Capcom's latest entry in the series doesn't disappoint.
It's the holidays, which means it's a good time for…zombies? Although Dead Rising 3 may have missed its ideal release window with Halloween a couple of months back, there's no question that its bloody impact remains intact, and it's still a delightful treat for those grabbing an Xbox One this holiday season.
The game focuses on a new protagonist named Nick Ramos, who's doing whatever it takes to survive a zombie apocalypse in a Los Angeles-style city, whether it's running around on foot or getting in a car and mowing the undead down like grass. Along the way, he'll deal with a few survivors, as well as street gang members who don't take lightly to the human race, and other problems.
Dead Rising 3 isn't a game that's going to be remembered for its story. Instead, it thrives on chaos, and it's these moments that really elevate it to another level. The sheer amount of weaponry you can get your hands on is staggering, from simple road cones to more complex firepower. In addition, you can track down blueprints and create some truly awesome weaponry, including a cement saw that makes a heck of a projectile.
The creation process even expands to vehicles, and you haven't lived until you've hopped into a combination Harley Davidson/steamroller special, running down zombies with all the unstoppable goodness of a Terminator. This brings the zombie kill count into the hundreds, which is sensational.
There are moments where the game bogs down, like having to track down objectives that are buried deep inside a building, or protecting survivors who have no clue how to take care of themselves. Thankfully, you've got more time to do it, as the clock doesn't work so effectively against you in this game – unless you're playing the highly-touted Nightmare Mode, that is. It lives up (down?) to its name.
Also, what's the point of Kinect support? Using voice commands seems like a novel idea, but it gets tiring over time. Just stick with general gameplay instead, you'll be better off.
The visuals in Dead Rising 3 probably won't win any technical awards, but they live up to the nature of the game's bloody hijinks. The zombie count is ridiculously high, and the blood effects are very well done. However, there are glitches here and there, and the frame rate does dip down into the teens if too much is happening at once. Still, this is a welcome presentation piece for the Xbox One once all cylinders are firing.
Dead Rising's audio isn't nearly as good, consisting of mostly cheesy rock music and voicework that you'd find in a typical horror film. Maybe Capcom wanted it that way, though, so we'll forgive it to a certain degree.
This sequel does provide plenty of replay value, with no shortage of zombies to kill and a number of outfits and tools to unlock, including a Mega Man X special that we can't get enough of. It really goes a long way into making the carnage last longer.
Although Dead Rising 3 has its hang-ups that keep it from being the top of the Xbox One class, it's still enough of a zombie-slashing good time to be recommended. Besides, there's something about slaying the undead to Christmas tunes that can't be beat. "Jingle Bells! *WHACK*"
RATING: 8 (out of 10)
(Review copy provided by Microsoft.)
Score: 8 / 10