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Video Game / Resident Evil: Outbreak

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Resident Evil Outbreak, along with its sequel Outbreak File #2, are online entries in the Resident Evil series exclusively for the PlayStation 2, first released in 2003.

Both games take place during the Raccoon City viral outbreak covered in Resident Evil 2 and 3 centering on how an octet of normal citizens — Kevin Ryman, Mark Wilkins, Jim Chapman, David King, George Hamilton, Cindy Lennox, Alyssa Ashcroft, and Yoko Suzuki — react to the disaster, along with their efforts to escape the city safely. The biggest point of interest is that it's a classic style Resident Evil (aka tank controls, fixed camera angles and inventory management) but with online coop capabilities, meaning several people can work together to try to survive.

They really don't have a singular overarching story, per se, and instead are presented as a series of short scenarios which pit a group of characters in a location and task them with following its story to the conclusion and subsequent escape. These games' place in the canon is often the subject of dispute, due to the fact that they need to accommodate all eight characters, as well as contradictions present in these titles compared to the primary series.

Notable in that Capcom made a conscious decision not to implement voice chat capability, to try and keep the game "in character" (they didn't want a man's voice coming out of Yoko, for example) and also to ramp up the tension. It's arguable whether they succeeded in this venture or not, and a rather moot point anyway now that it's officially restricted to offline play only, which itself is restricted to single player with AI-controlled partners: Capcom shut down the American servers in December 2007 and the Japanese servers in June 2011. Unofficially, however, undeterred fans have reversed engineered the game and created fan servers for the Japanese versions of both Outbreak and File# 2.

The first Outbreak sold very well, mostly due to popularity of the Resident Evil brand. By the time File #2 came out, word had gotten out about the game's many bizarre design decisions, in addition to Resident Evil 4 stealing most of the game's spotlight. Despite being a large improvement in both stage designs and controls, including the addition of auto-aim and strafing, File #2 sold very poorly and seems to have ended the series.

In June 2011, the Outbreak brand was revived as a social network-based game known as Outbreak Survive. In it, players cooperate to solve puzzles and share items. It was also an Allegedly Free Game, free to play, but items could be purchased with real life funds.

Black Command, an iOS and Android game that was released in 2018 has Rodriguez as a hired mercenary, part of a Resident Evil collaboration event that started from December 26, 2018 to January 10, 2019.

See also Left 4 Dead, which is this game's Spiritual Successor, and Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City, which escalates the Co-Op Multiplayer introduced in the mainline fifth and sixth game to a full-fledged four-man squad. The Resistance mode introduced in Resident Evil 3 (Remake) also takes some cues from Outbreak in the form of average citizens having to escape from Umbrella's bio-weapons, albeit as an Asymmetric Multiplayer game with another player controlling an antagonist.

These games provide examples of:

