenty of ammo and plenty of zombies to fight. You have a time limit, but glowing pillars scattered around the map will add time to the clock, and enemies will get stronger as the round goes on. The primary campaign forces you to manage your ammunition fairly strictly — if your accuracy isn't great you can expect to run out of bullets frequently — so being able to just fight without worrying about it makes Mercenaries even more entertaining.

The inventory and weapon selection systems are dominated by ammunition limits. Since you aren't given much of any one type of bullet, you're forced to carry around several different guns. These guns and their associated ammo don't leave much room for healing items, grenades, or proximity bombs, so those are used sparingly. You get the standard shooter-game implements — pistols, shotguns, machine guns, rifles — and the lack of ammo will force you to switch between them fairly often. It can be annoying, especially when you're restricted to a pistol or machine gun when you want to use something more powerful. They also give you a few more impressive weapons as the game goes on, but those are used less frequently. Regardless of the ammunition situation, the weapons themselves are nicely designed. You'll have a broad array of tools for the situations you're given, and each gun has a distinct feel.

It wouldn't be a Resident Evil 5 review without mentioning the concerns of racism that were raised when it was revealed that the game would be set in Africa. To put it bluntly: it's a non-issue. The plot is a natural development of moving the Resident Evil story to a new continent. They make it clear that the zombified people are victims, and that the real evil is the corporation behind the experiments.

Whether or not you enjoy Resident Evil 5 is likely to be dependent on how much you like the controls and whether or not you have a buddy you can play with. The plot is cheesy, but in an entertaining way, and it's basically shown to you as a movie interspersed with gameplay. Fans of the story will be pleased — there are tons of unlockable visuals and bits of information. If you were hoping for a more traditional survival game, you may be disappointed. The action is definitely ramped up, and there aren't really any scary moments. However, it's definitely a worthy addition to the Resident Evil franchise, and the amount of care and effort Capcom put into this game is quite evident.

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hrm (5, Insightful)

m0i (192134) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259135)

no PC release?

Re:hrm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27259157)

There's a pc release. I forgot the website number, though.

Re:hrm (5, Funny)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259287)

It's a game where a white cop shoots hordes of black men. This could never be "PC".

Re:hrm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27259345)

/golfclap

Re:hrm (1)

christ, jesus H (1317921) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259903)

There really more "'ashin' combies" (think Clayton Biggems) then blackmen (also there are several who arnt "men" at all).

I'm sure there will be (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27259771)

Capcom has released all the main RE games on PC, but usually they wait a few months to a year. And sadly usually the ports suck- see RE4.

Re:hrm (1, Insightful)

drsquare (530038) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260441)

It's not an MMO, which is all PC gamers want to play nowadays, so why would they bother porting it?

Re:hrm (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27260765)

Epic flame fail!

Re:hrm (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27263669)

peggle isnt an mmo

Re:hrm (1)

JohnnyBGod (1088549) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260769)

If it's going to be anything like Resident Evil 4's, it's best they don't bother. Having to hold an "aim" button to trigger a super sensitive aim (for which there isn't a sensitivity control) and having to be totally stationary while shooting? Seriously? Not even most console games do that, anymore... It pretty much requires you to play it with a gamepad and... if I liked or wanted to play a shooter with a gamepad, I'd buy a console.

Re:hrm (1)

cjsm (804001) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264933)

Usually the PC version of Resident Evils games comes out later, like about 6 months to a year. I would guess this is partially to allocate coding time to different platforms, and partially to give the consoles an exclusive over the PC market for a while.

But I had a great time playing RE 3 and RE 4, and hope RE 5 will be as good.

Most of the zombies should be college freshmen (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27259201)

They keep using 30-year-olds playing teenagers.

And you can tell the character models are not African. They just put darker textures on the white models. Sad.

Re:Most of the zombies should be college freshmen (1)

Ron_Fitzgerald (1101005) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259527)

I find a lot of games do that. I always assumed they had a general character model and cheaped out for final production and just used stock characters with a different skin tone.

Re:Most of the zombies should be college freshmen (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27261433)

I'm sure some would have issues if they were stereotypically black. (big lips, fried chicken in one hand, watermelon in the other).

concerns of racism? (5, Insightful)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259213)

The game is set in Africa. Remote villages in Africa. I'm guessing there's not a whole heck of a lot of white people out there in remote parts of Africa.

Nothing to see here, move along.

Re:concerns of racism? (5, Insightful)

Samschnooks (1415697) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259649)

The game is set in Africa. Remote villages in Africa. I'm guessing there's not a whole heck of a lot of white people out there in remote parts of Africa.

Nothing to see here, move along.

No matter what you do today, you'll offend someone. People like being offended. It makes them feel powerful. It means they can look down on someone and even lecture them on being so "insensitive". I can't count how many times some WHITE SUBURBAN PERSON lectured me behind their GATED ALL WHITE COMMUNITY about racism.

