Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles

Darkside revisits areas from Code Veronica Resident Evil 2 and also features a new side story involving Leon Kennedy and RE4 baddie Jack Krauser

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
Capcom Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles
  • Capcom Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles
  • Capcom Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles
  • Capcom Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles
  • Expert Rating

    3.00 / 5

Pros

  • Gorgeous cut scenes, great attention to detail, nice sense of fan service for franchise diehards

Cons

  • Weapon selection is minimal, the camera is your worst enemy, boss fights are far too repetitive

Bottom Line

If you absolutely loved Umbrella Chronicles and know the Resident Evil series by heart, you might extract enough fun out of Darkside to make it worth your while. but otherwise, you can safely pass this one by.

Would you buy this?

The Darkside Chronicles had me excited since its original announcement, but little did I know that it would ultimately be like playing the video game equivalent of The Blair Witch Project: it's a game with a low-budget home movie feel that it can't quite shake. Like its sibling The Umbrella Chronicles, Darkside is a rail-shooter re-living Resident Evil stories of the past and places more emphasis on shooting than thinking.

It Smells Like a Battlefield

Darkside revisits areas from Code Veronica Resident Evil 2 and also features a new side story involving Leon Kennedy and RE4 baddie Jack Krauser. The three storylines are interconnected beautifully, with the action moving smoothly from Leon and Krauser's missions in South America to Raccoon City and the events of Resident Evil 2, then back to the Code Veronica tie-in with Chris and Claire Redfield. But as much as I enjoyed revisiting tales of Resident Evil's past, no amount of nostalgia can make up for the sketchy mechanics that underlie Darkside's core gameplay.

A handful of issues drag this "could have been a contender" game down from its potential heights. The camera constantly works against you at every turn, making it difficult to rain down bullets on enemies with any sort of effectiveness. Every boss encounter also devolves into a frustrating treadmill where you shoot the hell out of the bad guy until his life bar is exhausted only to see him disappear and return with full health. To top off the downward spiral, there's a surprisingly low volume of enemies thrown in your path, which makes for less than a challenge, not to mention that the weapon selection definitely leaves something to be desired.

Did We Kill It?

Darkside's saving grace is its beautiful presentation. Although you circle the same handful of areas throughout the chapters, the attention to detail present in each set piece prevents it from becoming too big of an issue. The cut scenes also shine with memorable machinima moments such as a scene when Leon and Krauser find Manuela, a Veronica Virus infected young woman, singing to a mutated creature in an abandoned church.

The pure campiness of the game's dialogue also holds some entertainment value: Resident Evil has always suffered from b-movie horror film schlock and fans of the franchise will appreciate just how much of the game's story has turned into an insider joke. I should also note that the game performs much better when experienced with a partner -- fighting zombies is always best as a group activity -- but even these highlights can't fully compensate for what is an overall poor effort. Issues like a wonky camera and cheap bosses are momentum killers, turning what could have been an enjoyable romp through Resident Evil history into a lackluster spinoff.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Read more on these topics: games
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?