Resistance 3 Review

Resistance 3 (Available only on PS3)
ESRB Rating: M
Players: 1-16
Genre: FPS
Publisher: SCEA
Developer: Insomniac
Release Date: September 6th, 2011
PSN: Online co-op and multiplayer

Parent Talk: Resistance 3 is rated M for mature due to intense violence, gory images and strong language.  This game deals with a post-apocalyptic alien invasion where humanity is on the verge of extinction.  There is a lot of corpses lying around.

Plays Like: Halo, Call of Duty, etc.

Review Basis: Completed the single-player campaign on Normal difficulty. Tried a few missions via online/offline co-op. Tried my hand at a few online multiplayer matches.

Can you believe the PS3 has been available for five years now?  It seems like yesterday that I was reviewing Resistance: Fall of Man.  Here I am tackling the follow-up to Fall of Man’s sequel, one of the PS3’s greatest first-person shooters.  Can it possibly live up to the expectations set by Resistance 2?

The Great:
With Nathan Hale out of the picture, players jump into the boots of Joseph Capelli.  Joe is married and a father. That’s important because it adds a different element to the classic “save the world” theme from the previous games.  Now it’s personal, Joe is fighting not just to save what little remains of humanity, but also to give his child some kind of future.

The Good:

+ Co-op.  Online co-op campaign is fantastic and works as it should.  It’s also available in offline splitscreen for those that actually have physical friends.  Apparently there aren’t too many of those around anymore.

+ Not Killzone, but still looks excellent. Some of the best moments from R2 are a little downscaled here, but for the most part the graphics look sharp, detailed and run perfectly smooth.

+ Insomniac loves their weapons.  From the Cryogun to the Mutator, R3’s weapons are varied, alternate fire options are superb, and the new level-up system is great.  Just using your favorite weapons increases their effectiveness over time.

+ Varied and fun.  From taking down a giant Widowmaker to escaping a disintegrating city, Resistance 3 offers much.  When you think you’ve seen it all, something pops out of nowhere to throw a wrench in the mission.

+ Better-focused online multiplayer.  R2’s 60-player battles were too hectic for my tastes.  Lowering the cap to 16 allows for more intimate, strategic battles.  Everyone’s favorite modes are alive and well.

+ Cheats.  Unlock Trophies to earn credits redeemable for regenerating health, unlimited ammo, etc.  Fans will also enjoy the nifty trophy progression that shows how many more headshots remain before unlocking that one elusive trophy.

+ Fantastic Move and Sharp Shooter support.  If you own either, prepare for one good time.

The So-So:

+/- What’s happening?  The pacing brings down the experience towards the end.  There are sequences where you do nothing but walk around and wait for the next action piece to begin.  This is expected early on.

+/- How long have I been playing?  I expect a modern FPS to last around six hours or so, which is more or less what’s offered here, but I know some will wish the campaign was a little longer.

+/- Mixed AI.  Enemies flank and try to outman you at every possible moment, but your squadmates are mostly a lost cause.

The Bad:

– No online co-op matchmaking.  This means you need your own partner.  This is a bizarre omission that makes you wonder whether or not Insomniac tacked on online co-op as a second thought.

– No class-based co-op.  This would’ve been an excellent addition to the campaign co-op.  It worked well in R2, so it’s a shame to have been left behind.

– Not as epic as R2.  Do you remember Resistance 2’s set pieces?  There were some truly incredible moments in that game.  While there are excellent acts here, R3 never climaxes to the same degree R2 did.

The Ugly:
The end, or a new beginning?  While set in the same world as the previous Resistance games, there’s something that feels at odds with what came before.  Perhaps it’s the new cinematic storyline approach or that you’re playing as a new character. Who knows? R3 just seems like the start of something new instead of capping off a trilogy.

The Lowdown:
Resistance 3 is an excellent FPS with a few hiccups.  The online multiplayer is fun, but features nothing new.  The co-op isn’t as robust as expected, and the campaign suffers from pacing issues.  Taken as a whole, R3 offers a great break from the norm.  In a genre packed with releases, it feels unique. Thanks to Insomniac’s great weapon concepts, there’s almost always an excuse to keep playing for a few more minutes.

Average Score Scale: 8.0 (+/- 0.5) out of 10

Personal Final Score: 8.5/10 (Inflated)

Reason for +0.5 Inflation: Great fun, addicting multiplayer, and online co-op!

Reason for -0.5 Deflation: Not as epic as the previous entry in the series.


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