Resident Evil Revelations 2 review for Xbox One, PS4, PC

Platform: Xbox One
Also On: PS4, PC
Publisher: Capcom
Developer: Capcom
Medium: Digital
Players: 1
Online: Yes

As far as episodic experiments go, I think Capcom has done a really excellent job with their handling of Resident Evil Revelations 2. Releasing weekly episodes, as opposed to monthly or bi-monthly episodes, was an interesting approach, and one that I think worked in their favor here. The story elements and cliffhangers presented at the end of episodes 1 through 3 were strong enough to keep players coming back, in addition to the gameplay elements. But the wait wasn?t so long that it was difficult to keep players interested, or make them feel like they were missing out for too long if they opted to wait for the final product. Resident Evil Revelations 2 has been a pretty good example of how not to alienate your fanbase with episodic releases, and it?s an example I wouldn?t mind seeing followed by other companies going forward.

Of course, it also helps that the game was pretty darn good too. While I still think the first episode is a bit rough around the edges, Revelations 2 quickly found its footing with episode 2, and the quality never really dropped off from there. It?s not as good looking as you might expect a new-gen Resident Evil title to look, and it?s clear the team is working within the confines of a strict budget. But despite some technical and graphical budget constraints, the team responsible for Revelations 2 has delivered the most enjoyable RE experience since RE 5 in my opinion.

resident evil revelations 2-8I?ve already written at length about the first three episodes, so while this is a review for the entire game, I?m mostly focusing on the fourth episode ?Metamorphosis?, and the two bonus episodes ?Little Miss? and ?The Struggle?. The first thing you?ll likely notice when playing through ?Metamorphosis? is how this particular episode is structured differently than the rest. Whereas episodes 1 through 3 have been equal parts Claire and Barry, ?Metamorphosis? is almost entirely Barry?s episode. On one hand this makes sense, considering Barry?s story is set 6 months after Claire?s. But it also leaves the Claire section feeling a bit underwhelming, more so if you happen to skip out on playing through ?The Struggle?.

But outside of that, there?s a lot to love about ?Metamorphosis?. I don?t want to spoil much here, but there?s a sequence during Barry and Natalia?s part of the game that does a pretty solid job of echoing the first Resident Evil, in a way that makes me wish we could get a new, full Resident Evil experience within the classic mansion environment again. I also think that Barry?s portion of the game has a really satisfying conclusion, provided you made the ?good ending? decision from episode 3 necessary to see it. The final boss encounter here is memorable enough to belong in the pantheon of other, significant boss battles found elsewhere in the Resident Evil series. And the environments you?ll explore certainly make up for the drab, lackluster locations found in episode 3.

Resident Evil Revelations 2_3Of the two bonus episodes, I greatly enjoyed one and feel somewhat indifferent about the other. ?The Struggle? is the standout of the two, focusing on Moira and another character briefly introduced in a previous chapter. It?s hard to discuss much about this chapter without spoiling something significant, but I really think it?s worth playing. It adds some good elements to the overall plot of the game, features some unique gameplay mechanics in the form of hunting and using rations as continues, and it features some of the most challenging combat scenarios you?ll find throughout Revelations 2.

?Little Miss? on the other hand, delves into Natalia?s story a bit more. This episode feels largely unnecessary, since ?Metamorphosis? does a pretty good job of filling in the gaps regarding Natalia?s history and how it relates to the overall plot. ?Little Miss? is also strictly a stealth chapter, and considering I didn?t feel like the stealth mechanics were the strongest aspect of Resident Evil Revelations 2, I didn?t really enjoy playing through this bonus episode. It doesn?t help that the episode strips away Natalia?s most useful function, her ability to see enemies through walls and from a distance, in favor of using a Dark Natalia that can move more freely and point at nearby enemies to tag them. The whole episode just felt clunky to me, and was a chore to play through, and it honestly doesn?t leave the best final impression for Revelations 2.

Resident Evil Revelations 2_6I think ?Little Miss? is easily the low point of the entire package, which in comparison to the everything else isn?t that big of a deal. Having full access to the entirety of the excellent Raid Mode is also a huge plus, something that?ll easily keep you coming back for more in the following weeks. There?s also a decent amount of replay value with the main story, with lots of costume and weapon unlocks upon finishing the story for the first time. It?s nice to see this particular Resident Evil tradition carried on here, considering it would have been easy enough for Capcom to pack this content together as DLC instead.

So, ultimately, is the entire package of Resident Evil Revelations 2 worth your time? Absolutely. If you?ve already played the previous chapters, there?s no reason not to check out the fourth and final chapter in the game. And while I?m not big on ?Little Miss?, I think ?The Struggle? is certainly integral to the overall Revelations 2 experience. If you?ve held off on playing Revelations 2 at all until the full release, I think you?ll be pleasantly surprised with how great this particular side-story ended up being. If you?re any kind of Resident Evil fan, I?d highly recommend checking out Revelations 2.

Grade: B+