Dead Rising
Overview (cases/scoops) • BooksClothingFoodPsychopathsStoresSurvivorsWeapons

Several features of Dead Rising have been highly criticized by critics and players alike. Although Dead Rising has earned generally positive reviews, most reviewers also agreed the save system, as well as the survivors' AI detracted from the game's enjoyment. IGN stated the game needed "a better save system, more intelligent [Non player characters], a more forgiving story progression, and tighter controls," but still called Dead Rising "one of the more unique and entertaining titles on the Xbox 360."[1]

Survivor artificial intelligenceEdit

One of the main things to do in Dead Rising is to try and save as many survivors as you can, be it from zombies to Psychopaths, however 'try' to save them is the key word here as Dead Rising is notorious for having truly awful A.I when it comes to the survivors. Nearly all the survivors can't be saved thanks to the A.I as they will always let go of Frank's hand if going through a crowd of zombies (or just let go for no apparent reason) or worse they'll stand still while a group of zombies attack and eventually kill them. The A.I turns what should be a simple and fun part of the game into a completely frustrating and down right near impossible task. Capcom staff members assured listeners that the artificial intelligence in Dead Rising 2 would be better, and thankfully the A.I in Dead Rising 2 had indeed improved vastly, and from Dead Rising 2: Case West onward the survivors would be able to make it to Safehouses unattended.[2]

Save systemEdit

Dead Rising has an unusual save system: only one game-in-progress can be saved per memory device per Xbox 360 profile. Whenever the player is killed, Dead Rising allows players to either load from their last save or to save their current level and abilities, then restart the game with their level and abilities applied from the beginning.[3] This system is a deliberate game mechanic, borrowed from the Capcom's role-playing game Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter; the two games share some development team members. The save system was implemented to give players a sense of responsibility for their actions when making various decisions throughout the game.[4]

Most reviewers also agreed the save system detracted from the game's enjoyment.[5]

Gamasutra complained, "I'm bullied into playing the same parts over and over because I feel obligated to restart all the time, and the save points require me to actively seek them out, which means it's very easy to play for an hour or so and forget to save, then die."

"That type of save system may work for hardcore players [but casual players are] just going to quit playing out of frustration. I know I did."[6]

Otis's transceiver Edit

Aside from the awful NPC A.I critics lambasted how persistent the transceiver was when ringing, and how vulnerable Frank is while answering any calls on it. One of the most infamous and frustrating parts of the game would occur whenever Otis Washington would call Frank on the transceiver to give information on side missions, what would have been a usual game mechanic quickly went down in infamy. While using the transceiver Frank is unable to jump, attack, switch weapons, or pick up or use any item. Furthermore, if the call is somehow interrupted (such as being attacked), the call will end abruptly, only for the transceiver to ring a few seconds later. If Frank answers, Otis will scold the player for being rude, then start the previous call over from the very beginning.[7][8] Numerous gamer-oriented webcomics and blogs attacked the use of the transceiver within Dead Rising.[9][10][11] The Australian video game talk show Good Game's two reviewers gave the game a 6/10 and 7/10.[12]

In Dead Rising 2 the way the transceiver is used has thankfully been redone, as now "the radio system has been much improved. Getting a call adds a short info blurb to Chuck's wristwatch...which can be checked with the touch of a button. You will not receive any more long annoying calls from Otis, which is a blessing to anyone who had to take one of his agonizingly slow calls while surrounded by zombies."[13] Along with this Dead Rising 2: Off the Record would replace the transceiver with a portable ear piece, making communication even easier than before.

Difficulty reading text Edit

Dead Rising has drawn complaints from gamers that have standard definition sets and smaller high definition sets for having difficulty reading the on-screen text. This is due to Capcom's decision to develop exclusively for high-definition televisions, as the game had been touted as one of the first truly "next generation" titles available for the Xbox 360. On August 10, 2006, a Capcom representative posted the following on

Dear Everyone, I have heard your concerns and passed them to every source within Capcom possible. I feel your pain as I, myself, have a large SDTV and am having trouble reading the mission objectives, item names, etc.

