Resident Evil 3 Nemesis

Resident Evil 3 Nemesis is expected to arrive for the PlayStation this November


One of the big mysteries in Capcom's Resident Evil 2 was what happened to the cast from the original title, such as Chris Redfield, Barry Burton, and Jill Valentine. In RE3, you learn the answers. You play Jill, who enters the picture likely around the time the good citizens of Raccoon City start turning into zombies. Yes, that means the game's set before RE2, but it also takes place after it too. Confused? Let's explain.

Having returned from Resident Evil's T-Virus incident at the mansion on the outskirts of town, Jill, Chris, and Barry found that no one on the force believed them. This was partly due to the fact that all the evidence was blown up when the house exploded and partly to the corrupt police chief being on the sinister Umbrella corporation's payroll. Frustrated, Chris set off for the Umbrella HQ in Europe to get to the bottom of the conspiracy. Meanwhile, Jill resigned from the S.T.A.R.S. force and was just about to leave town when G-Virus zombies and the other creatures of RE2 invade.

That's where you come in, but that's just the start. Halfway through the game, Jill is rendered unconscious and, from there, you'll get to play as another character. Enter the tough as nails Brazilian mercenary Carlos Oliveira, who must get a cure and save Jill (let's just say she's "sick") so that she can continue on her quest. Once she regains consciousness, the time frame of the game is set 24 hours after the events in Resident Evil 2. As in RE2, decisions that you make during the earlier parts of the adventure will affect the events down the road. After playing the game a few times on the E3 showroom floor, we noticed a few different things happening at the same spot. This may mean that some of the events in the game are time-based.

Resident Evil 3 Nemesis has ten different types of zombies carried over from Resident Evil and Resident Evil 2. Some have different clothing, and others look a little fleshier, as if they haven't been dead that long. Zombies are also not always wandering around when you come upon them. They may be slumped against a wall and "wake up" when you approach. They don't seem to grab at your feet immediately when they're shot to the ground, but they're currently taking many more bullets than before.

You'll see a lot more of Raccoon City and visit some new areas as well. The first segment of the game takes place in the uptown area of Raccoon City, and Jill explores the streets and alleyways of the city and eventually the very police station where Leon and Claire began their tale of horror. In one part, Jill meets up with S.T.A.R.S. pilot and incidental RE character Brad Vickers who is seen being bitten by a zombie (he appeared as a hidden zombie in RE2, by the way). In the quick conversation that occurs before he flees, he mentions that something is hunting down STARS members. That something is the Nemesis, a seemingly unstoppable juggernaut similar to the Tyrant that plagued Claire in RE2, who is stalking about the city.

Despite being set in a relatively small town, the map is surprisingly mazelike. Sealed barricades will rock from the masses of zombies behind them. Fire escapes, stairs, and twisting pathways give Nemesis a slightly greater feeling of freedom and break up the simple room-to-room progression of RE1 and RE2. You still bear witness to the door-opening simulations during loading times, though, but by the final version they are supposed to move quickly.

The control in RE3 will be extremely familiar to veterans of the series, with very little having changed from Resident Evil 2. Drawing your gun to aim still forces you to hold your position, and while it seems a bit artificial after spending some time with Dino Crisis, there is the addition of autotargeting. This feature changes targets, should you be attacked from an unexpected angle. A Capcom representative says that a dodging feature of some sort will be implemented, although it wasn't present in the version playable on the E3 show floor. Rather than shifting to a floating camera and 3D world, Nemesis opts to stay with a fixed camera and prerendered locations. While the camera may not move and pan dynamically as in Dino Crisis, the cinematic views are intentionally used to limit your view and allows for some really nasty surprises.

Resident Evil 3 Nemesis is expected to arrive for the PlayStation this November.

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