Dead Rising 2
|Dead Rising 2|
|Developer(s)||Blue Castle Games|
Dan Brady (co-writer)
|Release date(s)||PlayStation 3 & Xbox 360
|Genre(s)||Survival horror, beat 'em up|
Dead Rising 2 is an open world survival horror beat 'em up video game developed by Canadian company Blue Castle Games and published by Capcom in September 2010 for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and Microsoft Windows video gaming platforms. It is a sequel to Dead Rising, and produced by Keiji Inafune. At the time, Dead Rising 2 became the fastest-selling game on Xbox Live. A sequel, Dead Rising 3, was released in 2013.
The game follows Chuck Greene, a motocross rider, as he tries to survive a zombie outbreak. The game is set in a shopping complex filled with zombies. Players encounter other people, 'survivors', who are often a threat, and can find or craft weapons to help them stay alive.
The player controls protagonist Chuck Greene as he fights off hordes of zombies while accomplishing specific missions. The game includes several new objects that can be used to attack the zombies. Up to 7,000 zombies can be seen onscreen at the same time.
Dead Rising 2 allows players to manufacture their own custom weapons at various points in the game by collecting items and combining them together in maintenance rooms scattered across the game map. The player also has the ability to unlock "combo cards" that reveal weapons that can be combined together. Such combinations include the "Hail Mary", a hand grenade duct taped to a football, "Dynameat", a stick of dynamite duct taped to a piece of meat, the "Paddlesaw", two chainsaws duct taped to a kayak paddle, and "Spiked Bat" which is a baseball bat with nails hammered through the item.
Like the first game, boss fights are represented by 'psychopaths', people who have either been driven insane by the zombie outbreak or are taking advantage of it to fulfill their cruel desires.
During the 2009 Tokyo Game Show, Capcom revealed that the multiplayer of Dead Rising 2 takes the form of the in-game reality TV show "Terror Is Reality" in which players will act as contestants in a fictional gameshow. Four players participate in multiplayer, competing against each other for the most kills inside an arena full of undead. Players can use weapons and vehicles including human-sized hamster balls and chainsaw-equipped motorcycles. They also will be able to prevent other players from scoring by using various forms of "dirty" tactics.
Chuck Greene joins the reality pay-per-view gameshow "Terror is Reality" to get money for his daughter's Zombrex. (Zombrex being a medicine which prevents infected humans from turning into zombies as long as it is taken once daily.) Terror is Reality (TiR) is hosted by Tyrone King (TK). Players compete with players all over the world online, and earn money for their character at the same time. The show consists of three minigames, including "Zomboni" (driving a car that makes zombie juice and players have to shoot the juice to the target to get points), "Bounty Hunter" (players snipe zombies and they can earn extra points by hitting the jackpot), "Stand Up Zomedy" (players put flowers, sticks, and dresses on the zombie, earn more points by getting all three of items in one zombie), and so on. Finally, the major game in TIR is "Slicecycle", where players drive motorcycles to slice up zombies for points. The winners and participants get money for their participation points from the games.
It was confirmed during Captivate '10 that cooperative gameplay for the story campaign will be available and according to Blue Castle Games there will be an online co-op mode. Both players will play as the main character, Chuck Greene, and will be able to earn experience and keep the items they collected throughout the game—but only the host player will be able to save the game's progress. A host can invite a friend to join the current game by sending out an invitation; if the friend accepts, a confirmation icon will be displayed and the host can allow the player to join in. Non-host players can drop in/out of a co-op game anytime they like. When the players become separated, a tiny animated Chuck Greene icon will appear at the bottom of the game screen. The icon will show what the other player is up to—attacking, being assaulted by zombies, etc. If a player is taken down by zombies, he will be able to call the other for help to revive them. The player will use food to revive the dying partner before his health runs out.
Five years after the events of Dead Rising, former motocross champion Chuck Greene is in the fictional casino town of Fortune City, Nevada, to take part in Terror Is Reality, a controversial sports entertainment game show where contestants kill zombies for money and fame. Chuck needs the prize money to buy Zombrex (a daily medication that suppresses the zombification process) for his daughter Katey, who was bitten by her zombified mother during a previous outbreak in Las Vegas when she was only 4 years old. While backstage after the show, the show's supply of zombies is released; Chuck rescues Katey and makes his way to an emergency shelter, which is sealed after their arrival. Raymond Sullivan (the only security guard to reach the shelter alive) is initially reluctant to let the infected Katey in, but Chuck promises to keep her supplied with Zombrex until the military arrives in three days.