Re:concerns of racism? (1)

Cornflake917 (515940) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260303)

I can't count how many times some WHITE SUBURBAN PERSON lectured me behind their GATED ALL WHITE COMMUNITY about racism.

That could really mean anything. Maybe your white suburban person decided to live there because he got a good deal on the house or it's really close to his job. I know I wouldn't refuse to live in all white (or whatever) neighborhood, if the house was a good deal or it fit my criteria. It has nothing to do with my racial views.

Re:concerns of racism? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27261731)

The game is set in Africa. Remote villages in Africa. I'm guessing there's not a whole heck of a lot of white people out there in remote parts of Africa.

Nothing to see here, move along.

No matter what you do today, you'll offend someone. People like being offended. It makes them feel powerful. It means they can look down on someone and even lecture them on being so "insensitive". I can't count how many times some WHITE SUBURBAN PERSON lectured me behind their GATED ALL WHITE COMMUNITY about racism.

Yes!! As a person of color I just LOVE having stupid, ignorant, or purposefully malicious references made about my culture and skin color so I can get in my daily quota of looking down on people and feeling powerful!

How did you know that minorities like being dehumanized and categorized?

Who the hell let the cat out of the bag?

Re:concerns of racism? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27262253)

Wow. You managed to turn a relatively raceless, general observation of human behavior that used white people as an illustration into something that you, as a person of color, could be offended by. There's so much irony in that, it's hard comprehend. Way to prove his point.

Re:concerns of racism? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27262387)

Are you serious? Let me see if I can recap the above conversation.

OP: People like being offended, so that they can repsond derisively towards the offender. Here's an example using white people.

AC: I (mistakenly, perhaps purposefully) declare you're belittling minorities. I take offense to that, and respond derisively towards you.

All I can say is, "niccccccce!"

Re:concerns of racism? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264951)

Yes!! As a person of color ...
my culture and skin color ...

How did you know that minorities ...

like being dehumanized and categorized?

Aren't you guilty of the same kind of "categorizing" when you refer to yourself (or if others refer to you) as a "person of color" having a special "culture or skin color" or a "minority"?

As far as this game is concerned, bear in mind that indigenous Africans are not currently a powerless minority in Africa. If anything, South Asians and people of European descent (actual minorities in Africa) are the ones experiencing discrimination these days.

Minority power issues would only be a factor in this game is it was staged in urban America, and African-Americans were being stereotyped/scapegoated.

Re:concerns of racism? (2, Funny)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260047)

What they could have done is pretend the game is set in South Africa. Then you can shoot as many white people with hilarious accents [escapistmagazine.com] as you want, which is of course perfectly acceptable behavior.

Re:concerns of racism? (4, Funny)

enderjsv (1128541) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260219)

Why didn't Uncharted cause as much uproar? I mean, the game was great and everything, but in that game you had a white man shooting Asians, Latinos and black men. Hell, the only bad white guy in the game gets betrayed and killed by his Latino partner. The scrutinizing watchdogs of cultural sensitivity really dropped the ball on that one. I bet Al Sharpton gave them a stern talking to after that one slipped through.

Oh, Africa! (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27260307)

Oh, it takes place in Africa! Well, then it definitely isn't racist, since nothing racist ever happens in Africa.

I agree with your conclusion, but you really need to find a better way to reach it.

Re:Oh, Africa! (4, Informative)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260931)

He's saying that criticizing a game set in remote Africa simply because it has a lot of black people in it is the height of reactionary stupidity. Amusingly enough, a game set in remote Africa inexplicably filled with white zombies would no doubt result in cries of racism as well.

Re:Oh, Africa! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27262867)

There is, to be fair, the question of why the game is set in remote Africa.

Re:Oh, Africa! (1)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 5 years ago | (#27263413)

Why would that be a fair question when posed in such a leading way when previous locations for the game/movies included Midwest American town, Paris, Antarctica, Las Vegas, a private New England island, American Mountains, rural European village, Ocean Liner in the Atlantic Ocean, Russia and Japan?

Re:concerns of racism? (3, Interesting)

NotInfinitumLabs (1150639) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260355)

The game makes no effort to distinguish from zombiefied africans from non-zombified africans, both are presented as "The Other", menacing and dangerous, which plays into the "dark continent" trope you find in so much colonialist literature. It's not like you really ever stop to concern yourself with this, though, since they're constantly trying to kill you and you have to mow them down by the dozens. The only identifiable black character is a ready-for-hollywood light skinned Anglo action chick, "one of the good ones". To top it off, her unlockable outfit is a leopard skin bikini, with an animal tooth necklace and warpaint. All she would need is a bone through her nose to complete this ensemble. Nothing racist about all this, nosiree.

Re:concerns of racism? (1)

snowraver1 (1052510) | more than 5 years ago | (#27261493)

leopard skin bikini, with an animal tooth necklace and warpaint.

That actually sounds pretty hot...

