And now we reach the point in the Retrospective where we talk about my favorite Resident Evil game of the entire series. No joke, Resident Evil 3: Nemesis is my favorite game in the entire franchise and one of my favorite video games of all time.
It just feels like the perfect storm of what I look for in a zombie survival horror game. An interesting setting, interesting characters, the constant fear of being stalked by this massive unstoppable creature, the game I feel is just the crowning achievement of what could be done with the PS1 and to this day I wish that they would remake the game like the did with the first game. Just the same game with PS3 graphics.
Is it technically the best game in the series? Well no. I think there is one game that beats it. But for me personally I still keep the game with me in my room and often whip out my dust covered PS2 just to play it.
That being said I’m sure you can see where this review is going so let’s take a look at what makes Resident Evil 3: Nemesis my favorite game in the series.
Unlike RE2, You Get to Explore Raccoon City
I loved this about Nemesis that I did not get with RE2 and that is the fact that you do get to explore Raccoon City. Now this game is by no means a sandbox type of thing where you just get to walk around and do as you please. But the game does take you to different parts of the city instead of just a diner, a few streets, and the Police Station. You get to see Bars, clock towers, the hospital, and the San Fransisco style trolley car system the city has, and well… You get more of the police station. Because I suppose we can’t have a Resident Evil game set in Raccoon City without stopping by the police station at least once.
I loved this about RE3 it was the one thing I wanted to do all along since playing RE1. I wanted to explore Raccoon City and see what all makes it tick. I wondered what the city was like before the outbreak and what kind of city it was like seeing as how it isn’t set in any existing city. Was it more like New York? Or was it more like Chicago? Or was it like a European City? Everything I wanted to know about the city and more was answered in this game as I got to explore and see different aspects of the city.
The Characters are Fun, Well Rounded, and You Want them to Succeed
Characters in this game feel a lot more three dimensional. I really wanted to see these characters to succeed. I wanted to help Brad Vickers who was the pilot in the first game. I got invested in Carlos and Jill’s problems. I wanted to heal Mikhail who was injured by a sniper shot and more than any other human villain in the RE universe I wanted to see Nicholai get what was coming to him.
Unlike other villains like Alfred Ashford where I was legit creeped out by the guy and Albert Wesker who is one of my personal favorite characters. Nicholai is a character that I hate for all the right reasons. He is arrogant and cocky. He thinks only for himself and is honestly a character that you are not only made to hate, but you still want to see him on screen. He isn’t an annoying character that you wish was just removed from the game all together. He is a character that you want to defeat. You want to see him get torn apart by the worst abomination that Umbrella Inc. could ever hope to forge.
Characters in this game are ones that you want to either see succeed or fail depending on how the game wants you to perceive them. Every time I play and one of the characters dies I still want to know… Hey what would happen if they actually lived? Maybe they will this time if I… Nope there still dead.
It is great whenever I see something like this with such rich characters in a game or film that it needs to be acknowledged whenever it occurs.
Nemesis is a Truly Terrifying Opponent That Appears Out of Nowhere
When I first played RE3 I was truly terrified of Nemesis. Because Nemesis not only felt like the perfect Umbrella creation… But it could pop up whenever it fucking wanted to.
During the game you are constantly hunted by this creature Umbrella has sent to eliminate the remaining STARS survivors Jill Valentine, Chris Redfield, Rebecca Chambers, Barry Burton, and Brad Vickers. This creature known as Nemesis hunts you throughout the entire game and is a constant thorn in your side.
Now this would not be that terrifying if Nemesis was preceded every time by a cut scene… But he doesn’t. Granted there are places where he is designed to show up but you do not know that on the first play through. You have no idea when he shows up and it feels like Nemesis shows up just like zombies, lickers, and hunters. Whenever he damn well pleases. Granted a lot of this terror is attributed to jump scares as he bursts onto the scene. But not only are there jump scares there is genuine terror of not knowing where he is and knowing that he is the ultimate killing machine. In my opinion an earlier version of villains like Slender Man and the creature from Amnesia: Dark Descent. He is a terrifying killing machines that just won’t go away no matter how many times you stop him and I loved every minute of it.
Like the First One You Will Get Tripped Up By Puzzles… That Make No Sense For Their Existence
One thing I do not miss about the new games is the fucking puzzles that requires you to get some random ass emblem or diamond or God only knows what just to get into someone’s office or even in buttfucking city hall! The first one I can kind of understand it was said that Spencer was excentric who liked puzzles, mazes, and cooky ways to open doors. But my God! Raccoon City is like this too?! How did they accomplish anything?! If someone steals one of those rubies apparently the whole damn city just needs to shut down because they aren’t accomplishing anything constructive.
Sure they try to write this off as well but I just think even if you were trying to stick with some rustic aesthetic you would put in another fail safe… Maybe a master lock or something besides worrying about complex puzzle locks that if you miss one piece then you are going to need a damn rocket launcher to break into.
Besides Umbrella’s Mercs there are Very Few Other Characters Besides Jill
This is an area I wish the game would have added just a bit and that is besides Brad Vickers, Jill Valentine, and one poor fucker named Dario, the rest of the characters in this game are Umbrella’s personal mercenaries. It isn’t bad because it even gives the game a ‘Aliens‘ kind of feel to it and that is one of my favorite movies of all time. I just would have liked to have seen a few more civilians along with it besides battle hardened marines. But Outbreak fixed that for me so really it is just a nitpick.
I really have very little bad to say about this game. It is easily my favorite game in the series and I take so much joy in it the cons I gave you are little more than nitpicks.
Bottom line it is a solid game with a solid premise and one of the strongest in the series.
Final Score: 4.5/5
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