  • Abandoned Hospital: Twice. One is featured in the Hive scenario in the first game, while another one is featured in the Flashback scenario in File #2.
  • Action Survivor: The eight Raccoon City citizens since they forced to survive during the T-Virus outbreak in Raccoon City.
  • All Webbed Up: If certain conditions are met, a PC can get webbed up in a giant moth abduction during the Below Freezing Point scenario in File #1. The result is a short video sequence worth extra points and several seconds of Controllable Helplessness before one can break free, at the cost of being poisoned.
  • All There in the Manual: The "BIOHAZARD OUTBREAK FILE 2 GRAND BIBLE" guidebook contains some details not found in the game, including stats for the creatures and a few bits of character backstory.
  • Amazing Technicolour Population: The Optional Boss Tyrant C has light purple skin.
  • And Then John Was a Zombie:
    • In the Bad Ending, the player character can turn into a zombie while escaping by helicopter in the first Outbreak. Said characters also show up as zombies in certain scenarios in both installments.
    • If players are killed by the Leech Man, they'll reanimate as more Leech Zombies.
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: Handled differently from the mainline titles. The player has to collect various articles of clothing before they get the chance use a character's alternate outfit.
  • Another Side, Another Story: The game's levels are not in chronological order and while the first level of J's Bar is the starting point, the survivors split up and some levels take place at the same time as others. For example, a certain group of survivors make their way from J's Bar to the Apple Inn that is on fire in the level Hellfire. Around the time this is happening, another group of survivors made their way through Outbreak's proper level culminating in the explosive detonation on Main Street. The more clearly defined case would be the final levels of File #1 and #2. In File #1's Decisions Decisions, George is lured to Raccoon University in hopes of creating a cure for the T-Virus. After creating the cure, he escapes on a helicopter. At the same time, David is at Umbrella's main HQ in Raccoon City, where he successfully helps an Umbrella researcher who can create a suppressor to the T-Virus escape. Both levels end with the same explosion that levels Raccoon City.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Some levels will offer alternate options to completing them, should you fail initially. Failed to escape onto the subway car? You'll have to detour towards the maintenance system. Did the bridge snap before you can cross it? A new quest has been unlocked so you can finish that instead! Did not get to the helicopter on time? Looks like you will have to fight the final boss after all.
  • Arbitrary Headcount Limit: Four players online, one player and two AI partners offline.
  • Artificial Stupidity: The partner AIs in the original seem to have a brain. For example, they will help you push objects if they see you struggling and they will often go to find key items for you in the last two scenarios. Unfortunately, the A.I.s in File #2 are dumber than Swiss cheese. They will refuse to help you push heavy objects. They often stand next to zombies and challenge them to a staring contest while said zombies try to feast on whatever nutrition there is in those tiny brains. In the last scenario, they think nothing of walking onto claymore mines or standing in an open area getting repeatedly sniped.
  • Ascended Extra: Desperate Times, a scenario in File #2, revolves around Marvin Branagh, the wounded police officer from Resident Evil 2 who was supposed to be Leon's superior officer.
  • Attack Its Weak Point:
    • Hitting Nyx with sufficient firepower will see its heart-like core exposed. Compared to how much damage it normally takes, a few strong hits to the core will quickly kill Nyx.
    • Thanatos' grafted heart is a red flag. Attacking it will deal massive damage in addition to staggering it.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Titan, the Elephant Zombie. However, it can be locked in a trap.
  • Awesome, but Impractical:
    • The rocket launcher required your target to be either stand still or come at a slow pace. You had one shot.
    • The remote detonator. You have to be in arm's length, and hold the button for about five seconds before it will actually blowup Mr. X. That is assuming he didn't just walk away from its range.
  • Badass Normal:
    • Every human character. Not as extreme as the characters from the main games, but they were all badass enough to survive Raccoon City. Special mention goes to the blonde cop Raymond, an NPC who doesn't survive but dies yelling for you to "Burn these bastards!".
    • In a way, you have to give the Axe man some props. He's (almost) as normal as the survivors, has only a fire axe, and will take on the players, no matter how well armed they are. The only time he finally relents is when you defeat him at the end of the level.
  • Bag of Holding:
    • Yoko's backpack.
    • Yoko herself. When she dies, her corpse still has her extra item slots. One common cheat for beating "Desperate Times" on the hardest setting is to deliberately kill Yoko in the RPD courtyard, then use her body as an ammo dump. It's not absolutely necessary, but it makes things a lot easier for all but the most skilled players.
  • Berserk Board Barricade: Along with the usual background dressing variety, the Outbreak scenario allows you to create one with a nail gun. It doesn't last very long in practice, since the provided lumber is quite thin.
  • Bizarrchitecture:
    • For some reason, J's Bar has its storeroom and loading dock on the third floor, and has no freight elevator to get those massive wine casks to the bar area.
    • There's a canal in the bottom floor of the Raccoon City Hospital.