Chuck needs to venture into the overrun city to find a dose of Zombrex, entering and exiting the shelter via an air duct. Another survivor, Stacey Forsythe (leader of the Nevada branch of zombie rights organization "Citizens for Undead Rights and Equality", which was in town to protest the treatment of the zombies by Terror is Reality) supplies him with a map and two-way radio; she promises to keep watch on the shelter's security monitors and direct Chuck to any other survivors or points of interest in the area. After returning with the first dose of Zombrex for Katey, a news report implicates Chuck as the cause of the Fortune City outbreak. Chuck tracks down the reporter, Rebecca Chang, at a nearby hotel, and offers her the story of a lifetime if she gives him a chance to prove his innocence and helps him determine who was really behind the outbreak. Following this, Chuck has three main objectives to complete: discover the origin of the Fortune City outbreak by following the "Case File" missions, rescue as many survivors as possible (either from zombies, or from the 'psychopath' boss characters), and find enough doses of Zombrex to keep Katey alive until the military arrives.
Chuck and Rebecca discover that Terror is Reality host Tyrone "TK" King is using the outbreak as cover to rob Fortune City's four main casinos. Chuck foils the robberies and prevents the host from escaping in his helicopter. TK is locked up in the shelter, and reveals that another organization responsible for the outbreak paid him to frame Chuck for it. Three days after the outbreak, the military arrives, but a green gas begins emanating from underground and causes zombies to mutate into a more powerful form. The convoy is unprepared to deal with the super-zombies, and is wiped out almost completely. A second military force would normally arrive 24 hours later, but media reports claim that the first convoy reached the shelter and found no survivors, so the city will be cleansed by firebombing at that time. The safe house is also sabotaged, and Chuck must quickly repair the door before too many zombies enter. Regardless of the player's actions, TK is bitten, and needs Zombrex to survive. Rebecca reveals the cause of the gas seems to be in the underground access tunnels, and Chuck finds a hidden facility where pharmaceutical company Phenotrans, the makers of Zombrex, is harvesting the zombies. The drug is manufactured from the queens of the genetically modified wasps that create zombies; the gas released by the Phenotrans facility is intended to increase the number of queens in a zombie horde. After killing the scientists in charge of the harvesting, Chuck recovers a satellite phone and a laptop from the facility and takes them to Rebecca as proof that Phenotrans orchestrated the outbreak in order to harvest more queens, while driving up demand for Zombrex. Just as Rebecca attempts to contact her news station and report the discovery, Sullivan shoots her dead. Sullivan is revealed as a Phenotrans operative; he was the one who let the Terror is Reality zombies out, and the one who sabotaged the shelter. He escapes with the phone and laptop, and Chuck follows him to a casino rooftop, where he plans to escape by skyhook after revealing that the Vegas and Fortune City outbreaks were necessary to keep a consistent supply of queens to make Zombrex, enraging Chuck as his wife was killed in the Vegas outbreak which led to Katey getting infected in the first place. After a fierce battle, Chuck handcuffs his harness to the rooftop, ripping Sullivan in half when the recovery aircraft catches the skyhook. Chuck contacts Rebecca's channel and offers to give them proof of Phenotrans' involvement in the Fortune City outbreak if they send helicopters to rescue the survivors.
There are six possible endings for Dead Rising 2, depending on the player's actions during the game.
The two primary endings are:
- Ending 1 (achieved if the player has given Katey all of the required Zombrex doses, but does not give TK a dose of Zombrex; revealed canon ending)
- The station sends a convoy of news helicopters to evacuate the shelter, one of which collects Chuck from the hotel roof and drops him at the shelter. Stacey brings a sleeping Katey to the helicopter, but Katey's bag, containing her mother's possessions, is accidentally dropped by the elevator. Chuck goes to grab it, but is ambushed by the zombiefied TK and several other zombies. He throws the bag to Stacey, and tells her to take care of Katey as he is dragged into the elevator. The epilogue states the city is bombed, but Chuck is cleared of his accused involvement in the outbreak and is praised as a hero. However, Phenotrans shares rise in price, and Chuck's fate is unknown. This ending is a canon ending to Dead Rising 2: Case West in the intro where Frank West finds Chuck almost being bitten by the zombie TK and rescues him.
- Ending 2 (as above, but TK is given Zombrex)
- Chuck calls off the bombing. He arrives back at the shelter to find the civilians being evacuated, but Stacey and Katey are not among them. He searches the control room and finds Katey's backpack. The game then goes into "Overtime Mode". Chuck receives a radio transmission from TK, who has kidnapped Stacey and Katey; he tells Chuck to collect several items from around Fortune City and bring them to the Terror Is Reality arena by noon (10 hours away). Chuck does so, but is tasered on arrival by TK and wakes up suspended over a pit of zombies, alongside Katey and Stacey. Chuck frees himself and climbs up to the rafters, where he fights TK. After overpowering TK and throwing him to the zombies, Chuck frees the other two, and they leave the city hand-in-hand. A zombie then screams into the camera, giving the players one last scare. If the player fails to collect the items within the time limit or does not defeat TK in time, the two girls are lowered into the zombie pit and killed. This ending was the original canon ending of the game before the release of Dead Rising 2: Case West. (Although it is possible that TK zombifies after the fall, and the rest plays out like Ending A, thus making this ending possibly canon with Case West.)
