E3 2011 Impressions: Dead Rising 2: Off The Record (Xbox 360, Sony PS3)

Dead Rising 2: Off the Record is an interesting idea. For whatever reason Capcom is going back to the Dead Rising 2 game, only with an alternate reality storyline where Frank West is involved instead of Chuck Greene. This means things play out differently than the original events of Dead Rising 2. As a fan of Frank West, it’s an interesting idea at least, although I wondered how this would work. Capcom had a demo at E3 that had essentially a playable area mode where you could kill zombies in this odd carnival themed area with a time limit.

The game started you at level 20, so you get a pretty good impression of what Frank’s abilities will be. So get ready to suplex, clothesline and drop an axe handle on some zombies. The abilities are easier to pull off than some of the convoluted button presses of the first Dead Rising game, and you can move while shooting like Chuck Greene, Otherwise, if you are familiar with Frank West, it will be deja vu.

Strangely enough, Chuck’s ability to duct tape things together is a skill Frank now has as well, and the demonstration already showed off at least one more new weapon to create. Presumably there will be more. The photography is back as well. The dark sense of humor that has been a part of the series is also showcased. There are different carnival skill game tables, and you can pick up stuff like the ping pong ball shooter and shoot at different cardboard cut outs for additional PP.

Altogether the E3 demonstration gave off a good idea of what to expect from Off The Record… essentially, it’s just more Dead Rising 2. For someone who is a fan of the series, like myself, that’s good enough to put me on the hook for whatever Capcom eventually sells the game for. Still, after spending a lot of time playing the previous titles, it feels almost a little too familiar. I hope that there are more surprises in store in the final release.

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