Mankind's last stand
While Resistance 3 packs in all the fun alien blasting of its predecessors, this trilogy-closing blockbuster also features the best story in the series to date. Set in an alternate 1957 where mankind has lost the war against an invading alien race known as the Chimera, the game throws you into the role of protagonist Joseph Capelli.
Given one last chance to deliver a potentially knockout blow to the occupying force, you embark on a cross-country journey from Oklahoma to New York to destroy a gargantuan Chimeran tower. A desperate tale of survival against the odds as you battle through a world overrun by mutated monsters, Resistance 3's story is effectively delivered by a range of carefully drawn and scripted characters.
The road trip nature of the story allows for a pleasingly varied range of settings, including an eerie boat ride in foggy Mississippi, and treks through a moonlit blue forest and a deserted metropolis. With a completely overhauled graphics engine, Resistance bleak world is beautiful to look at, and every environment is packed with detail and rich with history.
There are some large open battlefields in Resistance 3, and the game is at its best on the occasions when you're given the chance to explore by entering buildings and climbing rooftops, or to choose from multiple pathways in order to flank the enemy. A significant chunk of the action is fairly linear though, seeing you engage in medium and close-quarters combat as you travel through corridored areas like sewers and subway systems.
Resistance 3 offers plenty of flair in the weapons department, with a mixture of alien and human technology providing some really exotic tools of destruction that help keep the combat varied and engaging. A number of old favourites return, including the Auger, which can shoot through walls, and the Bullseye, which fires bullets that bend around corners.
These are complemented by the likes of the Wildfire, which launches room-clearing cluster bombs and heat-seeking missiles for downing enemy dropships, and the Mutator, which emits a vile green slime that creates exploding boils on the opposition skin.
Each of the weapons boasts a real-time upgrade system that boosts their capabilities the more theye used, and once you find a gun you'll never be forced to discard it because you've run out of inventory space. That's because the weapons wheel from the first game in the series makes a welcome return, allowing you full access to all of the guns you've collected at any time, which is perfect considering the nasties you come up against.
Three's a charm
From regular footsoldiers protected by new flying sentries to mechanical goliaths, Resistance's bugs come in all shapes and sizes. Massive Hulk Chimera charge and maul you if you fail to get out of the way in time, agile new foes dubbed Long Legs leap to great heights to attack from above, while Sniper Hybrids mask their location with cloaking devices. Each has their own strengths and weaknesses, keeping you on your toes at all times.
Having opted to strip the game down to its strongest elements, developer Insomniac has delivered the best title in the Resistance series yet. Blending a gritty story with alien-blasting fun of the highest calibre, it's a technically impressive game featuring varied environments, exotic weapons and gruesome enemies. Even if you didn't enjoy the first two games, if you're a shooter fan you owe it to yourself to give Resistance 3 a shot.
+ Great story.
+ Some stunning visuals.
+ Varied, satisfyingly punchy weapons.
- No regenerative health.
- More open environments would be nice.
- Is this the end for the series?