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Dead Rising Remaster Keeps the Most Important Part of the Original Intact

Frank West is back in action.

Dead Rising Deluxe Remaster

When you think of Capcom and zombies Resident Evil is likely what springs to mind, but there used to be another series you’d think of too. Eighteen years ago Capcom released a masterpiece with Dead Rising, a fascinating, frictional, and systems-heavy, game that put you smack dab in the middle of a mall during the zombie apocalypse. It’s the ultimate zombie-slaying fantasy, and now Capcom’s Dead Rising Deluxe Remaster is giving the classic a gorgeous fresh coat of paint. What’s crucial, however, is that the frictional systems at the heart of Dead Rising are being kept entirely intact. In other words, it’s the best decision Capcom could have possibly made.

The latest Capcom presentation divulged a wealth of details on the Deluxe Remaster, starting with how the core systems of the game haven’t changed, but quality-of-life changes have been applied.

When Dead Rising released in 2006 its most notorious feature was the time limit. In-game Frank West has 72 hours to make it out of the mall and solve the conspiracy going on, which translates to just over 6 hours of real-time. Your time is ticking away every moment you play the game, and it’s vitally important to keep track of the time limit on quests, survivors, and more. The choices you make can result in survivors getting eliminated by zombies, or even lock out entire story sections, or keep you from completing the game in general. Because of this, Dead Rising was a highly replayable experience, one where you focused on learning the shortcuts of the mall, planned your schedule, and knew the best places to pick up weapons or healing items.

The time limit added an incredible amount of friction to Dead Rising, making it feel like every single choice you make matters, how you spend every minute is vital. It gave Dead Rising such an incredible amount of personality, especially when coupled with the game’s janky combat and delightful sense of humor, and American mall aesthetic.

The time system was intrinsically tied to Dead Rising’s identity, and that’s something that later games in the franchise didn’t realize until it was too late. That’s exactly what makes it heartening to see that the Dead Rising Deluxe Remaster isn’t altering the time limit system whatsoever.

Dead Rising has been completely rebuilt using the RE Engine, the same engine uses in the Resident Evil remakes.


Instead, the quality-of-life changes are intended to make the gameplay surrounding those systems smoother and more intuitive. The two big ones are an auto-save function and the fact that Frank can move while aiming. Yes, those are both things not featured in the original Dead Rising, a game that came out a year after Resident Evil 4, which also didn’t let Leon move while aiming.

But at the same time, Capcom clearly wants to retain the “janky” feel of Dead Rising’s gameplay. That aspect was also vital as the cartoony way that both zombies and your character moved added a sense of deliberateness to every action.

During the presentation, art director Satoshi Takamatsu states, “For character animations we tried to limit unnecessary changes and use the original data as much as possible, especially during action scenes. We could’ve made them more realistic with today’s tools, but we wanted to preserve the unique and comical moments that made the original Dead Rising so special.”

Dead Rising was a real product of its time, a game that’s ambitious and janky, and better for it. The remaster looks like it’s perfectly keeping that spirit alive.


Everything Capcom has shown about the Dead Rising Deluxe Remaster suggests that the development team really “gets” what made the original such a unique gem. It’s fascinating to see Dead Rising finally come back in full form, just months after Capcom launched Dragon’s Dogma 2 to tremendous success — another game heavy on systems and friction.

It also can’t be overstated how the company has been on a roll with remakes and remasters, between the Resident Evil remakes, Ace Attorney Collections, Mega Man Battle Network Legacy Collection, the upcoming Marvel vs Capcom Fighting Collection, and more. There’s no other video game publisher consistently rereleasing or reimaging its past catalog with such high quality, and a whole new generation is about to experience one of the most important zombie games of all time.

Dead Rising Deluxe Remaster launches on September 18 for PS5, Xbox Series X|S, and PC.

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