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Resistance: Burning Skies review

The Vita’s first FPS falls short

For

  • Decent weapon variety
  • but not up to Resistance standards
  • Multiplayer is somewhat entertaining
  • but offers nothing special
  • Survival mode is fun

Against

  • Uneventful story mode
  • Sound effects are sub-par and unpolished
  • Clunky controls

The Resistance series has made an impression on the FPS genre with its unique array of weapons, memorable setpieces, and engaging multiplayer. The series continues on the PS Vita, making use of the system’s dual analog sticks and touch capabilities with Resistance: Burning Skies. Unfortunately, Vita’s first FPS doesn't hold up to the caliber of previous Resistance games.

Resistance: Burning Skies starts at the beginning of the Chimera invasion of North America. You play as Tom Riley, a New York City fire fighter who encounters the alien threat on the job, in the middle of a burning building. After leaving his wife and daughter during the initial chaos to help hold back the incoming Chimera, Riley helps the Resistance on his way to reunite with his family.

This all sounds like a good start to another epic story, but nothing particularly substantial happens during the five hour long campaign. Throughout, the narrative feels glazed-over and rushed, and Burning Skies takes limited time to familiarize players with the characters. Riley’s instant transition from common, civilian firefighter to freedom fighting, alien butt-kicker gives him no character whatsoever. He’s just a hollow vessel for a campaign that feels like a glorified shooting gallery.

But a shooting gallery shouldn’t be much of a problem, given the series’ history -- under Insomniac Games -- of inventive weapons. There are some staples that make a return, like the wall piercing Auger, the military Carbine, and the bullet homing Bullseye. But if you were looking for new, innovative weapons, you’ll have to look elsewhere. The weapons roster is disappointingly generic for a Resistance title. You won’t be jumping on any mounted turrets or experiencing any mind blowing setpieces either. The action basically boils down to finding cover and taking pot shots until all the Chimera are dead.

The action also doesn’t get much of a boost from the sound effects, which lack polish and realism. Burning Skies’ gunfire misses the feeling of heft when squeezing off some high caliber rounds and gives no real weight to the action. Automatic weapons sound more like firecrackers than flesh-shredding gunshots and the sound of explosions just feel empty. Ammo pickups from dropped weapons sounds more like Riley munching on a bag of potato chips than grabbing a magazine full of bullets and loading a clip. Most notably, in some cutscenes, there were specific instances in which the sound effect for explosions or for getting smacked by a massive Executioner Chimera failed to play, leaving us disoriented and confused as to what was going on as we tumbled to the next checkpoint.

More Info

GenreShooter
DescriptionResistance: Burning Skies starts at the beginning of the Chimera invasion of North America. You play as Tom Riley, a New York City fire fighter who encounters the alien threat on the job, in the middle of a burning building. After leaving his wife and daughter during the initial chaos to help hold back the incoming Chimera, Riley helps the Resistance on his way to reunite with his family.
PlatformPS Vita
US censor ratingMature
UK censor rating
Release date:29 May 2012 (US), (UK)
Available platforms:PS Vita
Genre:Shooter
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