Last year's Dead Rising 2 featured a brand-new character, Chuck Greene, instead of the original star of the series, Frank West. While the sequel did a lot to expand the series as a whole a lot of the fans wanted to see Frank back in action. Capcom's listened and is bringing fans Dead Rising 2: Off the Record, a "reimagining" of sorts of the sequel. We got a chance to try out a quick demo of the game at E3 2011 to see what differences this new spin on the sequel holds.
Following the events of the original game, war photographer Frank West fell on hard times and ended up as a reality TV show contestant on Terror Is Reality (the zombie-killing game show featured in Dead Rising 2). As anyone who played the sequel already knows the zombies weren't kept just in that area and now it's Frank West's turn to follow Chuck Greene's footsteps and solve the mystery behind Fortune City's zombie outbreak.
While Off the Record generally follows the same series of events that occurred in the original Dead Rising 2, there is a plethora of new material available in this reimagining. One of the biggest changes is the new Uranus Zone, an amusement park that's almost as large as one of Dead Rising 2's casinos and has a big futuristic vibe to it. In addition to taking pictures to snag PP, one of the biggest hooks of the series, Dead Rising's signature trademark ability to combine and utilize the items available at your disposal, is here again and is even zanier than ever.
In our short time with the demo (which was about 10 minutes long), we got to combine a plethora of items. Adding a toy pony head to a pair of firecrackers created the Pegasus, which looked amazing when it impaled an enemy zombie. Adding saw blades to a tennis ball launcher created a weapon which ejected saw blades that sliced through enemies. One of the best combinations, however, was combining an alien-like mask with a pair of batteries to create a mask which let Frank West emit laser beams from his eyes very similarly to the Menchi Beam attack found in Atlus's Kenka Bancho: Badass Rumble. Of course, Off the Record allows players to use items on their own, as we did when we rode around in a ice cream truck running down zombies or slicing them up using a katana. Players could easily spend hours just having fun finding new combinations or simply slicing up zombies and it's really one of the series's key strengths.
All in all, Off the Record is more of the same that everyone has come to know from the series. It doesn't do much new but what's here is exceptionally fined tuned. We're looking forward to the game's release this Fall on PS3, Xbox 360 and PC.