Zombies in the Navy: Don't ask, don't tell.
The life of a zombie must really suck. I mean, your body is constantly decomposing
and parts of you are falling off left and right. On top of that, everyone you
meet either runs from you or blasts your head off with a shotgun, making for a
really tough social life. Yup, being one of the undead definitely sucks.
has unleashed a new breed of zombie with their latest horror adventure title,
Carrier. The game takes place aboard the Heimdal, an aircraft carrier
that has picked up a mysterious prehistoric organism know only as ARK. Unfortunately,
ARK breaks loose and begins to infect the crew, turning them into tentacle headed
zombies and other creatures of the dark. Players initially take on the role
of Jack Ingles, member of an elite combat team sent to find out what's going
on. After completing Jack's scenario, players get to experience a slightly different
game from his partner, Jessifer's viewpoint. [Jessifer? ~Ed]
Carrier's basic design is similar to that of Resident
Evil, so you gamers should have no problem jumping right in. What separates
Carrier from other survival horror titles is the use of the BEM-T3 scope.
Since some of the infected crew members still look human, this handy scope gives
you the power to distinguish between who's safe and who's about to rip your
head off. The scope also gives you the ability to see in the dark. Trust me,
you'll be using this handy little toy a lot. While the concept is pretty cool,
you don't really need the scope to tell you who's a zombie and who's not. Most
zombies stumble toward you at top zombie-speed and can't wait to take a bite
out of your precious hide. The humans just kind of stand there like cows in
a pasture. With this in mind, the scope just becomes a tool for seeing in the
ever present dark. Still, pretty cool though.
Carrier's atmosphere is definitely done right. The game is complete
with your scary ambient sounds and that eerie music that just screams "There's
a zombie around the corner!!!" The backgrounds of the game are crisp and clean.
It's also dark and I do mean pitch black. There is even one point in the game
where the whole screen goes completely black. While the darkness does add greatly
to the scare factor, I found it to be annoying when the main character was barely
visible. Too bad you can't move with your super scope on. One definite problem
was that the zombies really aren't that scary. Don't expect to freak out any
of your friends with this one, boys and girls.
control system of Carrier is actually a pleasant surprise. Movement is
easy and combat isn't a chore. While aiming your weapon, characters have a full
range of motion and can actually target various body parts of enemies. Hmmm...
Carrier is a generally linear game that doesn't really keep sending
you back to places already visited. This setup keeps things simple and keeps
the game from becoming repetitive. Also, the puzzles that must be solved aren't
overly complex, making the game fun instead of frustrating.
The cut scenes aren't bad and help move the story along nicely. Each time
you happen upon a friendly face, the video kicks in and updates the situation.
Nothing spectacular, but still helps the gaming experience. A funny thing about
the cut scenes is the difference between the speech and mouth movements. If
you've ever watched those dubbed, old-school Chinese kung-fu movies like Super
Ninjas or Wu Tang you know exactly what I mean. The voice acting isn't the greatest,
but it does get the job done without making the characters sound too stupid.
One small complaint I have is the lack of variety with weapons and other items.
Action adventure games usually provide a large assortment of weapons to unleash
upon the forces of evil. A flame thrower to light up the dark and cook some
zombie burgers would have been nice, but alas, plain handguns and machine guns
will have to do.
Some people may call Carrier just a Resident Evil wannabe, but
in truth, Jaleco's latest has just enough originality in it to stand on its
own. While it is definitely no RE, the Carrier experience is a
good one that will tide you horror adventure fans over until Codename Veronica