by Kiran Sury
reviewed on PS3
Can You Resist Resistance?
As the final game in an apparent trilogy, Resistance 3 has to live up to high expectations. Fans of the series expect an intense campaign followed by equally epic multiplayer, all wrapped around a crazy weapon system reminiscent of Insomniac’s other series, Ratchet and Clank. Having beaten the game and enjoyed the multiplayer, let me lay those fears to rest. Though not the pièce de résistance of the series I had been hoping for, it is a fantastic play that will appeal to returning gamers and fans of the FPS genre alike.
What the... Wolverine?
Resistance 3 picks up where Resistance 2 left off (spoiler alert for those who haven’t played through the series). After shooting protagonist Nathan Hale in the head (and stopping him from turning into a Chimeran monster), Joseph Capelli is dishonorably discharged and joins a commune in Oklahoma. He starts a family, has a wife and kid, and predictably has to leave it all behind to save the human race. Dr. Malinov, the Chimeran research scientist from the second game comes to take him to NYC and finish the fight once and for all.
I initially hated the idea of killing off Hale and replacing him with Capelli. Capelli was a rude, bald meathead with a big gun for most of R2, and he didn’t strike me as a worthy successor to the Hale legacy. Fear not, for Insomniac used Capelli’s time with the commune to make him a completely different person. For one thing, he looks like Hugh Jackman (Yay! -Ed). For another, his voice actor puts enough gravitas into the role to make him a compelling human being. Capelli’s story is a bit too cliché for my taste, with the storyline wrapping up a bit too nicely at the end, but at least it grounds the story in familiar territory. Resistance 2 started to go off the deep end a bit in that respect. That being said, Resistance 2’s story was also more interesting because of the more ingrained sci-fi aspects. Resistance 3 leaves many questions unanswered, and almost feels like it need not be a Resistance game at all.
Back to Basics
Insomniac messed up with Resistance 2’s campaign. In an effort to copy other recent shooters, it added a rechargeable health system and limited you to carrying two weapons at once. This limited you choice and made the game gimmicky, if anything. See a sniper rifle in your path? Better pick it up or you’ll be shot down from afar before you know it. Rocket Launcher? Boss fight coming up! It made the game too predictable. Resistance 3 remedies many of the mistakes of the second game. The weapon wheel is back with new and improved weapons that are a blast to use (no pun intended). Series favorites like the Bullseye and Auger return, accompanied by new stars like the Cryogun and the Mutator. All weapons can be upgraded twice through use, and offer new functions that keep them fresh. The weapons feel real (Used many of these Mutators, have you? -Ed), work well, and most importantly, give you choice. One boss fight strongly suggests you should run from sniper point to sniper point in an arena. I had saved up my Auger ammunition, so I sat back in the safety of an underground bunker and shot away. Resistance 3 lets you play the game the way you want to for the eight or so hours it lasts, and for that it should be applauded.
Even though the game is so much improved, it lacks something present in Resistance 1. It’s hard to put into words, but R1 felt thrilling. R3 is more than competent and enjoyable, is well-paced with great set pieces, but doesn’t capture the feeling R1 had of really being on the losing side of a fight to save your species. (The ending sequence was magnificent, but only lasted for about five minutes). I just didn’t feel like I was resisting anything.
Expertly crafted campaign that, if not jaw dropping, is quite fun. Unique weapons add to the experience. Solid multiplayer guarantees replay value.
Core ‘Resisting’ theme seems lost, eight player co-op mode lost, Online Pass required.