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November 10, 1999 - Image 9

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1999-11-10

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

'Nemesis' advances 'Evil'
with elegant zombie story

The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, November 10, 1999 - 9
Mindless 'Roswell'
worsens teen genre

esident Evil 3:
mesas
Capdom
Playstation
The "Resident Evil" series is something of a
juggernaut. "Nemesis" is its third complete
installment, with a fourth due early next year for
the Dreamcast, and new versions of old games due
on the Gameboy and Nintendo 64 forthwith.
'Nemesis" is an advancement in the series' sto-
r*ling. For the first time, the characterization
atid voice acting seem like they were made by peo-
plevho have more training than your average pub-
lic access cable producer. This is especially evi-
def because you play as Jill Valentine, one of the
characters from the first Resident Evil where lines
on the order of "Here is a lockpick Jill, because
you are the master of unlocking" came standard.
In their stead are mostly good bits of dialog, and
the game mocks itself when it presents a bad line.
Wen a character says "All the hot ladies love my
a nt," he is responded to like the idiot he obvi-
ously is being.
The game's plot is cohesive independent of the
other games, but a certain familiarity with the oth-
ers might be good for exposition. Because your
character knows what's going on, a newcomer
rk1 ".tvn ren d imn rn t hint n intc like

The hulking "Nemesis" of the title is well
explained by the end of the game, and even from
early on it's explained why he's constantly saying
"S.TA.R.S." as incessantly as if it meant an evil
malicious Pokemon that shoots rockets at you.
There is a balance, but that entails some material
on the bad side.
To complicate matters, the story begins before
the events in "Resident Evil 2" and ends after them.
You even visit shme of the sets from "Resident Evil
2," leaving a comrade to make a secret appearance
in the previous game. This does avoid the problem
of explaining the second game, because those
events are going on simultaneously and so require
no knowledge by a player for understanding. Atthe
same time, knowing what is going on parallel will
add to the story line for "Resident Evil" veterans.
Between internal coherence and cross game inte-
gration, "Nemesis" is as elegant as a zombie story
can be.
The game's engine is now strong enough to pro-
vide background voices that add to the story. You
can hear the voices of your enemies staying one
step ahead of you and the screams of the people
you can't save from the undead wandering the
streets of Raccoon City. Special effects like water
spurting out of broken pipes and gnats buzzing
around lights also add to the experience. But
"Resident Evil" seems to have reached an impasse
as far as the Playstation goes. "Nemesis" contin-
ues to take mace only in shadow; it is easier to

light.
The Playstation just can't process well enough
to make zombies look good in light. Or at least
Capcom's team can't make it do so. Last year
Konami's "Silent Hill" was creepy yet had plenty
of light flooding through it.
"Nemesis" also suffers from the pre-assigned
camera angles that have plagued the standard
bearer of survival horror since its inception. Its
value as a cinematic device is becoming increas-
ingly outweighed by the irritation involved in
being unable to see what you are firing on or if
you walk one step forward if something will nib-
ble on your throat. Hopefully these problems will
be resolved as the technology progresses; the com-
ing Dreamcast game "Resident Evil Code
Veronica" will tell the world if Capcom is willing
to keep their stories together and fix some
ingrained problems. Until then, "Nemesis" will do
fine.

By Anika Kohon
Daily ArtsWriter
"Roswell, 285 South" airs this
Wednesday night at 9 p.m. on the WB.
This show is yet another of the WB
teen dramas, the bastard love-child of
"Scooby Doo" and "The X-Files" It is
perhaps the worst display of inane tele-
vision to assault the free world in-quite
a long time. With bad self-reflexive
cliches and thin
plot lines, there is
hardly any reason
to justify its exis-
RosWell tence. There are
little green aliens
No Stars popping up all
over the place,
The pm. and there is even
Wedesayat pm. a diner called
C rash d own
with a spaceship
sign. "Wiggle
your nose, blink
your eyes. Do
the Samantha-
Jeannie alien thing," Maria tells
Michael. The allusions to "Bewitched"
and "I Dream of Jeannie" only insult
these far superior programs by trying
to align the "Roswell" premise with
theirs.
It is conceivable the show is trying
to be clever by appealing to she uni-
versal teenage sense of "alienation"
from their parents and others, but it
does not work. Maria and Michael
bond because they are both looking for
something better than Roswell. But
seriously, how could anyone identify
with a group of one-dimensional, uno-
riginal characters? Maybe for those
who need YM surveys to discover their
personalities, ("Are you a gossip'?")
this showe offers some entertainment.
Certainly, anyone above the age of i0
would have to be smoking something
pretty strong to bessurprised by any of

mtght not understan important pot points, 1K ctVWUpia, ai l iavr LL ,0
what exactly is the evil bio-corporation Umbrella. program something spooky in darkness than in -Ted Mas
vest of late-night Sandler appears on DVD
By~atthew Barrett '90s. Fans of the Sand-man can four different Opera Man skits, a "Lunchlady Land." Along with the
Daily Arts Writer recapture his late-night glory in the turn as an Gap employee and a song, we get a live reenactment of its
"I am the smartest man alive!" newly released DVD "Saturday wicked riff on Bruce Springsteen's story (revolution in the lunchroom)
Well not quite, but Adam Sandler has Night Live: The Best of Adam "Dancing In The Dark afeaturingthe late Chris Farley as the
carved out a nice little niche for him- Sand.er." Sand.er also performs a few of his Lunhlady and a bevy of dancing
satf in the world of movies with his The DVD contains 20 different more popular songs including "Red foods.
unique brand of goosball comedy. sketches involving Sandler from his Fooded Sweatshirt" and "Chanukah So throsv on your favorite sweat-
Before he blew up on the big screen years on "SNL, and the material, Song." tiles, grab a plate of slop, sloppy
in."The Waterboy" and "Big Daddy' like much of his work in movies, But all these moments pale in joes and check out some of Sandler's
ler was a staple on "Saturday ranges from very lame to very funny. comparison to she highlight of the best work. The Sand-man shall not
t Live" for much of the early Some of the better moments include disc, a rousing rendition of leave you disappointed.

Jason Behr and Shirt Appleby star In
"Roswell," another Inane teen drama.
she plot twists.
In "285 South" the three aliens go
out in search of a dome from Michael's
visions with their two human compan-
ions. Michael kidnaps Maria, steals her
car, throws her cell phone out the win-
dow, and predictably, she comes to his
aid when they are pulled over. Of
course, the car breaks down right next
to a motel, adding to the sexual tension,
surprising no one. If you're not nau-
seous yet, this motel happens to be right
near the broken-down semi blocking
the road so that Liz, Max and Isabel can
walk when Maria is on top of Michael.
(And all of this on a school night!)
Adding to the dramatic tension, Liz's
possessive ex-boyfriend and a police
officer are in pursuit.
The dome turns out to be a hippie-
commune-looking structure with a
"isecret passage:' and Michael needs
Maria's belief and support to locate the
secret passage. One will not be sur-
prised wher, these two hate each other
again next week, though. It is this kind
of predictable, formulaic plot structure
that makes this show just another failed
attempt to attract an audience.

s., 1.
Oh, nothing.
0,,r h(
1 was just about to listen
to my new...er...brahma CO.
You?
7.
f

rizons

~pr
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