  • "Blind Idiot" Translation: The Fake Credits on File #1 has Below Freezing Point listed as "Below Fleezing Point". Also, from the same scenario, Peter's letter reads "Prease contact me as soos as possible." And lest we forget, Rinda.
  • Bonus Stage:
    • File #2 has the three unlockable Elimination scenarios, with different areas conjoined together, with only one objective. Kill everything that moves before the time expires.
    • In addition, you can also unlock three Showdown scenarios. One lets you fight all the bosses from Outbreak (not counting the hordes of zombies). Two pits you against all the bosses from File #2. The third has all the games bosses. Beating all those bosses has you take on two Mr. Xs, plus a red, more powerful and faster Mr. X known as Tyrant C.
  • Book Ends: The first scenario of Outbreak starts with the player having to lend a shoulder to a fellow survivor (if Mark was present) from beginning to the 1/4 part of the scenario. Half way in, the player comes across the front of a relatively safe Apple Inn, and will be transported to main street. End of the Road concludes with the player having a chance (depending on the location, or if you are playing single player as it is pre-determined by character) of starting at the front of the Apple Inn, OR at Main Street. How does the game end? With you escorting another fellow survivor.
  • Bottomless Magazines: An unlockable extra mode.
  • Breakable Weapons: The weapons you find will become useless after you use them a certain amount of times.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: If you hide from a zombie in a locker before it sees you, it will stumble around and leave. If you open up the minimap while it is still there, however, it will "hear" it and attack.
  • Bribing Your Way to Victory: Late in the game's life cycle, players who had purchased backwards compatible PlayStation 3s were able to play online with PS2 users. Because the PS3 loaded rooms much faster, the PS3 users shattered all the PS2 users time and score records.
  • Broken Bridge: Literally. If you dawdle too long before crossing the rope bridge in Flashback, it will crumble. This opens up a separate sidequest, however, which you could only play online. Oops. Thankfully, for the North American version, the sidequest is available offline.
  • Call-Back: Remember the "Licker in the Window" jump scare from Resident Evil 2? Yeah, now it's back.
  • The Cameo:
  • Camp Unsafe Isn't Safe Anymore: The Hive opens in Raccoon City Hospital. There are zombies bashing on the front doors, the doctors are gone, the halls are filled with bloodstains and corpses.
  • Captain Obvious: The first thing the last surviving doctor in the zombie-infested, bloodstained Raccoon City Hospital says is "This hospital is not as safe as it may look or sound."
  • Chekhov's Gun:
    • That Daylight Vaccine is very useful for curing you of the T-Virus. It is also your means to instantly kill the final boss (or at least deal a large amount of damage to it), should you use it with the injection gun.
    • The bomb that was implanted inside Mr. X in End of the Road. If you haven't activated it yet, and have to face Nyx, you have the opportunity to deal a great deal of damage on him.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Part of the reason the Outbreak games were originally canonically disputed is that most of the characters have never been seen again. Not even Yoko, who got the most character development and has ties to Umbrella, and uses it to testify against Umbrella in the aftermath, helping its downfall. Reportedly, the only way Capcom was able to sidestep their Nintendo exclusivity contract was to make the non-Nintendo games non-canon. This is subverted in later games after the exclusively agreement expired such as The Umbrella Chronicles, where in the scenario Death's Door, Ada Wong kills the T-0400TP-4, in which is the Tyrant encountered in End of the Line scenario, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard, where one of the eight playable characters is mentioned in a file and in Resident Evil 2 (Remake), where Rita is mentioned as an officer of the RPD.
  • Climax Boss:
    • The Giant Leech is the climax of the Hive scenario.
    • If Oscar isn't killed or trapped in his pen beforehand, he is the final boss of the Wild Things scenario.
    • The Giga Bite is the final boss of the Underbelly scenario.
    • Thanatos is the final boss of the "Decisions, Decisions" scenario.
  • Cold Sniper: In End of the Road, an Umbrella sniper brags about killing 100 zombies and shoots Linda and the player, who are clearly human, for no good reason.
  • Collection Sidequest: One that relies on the difficulty setting, your chosen character, and a completely random variable, and is needed for a 100% completion.
  • Combat and Support: Kevin and Mark are hard on the combat side, while Yoko and Cindy fall strongly on the support side. Alyssa, George, Jim and David form a bit of a blend, having a mix of combat and support abilities.
  • Concept Art Gallery: You unlock various art pieces and renders of the characters, B.O.W.s and settings for purchase with points by completing the scenarios.
  • Continuity Snarl: With RE2 and RE3, generally regarding the condition of the Raccoon Police Department. Raccoon City is also destroyed substantially earlier in both Outbreak games than it is in the ending of RE3.
  • Controllable Helplessness: If you're knocked down, you are denied access to any weapons until you were pulled back to your feet by another character, or you use a health item. However, you can crawl around on the ground to try and evade danger. File #2 allows you to collect items while you are down, which means you can get back up if a first aid spray happens to be laying around.
  • Co-Op Multiplayer
