With all the buzz around Resident Evil 6 releasing this November, it isn’t hard to forget about that other Resident Evil title that we should be talking about right now: Revelations. Releasing at the end of this month, the game looks to be far more robust than Resident Evil’s previous 3DS outing. It acts as a new chapter in the story, revealing what happened with Jill Valentine and Chris Redfield after setting up the BSAA, between the events of Resident Evil 4 and 5.
Revelations might not seem as big a deal as the other two Resident Evil games releasing this year, though; a lot of people without a 3DS will skip past this one without a second thought. Going from the demo, however, it paves the way for a brand new narrative and a new adventure in the series. It all feels more like a traditional horror game than the latest Resident Evil games have: Jill is stranded in a shady hotel, with a lack of ammo, requiring the player to conserve supplies in order to survive the creepy enemies that lurk around corners, in wardrobes and, of course, in the ceiling.
The game does appear to be a rather linear affair, judging by the section we’ve played. After Jill wakes up in an unknown room with her trusty pistol and knife she must solve a small, almost point and click adventure style puzzle then dispose of the first enemy in order to escape the room. She travels through corridors and subsequent rooms which lead her through this hotel area. This demo section shows off a few of the weapons and items you’ll harness in Revelations – namely the shotgun and the new scanner item, which allows you to search for hidden items and clues.
It looks great too. It certainly doesn’t compare to many of the Vita’s impressive visuals but the character models are realistic and although the textures aren’t slick, when it all comes together it’s one of the best looking games yet on the 3DS and a great way of showing what the handheld can do.[drop2]One disappointing fact is that turning the 3D slider up does negate the anti-aliasing effects and leaves a somewhat ugly, jaggy look. If you’re willing to bear with this, the 3D visuals are really impressive – not only can you turn it up to full blast with the built-in slider but you can also select a ‘strong’ or ‘very strong’ option in game. While it takes time to adjust and genuinely feels like a pain for the eyes at first, when the ‘very strong’ 3D effect sets in, it seems as if you’re staring five feet into the screen.
Revelations manages to feel like a full, robust game rather than a handheld afterthought, which gives Nintendo something to pit against the Vita’s myriad of console-like experiences.
While Revelations supports the Circle Pad Pro, you’re able to play the game with three other control systems that don’t need this attachment. I’ve heard some complaints about trying to control the game – a third person shooter at its core – with only one stick but after trying all three of the control options, mixed with the gyro controls, there’s definitely something there to please most people.
For example, the default controls have you moving and rotating with the stick, whilst holding down the left trigger allows for strafing and another option switches this, meaning you can move and strafe with the stick and then hold B to rotate. Finally, there’s the infinitely more clunky method of using the face buttons to rotate.
Whilst you’re unable to move and shoot if you select these options – as soon as you press down the right trigger, the stick is used for aiming, the gyro controls allow for fluid movement and precise aiming, though this can prove annoying at times. You’re even able to choose whether to aim in third or first person.
The demo, although relatively short, does show exactly what Revelations is going to be. As I mentioned, the ammo reserves are very limited and some of the scariest moments come from realising you’re left with nothing but a knife and a few bullets. The enemies are also gory creatures, rather than the human-zombies of Resident Evil 5. With hacking mini-games, quick time events and all of the usual Resident Evil staples, it looks to be another great entry in the series and an interesting piece of the story.
There’s even a Hell mode, which ramps the fear and enemy spawn times up, and makes items such as ammo and herbs ever rarer. It’s truly hellish and only for the most hardcore of survival horror fans.