Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles (Wii) Review

By Stuart Lawrence 29.05.2011 7

Review for Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles on Wii

One of Capcom’s best franchises is the Resident Evil series. Starting off as a fixed camera horror game, it has seen many sequels and spinoffs, including Wii’s Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles, an arcade shooter-styled recap of Chris Redfield and Jill Valentine’s adventures during and after the first three mainline games. In shooter sequel Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles, players join Leon Kennedy, Claire Redfield and a host of other characters through the rest of the story - some portions of which were previously left untold.

Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles starts off amidst events before the fourth instalment in the series, with Leon Kennedy and Jack Krauser working together in search of a missing woman in South America. On their way through a beautiful sunny town, something doesn’t seem right...and then they are attacked by what seems like zombies. All this takes place in the form of an arcade shooter, where you can choose your character and follow the story as it unravels from their perspective.

As you progress through the levels you’ll come across many weapons, upgrades and icons that give you more information about characters and the story background - great for Resident Evil fans who want to know everything there is to know about the tale, but not necessarily worth chasing down if you are not overly interested in the series’ plotlines. The story mode is quite lengthy for an on-rails game, clocking in somewhere between 7 and 10 hours.

The Darkside Chronicles isn’t much different to The Umbrella Chronicles. Generally the Wii Remote and Nunchuk combination is the best way to play, although the game doesn’t usually make use of the Z button. Enemies are easy to mow down, but sometimes there are scenes where damage is unavoidable; these moments tend to come around in boss fights but can occur with your average enemy, which can get extremely annoying since herbs - plants that recover your health - are sparse and best preserved for harder moments in the game. Luckily, each character also holds a health spray that fully recovers their health when ‘killed’, acting like a second life so that you don’t have to restart a scene. It’s vital to retain these for as long as possible if you want to get through the levels alive, however, as you are only afforded one of these per level...

Screenshot for Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles on Wii

As you would expect with an on-rails game, Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles looks great, the character models of your partner especially standing out since, except on boss fights, you’ll see them in front of you most of the time. The partners also affect the gameplay, occasionally popping a few zombie heads off getting damaged themselves. Should you not have a friend to aid you and would prefer some additional firepower, you can replace your AI partner by bringing in an extra Wii Remote as a second gun. This is particularly effective against bosses - some are almost impossible to beat without them. Quick-time events, where a button must be pressed or the Wii Remote waggled according to an on-screen command, have been made easier, with more time allowed for input before the enemy’s blow actually hits, but it’s mystifying why certain attacks are not attached to them.

The sound effects are good, but they are often re-used, with some enemies not even having different voices to one another, and music doesn’t play a lot aside in a few boss battles - and it is hardly memorable when it does. Despite this, and the overall atmosphere not feeling as confined or intense as it was in The Umbrella Chronicles, The Darkside Chronicles does still give off a Resident Evil vibe, even moreso than its predecessor in parts.

Screenshot for Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles on Wii

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

The Darkside Chronicles is a good game, albeit a difficult one that has a few moments of madness. The story intrigues, offering untold back story for fans but also providing an easy route for non-fans to get up to speed on the tale without playing any of the main games, and the gameplay holds up most of the time.

Developer

Feel Plus

Publisher

Capcom

Genre

First Person Shooter

Players

2

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  4/10 (5 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

Our member of the week

I found it really hard when compared to Umbrella Chronicles. I managed to get a S rank on every chapter in UC but didn't even bother trying with this one (though I might go back to it someday).

I liked it, but not as much as UC, despite being a much better looking game.

Cubed3 Limited Staff :: Review and Feature Writer

I only just realised C3 doesn't have a review for that.

But yes, I agree, UC was a better game and this was really difficult in comparison, but less enjoyable.

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Can't remember too much of these games now, but I played through them both last year with a mate. The co-op makes it ten times more fun. Especially when you're both Resident Evil fans. My only wish was that they included more new chapters, rather than just the retellings of the RE history. Was hoping for a third game but if I remember rightly, they didn't do too well at retail, so probably not gonna happen any time soon. But certainly a good series to use for the lightgun genre. An HD third game would be great.

Our member of the week

Umbrella Chronicles went over 1 million units sold worldwide if memory serves right, but the second one didn't sell too well indeed.

Cubed3 Limited Staff :: Review and Feature Writer

Am I the only one who liked this more than UC? I liked the fact that it was much harder and provided more of a challenge than the first game. (Even on easy)

Mush123 said:
Am I the only one who liked this more than UC? I liked the fact that it was much harder and provided more of a challenge than the first game. (Even on easy)

Nope, because I'm a Leon fan, I preferred Darkside Smilie

Count me in on that as well - much preferred this to UC.

Darkside didn't do too badly compared to UC in terms of sales, but sadly it didn't receive the same level of support from Capcom Smilie

Adam Riley [ Director :: Cubed3 ]

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