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Resident Evil Revelations review

A dark 3DS survival horror game of titanic proportions

Survival horror games are at their best when they funnel you into confined spaces. This has held true for every game in the Resident Evil series, from the claustrophobic corridors of the original to the darkened, monster-rammed alcoves of the Spencer Estate. The smaller the spaces, the more potent the scares.

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So it is that Resident Evil Revelations is set primarily aboard the Queen Zenobia, a cruise ship adrift in the Mediterranean. It's quintessentially a Resident Evil location, a mix of opulent halls, baize-festooned casinos, grimy metallic crew quarters and partially flooded, unlit engine rooms.

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The place is filled with locked doors and broken elevators, mutated fish-men and mysterious agents of a terrorist organisation bent on dispersing their T-Abyss virus into the world's oceans.

The plot is sufficiently removed from the rest of the series as to be straightforward enough for the passing Resident Evil fan: while investigating the apparent return of a bio-terrorist group called Veltro, anti-bio-terrorist mercenary Jill Valentine and her partner Parker (a sort of chubby Kurt Russell) board the Zenobia in search of their mysteriously missing ally, Chris Redfield.

Ship Of Ghouls

Of course, all is not as it seems: the boat has become a sort of floating haunted house and Mister Redfield is nowhere to be found. He is, in fact, off elsewhere in the 'European Mountains' with his new partner Jessica (who, given her genuine utterance of "me and my sweet ass are on their way", we can only assume is some sort of a satirical deconstruction of contemporary sexism in gaming).

In these sections, which are more action-focused than those set on the Queen Zenobia, you play as Chris, uncovering plot details and fending off vicious attacks from infected wolves and other Veltro abominations using your broad shoulders and guns.

A few tangential scenes also allow you to play as Parker (who catapults Revelations' kooky, off-the-cuff misogyny to Carry On levels by at one point, blaming Jessica for attracting monsters because she's "such a flirt") prior to his joining the organisation of which Jill and Chris are part.

You'll also play as the inimitable Grinder and Jackass in a few sections, Revelations' cringe-worthy comedy duo. These guys reel off some the game's most wonderfully quotable and questionably translated lines, including one incredible - if sadly unprintable - misunderstanding of a common Brit-phrase.

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But for the most part you'll be in the skin-tight, push-up wetsuit of Jill Valentine as she navigates the dusky bilges of the badly lit cruise ship armed with scant ammunition, screaming in fright at every whispering ventilation shaft and darting shadow.

Where Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D was, in effect, a sideshow, Resident Evil Revelations is a full and comprehensive Resident Evil adventure, one closer to the series as it appears on consoles than any preceding handheld outings.

The confines of the Queen Zenobia are a throwback to the walled-in atmosphere of the first handful of games, if anything, and while the game does make some concessions to the platform, it's a staggering feat of miniaturisation that Capcom has crammed such a full-featured Resident Evil game on to the 3DS. Those concessions include discrete chapters of plot, each preceded by its own serial-style "Previously on Resident Evil..." voiceover that recaps the events of the previous chapter, which is ideal for a game designed to be picked up and put down as your train journeys and bowel movements dictate. The campaign will take you about 10 hours to complete: another reason it falls in line with the full-fledged Resident Evils of consoles.

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  1. dreamer87 Thursday 26th Jan 2012 at 11:48

    I pre-ordered this can't wait to play it, looks epic.
    Nintendo are giving it's fans great games I for one am happy to own a 3ds I was a little skeptical at first but based on the fantasic games I've played (Zelda,Mario 3d land, mario kart 7, sonic generations and PES2012) and ones I really want to play resident evil revelations METAL GEAR SOLID 3D it's shapping up to a great time to be a nintendo fan.

    I think nintendo can't beat playstation in the handheld gaming department.

  2. LukeL1 Thursday 26th Jan 2012 at 11:51

    I cant wait to get this, not sure about the add-on though

  3. imbusydoctorwho Thursday 26th Jan 2012 at 13:54

    Really want to get this.
    I enjoyed Mercenaries,okay it wasn't a brilliant game,but it's pick up and play availability made it my most used 3DS game with a total play time of over 30 hours.
    I just hope the online in this is good,because Mercenaries was a bit messy,though the last time I used it,it was pretty good.
    I just hope there isn't any giant spiders,bugs or fish,in this game or I'll have nightmares.