  • Critical Existence Failure: If your connection were to drop during an online game, you'd keep playing, but all of the other players' characters would suddenly, simultaneously drop dead. Likewise, if you quit out of a game, the game treated it as though you'd suddenly died.
  • Cut and Paste Environments: Areas from these games were recycled for use in The Umbrella Chronicles.
  • Cutting Off the Branches:
    • As of Resident Evil 7: Biohazard, Alyssa is the only known confirmed survivor. The fates of the other playable characters are left unknown, though The Marhawa Desire confirms that Daylight was mass-produced to combat the T-Virus, meaning someone was able to escape Raccoon City with it in Decisions, Decisions.
    • Some scenarios have certain survivors canonically present during them, and extra cutscenes for certain actions taken.
      • Outbreak: Mark escorts his friend Bob as far as he can up to the roof of Jack's Bar, where the latter takes his own life before he can reanimate.
      • Below Freezing Point: Yoko is held up by her former colleague, Monica, who steals her ID card at gunpoint.
      • Decisions, Decisions: George finds a letter from Dr. Peter Jenkins requesting he come to Raccoon University to help develop the Daylight vaccine. Dr. Greg Mueller recognizes Yoko and explains that she lost her memory.
      • Wild Things: Cindy sees a note telling of an evacuation helicopter set up in the Raccoon Zoo.
      • Flashback: Alyssa visited the abandoned hospital in 1993 to investigate rumors of illegal testing on patients.
      • End of the Road: David saves Carter from zombies and meets Linda.
  • Damage Discrimination: On by default, although some servers allowed player-killing.
  • Damage Over Time: Mega Bites can inflict bleed and poison status ailments.
  • Deadly Gas: At random intervals in the "Desperate Times" scenario, gas will be pumped into the room that speeds up your infection rate until you leave or use an anti-gas canister. It's even a sickly yellow color.
  • Death from Above:
    • Max (and the female lions accompanying him on Very Hard) has a move where he will leap to the top of the train station and jump on the player.
    • One of Thanatos' signature attacks in the final battle is to jump into the sky and come crashing down.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: Outbreak contains a scenario called "Outbreak" that details the first stages of a viral outbreak.
  • Do Not Run with a Gun: You can still walk slowly while aiming/firing in File #2. Not so with File #1, obviously.
  • Duct Tape for Everything: David can create some unique weapons using the duct tape in his tool belt along with the right implements.
  • Dying Moment of Awesome: Raymond (the blonde cop) does not go quietly. After being knocked down by a zombie, which begins eating him, he gives the player a lighter and alerts them to a nearby gasoline tanker, yelling for them to unleash the gas and burn up the zombies and himself!
    Raymond: That's a fuel tank! Leak the gas and use it to kill these bastards! Do it now!
  • Eaten Alive: In the intro of File #1, we see an unfortunate USS operative get devouroued by a legion of T-virus infected rats. Throughout the rest of the game, plenty of people get eaten by zombies, usually RPD officers.
  • Emergency Weapon: Ran out of ammo? Your melee weapons broke off? Left all those knives behind? Time to start tackling and stomping!
  • Escape from the Crazy Place: The no-amnesia variety.
  • Escort Mission:
    • Starting off the Outbreak scenario with anyone playing as Mark has Bob, who cannot move properly without help. Thankfully, this is optional, as the player could simply leave him to his fate. It was either that, or escort him to earn points, but ending with him either shooting himself, or becoming a zombie.
    • Zigzagged in End of the Road. About 1/4th into the scenario has Mr. X escorting you! This doesn't last long. By 3/4th into the scenario, you end up escorting Linda. That too is optional, unless you want the good ending.
  • Everything Fades: No more pools of blood to inform you that a creature is completely dead; now it just vanishes.
  • Explosive Leash: Carter tries to use one on a Tyrant in "End of the Road" and the player can later collect the remote to skip a fight with it.
  • Face–Monster Turn:
    • Online, if the virus gauge reaches 100%, the player becomes a zombie and can attack his or her former teammates.
    • If the Leech Man kills a character, he or she will be resurrected a while later as another Leech Man that can't be killed in the same way the regular Leech Man needs to be.
  • Final Boss:
    • In Outbreak, we have Thanatos, an upgraded Tyrant, who is the last enemy the characters have to defeat to escape the city.
    • In File #2, if the players failed to escape the city via transport helicopter, they will be forced to face Nyx, who makes it's introduction by effortlessly slaughtering the UBCS mercenaries, making Thanatos look like a wimp! Once you do go to finally face him, he is then seen devouring a mutated Mr. X!
  • Flunky Boss: On Very Hard difficulty, Max is accompanied by two lionesses in his boss fight.
  • Foregone Conclusion: Raccoon City's getting nuked. Hope the characters got out of range!
  • Gaiden Game: The Outbreak series has kind of a shaky relationship with canon. It was originally stated to be a sidestory with no bearing on the main plot, but aside from a few minor issues, there was no reason why it couldn't have been set in the main continuity. A couple of scenarios and locations from the Outbreak games appeared as what were essentially Easter eggs in a couple of scenarios in The Umbrella Chronicles, and Ada's bonus chapter is essentially a very quick retelling of "End of the Road" from File #2. Fast forward to the modern day, and the "Daylight" vaccine from the first Outbreak apparently figures into the plot of the Resident Evil 6 manga.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: A player-controlled Alyssa using her ad-libs can cause File #1 to lock up.