Re:concerns of racism? (2, Interesting)

trytoguess (875793) | more than 5 years ago | (#27263429)

Then again I recall the exact same thing happened in the 4th game. There are no good Europeans (except I believe one guy), they're all "The Other" as you so nicely put it. ::shrugs:: Perhaps if this genre wasn't rife with setting where the whole world is against the player I might be more sympathetic, but the way I see it, you're accusing people of being insulting by bringing up historical precedent that in most likelihood the creators were ignorant about, and definitely didn't wish to associate themselves with. Itll be like someone accusing me of having an inferiority complex because I like parts of Japanese culture (Im Korean).

Re:concerns of racism? (1)

lovetank (1504889) | more than 5 years ago | (#27265333)

The only identifiable black character is a ready-for-hollywood light skinned Anglo action chick, "one of the good ones".

Small point of disagreement...I believe the guy in charge of the reinforcements that saved you from the motorcycle zombies was black and African.

Re:concerns of racism? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27261381)

I'm guessing there's not a whole heck of a lot of white people out there in remote parts of Africa.

Except for the hero, who is nobly taking up the White Man's burden and using the weapons of civilization to slaughter the black-skinned savages who are threatening Western interests in the region.

I guess it was totally unthinkable that they might have made a game set in Africa and given it a black hero, right?

Re:concerns of racism? (1)

masterzora (871343) | more than 5 years ago | (#27262495)

You would have a point if it were a new character (though I bet somebody still would have called racism), but they're using an established character from the series, just like they did with RE4.

Re:concerns of racism? (1)

elmartinos (228710) | more than 5 years ago | (#27262645)

amazingly you find tourists everywhere. It would have been both realistic and fun to add fat people with hawaii shirt white socks and sandals.

Re:concerns of racism? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264485)

This isn't an equal opportunity complaint. No-one's saying that there should be more whites getting killed in this. Read the discussion on Crispy Gamer [crispygamer.com] about this - here's a couple of quotes:

"What about Resident Evil 4? Huh? Huh? Huh?" ...Spaniards don't have a long, loud history of being portrayed as scary, subhuman savages. The average American citizen that previous Resident Evil games have used as enemies don't have a long, loud history of being portrayed as scary, subhuman savages.
...
I want more black people in my videogames. I don't even care if they're good guys or bad guys, shallow or deep characters. But I do care if they remind me of ugly, racist stereotypes, even if that wasn't the intent.

Reboot (2, Insightful)

runyonave (1482739) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259217)

Capcom said they would reboot the series, hopefully they mean bringing it back to its roots. As much as I enjoyed playing re5, it just didn't feel like i was playing an re game. It was just action after action and got tedious after a while. At least re4, which was similiar to this had some quiet, atmospheric moments.

Re:Reboot (1)

emocomputerjock (1099941) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259703)

As long as I don't have to see another MO Disk ever, I'll be alright with that *shudder*

Re:Reboot (1)

Colourspace (563895) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260203)

Having enjoyed RE4 (my introduction to the series, believe it or not, due to no gaming 1993..2002), I had to try the original RE1 on Saturn. If, by a remake they mean really shit controls, and really shit dialogue.... well, count me out...

Re:Reboot (1)

Cheapy (809643) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260579)

I was playing the demo the other day. And it was almost all action. I haven't actually played much of the other REs (maybe 5 minutes of RE4...), but I was constantly waiting for less shooting, and more horror-survival stuff. It never really came :(

Re:Reboot (1)

Haoie (1277294) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260825)

Normally a reboot is only warrented if a series or so is failing.

I don't like the action over horror take, but most seem to enjoy it.

Shooting black people in Africa?! RACISM! *blegh* (5, Insightful)

anomnomnomymous (1321267) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259279)

I still find it unbelievable how the developers actually caved in after some (overly sensitive people, mind you) people accused them of racism.
A game set in Africa has blaaaaack people: Ohno!
Where were those people when RE4 was released (set in an, iirc, Spanish town), shouting that it was clearly racism to only shoot Spanish people!

Blegh, so bad to see political correctness being brought in by overly sensitive people: I'd even go as far as to say those people are the -real- racists in this society...

Nevertheless, had a go at this game a few days ago; If you liked Resident Evil 4, be sure to get this one. It's more of the same, but has some amazing action sequences (though it wasn't as 'scary' as RE4 was for me).

Re:Shooting black people in Africa?! RACISM! *bleg (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259775)

Where were those people when RE4 was released (set in an, iirc, Spanish town), shouting that it was clearly racism to only shoot Spanish people!

A white guy was doing the shooting there. Of other white people. I guess the lesson is that fewer people have problems with white-on-white racism, possibly because that's not really racism. Why am I playing devil's advocate? Boredom.

Re:Shooting black people in Africa?! RACISM! *bleg (1)

$1uck (710826) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259843)

How did they cave? I played the demo and skimmed the articles accusing the developers of racism, but I'm unaware of any changes they made in response to the charges. So what did they change? Not that I'll buy the game, I really did not like the controls in the demo.

