Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City|
In order to know whether or not you should play Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City, I have to ask you a few questions. Do you like Resident Evil? Do you like third person shooters? Do you like interesting narratives? Do you like crisp, fast, and responsive gameplay? Do you like games that are fun? Well, if you answered ďYesĒ to any of those questions, than Operation Raccoon City is definitely NOT the game for you.
I honestly donít know where to start with this game, so how about I just go chronologically. Regrettably, Iíve never gotten around to playing Battlefield 3, so this was actually my first experience with Origin on the PC, and was it a bad one. Set aside the fact that I forgot that Origin was a thing, and spent awhile trying to get the code to work on Steam and Games for Windows Live, I was still required to jump through some extremely annoying hoops to get the game to run due to a weird missing .dll error, GFWL not letting me sign in, and then an extremely weird error that wouldnít let me start the game on my second monitor without deleting a folder in ďMy DocumentsĒ. In any case, this may not be the place to complain about Origin and GFWL, but if I canít download, install, and then start playing my game without any hassle, I think thatís worth mentioning. Especially when the game you end up playing is pretty terrible.
Once I got the game working I jumped straight into the campaign. The game is, like most Resident Evil games, a third person shooter, and the campaign is designed for co-op whether you are actually playing with other people or not. There is an option to leave the game open to random players (which I did), and they can just jump into your game at any time. When you arenít actually playing with anyone, your squad will be made up of 3 other A.I. teammates which might as well just not exist for anything other than distracting your opponents, which surprisingly, actually comes in handy during the later boss fights. In fact, the A.I. in this game is completely moronic on both sides. Opposing forces will run around aimlessly acting like they desperately want to get shot, zombies will often times run right by you if you keep pushing forward, and I canít tell you how many times I saw my A.I. squad mates standing in the open while watching me get shot or attacked by zombies, unfazed by the fact that it might be of their interest to actually help me out.
I would say that the bad A.I. doesnít really matter because the game isnít particularly hard, but there are some portions in later missions that seem almost impossible due to how horrible the game actually feels to play. Most of the time though, the game doesnít even require you to shoot anything. I would say you could probably beat 90% of the game by simply running past all the enemies and opening a door to the next checkpoint. ďThe constant opening of doors.Ē If I had to describe this campaign with one sentence, itíd be that one. Other than objectives dealing with boss fights, most of the time your goal is to get to the next door, open it, and possibly watch a cutscene.
If this ďrun by everythingĒ strategy doesnít work, and youíre tasked with actually shooting things, you better hope thereís some ammo around and possibly even a real human player in your game who can revive you if you die, because chances are you will run out of ammo and die. Ammo isnít necessarily scarce; itís just that enemies eat bullets like candy. Not only do they soak up bullets, but the only way you actually know if youíre hitting your target is if your reticule turns red. Pumping lead into your enemies should probably leave them hurting at least a little, but as far as you can tell they donít feel a thing until they suddenly fall over dead. Not only that, but it also takes nearly an entire clip for pretty much any gun to kill one soldier, and the chances of you actually hitting your target with all those bullets is about 0%. I would say Iím pretty good at shooters considering thatís by far the genre Iíve spent the most amount of my gaming time with, so I feel pretty confident in saying this game is frustratingly sluggish, and downright awful to play. The snapping in and out of cover, the sound design of the shooting, the drastically deliberate animation, and the lack of visual cues to let you actually know your bullets are hitting your target are all major factors in making the game feel like a chore to actually play.
Maybe I could have looked passed some this stuff if the story was interesting and relevant to the Resident Evil franchise, but no, itís not. They at least try to make you care about whatís happening in the game by placing the events during Resident Evil 2 and 3, but they really do nothing with that information other than use it as a call back for fans of the series. You are part of Wolfpack, a squad working for Umbrella and tasked with things like retrieving the G-Virus, subduing a Nemesis, and killing Leon S Kennedy and Claire Redfield. They try to weave your journey throughout some relevant parts of the Resident Evil timeline, but the whole thing feels disjointed and unimportant. The fact that there are only 7 missions in the entire game also make it extremely short, so Iím not really surprised that the story wasnít really important considering its length.
If thereís anything good to say about this game itís that it doesnít look completely terrible, and the multiple character leveling mixed with the multiplayer makes it fairly replayable. I actually like the whole pop in, pop out co-op style campaign, and the way you can get infected and turn on your teammates, but everything around the few mechanics I actually like donít make up for the games faults. The multiplayer isnít the worst, that is, if you can actually find a game. Iím not sure how it is currently on the PS3/360, but it takes a long time to find a game on the PC version. I waited upwards of 10 minutes without finding a game. Really, the only way I can say you should even partially consider buying this game is if you have some friends that are playing it who you can join up with in multiplayer and co-op, because sometimes even terrible games can be fun when played with friends. Otherwise, steer clear of this game, and if you are such a diehard Resident Evil fan that you want to know what happens in this game, Iím sure you can just go look up the story beats on Wikipedia.