Spoofy nightmares in the Wild West, bizarre epilogues from a crazed horror writer and bookends to a vacation in Fortune City – downloadable episodes that extend playtime beyond the limitations of their physical medium are becoming an essential element of today’s biggest games.
Case West, a download-only standalone conclusion to Dead Rising 2, promises extra time to knuckle up an impressive body count while motocross champ turned heroic father Chuck Greene seeks evidence to clear his name of the Fortune City outbreak.
An 800 Microsoft Point price tag nets you an array of new weapons and a three hour romp in a new playground to enjoy them in. For fans, this time-extended treat is made all the sweeter by a bromantic partnership with Willamette mall saviour Frank West.
So begins a wild goose chase in which Frank and Chuck follow a series of clues around the Phenotrans Facility with relentless hordes of the undead to slay along the way.
A handful of new objects blunt, sharp and electrifying make for even more ludicrous tools of zombie annihilation when duct taped together but the decision to reinstate Frank’s camera, lacking all the perks of snapping zombies for bonus PP, seems almost pointless.
Many of the bothersome constraints have also been axed. There’s no Zombrex to track down, survivors only need a prescribed weapon to ensure their safety and there are fewer sirens blaring onscreen to nag you away from your zombie massacring fun. Even the load times are a little shorter than usual.
Save for some begrudging banter passed between its leading men and spontaneous Segway races started with friends – when Case West comes to its swift, cliff-hanging, missing an escape scene, end, it all feels ironically lifeless.
A far cry from the dazzling sights and sounds of Fortune City, Case West is its own monster but one that forms an inaccurate impression of what has made the series so enjoyable to date. That said, co-op zombie thrills don’t come much better or more affordable than this.
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