Can't possibly be racist? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27260113)

So if it were game about a Nazi exterminating zombie Jews you would have no problem with it, right? I mean, it can't possibly be racist because a game set in a concentration camp during WW2 logically would have Jews in it.

It's all in the context and innuendo. Is it set in Africa because that's a convincing setting for zombies? Is there artistic value to the decision? Or is it just a lot of fun to shoot at a bunch of dark-skinned people? It's a fair question, no matter what the answer is.

Re:Can't possibly be racist? (1)

enderjsv (1128541) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260331)

HORRIBLE anology. You're talking about a decidedly racist organization exterminating the reanimated dead bodies of the people they sought to eliminate. If Chris Redfield wore a KKK bed sheet, then yes, I could understand someone taking offense.

But this is not about ANY racist organization, unless you consider the entire white race to be one. Taking offense to a game like this seems to imply that it is culturally insensitive to have a white protagonist fact off against black antagonists regardless of the context. To me, that is an unreasonable qualification for racism.

Re:Can't possibly be racist? (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#27261037)

Actually, I'd be more concerned about a WWII game set in a concentration camp that DIDN'T have Jews in it. And do you honestly think that there are masses of game buyers out there who buy their zombie games based solely on how many of said zombies are black? Really? What are you, 12 years old?

Re:Shooting black people in Africa?! RACISM! *bleg (3, Interesting)

NotInfinitumLabs (1150639) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260523)

RE4 was racist, all the zombies were backwards "ethnics" wearing weird clothes with some kooky religion (foreign = dangerous), and all the sympathetic characters were Americans. Nobody really made a fuss about it like they did with RE5, though.

say that in a room full of black people (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27260621)

kid, you just do not get it. you simple, are ignorant.

Re:say that in a room full of black people (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#27261195)

you simple, bad grammar.

YOU say that in a room full of black people (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27261601)

Anyone else find the irony and racism in the parents post? In not so many words, the parent has successfully stereotyped all black people as being knee-jerk reaction-ists, akin to Jessie Jacksons, who wouldn't or couldn't possible think that context maters. *rolls eye* It's people like this who perpetuate racism and racist stereotypes, but point fingers claiming otherwise.

Re:Shooting black people in Africa?! RACISM! *bleg (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27265725)

Blegh, so bad to see political correctness being brought in by overly sensitive people: I'd even go as far as to say those people are the -real- racists in this society...

You're sick of political correctness, but I'm even sicker of people complaining about it with this type of response. All political correctness ever really was about was the desire for people to not be goddamned racist pricks. RE5 is great fun to play and all, but anyone who plays it and thinks that the way it portrays black people isn't the slightest bit fucked up needs to have their head examined. Calling racism and bigotry what it is is always going to piss off people like you and you're just going to react with your feigned defensive outrage. Unfortunately, the REAL racists are the ones who continually deny that it exists, even in the most obvious places.

CanSecWest security conference (-1, Offtopic)

rs232 (849320) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259315)

Pwn2Own 2009 Day 1 - Safari, Internet Explorer, and Firefox Taken Down by Four Zero-Day Exploits [tippingpoint.com]

Charlie Miller got the luck of the draw, and had the first time slot for the browser competition. His target- Safari on Mac OS X. Before I could even pull my camera out, it was over within 2 minutes- and Charlie (coincidentally also last year's first winner of the day) is now the proud owner of yet another MacBook, and $5,000 from the Zero Day Initiative.

Next up, Nils. Just Nils- you know, like "Prince" or "Madonna". With a little tweaking, he ran a sleek exploit against IE8, defying Microsoft's latest built in protection technologies- DEP (Data Execution Prevention) as well as ASLR (Address Space Layout Randomization) to take home the Sony Vaio and $5,000 from ZDI.

What about the racism complaints? (4, Informative)

wiredog (43288) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259331)

Discussed here [eurogamer.net]

One of the first things you see in the game, seconds after taking control of Chris Redfield, is a gang of African men brutally beating something in a sack. Animal or human, it's never revealed, but these are not infected Majini. There are no red bloodshot eyes. These are ordinary Africans, who stop and stare at you menacingly as you approach. Since the Majini are not undead corpses, and are capable of driving vehicles, handling weapons and even using guns, it makes the line between the infected monsters and African civilians uncomfortably vague. Where Africans are concerned, the game seems to be suggesting, bloodthirsty savagery just comes with the territory.

also here [theatlantic.com]

And because there's a history of demonization and subhuman portrayals with regard to people of African descent, there's a certain sensitivity around that. I understand that legacy for the most part is completely different in Japan. But that history of negative portrayals was what informed my reactions.

Re:What about the racism complaints? (1)

Narishma (822073) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259599)

RTFA.

Re:What about the racism complaints? (1)

wiredog (43288) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259645)

Bad comment title on my part. I meant "What about the racism complaints:" but put in a question mark instead of a colon.

