Capcom is churning out DLC for Dead Rising 3, and so far, it's struck out. The first DLC had a major problem offering up an uninteresting character and scenario, while the second gave us a better character, but an equally disappointing campaign.
This time around, the third episode focuses on one of the psychopath bosses from the main campaign, in the form of biker king Hunter Thibodeux. While the concept of playing as a boss character is decidedly unique, the third scenario is still just as shallow as its predecessors.
Dead Rising 3: Chaos Rising (Xbox One)
Developer: Capcom Vancouver
Publisher: Microsoft Studios
Release Date: February 25, 2014
Our new "hero" starts off the DLC in jail, with the opportunity to escape due to the...you know... that giant zombie apocalypse that's happening. I use the term hero lightly, as Hunter is your standard degenerate biker gang member, and although Capcom could have gone somewhere with him to really show what he was made of -- they didn't.
That concept spills over to the story, because again -- this is the same exact city as the main game, so you've already seen every area before, including the jail. This feeling of deja vu continues throughout, and since the tale clocks in at under two hours like the rest, you never really get any sort of character development, nor do you get an interesting story in general.
Basically, Hunter goes back to his old gang, finds out "things have changed" with a new leader, and starts to gather up resources to take it back. That's literally it. You can do a few side missions along the way like "collect special whiskey for XP" and "destroy emergency phones," but they're just as hollow as the previous extra objectives, since they're basically soulless carbon copies.
Thankfully this scenario sets up some more interesting gameplay choices in comparison to the first two DLCs, since his gang will periodically pop up around the map for a skirmish or two. Having consistent human opponents that fit into the story is a cool concept, and they take it a bit further with some boss battles.
Yep, that's right -- Chaos Rising actually has boss battles, which the other DLCs completely lacked. They're presented in the form of gang rivals, all of which have their own unique weapon to steal. The final boss fight in particular is one of the more interesting battles in the entire game, and I would have loved to have seen these implemented in the first two campaigns.
The new vehicles are also great, as Hunter's trademark steamroller is ready and rarin' to go, as is another fun ride: a motorcycle with moving sawblades at the front that can also shoot blade projectiles. I spent quite a while with these things just running around slicing up zombies -- and the good news is that they're unlocked in the core game, too.
Ultimately though, Hunter functions just like any other character, and there's nothing special about him -- you just hijack Nick's stats and experience like always. If Hunter were different in some way, such as extra proficiency riding motorcycles, he would inherently be a more compelling character to play as.
The problem with Chaos Rising is that while it offers up something unique compared to the other two DLCs, it suffers from a weak, unengaging lead character and uninteresting sidequests. What Capcom should have done with these add-ons is meld all these ideas together for a massive single campaign for $10. As it stands after three middling parts, I can firmly say that spending the full $30 for the Season Pass is a waste.
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