  • Game Mod: By using a GameShark, the player can unlock some extra character skins that were likely meant for File #3, including some of HUNK.
  • Guide Dang It!:
    • Just try to find the invisible special items which are necessary for unlocking costumes and special features without a guide.
    • Try knowing what to do and how long you've got to play if you strive for 100% completion. Some of these criteria include killing yourself in specific ways.
    • Alyssa's lockpick combinations, the game gives absolutely no indication of which one to use. Now, you can either read a guide or try killing yourself by spending some minutes trying to find the correct one.
    • Some of the puzzles on the game are just Insane Troll Logic. For example, the password for the elevator in The Hive is supposed be found on a random background object, which upon examination will say "There is an event scheduled for September 30." You are supposed to read that as 09/30, remove the slash and then you have the password. The combination for the safe puzzle on Underbelly is found in a two-page file, both pages containing nothing but a bunch of scrambled letters, and you have to make a four-number combination out of it. Good luck with that.
  • Harder Than Hard: Nightmare mode. It doubles the points you gain for completing a scenario, but enemies do double damage and healing items have only 3/4 the potency.
  • He Knows About Timed Hits: "Training Ground" in File #2.
  • Hold the Line: The majority of "Desperate Times" revolves around this; the zombies lay siege to the police station and the players have to kill a specific number of them (scaling with difficulty and online/offline play) to end the level.
  • I Can't Reach It: The entire first half of the level "Outbreak" requires players to escape to the roof, jump between buildings, and come down the the building next door into the street in front. Even if you kill all the zombies coming into the bar, the game does not let you walk right out the front door to reach the same spot.
  • Implacable Man: The games love using this one. Roughly half the levels have some monstrous bullet-sponge stalking you the entire time. Special points to the Final Boss, Thanatos, who never actually dies until the nuclear missile falls. The characters can only incapacitate him temporarily.
  • Important Haircut: Yoko starts Outbreak's events by trimming her hair, as a sign of putting her past behind her. Also because Outbreak occurs canonically a few days after her old boss, William Birkin, was machine-gunned by HUNK and friends to cover things up. Changing your appearance is a pretty good idea in that situation.
  • Improvised Weapon: Push brooms, bent pipes, crutches, nail guns... Lots of choices!
  • Insurmountable Waist-Height Fence: In the Outbreak scenario, there will be a cutscene where you'll be placed in a police van. The officer drives the van for a short while, and then he stops because there is a pair of small barriers in the way and tells you to go on foot. Luckily, the survivors are smart enough to not let themselves be stopped by this, when they get a chance at driving a truck in End of the Road, they just use it to knock some barriers down and escape the city.
  • Intrepid Reporter: Kurt, whose files are read and story uncovered in "Flashback".
  • Inventory Management Puzzle: Oh so very much, especially offline. Yoko often alleviates this problem. In fact, some players have one player deliberately die as Yoko, so they can use the corpse as a storage device.
  • It's the Only Way to Be Sure: Both games end with the missile bombardment of Raccoon City to ensure the T-virus is wiped out.
  • Joke Character:
    • The Mr. and Mrs. series of secret characters. They're colored stick figures.
    • Both games had playable characters that you normally found dead, injured, or worse, such as Monica or the dead Daylight developer in the Raccoon University basement. They're often spawned with the gaping injury that caused their death or moderately infected, in dangerous condition, and have a high infection rate.
  • Just in Time: Averted. If you manage to outrun a countdown by a significant margin (not that hard to do on some of the File #1 levels), then you just have to stand around until it's done.
  • Kill It with Fire: The Leech Man is baited into a heating lab at the climax of the "Hive" scenario, cooking it and ending it for good.
  • Kill It with Water: Ironically, despite being fought in a sewer. Shooting certain pipes above the Giant Leech will hose it with boiling water, instantly killing it in all difficulties but Very Hard.
  • Lethal Joke Item: Jim's coin. Each flip which comes up heads gives him a stackable (to 3) 15% critical hit chance. If he has the time to flip three heads in a row (many levels have safe rooms where you could), he becomes an absolute badass.
  • Let's Split Up, Gang!:
    • Necessary at times to solve some minor puzzles or go foraging for items and ammo; otherwise, never splitting the party is recommended.
    • Offline, you can tell AI that tend to follow you around (for example, Yoko) to split up. Some (like David) automatically go off on their own.
    • Typically, on scenarios with multiple pathways, each of your AI companions will automatically take a path each, meaning you'll be separated from one of your companions for a good portion of that scenario.
  • Loads and Loads of Loading: Installing to the PS2's hard drive (sold separately) can help alleviate them. Sadly, the game doesn't detect the PS3's drive.
  • Lock and Key Puzzle: Present and accounted for.
  • Lower-Deck Episode: These games explore the experiences of average Raccoon City citizens while the members of S.T.A.R.S. and their companions are directly fighting Umbrella.
