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Dead Rising 2: Case 0 Review - Fear The Drill Bucket!

Jonathan Lester
Case 0, Dead Rising 2, Dead Rising 2: Case 0, Drill Bucket!, XBLA, Xbox 360 games
Xbox 360

Dead Rising 2: Case 0 Review - Fear The Drill Bucket!

Platforms: XBLA (400MSP)

Developer: Blue Castle Games

Publisher: Capcom

Dead Rising 2 is set to release later this month, but Xbox 360 owners can now get an exclusive head start on the proceedings. Before making his way to Fortune City, stuntman Chuck and his daughter Katey find themselves stranded in the sleepy small town of Still Creek... that's now awash with hordes of slavering undead. With nothing save his wits and the massive amount of wieldable objects cluttering up the place, Chuck will need to step up to the plate and discover a way out before it's too late. Or, you know, just inventively throw down on scores of zombies with common household objects whilst wearing a gingham dress, cackling insanely all the while. Whatever floats your boat.

Dead Rising 2: Case 0 Review - Fear The Drill Bucket!

Cue insane cackling.

The principle and premise will be instantly familiar to fans of the original. Chuck has to escape the town in a tight time limit, killing zombies and rescuing survivors for persistent experience and different endings. The small town has a fair few shops that provide hilarious props and clothes to enrich the experience, and even an actual pawnshop that vends useful items and hints. That's right: cash money is now extremely important part of the Dead Rising experience, and can be used to secure essential gear or partake in a little gambling.

Between sallying forth for parts to assemble a makeshift getaway vehicle, you'll also need to take care of Katey. She requires constant Zombrex injections every 12 hours, meaning that you'll constantly need to keep an eye on the clock and forage for the controversial drug in between dealing with the major objectives. Her voice acting is truly awful and the premise is actually shaping up to be more than a little annoying... though we'll hold out for the full game before making an assessment.

Dead Rising 2: Case 0 Review - Fear The Drill Bucket!

Small town hospitality at its finest...

The combat can be mastered by simply hammering the X button, though holding it down occasionally triggers a context-senitive heavy attack. Luckily, the new combo weapons system really kicks things up a notch. Workbenches are scattered around the town and allow Chuck to assemble some ridiculously powerful weapons by combining a huge selection of items. Molotovs, spiky baseball bats and a hilarious beer hat make light work of tough situations... but quiver in fear, pathetic undead, for I have discovered the ultimate equaliser. Combining a household bucket with a power drill creates a cranial iron maiden, that literally drills a zombie's brains out when placed on their head. All hail the drill bucket. On a serious note, creating a combo item grants you a card that allows it to be replicated later- as well as extra experience for using it.

Dead Rising 2: Case 0 Review - Fear The Drill Bucket!

As always, deranged psychopaths provide serious opposition. On the other hand... you'll get to make his "boomstick"afterwards...

The town is fairly small, but actually manages to pack a lot in. It's a lot more vertical than the mall, with exporable rooftops and alleys adding a literal extra dimension to the proceedings. There are survivors to find, cool weapons to try out and a surprising amount to explore. Most gratifyingly, experience and combo cards will be carried over to Dead Rising 2, meaning that you can start with (up to) a level 5 advantage from the get-go. The time limit is extremely tight, but with an insane level of replayability and persistent charcter upgrades, this is an absolute bargain for 400 Microsoft Points.


  • Surprisingly detailed town and backstory
  • Home made combo weapons make for epic kills. Go Drill Bucket!
  • Massively replayable zombie destruction and transferable experience for 400 MSP? Bargain.


  • Restrictive time limit
  • Fairly long load times
  • Katey is one of the most annoying game characters in recent memory

The Short Version: Case 0 offers a bite-sized yet meaty chunk of Dead Rising 2 action. It's a capable and fun little game in its own right, with a plethora of laugh-out-loud moments and plenty of the inventiveness that the franchise is famed for. It's a must-buy for fans of the series and well worth checking out by casual fans who want to see what all the fuss is about.

Dead Rising 2: Case 0 Review - Fear The Drill Bucket!

Add a comment4 comments
StauntonLick  Sep. 2, 2010 at 16:33

I played the demo of this last night and was hugely disappointed - my impressions were:

- AAA standard of presentation
- Erm...
- Cheap!

- Incredibly shallow, single-button combat that gets boring very quickly.
- Annoying controls that often see you swinging a weapon into thin air next to a group of zombies, or picking up and dropping items at inopportune times!
- Irritating and persistent cutscenes with utterly irrelevant back story.
- Screen-obscuring HUD full of unnecessary information that stays on screen the entire time.
- Stick-waggling to break free from zombie grips - thanks, I'd rather not fuck my controller up.
- You can complete the demo by simply running in a straight line through the zombies.

Essentially, Capcom have managed to make a game where battering a zombie to death with a rolled-up newspaper is boring - that's quite an achievement.

Jonathan Lester  Sep. 2, 2010 at 18:28

It's great to see you guys weighing in on the reviews. More second opinions, please!

These are all genuine grievances- though they can also all be levelled at the original Dead Rising. In fact, many of them are actually plus points depending on your point of view (e.g. one man's accessible and visceral combat is another man's shallow one-button combat). Dead Rising 2 is shaping up to be a real marmite game- and I'm glad you brought this up.

Andy  Sep. 7, 2010 at 14:41

400 MS points seems quite a lot for a glorified demo to a rather shallow looking game.

Damn that sounds pretentious. I best go talk about how Limbo an Braid are "art" now...

LanceVance  Sep. 7, 2010 at 17:24

@StauntonLick, I agree with some of your comments. The HUD is a pain and the load times are shite! The combat is better than the first and new moves will be opened up in the main game as you progress. Frank in the first game went form gaybo photographer at the start to hard as nails bastard at the end. I defy anyone to finish the game properly by just running in a straight line. I have enjoyed the little taste of whats to come in the main game. I think the new combo weapons (stabbing zombies with a garden fork then blowing them to chunks with a shotty) are great and cant wait for my preorder to turn up! Just my 2 pence worth.

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