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Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles (Wii) artwork

Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles (Wii) review


"Capcom has a long history of recycling games they've previously made. A prime example of this is their Street Fighter and Megaman series. Resident Evil(or Biohazard)is no exception. Several of the games in the series have been remade or released. The Umbrella Chronicles, despite containing content from many previous Resident Evil games, The Umbrella Chronicles isn't simply just another release. The game is basically a "reimaging" of the entire Resident Evil story, remade to be played on the Wii ..."



Capcom has a long history of recycling games they've previously made. A prime example of this is their Street Fighter and Megaman series. Resident Evil(or Biohazard)is no exception. Several of the games in the series have been remade or released. The Umbrella Chronicles, despite containing content from many previous Resident Evil games, The Umbrella Chronicles isn't simply just another release. The game is basically a "reimaging" of the entire Resident Evil story, remade to be played on the Wii as a shooter as opposed to an survival horror-action adventure game.

The Umbrella Chronicles is played in first person, and is a "rail shooter". This means that the player does not control where the characters move for the most part, and simply shoot enemies as they appear on screen. Occasionally, if players shoot or press certain buttons, the path the characters change will alter slightly. Shooting is controlled by pressing the B button on the Wiimote. The A button serves multiple functions. It is used to pick up healing items, weapons, or select direction when the crosshair is put over any of these things. However, if the player holds down A and swings the Wiimote, and characters will perform a knife slash. If the player press B will holding down A, and grenade is thrown. The controls do not get much more complex, and the game is clearly targeted towards a much wider audience then previous Resident Evil games, which many people found were difficult, cryptic and hard to play due to the controls and camera angles. The entire game is played in this fashion, with the exception of a few scripted action scenes were players must press buttons or swing the Wiimote when prompted in order to avoid dying or taking damage, something Capcom has kept from Resident Evil 4.

The Umbrella Chronicles covers the stories of Resident Evil Zero, 1, 3, and a small portion of 2. The game also takes environments from Resident Evil Outbreak. Resident Evil fans will recognize many familar locales and faces. Although the game tells the same essential story from each game, it skips over several important cutscenes and puzzles, making each game seem much shorter and easier then it really is. Several plot elements have also been left out or modfied in order to accomidate the play style of The Umbrella Chronicles. In addition to retell the stories from previous games, Umbrella Chronicles also adds additional content that has previously never been seen. Most of this is played from the perspective of Albert Wesker, the series antagonist and ex-team leader of the S.T.A.R.S unit. Other new content includes segments seen from the perspective of Rebecca Chambers, and covers the events between Resident Evil Zero and 1, as well a remade version of HUNK's scenario. Finally, The Umbrella Chronicles covers the story of what happens to Chris Redfield and Jill Valentine after the Raccoon City incident, and tells the story of them attacking an Umbrella stronghold in Russia in 2003.

The Umbrella Chronicles features a large variety of music taken from multiple Resident Evil games, as well as several unique Umbrella Chronicles tracks that are as good, if not better than music from the original games. Resident Evil fans will be glad to hear many old favorites, some remixed for the game. Many of the voice actors (or at least very good doubles) return to voice their characters, and for the first time in many years, Resident Evil does not feature many cringe inspiring lines of dialouge, something that has plagued the series in the past.

What does the game look like? Since much of the game is a remade version of old Playstation games, or a Gamecbue remake, many of the enviroments will look fresh and clean to those who have played the originals. The graphics do not look that much different from that of the Gamecube remakes, but for the Wii, which features games that have graphics that look like they belong on a children's cartoon television station, they are impressive. Many of the objects in the background can be destroyed, and have accompanying animations that are very enjoyable to watch.

Finally, in terms of replay value, few Resident Evil games have offered as much as The Umbrella Chronicles offers. Each scenario can be played on multiple difficulties, and there are many hidden files for players to collect. Getting certain end results for each level also unlocks secret archive items, where players can collect and view items and documents from previous Resident Evil games, keeping fans and completionists alike busy. In addtion, many of the main scenarios feature the ability to be played in two player mode, and the single player only scenarios can be played with two people once certain requirements are met.

In conclusion, Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles while not an entirely new game or true to the Resident Evil spirit, is a must have for an RE fan, and more importantly, is a fun game to play.

Rating: 9/10

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Community review by Probester (August 15, 2008)

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