"Toss aside the robotic and archaic controls, the seemingly predictable surprises in abundance and the undeniably boring story present in nearly every Resident Evil known to man, and youíre left with what looks to be a scant amount of enjoyable video game material. Adding insult to injury, letís throw on an antiquated control scheme, and some of the worst voice acting to ever grace a video game system. It sounds like Iím ripping Resident Evil: Deadly Silence a new one, but in truth, I have to a..."
Toss aside the robotic and archaic controls, the seemingly predictable surprises in abundance and the undeniably boring story present in nearly every Resident Evil known to man, and youíre left with what looks to be a scant amount of enjoyable video game material. Adding insult to injury, letís throw on an antiquated control scheme, and some of the worst voice acting to ever grace a video game system. It sounds like Iím ripping Resident Evil: Deadly Silence a new one, but in truth, I have to admit that I actually enjoyed another go down memory lane, even if its constant familiarities left me thirsting for a bit more.
RE:DS presents you with the option of playing the untouched, exactly replicated version that appeared on Playstation over ten years ago, or the slightly altered Rebirth Mode, that offers up some touch oriented puzzles and some added content. Rebirth Mode is a fun variation on the original, featuring the same claustrophobic, zombie-ridden hallways, locked doors requiring medallions and medals, and standard weaponry like the shotgun and handgun. It does offer up some new gameplay situations as well. Every so often, after entering a room, you may be presented with a first person view that requires you to use the touch screen to slash away at a flood of enemies with your knife.
At first, the novelty seems fresh and desirable, but it soon fades into an annoyance after you realize that it requires little skill and holds no ambitious qualities, nor entertaining qualities for that matter. Whether you choose to play the game as Jill Valentine or Chris Redfield, the same basic scenarios will be thrown at you. Most situations involve entering a room that has a particularly creaky door and eradicating all moving obstacles in your way. Normally crows or monstrous human eating spiders inhabit the spooky mansion that youíll be traversing, but occasionally hybrid zombies or the incredibly powerful hunters will throw their aggression upon you.
The game presents a nice mix of action and puzzles that helps to balance the gameplay. While most of the puzzles are pretty standard fare, some of them are challenging and can cause some head-scratching. However, when youíre not faced with a puzzle, the most thinking youíll be doing is inserting a key in a door to proceed. Occasionally youíll be required to backtrack and use newly acquired items to move on through the mansion, but none of it seems too tedious or laborious.
Sadly, the extremely outdated control scheme CAN become tedious as Jill moves like she just learned how to use her appendages. While a few questionable control issues have been remedied (like the 180 degree turn and the always ready knife for battle), as a whole, there is too much wasting of ammo, along with some cheap deaths. Youíll often find yourself shooting blindly off-screen because of the wonky camera angles, hoping madly that your shots are hitting that hideous flesh eating zombie that you know lurks just beyond your vision. Furthermore, some enemies present problems when trying to hit them since the camera is placed in such odd, precarious locations. Youíre not always quite sure if the gun is pointed in the right direction, so you fleetingly waste away the remainder of your shotgun ammo in vain.
RE:DS, while older than that pair of crusty socks beneath your bed, does give a decent graphical showing considering what itís running on. The DSí processors are put to use to render some respectably detailed zombies and character models. Everything is distinguishable and crisp, except for the highly pixilated slashes of blood; and thereís a lot of blood. After you blow a head off of a zombie, the torrential splash of blood is embarrassingly pixilated, effectively ruining its gruesome qualities. Most of the environments are already prerendered, but they donít look particularly bad or dilapidated. However, the sagging, staggeringly feeble attempt at audio IS terribly pathetic, featuring (literally) laughably horrendous voiceovers that would make any person cringe. One second a character may sound frightened and scared, then the next syllable come off incredibly nonchalant and laid back. Youíll never get a sense for how the characters feel, but rather find yourself laughing uncontrollably at the ineptitude of the audio. Even sound effects fail to impress, as a shotgun blast sounds like a corked bat connecting with a metal baseball, and footsteps on a plank sound like someone incessantly beating on a tin can. The only passable sound quality lies in the music itself. All of it sets the mood well enough to have that anticipatory sense of wonder and apprehension.
Upon completion, a plethora of goodies open to your exploitation, including an all new knifing minigame, that's basically a marathon that pits you against multitudes of enemies with nothing but your knife to stave them off. As well, unlockable costumes and clothes are available for your character, and even a somewhat rudimentary multiplayer mode is open. Sadly, itís not that fun, really, and simply serves as a little more meat to the bones.
Overall, though, RE:DS isnít all that apprehensive, but it is a fun little romp through the familiar freakish mansion. For what it attempted to be, it didnít fail utterly, and actually delivered some respectably solid entertainment. Just, please, donít come in expecting some vibrant, fresh adventure in the Resident Evil saga; itís nothing of the sort. But for whatís there, itís not half bad.
Community review by Linkamoto (May 07, 2006)
A bio for this contributor is currently unavailable, but check back soon to see if that changes. If you are the author of this review, you can update your bio from the Settings page.
If you enjoyed this Resident Evil: Deadly Silence review, you're encouraged to discuss it with the author and with other members of the site's community. If you don't already have an HonestGamers account, you can sign up for one in a snap. Thank you for reading!