When Resident Evil Collides With Jurassic Park, Primeval Terror Lurks!
Shinji Mikami, the creator of the first three Resident Evil games, has made several other games away from the series to keep things fresh for horror games. One new concept Mikami came up with was Dino Crisis. Instead of zombies or monstrous bioweapons, the main threat in the game are different species of dinosaurs. Dino Crisis was brought into conception after the recent release of the Lost World: Jurassic Park.
The premise of Dino Crisis follows Regina, a special forces member of a secret agency and her team landing on Ibis Island, where an experiment goes wrong and dinosaurs took over the facility, hunting and killing many of the scientists in the area. Regina must navigate around dinosaur threats like velociraptors and the tyrannosaurus rex while searching for a man named Dr Kirk and uncovering the mystery of the experiment.
The dinosaurs featured in Dino Crisis are based on the look and behavior from the Jurassic Park films. The velociraptors were large and scaly, while being swift and intelligent. They can even pursue Regina from room to room and hunt in groups. The raptors were made to be smart enemies compared to the zombies of Resident Evil. Another major threat is the T-Rex, the largest dinosaur in the game. It appears through the story events as a recurring boss fight that can’t be killed, only repelled or evaded.
The gameplay of Dino Crisis is similar to Resident Evil and can be seen as a spiritual successor that takes the basic Survival Horror gameplay and just changes some minor things around it. Some differences include how Regina aims her weapons while moving away or closer to targets compared to Resident Evil characters. Inventory management is only strict to how many of one item the player can carry.
Dino Crisis has a robust customization system where healing items and tranquilizer darts can be mixed with other stronger items to make even more effective items. Tranquilizer darts can be mixed and upgraded into poison darts that can one hit kill the dangerous velociraptors that stalk Regina. Taking weaker items and upgrading them into these stronger tools is a big part of improving Regina’s arsenal.
Aside from the darts there are also handgun bullets, shotgun shells, and grenade ammunition to find in the environment to defend against dinosaurs. These supplies are rare and the best way to keep stock is to use plugs found in the environment to access item boxes. These item boxes are all over the facility and can be used at any time once unlocked to take and store items throughout the game.
Dino Crisis has two separate story branches that change the gameplay by having Regina is caught between making a choice to agree with one of her teammates, Rick and Gail. Rick prefers to think of different ways to accomplish objectives. Gail is a ruthless soldier that goes into the action no matter the cost. If Regina sides with Gail, there will be more action sequences dealing with the dinosaurs while siding with Rick keeps her away from the action but she’ll do several complex puzzles in the facility.
Dino Crisis is a great addition to the survival horror genre with an engaging story full of intrigue and suspense. Regina is a great character and is one of many female protagonists that left a lasting impression in horror games. The decent success of Dino Crisis earned it a direct sequel, a spin off, and a distant sequel. Dino Crisis is a must buy game that deserves the remake treatment that many Resident Evil games received.
Dino Crisis (1999) Official Trailer