  • Luck-Based Mission: In the "Outbreak" scenario, certain events have a 1/16 chance of triggering such as seeing a wine bottle fall and break. In File #2, there is also a chance of you hearing an unseen person's scream in "Wild Things". Playing as Jim increases your chances of experiencing both, which are added to your Event List.
  • Made of Iron:
    • Unless certain enemies initiate an instant kill move, or an environmental hazard does them in, the only times the characters actually die is when the virus gauge fills up completely. With that said, it is completely possible to not die during the Thanatos fight. Unless he does an instant kill move on you.
    • Simple wooden doors and weak looking locks may be easy to take out. But in practice, and especially in higher difficulties, they can take a ludicrous amount of damage before they finally snap open.
  • Mad Libs Dialogue: The canned "contextual" ad-libs made by pressing the Square button. One might argue that these were part of the reason for said spinoff's lack of success. Word of God at the time was this was deliberate in order to ratchet up tension between the players.
  • Manual Leader, A.I. Party: Playing offline is basically this, with your player character being accompanied by two A.I. companions.
  • Menu Time Lockout: Averted when you're checking your inventory or map (Start); played straight when you are in the system/options menu (Select).
  • Mission-Pack Sequel: File #2 could be considered a Trope Codifier.
  • Molotov Cocktail: Just combine an alcohol bottle with a newspaper, then that with a lighter.
  • Multiple Endings: A damned lot of them for the endgame scenarios. Especially Decisions, Decisions which has:
    • A bad ending: Your character becomes a zombie and attacks the firemen in the helicopter
    • A normal ending: If you use the Daylight vaccine, the character escapes, but has no real sense of conclusion.
    • A good ending: If you use the Daylight vaccine AND keep another handy, the character escapes with a more upbeat ending (depending on the character), and with the cure in their hands.
    • A special ending: If you have two specific characters together, and both of them are uncured, triggers a unique ending where you see how they will spend their last moments before getting caught in a nuclear explosion.
    • Regular scenarios, like Outbreak, Underbelly, Flashback, etc, offer alternate endings as well.
  • Muscles Are Meaningless: Mostly averted. Body type has an impact on gameplay, with athletic cop Kevin being the fastest runner, or Mark having more powerful melee abilities. Yoko on the other hand has the smallest build, and as a result the least health, slowest run and most recoil from guns.
  • Nintendo Hard: The original RE games attracted a small but notable culture of hardcore players who specialized in beating the games as quickly as possible, or with as much of a handicap as they could give themselves. The Outbreak games are specifically designed to cater to that audience. While just about anyone with a pulse could probably beat a scenario on Very Easy, the Very Hard modes more than live up to their name. Beating "Wild Things" on Very Hard mode is quite the feather in an RE fan's cap.
  • Nostalgia Level:
    • "Below Freezing Point" is set in the underground Umbrella lab from RE2
    • "Desperate Times" in File #2 takes place in the Raccoon police station.
    • "End of the Road" in File #2 ends, yet again, in the area outside Apple Inn. This time though, you find out just what's behind that mysterious door off to your right. It's a shortcut to the bridge where you blew up the zombies in "Outbreak".
    • "The Hive" features the hospital from RE3 and the sewers from RE2.
  • Not a Zombie: "What a weird customer."
  • Old Save Bonus: Characters and costumes purchased in one game can be exported into the other in File #2's menu. Believe it or not, it also works the other way around. Unlocking any new costumes in File #2 can be transferred into Outbreak.
  • One-Hit Kill:
    • Using Daylight with the injector gun in Decisions, Decisions. You will get treated with a special cutscene for using this. It can be subverted in very hard, though it still does a great deal of damage.
    • The remote detonator for Mr. X, which is actually a subversion. If used early on, he'll still mutate and come back to you.
    • Oscar has an instant death attack where he raises his two front feet, graphically crushing any player unfortunate enough to be caught up in it.
    • Nyx has the ability to slam its outstretched arm on the player, which will absorb them and put them in an inescapable state while their viral gauge rapidly fills. Should the player not have others to kill it (i.e, single player) before that happens, it's Game Over.
    • Tyrant C has a unique instant death attack that involves rapidly swinging its arms back and forth in front of it, resembling the Tyrant R's with less of a wind-up.
  • One-Man Army: "Lone Wolf" mode, which removes the AI partners. Have fun having to do all the puzzles yourself. For File #1, this is actually needed to complete the European map puzzle in "Hellfire."
  • One-Steve Limit: In File #1, the game would only allow one of each character type in the game, meaning you can't play as a USS member if someone was using a fireman, both of which use Kevin's voice, animations, and loadout. This restriction was lifted for #2.
  • "Open!" Says Me: With enough firepower or persistence, most doors can be forced open. These are the same doors that zombies can force themselves through, though.
  • Optional Boss: Should certain negative conditions be met, Arnold will be present as a difficult sub-boss in the "end of the road" scenario in File #2, sniping at the player as an invincible enemy when they try to cross his mine-infested roadblock.
  • Outrun the Fireball: The Nyx ending of "End of the Road".
  • Palette Swap: Tyrant C is essentially a stronger, recoloured T-103 with horns and a unique One-Hit Kill attack.
