Jill Valentine in a catsuit in HD. Need I say more?
Most of you probably bought or played Resident Evil: Revelations when it came out on 3DS a little more than a year ago. I loved it back then and I continue to love it today—it comes out far ahead on my 3DS’ playtime counter (somewhere above 82 hours). When an HD release on consoles was announced, I wasn’t surprised and was even a little excited. Playing Revelations on the big screen would certainly be worthwhile, and staring at Jill Valentine in her HD catsuit is right up my alley. But this is more than just a cash-grabby, glorified port (although it’s that, too): Capcom appears to be throwing a little more effort into this rerelease, and the Wii U version looks to be the best one.
For starters, Revelations HD (as I’m calling it) has two characters in Raid Mode: series veteran H.U.N.K. and pre-mutation Rachel, the amply-proportioned blonde who, after succumbing to the T-Abyss virus, stalked Jill throughout the game. You’ll also unlock new seafaring-themed costumes for a few of the characters, including a ridiculous sailor costume for Chris. At least one new monster will also appear in the Story Mode and Raid Mode—something called the Wall Blister. From screenshots, it’s easy to tell where you’ll encounter the creature.
"Looks like a personal problem!"
Why would the Wii U version be the one to get? Pretty simple, really. For one thing, you can look at a real-time map and switch your weapons on the GamePad. You can also utilize off-TV play. In other words, it’s like playing the game on your 3DS (without the 3D). If and when you die in the game, you’ll be given the option to leave a message for other players who die in the same spot, and those messages will appear on the “You are dead” screen—a bit like NSMBU, I suppose. Also, for humorous effect, you can assign speech bubbles to enemies in the game.
So despite the fact that we all just finished this game a year ago, it may well be worthwhile to pick it up again, although the loss of the 3D effect is noteworthy; I thought it really added to the game on 3DS, especially when cranked up to its highest, eye-damaging setting. We could spend all day debating the merits of the game’s new characters (spoiler: they’re all stupid) but, overall, Revelations is one of my favorite entries in the series, and I’m happy to see more people get a chance to play it. And yes, I’ll be double-dipping to see Jill in her catsuit in HD.
Just for fun, I also downloaded and played the Resident Evil: Revelations demo on Wii U last night and I’m here to report back. Here’s the short version: it’s almost exactly the same as the 3DS game, which is both good and bad. Want the long version? Keep reading.
Hilariously, the demo can only be played 30 times, just like the 3DS demo from back in February 2012. The demo gives you many options to tinker with like brightness, sound volumes, aiming reticule color, and whether to display various overlays like the map. You can also display the game on the TV or the GamePad. I played it once on both for the sake of comparison. The demo encompasses Jill & Parker’s second mission on the Queen Zenobia cruise ship. It’s the mission right before the 3DS demo mission, actually.
I didn't experience this in the Wii U demo, probably because I didn't die (I'm just that good).
The control scheme is largely the same. You still move with the left stick, but you can now control the camera with the right stick. Press X to use an Herb and B + down to quickturn. Aim your gun with ZL (you can move while aiming), fire with ZR, or throw a grenade with R. Hold down the L button to bring up your Genesis Device (“Item Seeker”) and then hold ZL to scan things. If you have multiple guns, you can switch between them with the D-pad or by tapping the GamePad screen.
The game runs smoothly and I had no trouble adjusting to the controls. My one complaint is that the camera can tilt up or down unintentionally when you go into or out of aiming mode. You’ll shoot a lot of Ooze enemies, find a key, and quickly arrive at the end of the demo mission. It’s enjoyable, but a bit familiar for those who have played the 3DS game in that nothing has changed. Even the graphics haven’t “improved” so much as “are on a larger screen” and so are clearer. But it’s pretty clear that these are 3DS character models with 3DS costume textures. I mean, the graphics are good enough that I wasn’t bothered, but it means nothing was really improved. In fact, when I played the demo on the GamePad alone, it was difficult to tell the difference between the Wii U and 3DS versions.
I’m excited to see the new content and Wii U-specific features of the full game, but you can experience this demo without ever downloading it—just pop in your copy of the 3DS game!