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    Main Franchise 
  • Acceptable Targets: Anyone in any form of military is either an evil psychopath or a total moron. Or both. Even Diego, who's on your side, is an overweight fumbling buffoon who does nothing but crumble under pressure.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Some fans of the original games weren’t too fond of the strict time limits, and wished for them to be more lenient or completely done away with in the future. Then comes Dead Rising 4, in which Capcom Vancouver openly stated that they removed the timer completely in response to fan complaints. Needless to say, fan reception wasn’t too pretty.
  • Broken Base:
    • There's a pretty huge rift in the fandom between those who like the latter two games and those who see the first game to Off The Record as the "golden age" of Dead Rising while everything else is terrible. Of course, there are those who, while not too fond of the later games, can appreciate the fact that Capcom tried something new instead of regurgitating the same game over and over.
    • Frank West's depiction in later games, as many view him as suffering from some harsh Flanderization. While it would make sense in Case West as Frank is full of himself after his 15 Minutes of Fame and even more in Off the Record as that's deliberately made to be a goofy Fanservice-laden What If? spin-off, many feel like it's just egregious and taken up to eleven in 4, making him seem more like his crossover appearances than his canonical ones.
  • Complete Monster: Marian Mallon is the Director of Phenotrans and the mastermind behind their conspiracy; in order to necessitate the creation of Zombrex, Mallon has zombie outbreaks start in cities all over the country in order to harvest "Queen" zombies, infecting and killing countless people. Her planned Los Vegas outbreak alone kills 10,000 people, and Mallon has a scientist who tried to leak the truth killed. Mallon also keeps Isabella Keyes as a constant captive, stealing Keyes's research and forcing her to work for Phenotrans. When Frank West and Chuck Greene uncover the conspiracy, they discover Mallon has been committing mass kidnappings for her experiments, and Mallon claims Phenotrans created a cure for the zombie virus which she hoards for her own infection, also stating releasing permanent cure wouldn't be good for business. By the time of the third game, Mallon agrees to seek the permanent cure when her condition starts to deteriorate, starting another outbreak, teaming up with Hemlock in his bid to take over the country. Narrowing the immunity carrier down to Nick Ramos and his friend Diego Martinez, Mallon kills Diego by causing his parasites to explode from inside him, resulting in his gruesome death.
  • First Installment Wins: The first game is generally seen as the perfect Dead Rising game, and even the overall warmly-received Dead Rising 2 is seen as a very slight downgrade by some.
  • Flanderization:
    • The more Frank West appears, the more his personality becomes exaggerated and goofy, drawing similarities to Ash Williams. It was agreed to have been developed in a fairly seamless way in Case West but quickly turned sour by 4, taking a lot from his crossover/non-canonical appearances.
    • A unique case in that this happened to the Combo Weapons. Most of the Combo Weapons from Dead Rising 2 were fairly realistic and plausible, with a few exceptions such as the Laser Sword (gems + flashlight) and the Electric Rake (rake + battery). 3 and 4 really upped the ante by making absolutely ridiculous, unrealistic combinations such as the Blast from the Past (a sledgehammer with grenades taped to it that explode on impact but never harm Frank) from 4. This is so egregious to some as the whole shtick of Combo Weapons in its debut was the “homebrew” feeling of taping together two objects and making a competent weapon, but eventually, they turned into completely goofy fantasy weapons phasing out the more grounded weapons.
  • Franchise Original Sin:
    • The Flanderization of Frank West, specifically as we see in 4, could be traced back to Off the Record, or even Case West canonically-speaking, where Frank became much more cocky and wise-cracking than he was back in the first game. It was forgivable in Off the Record, as it was intended to be a Denser and Wackier version of Dead Rising 2 that starred Frank as a way of Pandering to the Base. It was less forgivable in 4, which was meant to be a Revisiting the Roots entry that paid homage to the first game.
