In addition to the solid Resident Evil 3 remake, Capcom also released a new multiplayer game that is unfortunately unremarkable.
Battle royal games may be all the rage for shooters but a new form of multiplayer for the horror genre is currently finding its own ground. The gameplay for these games typically takes the form of one player controlling an otherwise invincible antagonist while a handful of regular players have to survive or escape them. The style first gained popularity with Friday the 13th: The Game and the formula will also be used in the upcoming Predator: Hunting Grounds. Before that happens, Capcom has taken its own crack at the style with all the strengths and weaknesses that generally come with the territory.
Resident Evil: Resistance seems to take place around the same time as the first 3 games. In it, you can either take the role of a survivor or a mastermind. As a survivor, you play as one of 4 characters who all have their own strengths and weaknesses then you try to escape a series of maps by finding 3 keys before a timer runs out as zombies and other obstacles spawn in your way. You earn additional time by dealing damage to and killing said zombies and lose time when your character receives damage.
On the other end of this is a fifth player who takes the role of a mastermind character and each of them has their own strengths and weaknesses as well. Their goal is to delay the survivor players until the timer runs out by unleashing zombies, traps, and so on. The issues that come with the game is that much like with Friday the 13th: The Game, the amount of fun to be had goes hand-in-hand with knowing the people you're playing with and also, whether or not you take on the mastermind role.
While playing as the survivors, teamwork and communication is incredibly essential. The whole thing can be extremely tense but the fun that you're likely to have depends on the team that you're with. Just about every time I was put into a game, the people I was playing with had bad mics and in some cases, didn't even speak my language. Because of this, in every game that I managed to get into (which is needlessly difficult), all of the players were running around like a bunch of headless chickens as the mastermind picked us off. Your results may vary but playing as a survivor was a profoundly unfun experience for me. Perhaps as more people play Resident Evil: Resistance, it'll get better but for now, I wouldn't play as a survivor unless you have a few friends to team up with.
All of that being said, playing as the mastermind is a completely different experience as you essentially play as a kind of Resident Evil version of Jigsaw from the Saw franchise. Your goal is to keep the survivors from getting all 3 keys then escaping and you watch them through cameras as you send zombies, infected dogs, and other obstacles like bombs and leg traps in their paths. If you want, you can also take control of the zombies and attack survivors and this is where Resident Evil: Resistance gets fun as controlling a zombie and attacking other players is an absolute blast! Watching the survivors struggle as you lay more traps for them and send increasingly powerful zombies after them creates a rush that few other games can provide.
Keep in mind; the whole experience is even tense on the mastermind's end because you're constantly trying to keep the players from obtaining whatever keys they need and it always feels like you're running against the clock which is especially thrilling when you're up against a smart team. It's just a shame that even this mode loses its appeal after about an hour or so.
In the end, Resident Evil: Resistance is a passable yet unremarkable multiplayer game. Playing as a mastermind offers more amusement but being a survivor is too dependent on communication which can be a problem. Even if you're playing under ideal conditions, it sadly loses its appeal very quickly. Specifically, it's not a bad game but it's certainly hard to recommend for long-term play.
- + Mastermind Mode provides some entertainment
- + Zombies are fun to play as
- + Creates a solid sense of tension
- - Overall formula is far too dependent on cooperation between players
- - Gameplay gets old exceptionally fast
- - Not as much fun if you lack online friends