With the lack of support and games the PS Vita has received in the past year, Resident Evil Revelations 2 is one game that will finally be released for the forgotten handheld. Porting the full episodic game that Capcom released several months ago on consoles, many have high hopes for the PS Vita version. Now that the game is finally out digitally in North America, many are wondering if the game runs superbly on the handheld. The short answer is no.
For those who never had a chance to play the game on consoles, Resident Evil Revelations 2 has an episodic set-up similar to the first game where it’s divided into different episodes with a cliff hanger at the end of each them. Following the story of Resident Evil 5, Resident Evil Revelations 2 follows the story of Claire Redfield, Barry Burton, Natalia, and Moire Burton as they figure out a way to escape the Island from the so-called Overseer. Fans who have been following the story of the series will appreciate this game as it offers revelations that can be tied in previous games. When it comes to the quality of the story, it is solid and every fan of the series will appreciate what this handheld title has to offer.
As for its gameplay, it lives up to the survival-horror genre. It’s quite similar to the atmosphere of the first Revelations game – eerie with superb voice acting and a decent soundtrack. At every corner you come across, extreme caution should always be remembered as the game somehow has unexpected enemies that can strike at you. Ammunition is scarce, as well as the heath healing herbs, so it’s important to conserve them and know where to use the ammo for your weapons. Moira can uncover secret items in dark places due to her unique ability, so it’s important to use her once in a while as items covered in darkness might give you things that will come in handy later.
There are a total of four episodes in the game, not including the extra chapters focusing on the partners of Claire and Barry. For fans of the series, the game can be completed in around six to eight hours depending on how much you are willing to explore the game. With the skill system in place and with points that you can earn at every chapter, there’s a high chance that players will play an episode at least twice as the more points that you get, the more skills that are unlocked and be used in the campaign mode. For it’s two extra chapters, it’s not as full length as the main chapters but it’s there to give you a background on Moira and Natalia, which is quite alright if you want to learn more about them.
One of best features of Resident Evil Revelations is the raid mode and in Revelations 2, it makes a return. The addicting co-op raid mode is back, offering players items to unlock and many characters to play. Raid mode is pretty much an online co-op of the game taking both players in maps previously visited in the campaign. Unlike in the campaign where you can only play as Barry and Claire, the raid mode allows you play as past Resident Evil characters like Jill Valentine, Chris Redfield, Albert Wesker, and even Hunk. Playing through each level gives you points that you can use to unlock items and characters. It’s quite fun if you have friends to play with. The best part of the Raid mode in the Vita version is that the online mode is available on day one, unlike the console version received the patch for the online mode weeks after launch.
Okay, so the game is good obviously, but how does it run on the PS Vita? I hate to break it to everyone but the game runs poorly and it’s not what I expected. Those who are expecting the Vita version to run on par with the console version or at least better than the 3DS version of the original Revelations, prepare to be disappointed. The Vita version of Resident Evil Revelations 2 runs horribly as it has frame rate drops, long loading times at the beginning and in-between levels, random pop-in textures, and graphics downgraded by a whole lot. Since the team that ported Revelations 2 had to fit the game on the PS Vita and make sure it runs, a lot of the good qualities in the console version has been removed. A lot of compromises needed to be done to work the game on the Vita and this is something every PS Vita owner should know and expect when they play the game. It runs fine, but fans will not get the best experience on the PS Vita.
One exclusive feature that PS Vita version has is the use of the touch screen. Since the Vita doesn’t have the shoulder buttons, players will be using the touch screen to execute some actions like crouching, throwing bombs, and turning on/off the flashlight. Using the front touch screen works pretty well but it might take some time to get used to for some gamers.
Overall, Resident Evil Revelations 2 on the PS Vita has the same quality of content the console versions have. It features an amazing story that fans will appreciate and gameplay that any survival-horror fan will enjoy. When it comes to really experiencing the game at its peak, the Vita version fails to do that as it runs poorly on the handheld that omits the experience Capcom intended to give to their fans. If you have a console, do yourself a favor and play the game there and not the PS Vita version. If the PS Vita is the only console you have, get it as you probably won’t notice the downgrade the game received from the console to the handheld versions. Resident Evil Revelations 2 is a great game for the PS Vita, but it’s not the best platform to fully enjoy and experience the game.
[Editor’s Note Resident Evil Revelations 2 was reviewed on the PS Vita platform. The game was provided to us by the publisher for review purposes.]Resident Evil Revelations 2 (PS Vita) Review,