Dead Rising 2: Off The Record

So close to a great game. So close. This should have been one of the better games made by Capcom. This is the game the fans DEMANDED! They wanted to see Frank West, undisputed hero of the first Dead Rising, as the protagonist in Dead Rising 2. The game is fan service in the best possible way! Everyone wins with this. This doesn’t mean that Chuck Greene wasn’t loved (that guy ROCKED!)… but this was something that every fanboy and fangirl wanted to know. Could Frank West make it through?

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The game did so many things right that it’s scary!

  • Capcom changed the story just enough for the game to feel fresh. They moved the survivors around, changed some key NPCs, and created new scenes to reveal new parts of the story.
  • More weapons to build!
  • New, fun area to explore.
  • Great new costumes.
  • Frank West has his usual flippant comments.
  • Yes, he’s covered wars you know!
  • New survivors and boss fights.
  • Co-op play
  • Awesome soundtrack.
  • The overtime mode was freaking cool
  • Chuck Greene is one of the psychopaths!!!!

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Capcom did one better than they did with the original Dead Rising 2. They knew people love to just wander and explore, so they added in a sandbox mode. The player can wander, kill zombies, do little contests to earn money, kill psychopaths, kill survivors, cross dress, run over everything with cars or SUVs, gamble, make new weapons… whatever they want! This is simply one of the most fun and rewarding modes for any Dead Rising fan.

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But what they did wrong… they got really, really, really wrong. I mean, frustratingly… the game quickly become no-fun type wrong.

They screwed up the direction arrow.

You see, you can go on missions in the game. These missions tend to take you to a lot of different parts of the map. And it is easy to get lost. I mean, really, really easy. When you have hundreds of zombies going at you, that arrow is a life-saver. It tells you the direction to go because there’s just not enough time to think about it.

The arrow points in the god damn wrong direction about a quarter of the time.

It’s like it is trying to orient itself or something. I don’t freaking know. But when I’m getting swarmed and then look to see I’ve been going the wrong direction, the game no longer feels fun.

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And the final boss battle. How the hell did they screw this one up? In the original Dead Rising 2, it was already a difficult fight. The big boss has this charge attack that’s next to impossible to dodge. All you can do is survive the quick time event to take minimum damage and heal up when he withdraws. They made a difficult battle into a battle that’s next to f*cking impossible. Before fighting him, Frank West has to fight through a meat-grinder. Dozens upon dozens of super-zombies and normal zombies coming at him arena-style. There’s not enough time to do healing and the weapons suck. So a lot of it is running and trying to use the environment to survive. But this isn’t skill.. it’s luck. If one of those super-zombies does their mist attack that causes Frank to cough, he’s caught and will take damage. So, this part all depends on how nice the computer is feeling.

maxresdefaultThen on top of that, you have TK.. who is just as dominant as ever. His charge attack is freaking insane. If you’re anywhere near him when he does it, you’re caught! I was jumping clear out of the way.. so I shouldn’t have been touched by him. I mean it! I was out of his f*cking way, but he still nailed me. When you put the meat grinder that weakens the hell out of you on top of the impossible TK fight… it’s just way too much.

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Dead Rising 2: Off The Record is a good game, don’t get me wrong. But it should have been a great game. I should be praising it as the greatest Dead Rising of them all. But the screwed up direction arrow and an impossibly difficult final boss fight just ruins a lot of the game for me.

I think you should pick it up, now that it’ll be getting cheaper like all the other games from the previous generation. Just expect some frustrations along the way.

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