Unfortunately it does take time to resolve any issue and we would want to fix the issue appropriately as any changes to any game can create additional problems from the result of change; that's just how game programming works and that's why games go through extensive game testing programs and approvals.[14]

A week later, Capcom released a statement saying they would not be fixing the problem and suggested some DIY solutions:

Unfortunately Dead Rising was optimized for High Definition TV's. Due to this, the font in the game might be difficult to read on standard definition TV's. If you are having a hard time reading the text, please try the following: 1). Adjust the settings on your TV or monitor. 2). Try using component cables instead of standard composite. 3). Setting the TV to widescreen ratio (even though you may not have a widescreen TV) may help in some cases.[15]

Using a computer monitor is also a solution to the problem, as the Xbox 360 supports a number of common monitor resolutions high enough to render the text readable.[16]

While the small text within Dead Rising was not to be fixed, Capcom responded quickly to avoid similar criticism on the same issue for their next major Xbox 360 game, Lost Planet: Extreme Condition. When the demo was released in late 2006, it also had significant amounts of small text, and responding to these complaints, Capcom adjusted the game prior to release to detect the use of a standard TV and increased the font size as needed.[17]


The MKR Group, who holds the copyright to both the 1978 Dawn of the Dead film and its 2004 remake, sent letters on February 6, 2008 to Capcom, Microsoft, and Best Buy, claiming that Dead Rising infringes on the copyrights and trademarks of these films. In a complaint filed February 12, 2008, to seek an injunction that would pre-emptively counter an anticipated complaint from MKR, Capcom asserted that "humans battling zombies in a shopping mall" is a "wholly unprotectable idea" under today's copyright laws; Capcom further pointed to the warning "label" on the box cover as a preemptive measure that was intended to separate the game from the films and avoid any customer confusion.[18] [19] The MKR Group subsequently filed a lawsuit in February 2008 after failing to reach an agreement with Capcom over the dispute.[20]

The lawsuit was dismissed in October 2008, with United States Magistrate Judge Richard G. Seeborg stating that MKR failed to demonstrate the similarity of any protected element of Dawn of the Dead to that of Dead Rising, with many of the elements MKR claimed were similar being part of the "wholly unprotectable concept of humans battling zombies in a mall during a zombie outbreak".[21]

See alsoEdit


  1. Onyett, Charles (2006-02-17). "Dead Rising Hands On: You've got 72 hours to murder the dead". IGN Entertainment. Retrieved 2008-01-08.
  2. Kollar, Phil. Special Edition Podcast: Dead Rising 2, gameinformer, (May 18, 2010).
  3. This option is offered due to one of the factors that when the player is in the early stages of leveling Frank, some of the challenges and bosses may be proven too difficult to complete till a higher level is reached. The difficulty of this depends on the player's own skill level.
  4. Mielke, James (2006-04-08). "1UP reviews Dead Rising". 1UP. Retrieved 2008-01-08.
  5. Dead Rising, Wikipedia.
  6. Sirlin, David. Saving the Day: Save Systems in Games, Gamasutra, (September 1, 2008).
  7. Ahearn, Nate "NateDog" (2006-08-06). "Dead Rising Review (Xbox 360)". Team Xbox. Retrieved 2007-04-03.
  8. Martins, Andrew "Warlock". "Dead Rising — Xbox 360 Review". XGP. Retrieved 2007-04-03.
  9. Ramsoomair, Scott. "You've got Red on you". VG Cats. Retrieved 2008-01-08.
  10. Buckley, Tim (2006-08-12). "Steve's Day at the Mall Pt. 4". Ctrl+Alt+Del. Retrieved 2008-01-09.
  11. Parsons, Zack "Geist Editor" (2006-08-11). "Otis Rising". Something Awful. Retrieved 2008-01-09.
  12. "Good Game stories - Dead Rising and Caesar IV". Australian Broadcasting Corporation (2006-10-10).
  13. DeAngelus, Chris PS3/X360/PC Preview - 'Dead Rising 2', Worth Playing, (June 19, 2010).
  14. Gauger, Eliza (2006-08-11). "Capcom Responds to Tinytext Dead Rising Whining". Gawker Media. Retrieved 2008-01-08.
  15. Kuo, Li C. (2006-08-17). "Capcom Tips For Dead Rising on SDTV". IGN Entertainment. Retrieved 2008-01-08.
  16. "Xbox 360: Video Cable Comparisons". CNET Networks, Inc.. Retrieved 2008-01-08.
  17. Sinclair, Brendan (2006-12-28). "Capcom addressing Lost Planet text issue". CNET Networks, Inc.. Retrieved 2008-01-08.
  19. Capcom Sues to End Dead Rising Trademark Dispute
  20. Producer, game firm in rights battle over zombies
  21. Dead Rising wins copyright case
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.