REVIEW – Capcom’s new strategy involved grabbing their older titles and giving them a modernization treatment. The first Resident Evil‘s HD facelift made them focus more on this, as the REmake was good. Now, we got the prequel story’s HD update. I think it’s an alright game but nothing out of the box.
We don’t see this game that often: Originally, Capcom developed this for the Nintendo 64. However, the Japanese company struck a multi-game exclusivity deal with Nintendo, which pushed the development over to the GameCube. This is how the first game and Zero saw the light on the ‘Cube – Capcom took these games for the HD treatment.
Resident Evil 0 HD plays a bit differently than REmake. After the first three games in the numbered Resident Evil installments, Zero decided to bin entirely the idea of the trunks that you could put items in. Instead, you could just drop them on the floor (and then see this on the map).
As a tip, when it comes to puzzles, you should try to leave some key items nearby the place where you’d have to use them if you have to find more than one thing. The inventory can now be shared – and you have to do so, as you will only have just 12 spots to maneuver with.
Sharing indeed: you won’t control just one character throughout Zero (alright, 2 had one character per disc with a supporting character that you could control for a brief time, and 3 had mainly Jill with Carlos stepping in for a short segment). Rebecca Chambers is joined by Billy Coen. (Or someone else!)
The paranoid and claustrophobic early moments will be left behind in later hours – but only for those who can stay in.
You can switch between them by pressing Triangle. This will require a different strategic approach for Zero: you can go together with your partner, but then you must watch our for him/her to not get killed by the enemies. Otherwise, you’d have to go back to that typewriter and load that game in. On Hard, you get a total amount of fifteen ink ribbons to save – you better not save every two minutes!
Also, don’t forget that you can change your partner’s AI style by the touchpad so you can be either followed or not. Same for combat: attack or not.
Billy and Rebecca need to be played differently. Billy can push the heavier objects around, and he also has more HP. You should give him the bigger weapons. Rebecca – as a young S.T.A.R.S. nurse – is more of a support character as she can combine healing items like herbs and chemicals. Still, Zero’s star isn’t shining so bright.
Due to the lack of item boxes, running back and forth at several locations will be common unless you know the game inside out. Because of this issue, beginners will get their butts kicked. Boss fights can happen so unexpectedly that if you don’t happen to have enough firepower or ammunition, you will end up seeing that good old You Died screen.
There’s a hole on the top of the train. You get in. How do you get out? Change to the partner. Open door. And so on… In this way, Zero is great. In fact, the graphics also got a decent treatment, although we shouldn’t forget that the base game is fourteen years old, and it can show a little bit. Don’t expect extraordinary graphics. At least, the soundtrack is good, although the save room tune can be a bit annoying after a while.
Only if you like the original trilogy
If you like the first three Resident Evil games, you can easily add ten percent to the review score. For you, this is the most punishing title with the pinnacle of the classic game style. It’s different from them in a way but ends up being similar in another. The paranoid and claustrophobic early moments will be left behind in later hours – but only for those who can stay in.
I think it’s a 7 out of 10. The game’s good but not that great. I didn’t consider the price tag in my rating – if the price drops under 15 dollars/euros, it will be worth for those who played REmake as well. As a bonus, Albert Wesker is a playable character – he replaces Billy. However, you must get through Zero first.
+ We can now play 0 on PlayStation platforms
+ Albert Wesker as an extra character
+ The ambience is still excellent
– Watch out for your partner’s AI!
– It’s not easy to start out with
– Backtracking, backtracking and some more backtracking…
Genre: Survivor horror
Release date: January 19, 2016 (PS4, PS3, also part of Resident Evil Origins Collection)