The other four endings occur if the player fails to complete particular tasks:
- Ending 3 occurs if the player fails to complete a Case File mission after the attempted military rescue occurs, or fails to defeat Sullivan before the "Firebombing" timer runs out. Fortune City is bombed, as the U.S. government cannot contain the zombie outbreak any other way. The end text states that there were no recorded survivors of the outbreak, although it is unknown whether they were killed by the zombies or by the bombing.
- Ending 4 comes from the failure of a Case File before the attempted rescue. Chuck, Stacey, Rebecca, and Katey watch the arrival of the military on the shelter monitors, but are startled by the sound of gunfire and screams. Chuck goes to investigate, but pauses when he sees the attacker (offscreen, but most likely Sullivan). Chuck is shot. As with Ending B, the end text indicates the failure of the rescue, the subsequent bombing, and the death of the survivors.
- Ending 5 is the result of Chuck not being in the emergency shelter when the military arrives on the third day, regardless of the status of the Case Files or Katey's Zombrex missions. The screen blanks, and Chuck comes to in the back of a military vehicle, surrounded by soldiers, who have been ordered to detain him for prosecution. The vehicle is surrounded by the sound of heavy gunfire, then suddenly stops. As the door opens, the green super-zombie gas appears and the screen cuts to black. The end text claims that the rescue operation was a disaster, as the military was not prepared for what they found. None of the people in the shelter are recorded to survive, and Chuck was remembered as the sole cause of the Fortune City outbreak.
- Ending 6 occurs if Katey is not given her required doses of Zombrex, and zombifies. Chuck is shown standing catatonic in the emergency shelter's security room, staring at Katey's backpack. Stacey attempts to convince him to not blame himself for Katey's death and get ready to evacuate, but does not get a response, and turns to leave. As she does so, several zombies break in; Chuck allows them to devour him, while Stacey watches in horror, only to later figure out she is their next target. The end text states that the rescue mission found no survivors, and that Chuck was blamed for the outbreak.
An alternative ending F shows TK holding Katey and Stacey on a rope saying something about Chuck "being busy" before lowering the rope to the zombies, showing the rope shake violently as they are eaten alive.
Dead Rising 2 was announced on February 9, 2009, confirming earlier rumors of the game's existence, as well as a viral video for the game. The developers Blue Castle Games worked with Keiji Inafune, the original Dead Rising producer and Capcom's former global head of research and development, along with other original Dead Rising team members.
Marketing and release
Capcom created a variety of websites before the release of the game. These include TapeitorDie.Com, visitfortunecity.com, and deadrising-2.com.
In August 2010, Keiji Inafune released an eight-part video series entitled Zombrex: Dead Rising Sun. Capcom sponsored a gathering of zombies at the London House of Parliament on August 30— the best dressed won a game console. Attendees also received a limited edition, one-of-a-kind T-shirt.
Capcom also created Citizens for Undead Rights and Equality (CURE) as a marketing tie-in for the game, as well as its reimagining Dead Rising 2: Off the Record. The group is a parody of the political party system in Britain.
- The Zombrex edition in North America and Europe is only available for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, The North American edition includes a fake syringe of the Zombrex medicine featured in the game (functioning as a pen), along with an accompanying safety information card, a Zombrex-labeled steel case, a sales brochure, and a prescription pad. The Xbox 360 version comes with the Zombrex Dead Rising Sun movie whereas the PlayStation 3 version contains a voucher for a Dead Rising 2 XrossMediaBar dynamic theme and a behind the scenes featurette. The Zombrex Edition was also released in Europe, containing the Zombrex steel case, fake syringe pen and a making-of DVD. (previous website link 17 no longer shows info, Updated link) 
- The Outbreak Pack, available for any system, but exclusive to Europe, features a red box and contains a zombie figurine and some accessories for the figurine. A limited run of 700 copies was also announced for Australia.
- The High Stakes Edition is available exclusively in the Capcom store, and contains a poker set, a Fortune City visitor map, a Terror Is Reality XVII admission ticket, and a chance to win a 6 ft gold bust of the zombie statue.
Dead Rising 2: Case Zero is an Xbox 360-exclusive download, available on the Xbox Live Marketplace for 400 Microsoft Points. The download serves as a prequel for Dead Rising 2, and is set shortly after Chuck and Katey escape from the Las Vegas zombie outbreak. The player must deal with a minor outbreak in the town of Still Creek, and move on before the military arrives and kills any infected (including non-zombies like Katey). The player can reach up to level five in Case Zero, with the level and any combo cards earned able to be transferred into the main game.
