Since there aren’t very many games hitting the Wii U for the foreseeable future, I decided to download the Resident Evil: Revelations demo from the eShop on the Wii U instead of from Xbox Live, or the PlayStation Network. Part of me feels this is a Nintendo Resident Evil game anyways since it originally debuted on the 3DS last year on February 7th, 2012.
Let’s start with the various control options. You can either play the game using just the TV, which is the ideal set-up if you plan to use the Pro controller, in which case the game plays exactly as it would on the PS3 and Xbox 360. The next option allows you to use only the GamePad, perfect for when your significant other is using the TV. Finally there’s what I like to call the 3DS option. This puts the main action on the TV, and the map and other inventory options on the GamePad. This closely matches the feel the 3DS version had.
To begin, I should mention that I only played through the demo twice thus far. The first time was on normal difficulty using only the GamePad as the screen, and the second time on Infernal (Hard) difficulty using both the GamePad and the TV. I’ve experienced pretty much everything the demo has to offer, and here’s what I thought.
First off, it’s great seeing the game in glorious HD on the big screen, but even playing just on the GamePad, the game looks nice. The models have all been given a huge polygon jump, but the core game hasn’t changed at all. It still feels as though it was created on a portable system. Simple objects block your path, whereas if this was made on a modern console you could easily just hop over little obstacles like that. If you remember the vintage Resident Evil games, well that’s pretty much exactly how this one feels and plays, which is awesome if you ask me. I prefer this setup to the new ones, because the game will genuinely creep you out.
The normal difficulty demo is a simple walk in the park. Compared to the 3DS demo, this one will disappoint you given it’s incredibly short, and easy. Your goal is to find a key to unlock a certain door. All you do is race around a few rooms, find the key, and unlock said door. There are maybe five enemies in the entire demo on this difficulty setting. It’s ultra simple. However, crank it up to Infernal and things become much, much more difficult. Basically you have 20 or more enemies and even a boss. The good news is, that so long as you’re good at dodging incoming attacks, you can more or less skip all of the enemies, including the boss. To help you out you’re armed with a machine gun and a rifle on this difficulty, but get hit twice and it’s goodnight Charlie. It might take a few tries, but I’m fairly certain RE veterans will have no trouble finishing the demo on this difficulty once they master the dodge maneuver.
The TV/GamePad mode is by far the most interesting way to play if only because you have the map and inventory on the GamePad. It makes moving in and out of rooms extremely easy, because you know where the exit door is for when you’re trying to hightail it out of there. Switching weapons is also a simple press of the screen, instead of pausing the game and switching that way. It makes the game as fast as it was to play on the 3DS. The Genesis scanner is still mapped to the analog and buttons, but I think it would have been neat to incorporate the camera and sensor in there somehow.
Control-wise the game plays better than what I experienced on the 3DS, because I never had the Circle Pad Pro. That said, I also never had too many issues with the original version just the same. I do have issues with the Wii U’s GamePad though. I switched between using the Pro controller and the GamePad during my Infernal run and I’ve got to say that I much prefer the Pro controller. My aiming is off when I use the GamePad for some reason. I also wish Nintendo would have just copied the Xbox 360 controller and rearranged the right analog stick and the face buttons.
Not much else to say right now other than the game is looking good, but honestly I doubt I’ll be picking this one up. I’ve got a lot of games coming up I want to check out like Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D, and a slew of Virtual Console releases. I’m really not sure I want to spend $49.99 for something that I’ve already completed and that is more or less the exact same game with a few extra bells and whistles added in. I found the demo to be fun, but did it convince me to spend my hard earned money on the retail release, I doubt it.
Resident Evil: Revelations ships next Tuesday (May 21st) for the Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii U. Any takers?