    I might get this with the Circle Pad Pro,but that depends whether there's a bundle or a special discount when you buy the game and Pad together,in Game or somewhere.
    But then again I quite like the controls the way they are,I might just leave it till Kid Icarus or Metal Gear.

  4. Ai64 Thursday 26th Jan 2012 at 15:42

    Looks worthy. Maybe I should look out for this. :)

  5. fisher2007 Thursday 26th Jan 2012 at 15:50

    I'm getting this tomorrow also anyone here gonna play co-op when they finish single player.

  6. Fidu Thursday 26th Jan 2012 at 17:41

    I'm getting this tomorrow :)

  7. ninjafox Thursday 26th Jan 2012 at 21:49

    I'm getting this tomorrow

    Same here! Looking forward to playing it tomorrow night with the lights out. It should be a scary experience :)

  8. Rabb3D Friday 27th Jan 2012 at 17:54

    Only 90%!?
    Definatley the best 3rd party 3DS games, the graphics are superb, best for the system(out of the games I have) and it really feels like you're playing a movie! I've jumped a few times already and i'm only on Episode 2. It is also a real challenge (e.g running out of ammo after like 3 seconds) a true survival horror! Deserves about 96%, alot better than any mario game could be!

    *THIS IS BASED ON PERSONAL CHOICE, SORRY IF I OFFENED SOME DEDICATED MARIO FAN OR SOMETHING, BUT I LIKE MARIO TOO*

  9. GoldenSun Friday 27th Jan 2012 at 18:39

    It's really good, but I got nightmares playing it. Never play this game in the dark at 10pm guys!

  10. torterratrainer Friday 27th Jan 2012 at 18:44

    just received my zavvi bundle release day hah a
    its so bliddy scary went into my room turned the lights off wahhhh Chris kill those dogs Jill dodge.
    if honest its easier to use the camera without the circle pad pro but am still using it.
    really want to unlock raid mode

  11. reeesy Monday 30th Jan 2012 at 09:47

    Im a few hours in and i must say i'm enjoying it immensely. It's given me a couple of really nasty scares. The woman you chase throughout he air ducts made me jump so much the 3DS flew out of my hands! Brilliant stuff, and my favourite 3DS game since Ocarina of Time 3D. Really don't understand why Edge gave this a 6.

  12. MikeIt0rNot69 Tuesday 31st Jan 2012 at 03:11

    only thing there i didn't read was street pas, ar cards and picture taking. Just some ideas the game could do

  13. MikeIt0rNot69 Tuesday 31st Jan 2012 at 22:42

    can't wait to play

  14. olrodlegacy Saturday 14th Apr 2012 at 18:56

    Just finished this and it's by far the best game on 3DS. Brilliant combination of graphics and gameplay, and there are some genuinely poop-your-pants moments, such as the alien/worm thing smashing against the window towards the end, and the repeated unexpected appearances of Rachael!

  15. sarah1103 Saturday 12th May 2012 at 20:21

    My copy is in the post. Can't. WAIT!!

    I downloaded the demo just for the fun of it and loved it. I've never even looked at a Resident Evil game before...

  16. Rory2808 Saturday 14th Jul 2012 at 15:55

    The demo so good i'm getting the full game because it had enough scares and got me into resident evil games and dead space

  17. Kaney Wednesday 1st Aug 2012 at 13:44

    After completing this game I have to say it is one of the best games on 3DS at the moment. However, I was disappointed at the length of it. I completed the game in 08:09:12 (just over 8 hours) I'm not quite sure how much space of the game card is used up, but they have up to 8GB available. However, that's a stupid complaint as it only stems from my enjoyment of the game. I've yet to really get my teeth into Raid Mode as I was hooked on story mode.

    No spoilers, but Capcom's statement about there being another 3DS game sure is backed up by the game itself.

  18. NP Chilla Thursday 23rd May 2013 at 11:35

    I think nintendo can't beat playstation in the handheld gaming department.

    SOMEONE jumped the gun with their predictions. :roll:

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