Umbrella Corps – Review
PC, PS4, Xbox One
Sometimes I really enjoy going into a game blind. No preconceptions on whether the game will fail or succeed on its various attributes, where every new move or character becomes a delightful surprise and one could find one’s self in a state of shock and awe. Ori and the Blind Forest did this and all I can say is that my eyes were filled with tears of joy. Umbrella Corps came out of nowhere, no press releases, build up or even a tweet and after some time with this little title I can honestly say my eyes were yet again filled with tears … the bad kind.
When you look at the title of this game you immediately think a bunch of things, namely the Resident Evil IP and of course, scary zombies. You would be forgiven for thinking that with a title such as this that you’d be playing as the Umbrella Corporation soldiers cleaning up after another zombie outbreak in various cities, making questionable decisions but with the ultimate goal of keeping The Umbrella Corporation’s priorities as your number one concern, similar to what Opposing Force did with the Half-Life story. Boy oh boy how disappointed you’ll be though if that’s what you’re expecting. Basically, teams of three battle one another over a map filled with zombies. You’re given a loadout of fairly standard weapons that you can customise, with more options becoming more available the more you play. There are different modes of play but they all feeling mostly the same, gun down your opponents and you win the match, yay!
What about the zombies you may ask? Don’t worry because they won’t attack you, you have a device on your back that makes you invisible to them unless of course you attack them or the opposing team lands a shot which destroys said device. This rarely plays an effect because death is fairly swift, there were some times when I was in an altercation and found that zombies were suddenly attracted to my presence like flies to a dog turd. This wasn’t a problem though because they move about as fast as a sloth on Valium and this game seems to encourage a lot of running and gunning. If I had to describe it in a better way, the maps, gameplay, and battles felt more like a game of paintball than it did anything else, everything around that just felt like filler. There is a single player element which is basically you performing identical objectives but without an opposing team trying to kill you, it’s fairly uninspiring and reeks of laziness to somewhat pad out a fairly shallow game.
And this is probably where I feel this game is truly disappointing. There are some ideas here that could work well if they were more fleshed out. Get creative with the surrounding zombies, have game modes that change the way you play each map or even put an actual story in there and make it single player or co-op! The way the Resident Evil series has been going lately, with a move away from survival horror to more action orientated, they could have gone overkill with this, put you on the side of the bad guys and no one would have given them a hard time because it’s an offshoot from the original name. But no, this feels more like a round table discussion where someone had an idea for ‘something that could work’ and the boss has given it a thumbs up.
Everything in Umbrella Corps feels slapped on and lacking in direction. There are some positives, though, once my game would actually connect to a server the net code felt mostly fine. I wasn’t being yelled at by my teammates because, like me, they were probably too busy trying to figure out just what the hell was going on and the game itself didn’t feel broken or glitch at all. To put it bluntly, this game just isn’t fun or enjoyable and to say it will have a quick death is to only to assume it had a life to begin with. This title is best avoided.
Oh, and Capcom … grab the team that created the UI and loading times for this game and have them work at the Street Fighter V department and have them fix that broken mess, FGC’s around the world will forever be in your debt.