Re:What about the racism complaints? (3, Insightful)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259739)

Where Africans are concerned, the game seems to be suggesting, bloodthirsty savagery just comes with the territory.

Or, more charitably, it suggests that Africa is like every other continent, with both decent people and thugs.

Put it this way: What should Capcom have done? Made the villains a mix of all races, despite the true demography of Africa? Portrayed all uninfected Africans as virtuous, making other races the villains (which is racist in itself)? Or (the true lesson game developers learned here), avoid the hassle and never set a game in Africa, because it's a no-win situation?

Re:What about the racism complaints? (1)

Yeef (978352) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260085)

The plot of the game is actually about foreigner powers exploiting Africa and its people. It's an anti-colonial message really.

And I don't think the whole Africa thing has hurt the game at all. I've followed the discussion pretty closely ever since the first trailer was released. In my estimation it seems like must people discussing the racial issue were doing it as little more than an intellectual exercise of sorts. I haven't seen much talk of boycotting the game or anything like that and there's been little coverage of it in the mainstream media.

Re:What about the racism complaints? (1)

NeutronCowboy (896098) | more than 5 years ago | (#27262381)

The plot of the game is actually about foreigner powers exploiting Africa and its people. It's an anti-colonial message really.

Thank you. Someone played the game past the initial demo stage. I get the distinct impression that a lot of the accusation of racism came from the initial trailer and the demo. It's understandable, but I also would have liked to see a better discussion of the plot evolution by the people with a stake in the reception of the game. I think the exploitation aspect is actual an important plot turn, and as such, Capcom probably didn't want to reveal that specific portion. Still, Capcom's PR department could have made a better effort at selling the overall plot rather than defending an incorrect (but understandable) interpretation of the whole game.

Re:What about the racism complaints? (1)

Just Some Guy (3352) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259943)

Animal or human, it's never revealed, but these are not infected Majini. There are no red bloodshot eyes. These are ordinary Africans, who stop and stare at you menacingly as you approach.

When I was in Kenya, it was the custom for angry mobs to stop shoplifters in the streets, shove tires down over their bodies, then light them. I personally saw the aftermath of such vigilante justice. Newsflash to people crying racism: the world is violent when you get outside the safe zones.

Re:What about the racism complaints? (1)

bucky0 (229117) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260609)

That happens in Brazil if you rob in the slums, as a part of the vigilante justice enforced by the drug lords. It's called "the wave" (translated literally from portuguese) because of how it looks when they roll the still flaming tires down the hill. (Most slums in Rio, at least, are built on the mountains)

Re:What about the racism complaints? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27260143)

Discussed here [eurogamer.net]

One of the first things you see in the game, seconds after taking control of Chris Redfield, is a gang of African men brutally beating something in a sack. Animal or human, it's never revealed, but these are not infected Majini. There are no red bloodshot eyes. These are ordinary Africans, who stop and stare at you menacingly as you approach. Since the Majini are not undead corpses, and are capable of driving vehicles, handling weapons and even using guns, it makes the line between the infected monsters and African civilians uncomfortably vague. Where Africans are concerned, the game seems to be suggesting, bloodthirsty savagery just comes with the territory.

It's a zombie game. Maybe what's in the sack is a fucking zombie.

The assumption that these African civilians are menacing savages pulping an innocent animal or a human says more about the racism of the author of the excerpted comment than it does about the racism of the game.

Re:What about the racism complaints? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27260509)

What about it? Generation-X for the most part, doesn't see the difference between Black & White other than "Being Black is Cool". To our parents, there is a different feel because they lived through the 50's and 60's where racism was out in the open and rampant.

Today... I literally do not see the differences. It is a guy, black.. white.. brown.. yellow.. there is no difference to my eyes. Seriously. If you want to look for racism, look at the modern Liberals and their leaders! They are the ones trying to segment society into colors and groups with PC names like "African American". ...on that topic... the current President of the United States is one of the few TRUE African-American's. How so? His Father is a Black Man from Nigeria, his Mother is a White Woman from Kansas, USA. He is literally part African and Part American. (Sorry Jessy, you aren't African-American... you are just a plain-old American like the rest of us)

Anyway, the racism question is a total non-issue. It is set in Africa; a continent dominated by black men and women. The game has you killing Zombies... *ZOMBIES*. Not men or women, but zombies... the walking undead. They WERE men and women, but not anymore.

Re:What about the racism complaints? (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#27261151)

Well, since we've established that no group of black people ever commits any violence or atrocities in Africa, and that to even suggest they might makes you a raving, beer-swilling, racist; does this mean we can stop sending food and aid to Darfur, Somalia, Rwanda, etc.? Obviously any brutal tribal violence that happened in those places was just the figment of some hillbilly white racist's imagination. So let's stop wasting our money, food, and attention there.

Re:What about the racism complaints? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27262315)

Oh, shaddap.

