Still playing Resident Evil 2 Remake.
I finished all story router Lean and Claire A and B. Haven't managed S rank on hardcore yet, but I think I will manage. S+ rank on hardcore is a big maybe, if have attention span to get that good in this. Anyway, this is my final verdict for the game.
I can't do any comparison to original 1998 game. I recall I got RE1 it on some juarez CD back in the day, tried it for perhaps 2 minutes and laughed at console peasants and their poor games and continued with my Fallout or Baldurs Gate run, or whatever. I didn't get back to the series until year or two ago. I found RE5 for €1 or something from the bargain bin few years ago, didn't get to play it untill... anyway, I ended enjoying RE5 a lot and later got 1st and 2nd Revelation as well RE6 from Steam sales.
I can't compare post RE4(?) games to originals and I can't compare RE2 remake to original. I don't know about the lore and frankly I don't give a damn, this ain't an RPG.
In RE2 Remake there is sort of two layers, like in some other RE games. One is story, the mission and for me it was good enough to play through all routes in this game. I found Lean B hardest and Claire A or B easiest. I think it is mostly because Claire's weapon arsenal is simply more suitable for different encounters than Leon's. I can't hold that against the game however. What would be the point if they were the same? Even there are different routes and segments in police station and sewers (and some boss fight stuff) IMO that alone wouldn't make runs different enough, even when time and effort was put in to make them different characters runs have different tone also writing wise (simply introduction to first major NPC in police station is different for Lean and Claire) and different sub story segments reflect that too. Most important in repeating plays for me is that it's different to play Lean or Claire also game mechanics wise and that is where different weapon layouts matter. Maps, enemies, items, they aren't that different but if you learn to utilise your weapons arsenal you have tactically very different kind of options (for example miniboss G2). It's worth a note that they are different enough that if you only play Claire's campaign, you may miss entirely how good knife is against Lickers.
Game has somewhat counter intuitive approach how it leads into boss fights. I appreciate humour or whatever of the developers enough not to spoil it, but when I kept dying on some boss fight, it later turned out I was quite clearly doing it wrong, LOL. This is sort of important also regarding difficulty levels, standard is much more forgiving than hardcore.
All of the above is somewhere there when player goes through the game. Getting this, boarding that window, planning the route, searching through police station and other places, solving a puzzle, there is quite a bit of thinking behind a good run. In the end it's quite an action adventure, except players may not think of that, but genre associated, horror. But horror isn't a mechanic really.
The other side
When I was playing I felt there was something quite familiar in this game. How rewarding it may be and on opposite how frustrating it can get and something else. When I was playing the Hunk extra game mode it dawned to me. There is a lot of familiarity with Shoot 'em Up's and sidescrollers we used to play during 8-bit computer era back in the 80's.
Many games back then were arcade conversions, inheriting mechanical quirks like game being impossible to beat unless you used your coins and purchased an extra life. On computers there were sometimes alternative methods to get those extra life, or super shield or something because some boss encounters were impossible to beat without them (Gradius spin off Salamander aka 'Life Force' for example IIRC). For many games it was also crucial to memorise patters because there were situations where there really wasn't any reaction time. Trainers existed for a reason, there were game that were impossible, due bug or oversight (I'm looking at you Delta!) and patching was unheard of.
RE2 Remake in it's hardest, which is playing about how fast you can beat the game, is about the same, though a bit easier. There is curious RNG factor though, it's impossible to know how many bullets exactly you are going to waste. I think it's all right in main game and it's extra modes, but I think free DLC (I played through most of the scenarios) fucks something up. 2-3 bullets to dog is manageable, but when discrepancy increases with other foes, it rises questions. All scenarios are winnable anyway, but in the gaming in it's purest, I don't know if the best time or score should be that much based on RNG.
For audio, there is something that I appreciate a lot, dynamic range selector, which is called something else, but it's under audio properties. For me game sounds served very well their purpose (some echoes were perhaps off). Soundtrack is quite subtle, in style of many other Zombie games, for me it worked.
Recommended for full price:
- Big fan of the series
- Like playing challenges for yourself or RE.net wise
Recommended for discount price
- About anyone else who likes good games even when they aren't role playing games.
For those interested about game developing:
- Generation gap may be a major unseen factor. People who praise good old times of the 90's can't understand what made 8-bit era home computer gaming / arcade
- Game can have a good to decent story, good production values and also have very solid mechanics
- Potential franchises flopped in the 90's, did they fail one or two of the above?
- According to Steam stats 10 - to 11% of players have completed the game on hardcore, which appears to be bit high in comparison to many other titles. Perhaps every game doesn't need to be 100+ hours alternative life simulator to be successfull