    • Combo Weapons becoming increasingly ridiculous and impossible can be traced back to the very game Combo Weapons originated from, Dead Rising 2. Aside from the fairly plausible weapons such as the Spiked Bat, it also had weapons like the Laser Sword which was crafted from gems and a flashlight, or the Flaming Gloves consisting of a pair of boxing gloves and some motor oil. Though, to be fair to that game, the unrealistic, goofy weapons were very few compared to the more realistic ones. The later games’ selections are absolutely dominated by outlandish weapons, especially by 4, where it would make even less sense considering they’re created by the photojournalist with at best shop class experience (and a few pointers from Chuck), Frank West.
    • The Maniacs dying too quickly was a common criticism of the fourth game. However, Psychopaths in general could be defeated rather quickly thanks to how overpowered some of the weapons were. What made 4's bosses stick out were the lack of cutscenes for non-story bosses, which made them less memorable.
  • Friendly Fandoms:
  • Magnificent Bastard: Chuck Greene is a legendary motocross racer turned heroic zombie killer. After losing his wife in Vegas and escaping with his daughter on a bike he built from scratch, Chuck later became involved in the Fortune City Outbreak, being framed for the crime by Phenotrans. Slowly unraveling the conspiracy while saving people's lives, Chuck's ingenuity and quick thinking have him overcome insurmountable odds, including singlehandedly defeating an attack helicopter and using Raymond Sullivan's escape attempt against him. Chuck later breaks into a Phenotrans facility alongside Frank West and escapes alive, clearing his name for Fortune City. Returning in Dead Rising 3 having become a crime lord to pay for Katey's Zombrex, Chuck remains as effective as ever, tracking her down in the middle of the outbreak and jumping back into the fray against General John Hemlock without hesitation. Calm, collected, and devoted to his dear daughter, Chuck's determination is second to none, and no one, whether they're game show hosts or even entire corporations, wins against him.
  • Only the Creator Does It Right: Most of the fanbase agrees that the games with Keiji Inafune’s involvement (those being the first two) are generally the best, and find the later two entries to be the downfall of the series.
  • Sequelitis: It seems as though the reception of the games tanks with every new sequel, at least after Off the Record.
  • Vindicated by History:
    • Dead Rising 3 was met with plenty of vitriol from the fandom, from the more lifeless, Real Is Brown color scheme, and especially after an interview with Capcom Vancouver stated that they aimed to appease fans of Call of Duty. However, with the release of the extremely polarizing Dead Rising 4, many fans have learned to appreciate 3 some more, even if it’s nowhere on the same scale as the first two games.
    • In a way, the strict time crunch of the original was much better-received with time. Even hardcore fans of the game felt like the time limit was very punishing, especially on a first run, and that it crippled exploration and 100% Completion should one try saving Survivors and fighting Psychopaths. However, with Dead Rising 4 completely removing the timer, many feel as though it makes that game feel too easy and that the original’s time limit provided a sense of tension and difficulty that made the game fun and unique.
  • Wolverine Publicity: Despite the games operating on an "anthology" method of every new game taking place in a new setting with a new protagonist, Frank West is seen as the "face" of Dead Rising, so much so in that he's usually the representative of the series in crossover games, had a story DLC for Dead Rising 2 based around him with Case West, got his own spin-off, What If? scenario version of that game with Off the Record, and became the protagonist of Dead Rising 4, even returning to Willamette.
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    Dead Rising 
  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • The game leaves no doubt that Carlito is a monster hellbent on nothing more than revenge, but it leaves it ambiguous as to if he realized that giving Isabela his locket would allow her to take down his systems. This can lead to one of three interpretations:
      • 1. He didn’t know, and the locket was meant as both a memento for Isabela to remember him by as well as a final way to screw Frank, and by extension everyone, over one last time.
      • 2. He did know, and he was giving Isabela the locket to ensure she could escape the outbreak alive. He could have also realized that Frank wouldn’t be able to tell the world about Santa Cabeza if he died.
      • 3. He did know, and he also realized that when they called for help, the military would arrive to kill everyone, thus having America do to itself what was done to him.
