Resident Evil: Confidential Report File
An explosion at a Raccoon City research facility? Zombies? Sign us up!
I think it's safe to say that Resident Evil has made a rather weak entrance on the European mobile scene. Resident Evil: Assault the Nightmare and Zombie Buster both looked and played terribly, while, on the other hand, US and Asian customers get 3D apps like Resident Evil: The Missions (Koreans are the luckiest- they get an entire port of Resident evil 1 on a Samsung phone released over there.). This latest RE mobile game, called Resident Evil: Confidential Report File, might just change the public opinion here that Resident Evil just can't work out on phones.
Confidential Report File documents the actions of two characters, Tyler Hamilton and Naomi McClain, in a disaster situation at a research facility in Racoon City. Tyler is a rookie cop who has just been given guard duty at the research facility. Just when he's about to leave at the end of his shift, an explosion inside knocked him unconscious. When he wakes up, he finds he's the only survivor... save for a few hundred zombies and other abominations (what did you expect? It's Resident Evil.). Naomi McClain is an FBI agent, who's been investigating the facility, using inside informants. Once she heard about the explosion, she was sent down there to learn the fate of her informants, and also find out why it happened.: Tyler's aim is to simply get the hell out of there alive and get to the police station, while Naomi's is to stay and investigate the cause of the explosion. This obviously means you get to play as both characters.
The graphics used in the game aren't anything special, but do suit the gameplay quite well - sprites are small, avoiding any graininess, like in Final Fight. The smaller sprites seem to allow for more colors, eliminating any monotone feel the game could have had. Different weapons and items are also clearly shown in the character's hands, like rifles and knives, while the zombie and monster sprites are rather impressive for their size. Your surroundings in the game are suitably dank, including things like sewer water moving underneath, rubble, vandalized walls and, er, blood. Animation, on the other hand, really needs some work- it's rushed and of a much lower standard than similar games out already. The game would've been much more attractive if the animation wasn't so shabby. Music in the game is moody and atmosphere-setting in a way that will be eerily familiar to people who've played RE on console. It is, though, a bit disappointing that there are no actual sound effects in the game.
Overall, Resident Evil: Confidential Report fFle succeeds in making itself a game you actually WANT to play, not something you'd try simply because of the RE logo. When not in battle, your character can move freely around the area using the directional buttons, where they can pick up several items including new weapons, health kits, and items. Weapons you can collect range from ordinary glock pistols and knives to shotguns, revolvers and assault rifles, all with varying amounts of range and damage. Health items include the familiar herbs from the console games, as well as usual first aid kits and whatnot. The original RE interface returns, including your heartbeat, health condition and amount of HP, which is a nostalgic plus. Battles in the game are done through a turn based system- in your turn, you can either move; change the direction you're facing, or attack your enemy, given you're in range of course.
Each character's "file" consists of 8 parts, making 16 levels altogether. As you progress through the game, your character will record their feelings, opinions and actions regarding the situation in the "file", so when you finish you'll have 8 entries for each character. What's also quite cool is that each character's path is different, so you're not playing the same game with each character. You'll also interact with several other people in the facility (Tyler thought he was the only survivor - he wasn't), including the other playable character, depending on who you're playing as. Capcom have also announced that the game is the first of a series of "files", which will be released in the coming months.
So, as the first "serious" Resident Evil game on European mobiles, Confidential Report File fares rather well. It's more reminiscent of the original games as it's actually survival horror, unlike the uninspiring whack-a-mole escapades of the previous games on mobile. The fact that it's also one of many has got me hungering for more of this refreshing take on a classic series.
What's Hot: New take on Resident Evil, better than previous games, good longetivity
What's Not: Rubbish animation, not enough sound