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access_time June 22, 2021 at 6:00 AM in Reviews by Paul Jennette

Review | Dead by Daylight Chapter 20: Resident Evil

Dead by Daylight has become quite the phenomenon. While I didn’t really understand the hype before, it’s got something special going for it. Incredibly eerie environments and only teamwork to help you escape some of the biggest names in horror easily makes for hours of fun. Chapter 20 of Dead by Daylight is a crossover with the Resident Evil franchise, making it’s heroes (Jill Valentine, Leon Kennedy, Chris and Claire Redfield), a new location (Raccoon City), and a new killer (Nemesis) available to play. As you probably already knew, Dead by Daylight is undoubtedly the best asymmetrical horror game available. However, I do find it leaving me with more to be desired from its presentation and mechanics.

You and three other survivors are whisked out to a desolate, terrifying location to discover a way to escape before being killed and sacrificed by the killer. Alternatively, you can take control of the killer and hunt for survivors. I personally enjoy playing as a survivor more, as running away is far more fun than being a pursuer. There are generators and other interactive items scattered across the map for your escape. The fun part is that none of this is obvious to you at the beginning of each match. It really adds to the horror.

Another great thing about this chapter is the AI-operated zombies that roam around the map. They allow for more frequent encounters that make you think a lot harder about what your next move is. I found myself ducking and hiding in small closets and lockers all the time. They always pop up real suddenly, especially as I’m turning a corner. It really adds an extra layer of depth for Dead by Daylight Chapter 20, and helps to give it additional Resident Evil flavor.

Each new survivor also comes with a series of perks that can heal allies or the player, or incorporate some kind of tactical advantage that other survivors don’t possess. My favorite new perk from this chapter has to be Jill’s “Resurgence” perk. If the killer really wants to eliminate you in the game, they have to hang and sacrifice you. Jill’s perk makes the chances of surviving capture a lot more likely. If you manage to unhook yourself, you heal a considerable amount. It comes in handy when you’re alone and there aren’t any teammates nearby to assist you. So ultimately, instead of worrying about recuperating, you can keep looking for that next generator.

I really appreciate how the Resident Evil characters’ perks all reflect their in-game attributes. For example, one of Leon’s perks, “Bite The Bullet,” gives him a very valuable ability. It simply makes it so he omits any sound while healing himself. This is crucial, as remaining quiet is an essential for survival. As a killer, Nemesis comes equipped with his tentacles and brute force punches to dominate his prey. One of his more tactical perks that I enjoyed on my few plays with him was the Hysteria perk. When Nemesis injures a survivor, all other injured survivors are given no detection as it essentially cloaks the killer’s position.

The incentive to playing is the satisfaction you get from leveling up your survivors. As you play, you’ll gain Bloodpoints, which can be used to upgrade your favorite survivor’s perks and attributes to better assist you in surviving as you keep playing. My preference to playing as survivors above killers is simply a challenge thing. The killers, like Nemesis, all feel too strong, and survivor’s efforts to stop them are often futile if they’re within range. I understand that that’s kind of the point of it as an asymmetrical horror game. However, I find it more fulfilling to have something strong to avoid and escape rather than hunting down things I know are weaker than me.

There’s a pretty mixed bag here as far as visuals go. The games main player models look just fine. The Resident Evil characters made available in this new updates are what you’d expect. Nemesis looks terrifying in game, making for a great inclusion. The chases I had with him reminded me a lot of my time playing the recent remakes of the earlier games. The environments are commendable and emotionally striking. Raccoon City’s aesthetic is commendable, and really gives off that depressing, claustrophobic vibe of the original.

Where the game falters is in its animations. While the controls aren’t hard to grasp or necessarily clunky. Walking, running, crouching, hiding; all of it just looks choppy. Crouching looks especially bad, your character model basically just snaps into a crouch, no real transitional animation it’s really a sight for sore eyes. It didn’t really hamper my experience or ability to play the game effectively, so it’s a cosmetic thing and cosmetic thing alone. I just wish the animations fit the game in the polished way that everything else does. The game has been out for a while now, so I don’t see it changing.

Generally speaking, Chapter 20 continues the Dead by Daylight story with finesse. Adding some familiar favorites and a new environment helps to keep things fresh. While it’s presentation misses the mark at times, I will be playing more Dead by Daylight as the year passes. As a big fan of the Resident Evil franchise, I’m pleased at how this crossover materialized.

Final Score: 8 out of 10

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