  • Pet the Dog: The moment Arnold identifies Linda as a human survivor after shooting her leg, he lets her go.
  • Pixel Hunt: The SP items.
  • Plot Coupon That Does Something: "Daylight", the cure for the T-Virus, not only permanently cures you of any infection but can also be used to one-shot the True Final Boss of File #1. For that matter, what endings you get depend upon if you took the pill or not, and if you saved any pills of Daylight to be used to reproduce it to cure others.
  • Poor Communication Kills: The series didn't include voice communication, only a small number of prerecorded lines. Unless the players knew what to do in the level, this could very easily get someone killed. The developers believed it would heighten tension.
  • Puppeteer Parasite: The leeches in "The Hive" take over the body of Hursh and forcibly puppeteer him to get around the hospital.
  • Raising the Steaks: "Wild Things". Zombie hyenas are a common enemy, you must cross a pool with an angry zombie alligator in it, and depending on what you did to the mutant elephant chasing you, you either fight that, or a zombie lion - after you kill the zombie lion's wife.
  • Redshirt Army: These games shows a lot more of the RPD's efforts to contain the outbreak, efforts that are less than impressive. They send a grand total of three officers to stop a horde of hundreds of zombies on main street.
  • Reusable Lighter Toss: Occurs in "Outbreak" alongside the canal after the survivors have emptied a fuel tanker among a group of either zombies or mutant scorpions, depending on the difficulty level.
  • Revive Kills Zombie: A near-perfect example. The medicinal pills George makes can be launched at enemies in File #2 to kill them. Shooting Thanatos with the Daylight cure is the easiest way to beat him in "Decisions, Decisions".
  • Riddle for the Ages: Nyx's purpose has never been explained since its inception.
  • Rolling Attack: The Mega Bite's main attack is to roll itself upward against the player. Weaponized by the Giga Bite in its fight, who will summon a set of Mega Bites that only roll at the player in a sequence.
  • Say My Name: Character names are mapped to the right analog stick for a quick means of getting someone's attention.
  • Scary Black Man: Thanatos, a hulking African American Tyrant in a speedo.
  • Schmuck Bait: Hitting the second floor elevator button in "The Hive" dumped you into the Doctor's Office, an extremely cramped room with two zombies and no useful items. It was very easy to get yourself severely wounded before you could get back into the elevator and if Leech Man joined the fray...
  • Schrödinger's Player Character: Obviously, given that you have eight choices. In certain stages, not playing as a chosen character will have them as an NPC who cannot be interacted with, and will later show up dead or zombified. Later games never even made it clear if any variation happened.
  • Screw This, I'm Out of Here!:
    • When he receives word Raccoon City is set to be nuked, Arnold abandons his mission and evacuates the city over Nielson's protests.
    • If you take too long to get to him, Rodriguez will leave without taking you or Linda, since he doesn't want to get blown up along with the city.
  • Secret Character: Every NPC you encounter can be unlocked and controlled. But...
    • Send in the Clones: Functionally, they mimic the eight primary characters, even being described in-game with terms like "KEVIN Type".
  • Sequence Breaking: In Below Freezing Point, there's a cutscene where Yoko gives Monica her ID card. If you don't pick Yoko, she'll show up as a NPC and won't die until after the cutscene. However, if you played the game online and one of your partners happened to be Yoko and quit before said cutscene happened, the cutscene would still play as if Yoko was still alive.
  • Shoot the Shaggy Dog: Not of the entire series, but only happens once with certain conditions. "Decisions, Decisions" may end in this if you fail to take or replicate enough Daylight to get out.
  • Skippable Boss:
    • Not exactly a boss fight, but the zombie horde in Outbreak can be skipped by returning to the police van after triggering the cutscene. You will get a much shorter, less than optimistic ending.
    • Technically, the boss and the Axe Man in Flashback can be skipped if you stayed away from the bridge by the time it snaps, though it takes a long time to trigger, and you could be at the boss fight by the time this triggers.
    • Nyx in End of the Road can be skipped if you make it to the transport helicopter on time.
  • Sinister Subway: "Underbelly".
  • Socialization Bonus: Some of the sidequests and special endings required you to be online because of the triggered events (see Broken Bridge). Also, online allowed players to tackle the highest difficulty levels with 4 characters instead of three. The finale of "Desperate Times" is almost impossible on the hardest setting with some characters, because you physically cannot bring enough ammo into the finale without having Yoko to use as a bag of holding, and some PCs don't start with her on the team.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: The opening FMV to File #1, featuring footage of HUNK's unit being attacked by William Birkin, paired up with some of the most beautiful music you'll hear in the franchise.
  • Special Attack: Each character has one exclusive defensive move, some passive skills and personal items. More to the trope, Ryman and Alyssa can re-aim their shots for much more damage and a usual One-Hit Kill.
  • Spiteful A.I.:
    • The computer-controlled partners like to hog firearms and ammo, will never take keys or important story items, and generally like to separate from the player. The second part could be considered a boon, given the alternative. Depending on the AI type, some will hand over weapons easily (such as Yoko) and others won't (such as David).
