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Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this first-person shooter is quite gory and bloody. Gamers can use an assortment of deadly weapons -- from pistols and machine guns to melee attacks using knives -- to kill human-like characters infected by a "mutagenic" virus (as well as animals, such as infected dogs, and monsters). It's possible to dismember limbs and decapitate heads, resulting in copious amounts of blood. Corpses can be seen on the ground, sometimes seeping entrails. Profanity can also be heard throughout the game.
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What's it about?
Halloween has come and gone, but Capcom has delivered a frightful new sequel to its beloved zombie series. Available exclusively on the Nintendo Wii, RESIDENT EVIL: THE DARKSIDE CHRONICLES is an atmospheric first-person adventure that lets armed players take on hoards of the undead. Those familiar with the series will recognize story-lines and locations from past games, such as Resident Evil 2 and Resident Evil: Code Veronica, as well as recognizable characters including Leon S. Kennedy, Claire and Chris Redfield, Jack Krauser, and Steve Burnside. This game is heavily focused on co-op player, as you can work together with someone beside you to make it through this deadly adventure unscathed.
Is it any good?
Yes and no. As with the million unit-selling Resident Evil: TheUmbrella Chronicles, this arcade shooter is on "rails" -- therefore the player only controls the gun and not the player movement or camera --which might disappoint those who prefer more freedom to roam around a creepy world. Speaking of the "camera," the game makers opted for a"shaky cam," popularized in some scary movies for realistic effect, but it makes it harder to aim and shoot enemies. That said, this arcade shooter does improve on its predecessor in its enjoyable co-op mode, improved graphics (that push the Wii hardware), weapon configuration, new evade moves, variable difficulty levels, and collectible items. Not one of the best games of the season, but it might make for a frightfully fun weekend rental for mature Wii owners.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the appeal of zombies in today's pop culture.What is it about movies, games, and books featuring the undead thatappeals to such a mass audience?
Families can also discuss why going up against undead enemies might be less off-putting than attacking live humans. Is it the sheer silliness of the ideaof infected dead coming back to life a way to rationalize thethrill of virtual killing? Is it somehow more acceptable to kill these human-like opponents because they are trying to infect or eat you?
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