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Surviving the Remake: Resident Evil 3

Resident Evil 3: Remake is worth a shot, even if your gaming hours are limited in this action-horror spectacle. Undoubtedly, it stands out in terms of visuals, feel, and performance, yet it undergoes some weakening experiences compared to its 2019 counterpart, “Resident Evil 2: Remake.” In the previous installment, each scene could be completed in 1-2 hours, filled with additional content that left me savoring every moment. As a die-hard fan of the series, I’ve found myself doing the same with “Resident Evil 3.” However, most players might only complete the main storyline once, likely on standard or assisted difficulty. If you enjoyed the “Resident Evil 2” Remake last year, chances are you’ll appreciate “Resident Evil 3,” although the main plot is somewhat limited.

(Disclaimer: Mild spoilers ahead. If you seek a completely fresh experience, like avoiding trailers or demos, I recommend playing the game first.)

My experience with “Resident Evil 3: Remake” might differ significantly from an average fan of the series; I grew up with “Resident Evil,” making it one of my favorite video game series. Critiquing the “Resident Evil” series while pretending to be objective would be a futile task. I know it’s filled with stunning highs and unsettling lows throughout its extensive history. Despite the bias, I believe the opinion of a longtime gaming enthusiast holds value. Throughout the gameplay, I consistently questioned if I would still enjoy this if I weren’t familiar with the story.

This depends on the specific aspects of the game under scrutiny. For instance, the dialogues are the typical “cheesy” essence fans expect from the series. However, those hoping their survival horror games take themselves seriously might find the voice acting irksome, perhaps a tad juvenile. In reality, even the latest mainline title – the excellent “Resident Evil 7” – was an immensely immersive experience. Only the DLC truly delved into full-blown absurdity.

On the flip side, the gameplay caters to both action and horror enthusiasts, offering a satisfying experience. One word to describe it? Gratifying. The action is smooth, weapons carry genuine weight, and Jill’s perfect dodge ability revolutionizes the game from the tank-style movement of its predecessors. Coupled with the RE Engine, the game runs at a consistent 60 frames per second (I played on PlayStation Pro), providing a unique experience. That’s why, even after the end credits rolled, I came back. In fact, I’ve achieved the platinum trophy. Needless to say, I thoroughly enjoyed the modernized gameplay of the “Resident Evil” games. However, setting aside all praises, “Resident Evil 3” might be one of my least favorites among the trilogy, with two and seven standing out as superior works.

The most disappointing aspect of “Resident Evil 3: Remake” is the Hollywood-esque feel it exudes. Granted, the production value is top-notch, and the action is genuinely thrilling, but it often feels like navigating through a super corridor. A very short but beautiful corridor. This is not to say the title lacks replay value, as players get a “shop” as a lifesaver for New Game Plus activities. However, design-wise, there’s nothing explorative or open-world about it. The main antagonist, Nemesis, falls into this category, merely serving as a backdrop to propel the protagonist across the city.

The most glaring flaw is the imbalance in difficulty throughout the game. Although Nemesis is typically a formidable foe, his predictability renders him inconsequential after the initial playthrough. In fact, his final evolution feels like a boss from a nightmare difficulty Souls-like game, forming a disconnect with the rest of the game. This is shocking and makes any prior encounters seem ludicrously easy. One exception is that I, like many other seasoned fans, achieved an S rank on the hardest difficulty after unlocking the rocket launcher (infinite ammo). I can’t even fathom obtaining an S rank without the rocket launcher at the highest difficulty, so I imagine it poses a considerable challenge.

Of course, all of this doesn’t even include the standalone asymmetric multiplayer game bundled with “Resident Evil 3: Remake” – “Resident Evil Resistance.” I believe it warrants a separate review, but my brief time in it felt somewhat enjoyable, albeit a bit frustrating. Many PlayStation 4 users are currently experiencing a bug that makes it nearly impossible to find a match for the “Mastermind” game. When unable to play both “Mastermind” and “Survivor” simultaneously, the game quickly becomes monotonous. I also worry that the price barrier might deter a stable player base in the long run. In fact, I can see this future evolving into a free-to-play option.

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