They did the same in Resident Evil 4. When you start the game, the guy that attacks you in the house doesn't look infected. (Hell, you can even check his corpse afterwards and the text will tell you the same thing.) I assume they did this to make it more "dramatic" when you see people who are visibly infected.

Re:What about the racism complaints? (1)

NeutronCowboy (896098) | more than 5 years ago | (#27262323)

Actually, what the game is suggesting (and I understand the confusion, because this comes out as the story plays out) is that the area is used as the test ground for a 3rd generation Plagas bio-agent: subjects are highly-functioning and highly violent, but very obedient and with much higher residual intelligence than past infected hosts.

That's why you see the violence in the beginning town: most of the residents have already been infected with the parasite, but not all. Bloodshot eyes are not a requirement anymore.

The only issue I have is with the white, blonde girl being dragged off in the first level. I think though that that has more to do with japanese ideals of beauty and innocence than with racism. There's also some merit to the point that Sheva is not very African in either name or looks. But at that point, it's really nit-picking.

From the demo... (1)

Seakip18 (1106315) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259367)

Can anyone comment on something? In the demo, the laggy controls then an instant death in melee, followed by a nice restart from the beginning did not create a good impression. Did the game actually fix this or should I just expect more of the demo?

Anyways, from the demo, I felt this was a game that had the RE name attached to it because it wouldn't sell with any other story. I'm sure it's got a great Resident Evil saga attached to it, but

I'll pick it up on gamefly, but I doubt I'll get the same terror of hoping that a zombie hasn't turned into a crimson head when I've only got 8 pistol rounds and 4 shotgun shells or frantically running away from a suit of armor while weaponless from RE:4.

Re:From the demo... (1)

MooseMuffin (799896) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259509)

I didn't like the demo either, and I haven't played the full game but the feeling I got was that it was just a bad area for a demo. You were facing a ton of bad guys with little ammo, and while that may be the normal situation for the game, its a poor choice to get acquainted with the game's controls. Given some easier into areas maybe I wouldn't have found the experience so frustrating.

Re:From the demo... (1)

Yeef (978352) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259929)

The demo had two areas: 'Public Assembly' which was a huge open area with tons of enemies (obviously meant to be similar to the first village scene in RE4) and 'Shanty Town' which was more slow paced and linear and much better for getting to know the game. The full game is mostly areas similar to Shanty Town.

A big part of the Resident Evil series has always been about conserving supplies and avoiding combat when possible. That changed a little in RE4 and more so in this new one, but a few stages, like Public Assembly, rely on that mechanic. The goal for the uninitiated is to simply survive until backup arrives.

Of course, once you get more acquainted with the game it's possible to take out all of the enemies yourself. If you shoot the guy with the loudspeaker through the window at the beginning it greatly reduced the number of enemies that show up throughout the level. Then there's tons of environmental hazards (explosive barrels, transformers, etc.) you can use to take out the executioner and the few remaining enemies. There's also plenty of hidden weapons and ammo and even a couple of sniper perches that one player can position themselves on while the other takes care of things on the ground.

Anyone who's been a fan of the series will tell you that the game strayed away from its roots with RE4, which is true. RE5 doesn't really do anything new for the series, it's essentially RE4 with some of the mechanics from RE:Outbreak thrown in. If you haven't played a Resident Evil game before I think RE5 is a good one to start with. If you have played RE4 then the single player will feel like a watered down version of that game, but the co-op makes up for it.

If you've played the older games and didn't play/like RE4 chances are RE5 isn't for you.

Just a rant.... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27259443)

This is "News for Nerds". Right? Games are for Dorks. Any asshole can play a game.

I come to this site to get the distillation of the latest news on technology because you guys are pretty good at it.

Games?!? I guess if it pays the bills at Slashdot. Personally, I don't give a rat's ass.

P.S. Slashdot's editing script for their page sucks!

Re:Just a rant.... (4, Informative)

Diamon (13013) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259541)

Here's some late breaking news on technology

You can disable the games section of slashdot for your account in less time that it took you to post your complaint about them posting news about games.

RE4 (3, Insightful)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259615)

I don't think that RE5 on the 360 or PS3 could ever compare to RE4 on the Wii. The use of the pointer in RE4 made the game control perfectly. No matter how good the graphics on RE5, it's going to seem like a step backward. A bit like playing the same FPS on a pc with a mouse, then on a console with a gamepad, I suppose.

Re:RE4 (1)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259807)

As somebody who owns RE4:Wii and RE5 360 and loves them both I wholeheartedly agree. They are both great but the laggy controls really make RE5 seem like a regression. Still a blast and highly recommended though.

Re:RE4 (1)

Predathar (658076) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259957)

I agree, and I am so happy that they are remaking Resident Evil and Resident Evil: Zero for the Wii, I never played those cause I find they look awful now, but a remake? I'm ready to preorder them as soon as I can.