    • Cletus is generally considered an understandable person by the standards of the other psychopaths, given the justified reasons behind his paranoia and the fact that his victim in his opening cutscene had multiple opportunities to back off, but the amount of wine bottles found around him and how much he drinks during the battle raises the idea that he is simply violently drunk. If you take this interpretation, it gives Cletus an extra Woobie factor, since the man turned to drinking his sorrows away to deal with the outbreak and may have been a completely different person when sober. Furthermore, in Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop, Cletus can be saved from his death and will run the gun shop for Frank with no quarrel for the rest of the game.
  • Annoying Video Game Helper: Otis' phone calls mean you cannot attack. Or jump. Or pick up items. Or hold on to large items you're already carrying. He will keep ringing until you answer. If you hang up or get hit, he will just call you right back, yell at you for hanging up on him, and start his painfully slow explanation over from the beginning. To make matters worse, when you did want to answer him, the original Xbox 360 D-pad's design made actually pushing the button ridiculously finicky. Answering every single one of his calls is tied to an achievement, so you have to go through at least one playthrough dealing with him for 100% completion in order to get it.
  • Anti-Climax Boss: Brock Mason, the True Final Boss, is this in spades.
    • The first part of the fight with Brock's tank - in spite of having a cannon, machine-gun equipped drones, and occasional bursts of missile fire, you're able to knock it out with a jeep-mounted heavy machine gun.
    • Brock himself is forcibly fought without any healing items or weapons, which can make for a challenging fight. However, if a player stocked up on blender juices, they can drink before the tank battle and enter the fight with Brock still powered up. If Frank comes into the battle with Spitfire, he can force Brock to block for the whole duration and whittle his health to death anyways.
  • Awesome Music: Plenty of chose from:
    • Despite being one of the more annoying bosses in the games, The Convicts have a pretty badass theme in the form of "Gone Guru" by Lifeseeker. An rap-rock number with an old-school sound reminiscent of the Beastie Boys.
    • Steven Chapman's theme "Fly Routine" by Hostile Groove. An explosive nu-metal/rapcore track that matches Steven's insane rage.
    • Larry Chiang's theme "On A Mission" by Hostile Groove. A intense mixture of metalcore and groove metal that perfectly fits his fight, as you rush to defeat Larry before Carlito is killed.
  • Broken Base: The time limit is somewhat of a mixed topic with players. Many lament that its strictness turns a somewhat arcadey zombie killing game into a frantic race from point A to point B with no possible detours, since it doesn't give players enough time to see what the game fully has to offer. The other camp enjoys the aversion of the near-ubiquitous Take Your Time mechanics of most modern games, and argue that it can be ignored with no consequence besides shutting down the plot, allowing you to run around and goof off at your leisure.
  • Complacent Gaming Syndrome: You know, that whole mall full of random stuff you can use to kill zombies? Yeah, all of that is just there for you to use until you kill Adam, take his Small Chainsaw, and buff it with three skill books, at which point every other weapon becomes irrelevant.
  • Complete Monster: Jo Slade is a lecherous mall cop who began kidnapping and sexually torturing beautiful women when the outbreak hit. Going through a number of women before being encountered, it's implied that Jo also tried to kidnap Tonya Waters and shot her boyfriend Ross Folk when he protected her, causing him to later attempt suicide. After catching Frank West's attention by taking four hostages, Jo begins killing them one by one if he takes to long to confront her; during this confrontation, she begins to rape Kay Nelson with a nightstick and threatens to do the same to him for interfering. During the resulting fight, Jo slowly tortures the hostages with electrocutions and beatings, potentially killing them if Frank can't defeat her in time.
  • Demonic Spiders: The Raincoat Cult and Special Ops are this to the zombies' Goddamn Bats, the former of which appearing in path-blocking clusters and capable of knocking Frank out instantly, the latter toting machine guns, having high health, and being immune to headshots (which is the best way to take out the cultists) and both emptying Frank's inventory and dragging him off to their bases upon incapacitating him.
