Review: Dead Rising 3
I’ll be perfectly honest, if Dead Rising 3 hadn’t been a launch game for Xbox One then I probably wouldn’t have bothered with it. But as one of only three exclusives (unless you want to be pedantic and include Crimson Dragon et al) I figured it would be a better option than only having Forza 5 to play on my new console. And I must say I’m more that a little surprised; Dead Rising 3 is an immensely fun and addictive game that pushes the series to new heights.
Dead Rising 3 is the game I wanted the original Dead Rising to be back in 2006. Whilst the first title got me excited at the prospect of slaying a ridiculously large amount of zombies, the game’s structure of didn’t compliment the way I wanted to play it. It’s taken a good seven years, but finally the mix of exploration, levelling, and questing has finally been blended together perfectly, and because of this tight balance, Dead Rising 3 is a game I found myself playing for hours on end.
Slaughtering zombies is a fundamentally fun concept, although Dead Rising 3 still does a few things to ensure that your time in Los Perdidos is as enjoyable as it possibly can be. Pretty much anything you find can be used as a weapon, and the combo weapons are both plentiful, and easy to craft. This thankfully reduces the amount of time you’ll be bashing zombie brains in with a traffic cone, or something equally useless. And Dead Rising 3 has a lot of zombies, far more than the first two games, or pretty much any other game ever. The sheer amount of stuff on screen is technically spectacular, and whilst the game won’t always wow you with it’s graphics, there’s enough going on to set Dead Rising 3 well above anything that could be achieved on the Xbox 360.
The greater amount of foes effectively justifies your new arsenal of insane combo weapons and vehicles, but the survival horror elements of Dead Rising 3 always mean that you’re only a couple of wrong moves away from immense venerability. You’re constantly managing your health, inventory, side missions and main quest, and doing all of this as you forge a path through an army of undead using a flaming sword pretty much guarantees that the game never gets boring. It’s an immersive experience, and even when mission objectives are as simple as traversing to a number of points on the map, this doesn’t stop things from being enjoyable.
The story is the only area of the game that is noticeably weak, although I’m sure many will enjoy it in a ‘it’s so bad it’s good’ kind of way. The fact that Dead Rising 3’s plot takes itself seriously is a complete mystery to me, I mean when Capcom Vancouver finished making it did they not look back and realise it was utter garbage from start to finish? But aside from the bad acting and tonal inconsistencies, what bothered me the most about it is that the majority of problems have solutions that aren’t really applicable to real life. At one point main character Nick needs a sturdy vehicle to cross town, so in the space of somewhere between five and six seconds he combines a steam roller and a beaten up sedan to create a tank with a gun turret.
But whilst the story being bad isn’t really an overal positive, it’s disconnection from the game is. As the two are largely separate, it never interferes with your enjoyment, and the levelling, crafting, and massacring that makes Dead Rising 3 so enjoyable to play. It’s an overall impressive game that has a lot to see and do, as well as some impressive next gen features. If you’ve got an Xbox One, then this is a game you shouldn’t miss out on.