Re:RE4 (1)

HAKdragon (193605) | more than 5 years ago | (#27261649)

I'm pretty sure that those are just ports of the Gamecube games, which still look pretty good.

Re:RE4 (1)

Sinbios (852437) | more than 5 years ago | (#27263803)

Why would they port the GameCube games when you can already play those in the Wii? Then again, why would the remake it for the Wii? It's not like there's any aim-and-shoot gameplay like in RE4.

Re:RE4 (1)

Hellsbells (231588) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264313)

I've played them both now, and the main reason to get RE5 would be for the co-op, which is well done.

If you're playing through the game on single player, then RE4 on the Wii is a lot better just because of the great controls. Capcom must be nuts for not bringing this game out on the Wii.

Meh (2)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 5 years ago | (#27259627)

The RE5 demo underwhelmed me. Same old control issues. I think Dead Space could be the new pillar of horror games as long as they don't bring back the fraking asteroid shooting minigame in the next one.

Re:Meh (4, Informative)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260519)

Dead Space is awesome.
It's the best game in a long time.

There was nothing wrong with the asteroid sequence, either.

Likewise, there is nothing wrong with the RE5 controls. There was nothing wrong with RE4 controls, and there was nothing wrong with the controls in the other RE games. The issue is that people want the game to control like a typical action game, or even a shooter. What people don't realize is that RE isn't about run and gun. It's about running.

Classic RE games (which I sorely miss), are ALL about running. If you take out every zombie or monster in your way, you'll be out of ammo pretty quickly. The gameplay was about solving puzzles, and staying alive. Running through the mansion/police department/etc., your strategy should be to explore first, and confront last.

People bitch about the controls in these games too - being one of the earlier 3D franchises, the use of relative controls disoriented a hell of a lot of people. People didn't understand that UP on the controller meant forward, not UP on the screen. The games HAD to be designed this way since they used fixed camera angles (due to the use of pre-rendered environments). Imagine running from an enemy down a long hallway by holding down on the controller. When you get to the point where the camera angle changes, holding down would no longer keep you moving in the same direction (in many cases, it would turn you around and send you running into the monster!). Relative controls meant that players were able to hold one direction and run through the hallway across multiple camera angle changes. Relative controls also made manual aiming without a crosshair, over the shoulder view, or even first-person view, much more viable.

The only legitimate gripe about the controls is the slow rate of turn. Without an analog controller (since it was not the default on the PlayStation), a decision about turn speed had to be made. The issue is MINOR, at best.

For the action RE games (4 and 5), the control was built around single-analog movement. This meant one stick was used for forward+back as well as turning. (Yes, RE 5 is basically RE 4 HD.)

The complaints about the controls in RE 4 and 5 almost invariably come for people who want a pure action game. Ever fire a gun while running? Doesn't really work so well. Even a slow walk make it about a million times more difficult.

I can understand wanting a faster turn rate while standing still (and not aiming). While aiming, the turn rate is fine. I personally play with it set to "faster" (there is one above it, "fastest") and have no problems on the hardest difficulty. This isn't Quake.

I can understand wanting to walk while aiming, but being required to stop to shoot (like Dead Space). However, I think this would make the game too easy. In order to keep the difficulty up, we'd see more enemies, faster enemies, and, as a result, more shooting and more ammo. This would push RE games even further away from survival horror. No thanks.

Re:Meh (1)

xmod2 (314264) | more than 5 years ago | (#27262033)

People who can't handle relative controls remind me of the mouth breathers who play with un-inverted mouse controls.

Seriously, there should be a camp for those people.

Re:Meh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264299)

Couldn't be more wrong. RE5 is already so far away from survival horror it isn't funny. It is just an action game now with really poor controls.

Either fix the controls or make it a proper survivor horror game like it used to be.

Re:Meh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27264403)

There was nothing wrong with RE4 controls, and there was nothing wrong with the controls in the other RE games.

That just tells me you never played the other RE games.

Forward to move in the direction you're facing, left and right to spin in place is not what I'd call good control.

Re:Meh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27265779)

[quote]Ever fire a gun while running? Doesn't really work so well. Even a slow walk make it about a million times more difficult.[/quote]

Yep, it's almost impossible to reload a gun while moving in real life, especially if you are being chased by a horde of zombies (unless you're Chuck Norris).

I, for one, am glad RE5 has this amazing level of realism - I feel far better prepared for the African zombie invasion after this game.

Re:Meh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27265899)

"Likewise, there is nothing wrong with the RE5 controls. There was nothing wrong with RE4 controls, and there was nothing wrong with the controls in the other RE games. The issue is that people want the game to control like a typical action game, or even a shooter. What people don't realize is that RE isn't about run and gun. It's about running."

Did we play the same game? The RE5 constantly forces you into combat systems which you have no way of running away from.

It's much more of an action game than a survival horror, and the controls just feel too dated for this.

I know the arguement of "the bad controls make the game harder/more scary," but c'mon, thats just lazy any way you cut it.

