Very rarely are we given such a treat when it comes to re-visiting games of the past that we hold dear. Resident Evil 2 is certainly one of the very best.
At the start of this generation we were given many HD upscales and remasters of games from last generation. Yet we’ve seen very few of them done well. Notable examples include Shadow of Colossus, Halo Master Chief Collection (particularly at launch), the Crash Bandicoot trilogy and Ratchet and Clank. None have been re-imagined in the vein of the Resident Evil 2 remake. Gameplay has been overhauled, new textures have been created, and the sound direction is all new. There are a few differences from the original, and in my opinion the changes in story and gameplay are for the better, but loyal Resident Evil fans will certainly notice them.
Resident Evil 2 begs to be played multiple times as you haven’t really completed the game until you do. Both Claire and Leon take different paths to reach the end and you receive hints to this when playing through the campaign as each is attempting to do something different to complete their mission. I began in the traditional method with Leon’s campaign initially and then completed Claire’s story in the second playthrough. Depending on which character you choose on your first playthrough, the other character will experience different paths. Presently, I’m working my way through the initial “hardcore” playthrough which unlocks after you complete both Leon and Claire’s campaign(s). Summed up, you need to play through the game in its entirety four times to get the “complete” experience.
On the technical side, Resident Evil 2 is not perfect. But honestly, it’s very close to it. Graphically the title is one of the best games of this generation. There are a couple of characters that could have used a bit more polish, and a few clipping issues, but overall the game is done so well that it’s hard to complain. Headphones are strongly encouraged, but if you have a high-end surround sound setup be sure to tune into how well the effects are implemented as you can hear every detail around you which in-turn, gets your blood pumping even more.
That brings me to the end of my quick review. In short, play this game. Get a feel for what so many people loved back in the original PlayStation era but revolutionized using today’s engine. This is the quintessential remake of the generation, and can’t be missed if you loved the original. For newcomers, the game challenges you in an old school manner that is missed in modern games. Even if you scare easily, enjoy meeting Mr. X with the rest of us.