Home > Chronological Challenge > Chronological Challenge – Resident Evil 2

Chronological Challenge – Resident Evil 2

January 11, 2016 Leave a comment Go to comments

Hello! Welcome to 2016! It’s been a while, but I’d taken some time off over Christmas and New Year, and my absence last week was due to working on more of these reviews as well as upcoming videos for the BTPF YouTube channel. But I’m back! And good news! There will be reviews every day from now on. I’m aware I said that before and then forgot, but my plan will be to get a bunch of stuff posted up in advance and scheduled so I don’t have to worry about it.

So yes, we’re back with the challenge, and I got through a whole bunch of stuff over the holidays so there’s plenty to talk about. We’re on 1998, which is exciting! Let’s start with something good, shall we?

Resident Evil 2
Publisher: Capcom | Developer: Capcom | Year: 1998
Original System: PlayStation
Played on: PS2 (original PS1 disc)

Goal: Escape Raccoon City as either Leon or Claire

Actual Outcome: Escaped as Claire!

As you know, I managed to successfully beat Resident Evil for the very first time back when I was playing through the games of 1996. I finally forced my way past the second encounter with giant snake, Yawn, after years of trying, before pushing my way to the end of the game. It made me very happy, since it’s something that had been bothering me for the longest time.

Resident Evil 2 occupies a similar space to its predecessor. Every time I’d attempted this game before now, I’d get to the battle on the lift into the lab and consistently die there. And then playing this again for the challenge I discovered that the area is bigger than I first thought, and I was able to move around a lot more and ultimately defeat my adversary. And then I finally managed to beat the game. Admittedly, still only with one character thus far, but that’s better than before.

This similarity in my struggles to beat both games is reflected pretty nicely in how similar the games are overall. Resident Evil 2 can be described as more of the same, albeit with a little refinement. Lots of little changes have been made without changing the formula too much, and they make it a more enjoyable experience for the most part. The menu feels somewhat easier to navigate (very good in a game that has a lot of inventory management) and character movement feels a lot less sluggish. Everything just feels a little more polished.

Otherwise, this is the same Resident Evil. You explore an area, advance through picking up keys and puzzle items, you dodge zombies and other hideous monstrosities, and manage your resources so you don’t find yourself lacking when you’re forced into an encounter. This is no bad thing, because I loved the original game. It tested my brain in both puzzles and navigation, while maintaining a foreboding atmosphere that kept me wanting to explore further.

The biggest change in Resident Evil 2 is the frequency of monster encounters. There’s a sense that Shinji Mikami wanted to ramp up the action for the sequel, and so encounters are a lot more frequent, and more often than not, a lot more frustrating as a result. Because so little has changed, this means ammo is just as scarce as before, but the increase in action means that you feel a little too stuck for ammo and healing items most of the time, and this can threaten to damage the overall enjoyment. It can become frustrating trying to avoid zombies when a hallway practically has a conga line of them waiting to gnaw on you.

This extends to the kinds of threats you encounter. Zombies are a great early game enemy as they’re slow and weak, and this allows you to get used to the mechanics and the environment a little better while still maintaining some sense of a threat. In the first game, Hunters turned up when you returned to the mansion after a brief excursion elsewhere, so by that point you were familiar with the game and more comfortable trying to tackle these tougher enemies. RE2’s equivalents, the Lickers, are introduced almost immediately and turn up in some really awkward places far too often. I don’t really want to have to solve a complex puzzles involving a lighter and card suits while a Licker slashes at my ankles every second, thanks.

That said, I loved Resident Evil 2 just as much as I loved the first. It’s still a bit clunky and awkward by modern standards, but there’s a damn fine game here still.

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  1. p2d2
    January 12, 2016 at 8:11 pm

    If you have a chance and want to REALLY challenge yourself, play the battle mode, 4th survivor or Tofu. I highly recommend it and you’ll certainly go down as a Resident Evil pro, if you do.

    • January 18, 2016 at 4:09 pm

      I do know about the Hunk/Tofu stuff, but right now I’m just focused on clearing out my entire collection of games. One day I may attempt that challenge though, because RE2 is a great game that warrants a few replays.

      • p2d2
        January 19, 2016 at 1:01 am

        Yeah, make a list of the ones you want go back to, when you get through the games.

  2. febriminato
    January 15, 2016 at 10:30 am

    i throw my joystick.. surprised when t-dog break the window…what the hell…
    someday i must play this game again…

    • January 18, 2016 at 4:10 pm

      I’m pretty sure the dog is from the first game, not the second one. But it’s okay, I did the same thing with the T-Rex in the original Tomb Raider :p

      • January 18, 2016 at 9:36 pm

        summary…thats the sensation that i want on next installment…
        how about RE 6 ?

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