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Resident Evil HD (PC) Review

/ Jan 19th, 2015 No Comments

Resident Evil

The king of survival horror is back with a fresh coat of paint. Resident Evil HD, which is developed and published by Capcom, breathes new life into the familiar classic by counteracting the aging visuals of Jill and Chris.

While fans of the original won’t find any true surprises in the remastered version of Resident Evil, the updated graphics and sound will more than delight Resident Evil fans.

Are You Afraid of the Dark?

Resident Evil (along with Silent Hill) serves as the grandparent of modern survival horror. While many have tried to dethrone the king, none have truly succeeded. Resident Evil HD gives the game a much needed graphical enhancement, but the plot remains the same.

An elite group headed by one Albert Wesker attempts to figure out the situation in Racoon City, where things have gotten “bad,” to make an understatement. Players take control of Jill Valentine or Chris Redfield as they explore an old mansion hiding many secrets, fight off some serious hellhounds (as well as other nefarious creatures), and get into wacky Scooby Doo-level hijinks.
 

And play with us, forever, and ever, and ever.

And play with us, forever, and ever, and ever.

The updated graphics and sound positively affects the story and gameplay by enhancing the fright-factor. What was before just a strange polygonal monster is now a fully fleshed Frankenstein of fear. Resident Evil sits on top of the survival-horror genre for many reasons, but one that cannot be ignored is the concept it brings forth of society making its own monsters. The mystical fear of zombies mixed with the idea of manmade things that go bump in the night still creates the perfect storm of memorable gaming.

Don’t Look Around That Corner. Oh, You Can’t

Getting this right out of the way, the fixed camera angles are annoying. However, this is nothing new for gamers to harrumph at. Many argue this only heightens the tension as not being able to see enemies will do, but the fact remains that it still dates Resident Evil back to a time when a fixed camera was often the solution for good graphics.

The new control scheme is sweet mana from heaven, and for those looking for a real challenge, there is an option to use the original controls.
 

Maybe someday zombies won't catch me off-guard and tear me limb from limb... maybe someday.

Maybe someday zombies won’t catch me off-guard and tear me limb from limb…someday.

Ultimately, the new-versus-old control scheme is really a matter of personal preference, but the improved gameplay is not. This remaster is not just a fresh coat of polish; gameplay is heavily improved by better line-of-sight, enemy sound recognition, and the simple ability to quickly discern objects within the environment. Also as a silly gimmick, players are able to choose between the classic models of Chris and Jill as well as the shiny new improved versions.

But Damn Son, Those Graphics!

There is always more time to discuss graphics and sound, especially with an HD remake. While it has been beaten into the ground, the difference in look is nothing short of astounding. The first glimpse of the zombies of Resident Evil is horrifying, and that first lurch will keep gamers running the whole game through. Item recognition is a big deal considering how much of the game is a painted background, and the HD graphics lend themselves heavily to this crucial feature. Where once was a group of players hunting for that one sigil or bit of spare ammo is now the beautiful guiding light of graphical optimization.
 

HA HA HA! JUST KIDDING, PLEASE TURN THE GRAPHICS OFF.

HA HA HA! JUST KIDDING, PLEASE TURN THE GRAPHICS OFF.

If a lurch is enough to keep gamers on edge, then a groan only adds to this effect. Sound quality adds not just the moans of horror that will keep the sense of fear high, but also the strange ambiance that is the Resident Evil HD soundtrack. In horror games (such as with F.E.A.R.), low quality can be a strange blessing in disguise, but Resident Evil soars with its improved quality and that will keep generations of gamers coming back to go toe-to-toe with the big chief of survival-horror gaming.

We are Our Own Monsters

Resident Evil has stood the test of time, and now Resident Evil HD will ensure that burden remains shouldered for many years to come. Fans of the series, rejoice. Your messiah has returned and brings you sweet, succulent death. Naysayers, well… it’s still Resident Evil, just HD. That is the best way to summarize Resident Evil HD; the new graphics, controls and sound quality will convert many gamers too stubborn to appreciate older titles, but those that don’t enjoy survival-horror sadly will not be convinced.
 

Ain't life a b!&@$?

Ain’t life a b!&@$?

Resident Evil HD is available through Steam for $19.99. While slightly steep for an HD clean-up, it’s not a gamble, but a tried-and-true classic with a brand new shine. Inside the mansion awaits horrors like the world has never seen, but be not afraid, for players shall have limited ammo and be easily killed…OK, maybe Wesker had the right idea.

 

Greg Johnson

Greg Johnson

Associate Editor at Gaming Illustrated
Greg is a Nintendo fanboy who would cry if they ever went third party. He writes news, previews and reviews at Gaming Illustrated.
Greg Johnson

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RESIDENT EVIL HD (PC) REVIEW

Gaming Illustrated RATING

Overall90%

GAMEPLAY8

While the improved control scheme adds a lot, the fixed camera still remains, ever watchful and resolved to not move. Also with the decision to keep the classic control scheme, players whom felt more at home with the original controls still have that option.

GRAPHICS9

The improved graphics turn the strange flesh creatures of Resident Evil into the fully fleshed nightmares of Resident Evil HD. Don't play this game in the dark is the lesson to be taken.

SOUND10

If the Resident Evil HD graphics are amazing, the sound is perfect. The crystal clear haunting ambiance will create a mood unlike any other and breath new life in the undead evil that is the original Resident Evil.

STORY9

It's Resident Evil, it is, was and always will be groundbreaking. The implications of man-made horrors will haunt generations to come thanks to the HD remake and we'll all get to follow along as Chris and Jill inevitably hate their lives more and more.