STAFF REVIEW of Resident Evil Code: Veronica X (Xbox 360)

Saturday, October 1, 2011.
by Brent Roberts

Resident Evil Code: Veronica X Box art Some could compare video games to fine wine. Some get better with age and provide us excitement and enjoyment even after almost 10 years. Recently, Capcom has released two new Resident Evil games to the Xbox Live Games on Demand section for $19.99 per game (Resident Evil 4, and Resident Evil Code: Veronica X). Now while Resident Evil 4 offers up some exciting new innovations and breaks from some of the traditions that made the Resident Evil series, the king of survival horror games, Resident Evil Code: Veronica X unfortunately falls flat in its attempt to secure a great place amongst the other titles in the series. There?s a lot that takes place in Resident Evil Code: Veronica X (RECVX), however walk with us as we show you why RECVX is more like an old wine that was kept improperly and only holds a hint of its former glory.

First and foremost, the story is quite good in RECVX, however it is really short. What do we mean by really short? Well RECVX is the type of game you can easily run through in less than six, yes that?s right, six hours, and in fact rewards you for beating it in less than four hours and thirty minutes. So let's be clear on this, you're spending $19.99 on a game that rewards you for beating it in under five hours. While it may entice you with its plot twists and turns, having a storyline less than five hours long is far beyond enjoyable. Originally released on the Dreamcast back in 2000 (God now don't I feel old), Resident Evil Code: Veronica marked the first time a Resident Evil game didn't debut on a Sony console. However, after some updating to the graphics and the inclusion of some new cut scenes sprinkled about, RECVX was finally released in 2001.

Resident Evil games have always been providers of some great gameplay and in RECVX we see the same semi fixed viewpoints that made the series an industry leader in survival horror. The real breakthrough of this title was when you would use weapons such as the Sniper Rifle and the Linear Launcher as the camera angle would shift to a first person viewpoint. Weapons though were almost the same however there were a couple new weapons such as the crossbow and anti-B.O.W. rounds that you could get for your grenade launcher. In respect to the weapons, RECVX does allow for dual wielding pistols that allow you to target multiple enemies at the same time, granted there will be a few times where this could come in handy, but it's there anyways if you wish to use it. RECVX also sets a first in the series by forcing you to control the two heroes, Chris and Claire Redfield however, one at a time. For the first half you are forced to use Claire and then switch up to Chris at the half way mark. While the innovations of RECVX do show progress in the series, it's minimal at best.

Way back when in 2001 when RECVX originally released, people were amazed at the graphics as it was the first Resident Evil game to fully utilize 3D backgrounds instead of pre rendered graphics. Now Capcom has released RECVX to the Games on Demand section of Xbox Live and with claims of HD graphics. While this got us very excited, the graphic improvements were not what we were hoping for. First we have to discuss the full motion video sequences as they seem to have been completely ignored and for what reason we have no idea. Given the fact that you can skip these cut scenes, if you have played RECVX before then you are probably better off doing so as watching these untouched scenes adds game time to your run-through and when combined with the horrible voice acting which we will chat about latter on, these should almost always be avoided for fear of losing your own sanity. Some aspects are done nicely with a cleaner feel though, the water effects look a lot better and some of the character modeling look ok at best, but coming from a last generation this title this is a game that we wish was remade instead of remastered. True the character modeling looks a little better, and some of the water and lighting effects look a little cleaner and crisper, however don't be surprised if you are unimpressed for your $19.99 investment.

While there is some improvement with the graphics, the sound quality however, seems to have remained the same and in today's day and age of epic quality soundtracks, voice acting, and sound effects, RECVX showcases another reason why this game is a last generation title. Some of the voice acting just makes you almost want to skip every cut scene just so you don't have to hear how horrible it is by today's standards. Maybe that?s where we got it wrong, but it really goes to show just how amazing the development of not only graphics and gameplay, but sound has evolved throughout the years; and while this is only $19.99, the voice acting and soundtrack leave a lot to be desired. Sure the ambient noises and sounds add a lot to the feel that you are playing a Resident Evil game, however, with the natural evolution of games today you can't expect miracles from a game that is 10 years old.

While Capcom has decided to release Resident Evil Code: Veronica X to the Games on Demand the bottom line of it is that this is a last generation title that has had some minor improvements, however, since not everything was improved upon you can still notice the fact that you are playing a game over 10 years old. Some games have aged well, and some are better left to the fond memories we had of them in the past. What category does Resident Evil Code: Veronica fall into? If you have $19.99 in your pocket, a Dreamcast system in your home, then spend 1/4 of your money and pick up the original and enjoy it. If you purchase Resident Evil Code: Veronica X thinking you're in for a treat of amazing new graphics, sound, and gameplay, then we also have some Prozac for you to borrow because you will need it to raise your crushed spirits.

Overall: 6.4 / 10
Gameplay: 6.5 / 10
Visuals: 6.0 / 10
Sound: 6.0 / 10


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