Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles

Micah Kolding

Nintendo Editor

Publisher: Capcom

Release date: Now available

The Resident Evil franchise has, for a long time, been the quintessential standard of videogame horror. Time and again it has thrust us into the delightfully dreadful fantasy of surviving amidst a zombie plague. We would creep through their bleak and dismal levels, ever vigilant for the elusive keys to our salvation, ever wary of any shadow that might conceal the next abomination, and ever aware of our diminishing reserves of ammunition, herbs, and typewriter tape.

Of course, sometimes you just want to shoot a whole bunch of bullets at zombies.

You looking at me? You better not be looking at me.

Say hello to Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles.  It should be familiar to most of you, largely consisting as it does of the abbreviated story lines of Resident Evil, Resident Evil Zero, and Resident Evil 3.  With no more creeping around, no more puzzles, and a truly boiled-down plot, the games are reduced almost entirely to unloading your gun at the living dead.  Reminiscent of a good old-fashioned, arcade-style shooter, the game walks you automatically through Raccoon City while you kick back with a dumb grin on your face and quote Bruce Campbell with every head shot you score (you know the line I'm talking about).

It's mindless fun, but fun nonetheless.  Your handgun never runs out of ammunition, and you start each level with your choice of secondary weapon, each one of which is upgradable. You can throw grenades if your enemies get too numerous. You can swing your knife if they get too close. It's a great diversion for anyone who's familiar with the series and doesn't mind reliving it in the most shallow, action-movie manner possible.

Jillís back!

Probably the best reason to buy the game is the multiplayer option.  If there's one thing better than shooting at zombies, it's shooting at zombies alongside your Cheeto-stained friend.  The easy point-and-shoot control style of the Wii remote combined with the simplistic gameplay allows for a co-op that is neither contrived nor unbalanced, making this a great game to play with the friend who gets tired of always losing to you in Smash Bros.

In the end, Umbrella Chronicles rates a recommendation. Though maybe a little less interesting than the full games it represents, it brings an element to the table that is nice to have around when you either have company or simply don't feel like thinking too much. So board up your windows, keep those games spinning, and have a happy apocalypse.

Our Score: 7 of 10

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