For the last time. (4, Insightful)

tthomas48 (180798) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260003)

It's not "white people shooting black people racist". The images people are objecting reflect back to colonial days. It's the image of a white strong superman coming in to aid the poor impoverished dark skinned people.

It's Curious George racist, not Rodney King racist.

Re:For the last time. (1)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260135)

That has more to do with economy and wealth than race. It's not a white superman saving the black skinned; that's focusing on trivialities. The relevant issue, and why the story is constructed the way it is, is that it's a guy from a rich 1st world saving people from the poor 3rd world. The hero could be a black American, and it wouldn't make any difference. The setting could be an empoverished Asian country, and it wouldn't make a difference.

Re:For the last time. (3, Interesting)

tthomas48 (180798) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260255)

No because it's not the plot that was objected to. It's the images. And the images from the trailer were of a white superman going into an African country. For most Europeans and Africans that evokes memories of not particularly distant colonial adventures.

I haven't heard anyone object to the plot, nor have I heard these concerns voiced as much in the context of the game. But in the trailer the images definitely played out like some sort of colonial wet dream. My point was just to point out what people objected to in the trailer, because I think so many people heard racism and interpreted it completely wrong.

Imagine if they had shown a trailer where Chris was battling African-American zombies with the help of his trusty canine companion and firehose. The plot context wouldn't matter that much because the first thing people would see would be reflections of their own experiences during the mid-twentieth century.

I'm glad that the game was not indeed racist. I think Capcom could have saved themselves some grief, however, if they'd had that trailer vetted by someone with knowledge of European and African history.

Re:For the last time. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27260593)

but niggers are a bunch of monkeys who need the white man to keep them out of harms way. otherwise you'll end up with shit like you do in heavily black populated areas. we should just send them all back to africa.

Re:For the last time. (2, Insightful)

earthbound kid (859282) | more than 5 years ago | (#27265597)

You see, it's thoroughly reasoned out reactions like yours that make me wonder why people are constantly crying about racism. Clearly, there are no more idiotic racist fucks on the internet, so there must not be any in real life either.

Re:For the last time. - Just remember (0, Offtopic)

gabrieltss (64078) | more than 5 years ago | (#27263079)

Just remember it was blacks that sold blacks to the whites..... Where do you think they got black people from???? Everyone is racist - blacks hate whites, mexicans hate blacks and whites, whites hate everyone not white. Who cares anymore......

COMING SOON (1)

Sam36 (1065410) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260171)

Resident Evil 6!

dogs, spiders, and some bosses (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27260463)

uhh.. what year are we in?

Re:dogs, spiders, and some bosses (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27261145)

My boss is a wolfspider, you insensitive clod!

Good game! (1)

genw3st (1373507) | more than 5 years ago | (#27260821)

Like some have already commented, I find it hilarious that people are offended by fact that there are AFRICANS in AFRICA!

It is definitely apparent that people in today's society do not have enough to do - so they spend their energies on useless crusades such as these.

If the game involved black-killing-whites, or hispanic-killing-blacks, or black-killing-hispanics ... nobody would care! It would not have been blown out of proportion by the media. Another funny little tidbit is the fact that the female isn't actually caucasian at all... but, well, nobody cares about that of course. I laugh at the obvious insecurities of people because it really goes to show you how tiny they feel.

Just swap the problem out? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27261095)

The racism problems were all wrapped up when they made half of the local zombies into a combination of Mexicans and Asians. The whole scenery was amusing.

Re:Just swap the problem out? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27261417)

If the game were a combination of Mexicans and Asian Zombies, That'd be the easiest game ever, because all you'd have to do is shoot the zombies that are sleeping (Mexicans) and then pop off the ones that are vigorously doing math (asians) FTL!!!!

Run and shoot? Mouse control? (0, Troll)

thewils (463314) | more than 5 years ago | (#27261733)

Didn't think so, I'm leaving it on the shelf. Don't care squat about the plot/graphics - those two are deal breakers for me.

Re:Run and shoot? Mouse control? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27262727)

That's really your loss. I'm primarily a PC gamer. I picked up a PS3 last year only for Rock Band, and having tried the PS3 RE5 demo, I was so impressed that I bought the game. I absolutely suck at playing games with the PS3's controller. It feels unnatural, inaccurate and generally terrible after playing games on the PC for years with kb and mouse. RE5, however, works great. I have no problem with aiming and I'm having a ton of fun with the different game modes.

Yeah, I grew up on QW/Q3 on the PC, but seriously, try RE5 before you write it off. Unlike all those comments I read about the controls being bad, I found that they work very well for me, even though I've never played a Resident Evil game on the console before and, like I said, I'm terrible when it comes to playing with console controllers anyway.

What does this have to do with wheelchairs? (1)

mongrol (200050) | more than 5 years ago | (#27264549)

There's a disabled joystick shown at the top of the article.

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