For the release of the Xbox One, Capcom is debuting a new entry into their mass zombie killing series with Dead Rising 3. A significant shift in the series direction, Dead Rising 3 doesn't just continue the franchise’s practice of swapping out its player characters, but this entry also marks the end of its campy/slightly cartoony feel.
Described by the developers during their hands-off theater presentation on the floor of E3 2013, Dead Rising 3 is a “more mature and sophisticated game” with a “darker, more serious horror vibe” than its predecessors. In the load-time-free open-world that is the zombie overrun city of Los Perdidos a young mechanic with a mysterious past, Nick Ramos must use his skills and what ever is at hand to beat back the hoards of the undead, three days after the outbreak hit that took down much of humanity.
If by 'more mature and sophisticated' the developers meant a more bleak landscape than the colorful shopping mall and the Vegas stand-in of previous games they definitely got what they wanted (though eagle-eyed attendees could spot a ServBot head/mask sitting on the sink in one location). As the demo progresses Los Perdidos shows itself to be a ruin that fits in better with The Walking Dead than how a Dead Rising title typically looks, but the improved power of the Xbox One did let them show off the on-screen unique zombie count has been multiplied and how the hoard has been enhanced with new behaviors. Zombies, if they detect Nick (or any sound) will start to push their way though the environment to reach him including breaking though glass and entering buildings though any opening.
Since the world is larger, at least four times bigger than Dead Rising 2, driving takes more importance and both the environment and zombies are constantly hampering your attempts to get from A to B vehicularly. Zombies can now latch onto moving cars, hampering their performance and can even attempt to drag you out of a car while it is in motion.
Fortunately Zombies aren't the only ones with upgrades, as Nick doesn't need a workbench to create combo weapons (thanks to the story reason of him being a mechanic), just a few moments of time anywhere and the necessary ingredients; he really doesn't need those either as the new RPG style attribute point system allows him to choose a skill that lets him use any item in the same class as the necessary one as a replacement. At the scattered safe houses Nick also has access to a weapon locker and a clothes cabinet that will store any items he fins in the world. If you’ve picked up a chicken costume or an assault rifle in one location, they’ll be available at later safe houses. The RPG system extends to weapon blueprints, which serve as mini-quests, attribute points to help you out, and like in past editions, quest givers to help you on your way.
As the development team made they way though a ruined hotel, Chinatown and a graveyard they described the features of the game's SmartGlass compatibility. Using a second screen device you can find and mark locations of shops in the area and even call down assistance from the military including a hoard-butchering aerial machine gun strike or a devastating artillery barrage.
To wrap-up the demo, Capcom showed off the whole map, four large districts in the city, again reiterating the promise of no loading anywhere on the map, even between districts
Dead Rising 3, an Xbox One exclusive, will be out November 2013 as a launch title.
Additional reporting by Lucas Siegel