Nope, not Silent Hill. Not Fatal Frame. Not Dead Space, Alone in the Dark, House of the Dead, Juggernaut (although I do wanna talk about that freakfest at some point)…not even Haunted House on Atari.
Today, for Halloween, I wanna show you Resident Evil 2. But not just any Resident Evil 2.
Resident Evil 2 for Tiger’s Game.com. Now THAT’S scary.
RE2 was originally released for PlayStation of course, and ported to other consoles such as the Dreamcast and N64. Gamers were surprised at what they shoehorned into an N64 cartridge, but the thought of cramming any sort of Resident Evil experience onto the cheap, blurry, black and white LCD screen of Tiger’s underpowered Game.com handheld console is nothing short of ludicrous.
The really frightening part? It’s marginally better than you’d expect.
It’s hard to see and the controls are unresponsive. Couple that with the traditional tank-like mechanics of RE’s “classic” control scheme and you have a recipe for disaster. However, it looks like they really gave it a shot at making something worthwhile, with a fair approximation of the changing camera angles and 3D movement that the original games in the series (i.e., pre-RE4) were based on. It’s also worth it to note that the Game.com Pocket Pro edition features a touchscreen, so you can actually select menu items by touching in addition to using the D-pad and buttons.
Maybe most shocking is the fact that the audio mostly consists of digitized sound effects, with echoing footsteps, shotgun pumps, zombie groans, and a surprising amount of voice. I haven’t played it far enough to find out if any actual music shows up, but I suspect that’d be pushing it a bit. Then again, this entire project is pushing it, so who knows.
BUT! As a special Halloween treat, I made you a video!
So is this a trick or a treat? Is this whole thing a joke or would we go so far as to call this a hidden gem? Honestly, I don’t know that I could stand to wrestle with this game long enough to finish it, but it’s interesting enough that I’m keeping the Game.com console and RE2 in my collection. Because other than that, the only thing this system is useful for is the built-in solitaire game.
I gotta wonder what the cancelled Game.com version of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night would have been like. Would it have been more or less frightening than this?
…besides, it can’t be as scary as this: