Resident Evil: Revelations 2 – Episode 2: Contemplation PS4 Review

The first episode of Revelations 2 began with a decent, if delayed, start. The latest spinoff in Capcom’s long-running but quality-deteriorating franchise introduced a host of interesting new features, but failed to showcase them in any meaningful way until the second half of its debut episode. With new episodes hitting on a weekly schedule, it remained to be seen if Revelations 2 would steadily pick up the pace in order to have its fans wait for the next episode with optimism rather than cautious optimism.

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If Episode 2 is any indication, then it seems that Revelations 2 has successfully found its groove. The second part of the weekly series is a substantial improvement over its predecessor in almost every way and manages to better flesh out both its gameplay mechanics and its characters. Episode 2: Contemplation passes the ball back to Claire and Moira, who team up with another group of survivors whose lingering fates are as obvious as their fake hispanic accents. Long story short, the group finds themselves surrounded on all sides by a horde of undead in a standoff similar to Resident Evil 4’s skirmishes. The increase in enemy numbers and variety result in a more tense game than the previous episode, and the inclusion of a pivotal character in Claire’s scenario allows Moira to show off a more likeable, less vulgar-spewing side to her character.

Once again, however, Barry’s scenario ends up being the high point of Revelations 2. It is especially effective in how Barry’s role in the story takes place after Claire’s, where previous locations and scenarios are revisited by Barry as he tries to piece together the events that occurred prior to his arrival. It’s a unique story concept that hasn’t been tried before in the Resident Evil series, but is ideal for setting an appropriate tone that gives off a foreboding atmosphere, in addition to all the dark and rain-filled locations.

The highlight of Episode 2 is the introduction of a new enemy type that requires the cooperation of Barry and Natalia to dispatch. Invisible to Barry’s eyes, players must utilize Natalia’s sixth sense to pinpoint the enemy’s location so that Barry can put a bullet or two into it before it makes a meal out of him. This specific enemy type not only makes the best use of the dual-character mechanic yet, it also brings the series even closer to its original Survival Horror roots, something that many jaded fans felt would never happen again.

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A few technical issues still remain, such as the unreliable stealth mechanic where enemies will arbitrarily sense a player’s presence even if they are properly concealed, and the AI-controlled character still has a habit of staying behind and/or failing to pull their weight during more heated skirmishes. Nevertheless, this latest episode has gone a long way to raise optimism over Capcom’s latest RE experiment. As for the plot twist at the end of this episode, longtime fans will either declare it as “bad”, or “so bad it’s good”. Your mileage may vary, but it certainly succeeds in making us anticipate the next episode.

7 out of 10
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