Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City is perfect case study material. It should be showcased to any budding video game developer so they know how not to make a video game unless of course their aim all along is to waste money making a terribly boring, frustrating, buggy and jumbled mess.
Billed as an action game set in the Resident Evil universe, Operation Raccoon City attempts to take players back to where it all began, Raccoon City. Unlike previous games where you stepped into the boots of the good guys, Operation Raccoon City paints a parallel picture you’ll experience from Umbrella Corporation’s nefarious clean-up crew. It’s a cool idea no doubt and fans of the series will appreciate the subtle throwbacks to older games.
Screw you guys, I'm going home
The game strives to be a conventional third-person, cover based shooter and that’s totally fine by us but the cover system is all over the place. To take cover, you have to simply push your character up against any surface and he/she should technically take cover. That rarely works. What’s worse is that every time you bump against any object in the environment, you’ll find your character taking cover even though you just wanted him/her to move on. Weapons have an excessive amount of recoil and since there is no way to customize them, you’re left with shoddy gunplay throughout the game. This is also the first game where characters, be they humans or zombies do not die with multiple shots to the head. Now that’s hardcore.
Throughout the campaign, you can choose to play as one of four characters each of which specialize in certain abilities so someone can turn invisible or double up as a healer. As you slay foes, you’ll amass experience points that can be used to activate and upgrade active as well as passive abilities. This is a decent mechanic made redundant by the fact that most squad members had useless abilities.
You’ll spend your time in Raccoon City mowing down hordes of mindless enemies that attack in predictable and often cheap patterns. Still I’d go as far as saying that killing the undead is kind of fun. There’s also a neat mechanic in there that sees players turn into the undead once infected. This does seem like a good idea on paper that never got fully fleshed out (pun intended) since you lose all control of your character once converted. You then have to get snuffed out by your squad after which you respawn with a fully loaded load-out. Not a bad reward for nearly wiping out your team costing them the entire mission.
Things also take a frustrating turn when mini bosses or bosses are added into the mix. Not only do they absorb bullets like sponges but once they start their attack pattern, there’s no escaping it. The game doesn’t even have a roll or evade button so if you get knocked down by a boss, he’ll keep spamming you with attacks till you die since you can’t get up fast enough or roll out of the way. Not fun!