I have a soft spot for zombies. For all its flaws and idiosyncrasies, the Dead Rising series has been one of my favorite (if not my favorite) zombie video game franchises. To say I was excited to hear about Dead Rising 3 coming to the Xbox One is a tiny bit of an understatement. I was ecstatic to the point where waiting in line for an hour seemed like a small price to pay just to get a glimpse of what was to come.
Dead Rising 3 has a new protagonist, in a new location; this time, the game takes place in a city overrun with our beloved shambling reanimated corpses, and the first thing you notice when they started the playthrough is just how much more wide open everything feels compared to the first two games. You play as Nick Ramos, a mechanic who is desperately trying to find his way out of town; but it wouldn’t be a Dead Rising game if you didn’t run into some troubles along the way.
As with everything I’ve seen on the next gen systems, the graphics were gorgeous; and even with what looked like thousands of zombies on the screen, everything ran super smoothly with no hiccups whatsoever. The gameplay hasn’t really changed much; everything is still a weapon, and zombies can (and will) come at you from all directions.
You can still combine certain weapons, though now you can actually make weapons anywhere you want to. As long as you have the blueprints and materials for what you want to make, you don’t have to find a workbench to make it – just do it on the fly. The safe house system is really well done, as well. In addition to being a great place to save, each safe house has a weapons locker where you can pick up any weapon you’ve collected in the game so far; as well as a closet where you can dress Nick up in any of the stylish/funny/outright weird costumes you’ve picked up while out in the city.
Just an aside; major kudos to Dead Rising 3 for having the best booth on the floor at E3, hands-down. A small-scale replica of Nick’s workplace (the “Wrench-O-Rama”), with a caged-off area containing “real” zombies that lashed out and tried to grab people as they walked by? BRILLIANT.
I’ve been clamoring for an open-world version of Dead Rising, and with this third iteration, it seems like we finally have it. Check it out—exclusively for Xbox One—when it hits shelves in November.