Resident Evil 5: Versus Review
Player(s): 1-4 (online)
Extra Features: Online play through PSN or Xbox LIVE, Leaderboards
Resident Evil 5 was the first game in the main Resident Evil series to bring in online play and it did so quite well with its online partner feature for co-op play. Even this single player purist was floored at the results of the online portion in Resident Evil 5. Now that new aspect has been expanded greatly with the new downloadable mode known as "Versus" that is up on both the PlayStation Store and Xbox LIVE marketplace for $5.00 or 400 MS points right now. I never have once considered the idea of a Resident Evil deathmatch to be much fun, but Versus has caused me to change that anti-online play attitude once again now that I have given it a shot.
Versus comes complete with four modes of play. The two main modes are Slayers and Survivors. Each of them can be played with four players that are all individually against each other or they can be played as a team game with two players on each team battling it out. So the complete list of modes is Slayers, Survivors, Team Slayers and Team Survivors. Players can choose from the same characters that are in the normal Mercenaries mode, though some have to be unlocked through the Bonus Features menu. All stages are taken directly from the Mercenaries mode.
Slayers is basically a four player version of The Mercenaries. Players battle it out individually to see which one can get the highest score based on chaining enemy kills and fighting off big boss enemies for a high score. All time extenders and combo bonuses are still in place like in the normal Mercenaries mini game. As a twist to the normal Mercenaries mode, players can now kill off each other. Killing off another player will award 1,000 points to the victor and subtract 1,000 points from the player killed.
Unlike avoiding attacks in The Mercenaries mode, in normal Slayers, there is no way to seek invincibility from another player's attacks. For instance, climbing a ladder or reaching down to pick up an item does not grant a player invincibility from another player's gunshot, but it does grant invincibility from a normal enemy's attack just like it did in the Mercenaries.
The hits from player to player affect the characters much like having the attack reaction in the main game of RE5 turned on. The players don't stagger unless they are about to enter dying status. Once a player enters dying status, that player can be finished by approaching the player and pressing the action button for a melee attack. The opposing player can be finished off with a gunshot also but the sheer power of these melee attacks can take out surrounding enemies and even send another unlucky nearby player into instant dying status, so is quite helpful to finish off a player with a melee attack as opposed to a normal gunshot.
Team Slayers works much like normal Slayers except that the game is played with two teams of two players. The objective still stands the same: defeat the enemies and chain kills. The main difference here is that one player can help out the other in obtaining enemy kills or while fighting against the other team. When a team member enters dying status the other player on that team can resuscitate or heal the player much like in duo Mercenaries, but when the player resuscitates the other player on that team, both player are completely invincible to all attacks during that resuscitation sequence. I have seen several games where a resuscitation can be triggered around 7 times in a row before one team finally kills off a player.