    • Another thing that should be brought up is based on which characters are grouped together. For instance, David and Kevin don't get along, while Yoko and David do.
  • Status Buff: Herbs or pills to replenish your health, and pills to slow down the virus gauge.
  • Status Effects: The usual Resident Evil poisoning that requires blue herbs to cure, but characters can also bleed out which slows them down along with diminishing their health until fixed with a hemostat or Cindy's bandage.
  • The Stinger:
    • After the credits of Outbreak, you get to see a scene of a government research outpost, having been positioned in the middle of the nuclear devastated Raccoon City.
    • This happens again in File #2 if you go for the bad ending. If you fail to rescue Linda, aka the only one who can recreate the cure for the T-Virus (despite File #1 already having something similar), you'll be greeted with a nice newspaper headline reading "Worldwide Bloodshed." Implying the whole world fell to the virus.
  • Story Branching: The game had several scenarios where the plotlines would branch and you could take a different path of escape.
  • Take Your Time: The Outbreak scenario has one scene where a fuel truck is lit on fire and ready to explode. You can stand next to it for as long as you'd like (at least until the virus meter kicks in), but the trunk never explodes unless everyone jumps into the sewer waters.
  • Team Spirit/The Power of Friendship: You can hoist downed partners to safety, and cooperation in general is key. Naturally, this was made interesting by the aforementioned lack of voice chat.
  • Temporary Online Content: The online functionality, now that Capcom has shut all of their servers down. When questioned about the prospect of a PS2 Classics release, they confirmed that online play would remain disabled. Especially painful as some special events and endings were only possible through online play.
  • Tempting Fate: The helicopter pilot in the "Chopper Zombie" bad endings, where your character escapes Raccoon City only to turn as the helicopter is flying to safety.
    "That was a close one. We'll head over the mountains... but I wonder if it's really over. At least we survived, thank God... if there is a God."
  • Timed Mission: The virus gauge is effectively a time limit, as it's impossible to cure your infection until you use some Daylight at the end of "Decisions, Decisions".
  • Turned Against Their Masters: Briefly discussed between Linda and Carter in End of the Road. Carter came prepared. In the event of Mr. X turning against them, Carter has a remote detonator to a bomb that was implanted inside its body. Mr. X does turn on them, and kills Carter before he could grab onto the remote.
  • Unlockable Content: Usually unlocked by completing scenarios or finding hidden items.
    • Double Unlock: Of course, players then get the privilege of shelling out their hard-earned points.
  • Unusable Enemy Equipment:
    • The UBCS team in "Decisions, Decisions" is massacred literally right in front of you, but you can't pick up their guns.
    • Averted at the finale of "End of the Road" when another team is killed, but this time you can take the guns.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: Zombies normally ignore Bob entirely during "Outbreak", but if the player stands behind him when they attack, he'll get struck instead, and it doesn't take him long to die given his condition. He can also, with some careful positioning, be hauled out the window by the zombies up the first flight of stairs from the bar.
  • With This Herring: Justified most of the time, as none of the citizens were expecting to get attacked, and Kevin and Mark both start with their standard-issue firearms.
  • Workplace-Acquired Abilities/You Have Researched Breathing: Some of the survivors have skills which logically follow from their clothing or training. For example, combat boot-wearing Kevin can boot zombies. Others have skills that are just plain obvious, like Cindy's amazing ability to duck. Or Yoko thinking to wear a backpack.
  • You All Meet in an Inn: "Outbreak" survivors all meet at J's Bar. With the wonky canon, this could also happen in an actual inn, an infested zoo, a safehouse, etc.
  • You Will Not Evade Me: The Leech Man has an ability to stretch out its arm like a tentacle if the player is too far.
  • Zombie Apocalypse: The Raccoon City outbreak. The classic gaming example.
  • Zombie Infectee:
    • All of the characters. The virus was represented by a gauge in the corner that constantly ticked up and went faster if you were wounded.
    • Mark's friend Bob from the first scenario was an NPC example. He needed to be carried to the roof and defended the whole time. If you got there on low difficulties he would commit suicide, but on the highest he would turn and attack you.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Resident Evil Outbreak File 2


Resident Evil: Outbreak

Resident Evil Outbreak, along with its sequel Outbreak File #2, are online entries in the Resident Evil series exclusively for the PlayStation 2, first released in 2003.
Both games take place during the Raccoon City viral outbreak covered in Resident Evil 2 and 3 centering on how an octet of normal citizens — Kevin Ryman, Mark Wilkins, Jim Chapman, David King, George Hamilton, Cindy Lennox, Alyssa Ashcroft, and Yoko Suzuki — react to the disaster, along with their efforts to escape the city safely. The biggest point of interest is that it's a classic style Resident Evil (aka tank controls, fixed camera angles and inventory management) but with online coop capabilities, meaning several people can work together to try to survive.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (1 votes)

Example of:

Main / SurvivalHorror

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