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Resistance 3 Review

Posted on the 15 September 2011 by Acdarkknight @thedpadgames

Resistance 3 Review
The Resistance series has been synonymous with the PlayStation 3 brand since the systems launch in 2006. The series brought developer Insomniac games into the light as a legitimate competitor in the home console market and created a game that generated a ton of great press for both Sony and Insomniac.
Resistance introduced us to an alternative history, pre-World War II earth which has been over run by an alien race know as the Chimera. The chimera infect and transformed the local population into their own, making each city they take increase their numbers and add to the mounting threat. The events of Resistance: Fall of Man, saw Nathan Hale survive after being infected by the chimera and causing him to develop super human abilities to fight against the Chimera threat.
After some success in London, the Chimera were only slowed and were able to cross the Atlantic and come to America. Nathan Hale is once again on the forefront of the defensive, now backed by super soldiers powered by "Project Abraham" which took Hale's mutations and augmented the abilities to other American soldiers. These elite groups were known as S.P.E.C.T.E.R. forces and took the Chimera head on. Ultimately, Hale's band of super soldier's were killed off until none but Nathan Hale and Joseph Capelli were left standing. Unfortunately, Hale's body finally gave into the virus and began to change, becoming more chimera then man, and Joseph had to make the choice to spare Nathan's suffering by ending his life.
This is where the events of Resistance 3 pick up. Joseph Capelli has been dishonorably discharged for his actions taken against Nathan Hale and is now living as a refugee in Haven, Oklahoma with his wife and child, serving as a front man for their defense. After a Chimeran attack, his home is destroyed and his family and friends are forced to flee for their lives. A familiar character proposes to Joseph that the Chimera can be stopped by traveling to New York and destroying a massive terraformer that has now appeared through a worm hole in the sky.
Will we finally find out who and what the Chimera are and where they came from? Will we see innovative and inventive weapons and enemy design that Insomniac Games has become famous for? Is this the biggest and most bad ass Resistance in the series? In short: Kind of, Very Much So, and Abso-friggin-lutly. Check out what I really thought and the break down after the jump.
Tech (Graphics, Sound, Physics) – 18/20 – Resistance 3 is an absolute joy to play. The graphics and draw distance are on par with the likes of Killzone 3 and Crysis 2 in my book. The character models for the Chimera and various other life forms in the Resistance universe look not only the best in the series but rest among the best looking games of this console generation. There is a scene in particular that sticks out in my mind where you are on board a train and you look out over the landscape and a stamped of Widow-makers are stampeding across the ruined terraforming landscape, and you cannot help but just stare in awe at the terrifying beauty that is unfolding before you and it's only when they get close that you actually realize that they are not just a background animation but actual enemies that mean you harm.
The sound work in Resistance 3 sticks to the graphical polish that oozes for every corner of the game. When trapped in a building in the middle of hostile territory, you can hear the Chimera's feet above and around you and the call of the Long Legs in the distance letting you know that your presence has not gone unnoticed. Even in the moments where of calm, the haunting piano score playing the in the background keeps you on the edge of your seat and hesitant to go around the next corner in the house for the fear that a Hybrid or Grim is waiting for you. The musical score behind the game is terrific and does a fantastic job of transitioning the hopelessness that often washes over Joseph from time to time as he see his home world being destroyed before his eyes.
Technically, Resistance 3 impresses on all levels but I have always had a beef with the physics in the series. My big issue is with the way you feel when you move through the environment. The camera often feels like Joseph is gliding though the world when he is not in a fire fight sprinting for his life. This can also be seen in the multiplayer character models, almost like their spine is a solid pole not allowing you to really get the feeling that you are a human moving and more like a camera set up in a movie. I'm sure this was meant to keep people playing in 3D from feeling like they were on a ship at sea, but Killzone 3 was able to avoid that and it was disappointing to be taken out of the experience by lowering your weapon to frame a shot.
Another issue was the occasional physic glitch that I encountered. Nothing too insane, but the occasional seizing body or awkward NPC movement would detract from the experience. Regardless of its few flaws, the game fires on all cylinders consistently throughout the experience and felt terrific.
Gameplay (Controls, Functionality, Difficulty) - 18/20 – The control scheme in Resistance 3 took advice form both Battlefield: Bad Company and Killzone 3 making the controls and zooming of the weapons feel more natural than in past Resistance title. The PlayStation Move functionality is also some of the best yet. The sharpshooter feels like an extension of your body after the first scene and Insomniac's inventive weapon design really makes it fun to use the periferal and make you feel like you are wielding these spectacular weapons.