Case Zero was released on August 31, 2010 in North America and Europe, then in Japan at a later date because the Computer Entertainment Rating Organization was concerned about the content and the download's rating. The game is region-locked to these specific areas, and cannot be downloaded outside these regions. In the game's first week of release, 300,000 downloads were made: the fastest selling game on Xbox Live Arcade. On September 15, Capcom announced that Case Zero had received more than 500,000 downloads.
Reception for Case Zero has been generally favorable, receiving an average score of 79 on Metacritic. IGN gave the title a 6.5 out of 10 rating, criticizing the load times and the lack of things to do. GameSpot gave the title an 8 out of 10 rating, praising the fun zombie killing, in-depth weapon creation, and multiple endings that require several playthroughs. Joystiq gave the title a 4 out of 5 star rating, and recommended the game to anyone because of both the content and the price. Eurogamer gave the title a 7 out of 10 rating, criticizing many annoyances but praising the overall product.
On September 15, 2010, Capcom announced a second downloadable episode: Case West. The Xbox 360 exclusive is available on the Xbox Live Marketplace for 800 Microsoft Points. The game features Frank West, the main character from the first Dead Rising game, and serves as the canon Overtime Mode of Dead Rising 2, with Frank teaming up with Chuck to further investigate the link between Phenotrans and the Fortune City zombie outbreak, and find proof that clears Chuck of any wrongdoing.
The story follows on from Ending A of the main game, with Frank rescuing Chuck from the elevator. Frank was going to meet Rebecca Chang to investigate a Phenotrans facility west of Fortune City, but learns from Chuck that she was killed by Phenotrans mole Sullivan. Although initially suspicious of Chuck because of the media reports blaming him for the Fortune City outbreak, Frank lets the motocross star come with him to find proof that Phenotrans was behind the outbreak.
Case West includes cooperative play for two players, with each taking control of one of the two characters. The episode features new challenges, enemies, items, combo weapons. The photography element returns from the first Dead Rising; the characters use this to generate proof of Phenotrans' part in the zombie outbreaks. Case West was released on December 27, 2010.
Case West received generally positive reviews, with a score of 74 on Metacritic. IGN gave the title an 8.5 out of 10 rating, with praise for the story, combo weapons, and fun co-op mode. Eurogamer gave the title an 8 out of 10 rating, stating that the product was more a worthwhile purchase for people planning to play co-op with a friend. GameTrailers awarded the title with a 7.9 out of 10 rating, saying that the $10 asking price was worth it. GameSpot gave the title a 7 out of 10 rating, praising the new weapons, fun while rescuing survivors, wacky humor, and plenty of replay value, but criticizing the similarity it has to Case Zero, no integration with previous games, and that the photography in the game has less impact than in Dead Rising.
At Captivate 2011, Capcom's annual press show, the company announced that it was releasing Dead Rising 2: Off the Record, as a reinterpretation of the game with Frank West from the original Dead Rising as the main character. The game was released for the same consoles on October 11 in North America, October 13 in Japan, and October 14 in Europe for a discount retail price.
Off the Record is intended as a complete reimagining of Dead Rising 2, with new missions, cutscenes, environments, enemies, and weapons. The photography mechanic from the first Dead Rising is also included. There are technical and system upgrades, such as optimization of loading times and improved network performance. Off the Record also features a new sandbox mode. This allows players to explore Fortune City without the obstacle of time. Off The Record has received mostly positive reviews, with the changes and additions both praised and panned.
Dead Rising 2 has been met with generally positive reviews. IGN, Eurogamer, and GamesRadar have given the game an 8 out of 10, praising the story, combat, and huge numbers of enemies on screen, while complaining about long loading times. GameZone gave the Xbox 360 version of the game a 6 out of 10, stating, "the lackluster presentation, uninspired story, outright broken multiplayer, and atrocious amount of glitches makes Dead Rising 2 less of a flawed gem and more of a somewhat polished pile that incrementally smells worse the longer you let it sit in your disc drive." Game Informer gave the game a 9.5 out of 10, stating, "Even after playing for dozens of hours, you'll still find new things in Dead Rising 2. I won't spoil anything, but there's a lot of variety to be found in the game beyond obvious things like the number of objects that can be used as bludgeons. This game is designed for multiple playthroughs, and I'm looking forward to each and every one of them." Ben Croshaw listed Dead Rising 2 in second place in his Top 5 games of 2010, praising it for its correcting all of Dead Rising's old problems (as in high difficulty and poor AI) and for the Combo Weapons mechanic. In February 2011, Capcom announced that the title had sold more than 2.2 million copies worldwide.
Dead Rising 3 is an open world survival horror video game, developed by Capcom Vancouver and published by Microsoft. The game was announced as an Xbox One exclusive title during Microsoft's E3 2013 press conference on June 10, 2013. It was released as an exclusive Xbox One launch title on November 22, 2013.
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