Resistance 3 PS3 Review

September 16, 2011 by  
Filed under PlayStation 3, Features, Reviews

Publisher – Sony Computer Entertainment Europe – Developer – Insomniac Games – Genre –  FPS– Players – 1-16 – Age Rating – 18+ – Other console/handheld formats – N/A

With Nathan Hale dead after he lost his mind to the Chimera, his killer Joseph Capelli has taken the mantle of Resistance 3 protagonist, and with him has come a welcome shift in tone and it turns out that it’s good riddance, Hale.

Joe is a much more likable character than Hale ever was, and the fact that he’s fully human and has a wife and son that he just wants to give a better life means that he’s much easier to get behind. The story picks up four years after the conclusion of Resistance 2, humanity is near extinction and Joe has been vilified and discharged from the army for killing the hero Hale, and the new protagonist is doing his best to live in peace with his family and other survivors. This inevitably doesn’t last, though, and events send Joe on a journey to New York to try and stop the Chimera threat.

Visually, it’s by far the best the series has ever looked and even echoes Guerrilla games on occasion. Set pieces are granted bigger dramatic impact than they otherwise would have, with some stunning visual effects that sees wood realistically splintering, trees waving in the wind and plenty of lovely explosions and smoke.

Unfortunately the quality of the campaign can be a bit hit and miss. It’s certainly not lacking in memorable moments, but there are undoubtedly sections that are much better than others. It doesn’t have many surprises along the way, and there’s the usual blow things up, kill enemies and protect objectives that are commonplace in the genre. Though it does take some unexpected turns for the series on occasion – the halfway point, for instance, sees the introduction of human enemies.

There’s a fair degree of variety to the campaign, with plenty of diverse locales to pass through on your arduous journey to the Big Apple. There’s a healthy mixture of enemies introduced throughout that keep you on your toes too, calling for change to your tactics.

As far as their AI goes, they never really display much intelligence, though can occasionally catch you out with some sneaky flanking manovoures, but they often behave predictably and their most successful method of victory is the sheer number of them that you have to contend with.

Resistance 3 forgoes the modern day mechanic of recharging health and revives the health pack mechanic. Thankfully medikits are liberally scattered around, preventing frustration for those that are used to ducking around corners to magically heal themselves. A further nod to the past is the fact that you’re able to carry around an entire armoury’s worth of weaponry, just like how it used to be.

The trademark Insomniac outlandish weapons have returned. Favourites like the Auger (which can shoot through walls and other objects) and the Bullseye (which allows you to tag enemies to give your gunfire the ability to home in on your enemies) are back amongst others. New weapons include the Cyrogun, which allows you to freeze enemies, the Mutator, of which sees the enemies mutating and eventually exploding, and finally the Atomizer will not even leave bodies, instead completely erasing them from existence.

In a welcome touch, weapons will level up through use and, in the process, will gain two further abilities each – the shotgun, for instance, will begin shooting incidentry rounds and the Bullseye allows you to tag multiple enemies.

The multiplayer, whilst certainly enjoyable and as fully featured as you’d expect, is very well made, though it doesn’t really have anything to call its own. The modes on offer are death matches (with solo and team variations) capture the flag, chain reaction and breach, all of which are familiar and hardly likely to impress those that are seeking a fresh multiplayer experience.

As has become common these days, XP is rewarded for every kill and objective completed and will result in eventual level ups, often rewarding you even if you happen to be at the bottom of the scoreboard and making you feel a little less useless in the process, as well as giving you a sense of progression. There are also over 50 medals to earn, and from level 5 you’ll gain the ability to craft a custom class.

The maps are largely reworked versions of areas from the campaign, though Wales, Australia, Columbia and Chad make an appearance. They’re all fairly efficient, offering multiple tactical opportunities and scope for plenty of memorable moments.

There is also co-op, that, unlike Resistance 2, isn’t a separate component of the game, but is exactly the same as the single player portion, and always welcome is the presence of split-screen (just because online exists, Mr developer, doesn’t mean we no longer want to play locally) though the online co-op is strangely only able to be played with people on your friends list, which is likely to come as a disappointment to some.

The campaign of Resistance 3 has its share of highs and lows, though its new, more sombre tone is welcome, whilst the multiplayer doesn’t have an identity of its own. Both components, whilst not quite amongst the best of a crowded genre, are still highly efficient nonetheless, and in the end it’s a mighty fine offering for Insomniac’s apparent final Resistance game.