Capcom has been pretty back-and-forth on supporting the Nintendo Switch, so the Resident Evil Revelations Collection was a pretty interesting announcement for the company. Resident Evil Revelations originally released on the 3DS before being ported to a multitude of platforms, but the sequel, Revelations 2, never ended up on a Nintendo console. Now both games have been retooled and remastered and have hit the Nintendo Switch. So should you check out this package?
The first game, Revelations, has you playing primarily as Jill Valentine and Chris Redfield, staples in the Resident Evil community. As usual, both characters are having to stop a virus outbreak that is breaking out all over the Earth. Jill and her partner board a ship looking for Chris, but Chris isn’t actually on the ship, meaning it was a clever ruse. At all times there is an A.I. partner that you don’t control that can help you with basic puzzles and in taking out enemies.
Revelations features two pretty distinct styles of gameplay. During the time of the original release, the series had started to go into a more “action” focus, but Revelations does a good job of combining both the original survival horror style with the more guns blazing features seen in games like RE5 and 6. The game has segments that play out like a TV-show, with episodes featuring you playing as different characters in different locations, showing multiple facets of the same story. It works well in providing segments of low-ammo and tight corridor situations that feel like an old-school Resident Evil, while still providing good bursts of action in other episodes.
Revelations 2 story consists of more classic Resident Evil characters: Claire Redfield and Barry Burton. Claire and Barry’s daughter are held captive on an island by “The Overseer”, and Barry sets out to find them. Barry then meets a little girl who ends up being his partner.
Revelations 2 gameplay is different than the first entry in the series, with a stronger emphasis on things like stealth which is an interesting take. The partner system returns, but with a key difference: this time you can control both partners. Barry’s daughter Moira and the little girl, Natalia, are available to be swapped to at any point while playing. Both are much weaker than the main characters, but have some strengths: Moira’s flashlight can find hidden items and blind enemies, whereas Natalia can sense monsters and crawl in small spaces.
Revelations 2 feels almost a bit like The Last of Us, as your partner is considerably weaker than the main character but still serves an important role. I didn’t really ever love playing as Moira or Natalia, but the diversion in brief moments was decent enough.
When it comes down to graphics, both games look solid, with Revelations arguably being the better looking of the two. Revelations runs at 60FPS, which it should considering it’s a 3DS port. Revelations 2 runs at 30FPS, and there’s some noticeable pop-up in the outdoor environments of the game, but nothing groundbreaking. Both titles have very solid framerate despite the differences in FPS, but I prefer the overall look of the first game compared to the second. Both titles do look very good in handheld mode, despite a slight drop in the resolution compared to docked mode.
Both games also feature Switch-specific features. Motion controls are added into the game, with Joy-Con aiming featured in both titles. You can additionally do a knife attack with the Joy-Con as well. The motion controls seem to work fine, but I prefer using the standard controller.
Aside from the main story mode in both games, both games also feature Raid Mode, which is a great way to extend the length of the titles. Raid Mode can be played Solo, Online, Online with Friends, and exclusive to the Switch version, in Local Co-Op. Raid Mode has you playing through segments of the game, blasting away enemies and earning BP. That BP can then be used to buy additional weapons, upgrade weapons, and much more. It’s very easy to get addicted to Raid Mode, and it works well with no online issues. There are also some Switch-exclusive mini-games included as well, and while not great, are fun little time wasters and can earn you some extra BP.
Aside from the aforementioned graphical quirks in Revelations 2, there are a few things worth noting with these titles. The control scheme varies from game to game, which is a bit weird, and can be initially confusing when switching between the 2 titles. There are some longer than average load times in Revelations 2 as well, and while not terrible, are noticeable. If you purchase the physical version of the game, only Revelations is on the cartridge, and Revelations 2 requires a hefty 23 gig download. Finally, Revelations 2 at times feels like a step-back from Revelations in terms of gameplay and storytelling, and I feel is the weaker of the two titles.
All in all, the Resident Evil Revelations Collection is a solid addition to any Switch owner’s library. Getting 2 full games for $39.99 is a great value, and both games are pretty enjoyable. If you have checked out one or the other before, you can also purchase them in the eShop for $19.99 each, which is nice because it gives you an additional option.
If you haven’t played the Revelations games before, this is a great way to do such. Switch-specific features, solid gameplay, good graphics, and fun online are the highlights of this collection, and being able to play them anywhere is a great convenience.