Most of the game play is amazing. During firefights, when you get knocked off of great heights you not only loose life but Joseph's perspective becomes hazy and shocked and you see his hands come down to lift himself up. This really added to the game in a very subtle way to draw the player in and let you know that Joseph is a human, not a super soldier. At times, the scarceness of health packs and ammo really play to the games strengths and builds alot of great moments of intense tension and worry.
The times when the game play lacks the most is when you are relying on an NPC to progress the game. There are two instances that come to mind immediately. In the beginning of the game you have to go through tunnels to observe the Chimera and you are relying on an NPC to open a door. The NPC just kind of shutters, takes his time to open the door and just looked rather sloppy, which took away from the tense moment. The other was during a semi-boss fight where Joseph has to lift logs to allow an NPC to pass through but if you do it too quickly, the NPC just stands there while you go through the impasse and become trapped only to quickly be killed due to a glitch. That moment was extremely disappointing because the scenes leading up to the encounter were so well crafted that the error just really hurt my experience.
Resistance 3 has some of the most punishing and intelligent enemies I have ever encountered in any game. While camped out in a bombed out building, I watched as a squad of Hybrids separated ways leaving two behind cover firing at me to draw my attention while their brethren flanked and quickly dispatched with me. While instances like this are quite impressive the game is actually fairly easy. Even playing on the difficult setting, I was able to breeze through the campaign relatively quickly suffering only a few set back mostly due to being caught off guard. The coop suffers doubly from this because the enemy count doesn't increase but the ammo and heath pack drops double making it even easier to dispatch with the death squads. While not the most challenging game on the planet, the diverse weaponry, environments, and gameplay make single player, coop, and multiplayer a thrill to play and the most satisfying gaming experience I have had ever in a first person shooter.
Story – 17/20 – The story of the Resistance series is a long and impressive one with many questions and lore that many fans hoped that Resistance 3 might solve or give clues too. While you encounter some answers along the way to many of the longtime questions the series offered from finding special journals written by Dr. Malikov throughout the game, the story of Joseph Capelli's journey is a fairly straight forward, albeit amazing one.
Joseph Capelli travels from Haven, Oklahoma to New York City, New York and there is a crap load of Chimera in the way. While there are some interesting stops along the way and a few sub plots to further the narrative, the lack of any character development really makes the side stories lose some of their power. I never felt a real connection with Joseph, and I should have. He is one of the few survivors of the human race living out his days in an underground resistance with his wife and sick child but that connection is quickly lost as you finish the first chapter.
Each subsequent encounter has a similar hollow impact with the characters even though the experiences that you have with the character is amazing. I can recall almost every battle I had along side each NPC because the encounters were brilliantly crafted and amazing to play but I could not tell you the other character's names for the life of me except for Dr. Malikov because we have known him for years by this point. There is one point where I have to give Insomniac credit, I would caution that this next sentence may be a partial spoiler even though it is the main part of one of Resistance 3's launch trailers. The point in New York when he is speaking on the radio, that was a powerful scene and really showed the desperation of a man who loved his family and really believed that not only was he about to die and never see them again, but that the world may be doomed if he failed. I believe that is what Insomniac had in mind for the tone of the game. Had the tone of that one scene carried throughout the entire game, you could just tell Naughty Dog and Bethesda sorry right now because the game of the year fight would have been over in one punch.
The journey and events that you experience as Joseph Capelli is one of the most amazing campaigns I have ever played and is one of my favorite experiences of all time, I just wish I could say the same about his supporting cast.
Lasting Appeal - 20/20 - Insomniac has crafted not only an amazing story with a bevy of hidden tidbits and secrets but included unlockables that can only be accessed by completing the game multiple times to earn points to unlock each video and cheat. Playing the campaign multiple times is no problem at all due to the weapon leveling system and terrific coop integration that makes each play through enjoyable and a little different.
While the campaign may be fantastic and great to replay, the main factor in it's lasting appeal perfect score is the amazing multiplayer component attached to it. Insomniac has made a multiplayer that is able distinguish itself from its contemporaries while implementing improving on many of the first person shooter multiplayer basics. The modes are similar to other games but couple them with the entire arsenal of Insomniac powered weapons and unique leveling system and the Insomniac team has been able to create something very special.
Overall Satisfaction – 20/20 – I loved this game from beginning to end, even several play-throughs and multiplayer sessions later. I hope that this is not the last Resistance game in the series because there are still so many questions left unanswered. If this is Insomniac's last adventure in the world of Resistance, they can go out with their heads held high, Resistance 3 is a proof of concept and one of the best first person shooters I have ever had the pleasure to play and created a Game of the Year contender in my book. If you own a PlayStation 3, go out right now and buy this, you won't regret it.
Score 93/100
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