Forget Call of Duty, Real Men Need the Retro Love: Dino Crisis

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bill-swift - February 12, 2014

You can imagine the scene in that Capcom boardroom in the late nineties. Amid a sea of sensible ‘professional' haircuts and fancy-ass business suits, one dude leaps out of his chair and shrieks:
"How about... Resident Evil crossed with Jurassic Park!?"

Everybody hollers, applauds and daydreams about whipping their pants off and rolling in the huge piles of money this is going to make them. In their undercrackers, apparently.

And, lo, Dino Crisis was born. After all, what the hell else would you name a crisis involving dinosaurs?

So, anywho, the game hit the PlayStation in the Summer of 1999. Three years after the company's seminal shocker, Resident Evil, they were back with another crap-your-pants adventure. With an even more demented plot.

These huge lizard bastards have NO respect for personal space. "Get out of my living room!"

It's a similar, imminent doom-y story. A small band of special agents are sent into a top secret government facility, where all manner of unscrupulous experiments have been going on. They find furious, hungry monsters within that want to chew on their eyeballs. There are deaths, and squishy ones at that. You know how this works.

The twist this time is that said beasts are dinosaurs, displaced in time by the undisclosed research within. We play the part of Regina, a survivor of the hapless heroes of SORT (Secret Operation Raid Team) sent to Ibis Island to investigate. ‘Investigate' with violence, and guns, and general gung-ho-ness. Needless to say, quite the shitstorm is unleashed upon their arrival. From here, Dino Crisis very much follows Capcom's newly-established survival horror template. There are dark corridors to cruise through, ugly-ass things to jump out and loosen your bowels, absurd weaponry to vanquish them with, goretastic violence, everything the Resident Evil fan could want.

Nevertheless, Dino Crisis also has a few tricks of its own. When Regina sustains damage, she begins to leave a trail of blood behind her. This, as you'd expect, is like telling a gathering of fat dudes that there's a buffet in the vicinity, and bodes pretty goddamn ill for the player. Think Jaws, but even bigger and toothier. As such, the use of surgical supplies (the terrifying-looking hemostat in this case) is needed. The game also presents some early instances of QTEs, those darn things that are always bitched about.

"It's not how it looks, officer. This guy... tripped."

The game was brought to us by Shinji Mikami, Mr. Resident Evil, and that's plain throughout. The art style, the gameplay and the concept are all strikingly similar. Naturally, it's rather obscure in comparison to the other ball-bustingly popular franchise, but it's still a classic in its own right.

For terribly-animated nineties dinosaurs, clunky combat and pterodactyls flying into turbines and exploding in a shower of blood, take a look below.

Source of images: gamefaqs.

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