  • Difficulty Spike: Once the cultists show up on the second day, the game gets even harder, as you have to contend with their path-blocking clusters in every section of the mall as well as the zombies. Each one takes a fair amount of hits to kill, they always appear in big numbers and can blow knockout dust in Frank's face to instantly take him down. If that happens, you have to waste even more time fighting your way out of their hideout with no clothes or weapons, which will often make you miss a scoop or two.
    • Another spike occurs after you complete "The Facts". At this point, the Special Forces soldiers will enter the mall, and boy are they Made of Iron. They're immune to headshots, take at least two hits from the Small Chainsaw and can shred through your health in no time. They can also incapacitate Frank as well should he take enough damage from them. It's no wonder you get an achievement just for managing to take out a measly ten of them in a playthrough because they really are that dangerous.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Adam the Clown. He's enough of one that his clown brother appears as a Psychopath in Dead Rising 2: Off The Record.
    • Fans also really love Steven Chapman. Along with Adam, he got a Heroes & Heralds Ability Card.
      • Also, both Adam's and Steven's respective weapons can be recreated by Nick in Dead Rising 3.
    • To a lesser degree, Cliff Hudson, the Shell-Shocked Veteran having flashbacks to Vietnam, mostly for being the most sympathetic of the Psychos - after all, wouldn't you go berserk if those damn zombies devoured your granddaughter alive?!
      • Frankly, any Psychos that aren't That One Boss (we're looking at you, Convicts!) and/or The Scrappy (we're looking at you, Kent Swanson!) usually get this status - either because they are totally awesome villains, or are just the kind of people you'd "love" to beat to death with any and all weapons you can find, even the joke weapons.
    • On the survivor side, Wayne Blackwell tends to stand out due to his gun skills and willingness to follow orders from Frank, which is truly a breath of fresh air compared to other survivors.
  • Fan Nickname: Players tend to call psychopaths by epithets rather than their names. We've got the clown, the gunshop owner, the fat cop, the pyro, the shopkeeper/stooooore guy, the butcher, and the Shell-Shocked Veteran, and the Halls particularly are much more commonly called the sniper family than the Hall family.
  • Fanon: The implications are fairly light, but it's generally accepted that Jo, the Psychopath policewoman, shot Ross Folk. Tonya mentions that he was "protecting" her (which would make sense if Jo were kidnapping her), Jo is one of the few bosses to use a gun, she's confirmed to have had more victims than the ones Frank rescued, and Jo not only spawns just five in-game hours later (only twenty-five real-life minutes), but also in the same plaza almost exactly across the way. Tonya's dialogue is vague, but enough of the facts line up to make her the most likely candidate.
  • Game-Breaker:
    • While the game is difficult, you can get to Level 50 in no time by going to the underground tunnels right away and running over zombies constantly. Then restart the game and transfer the stats and you start the game at Level 50. In fact, merely going back and forth in the meat truck near the butcher's section of the underground is enough, with plenty of time to spare and some healing items just in case. On top of that, it's enough to get you the Zombie Genocide achievement, which grants you...
    • The Real Mega Buster. It's a gun that spawns in the safe house, instantly kills both zombies and cultists while still significantly damaging both soldiers and psychopaths, without recoil, and most importantly, has three hundred shots. Even in the highly unlikely event you run out of ammo or drop it by accident, another one spawns if you enter the safe house without one in your inventory, with another 300 shots in it.
    • Upgrading the Small Chainsaw with the 3 applicable upgrade books makes the game much easier than intended. You can pretty much carve your way through all but the largest zombie crowds, and boss fights end within seconds if you just charge and swing away. Escorting Survivors from point A to point B without them getting eaten or you running out on a mission time limit is still a huge pain, though.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Americans love Frank West, according to Capcom.
  • Goddamned Boss: Cliff. He's really not hard to deal with, as there are several convenient chainsaws laying around where you fight him and the running attack with it shreds through his health while leaving him little way to retaliate, after you memorize his simple machete pattern. But he has a tendency to flee through the trapdoors in the store and appear on top of the stands, before sitting and spamming pipe bombs and flares at you. They're easy to dodge and don't do much damage but it's a pain to have to wait for him to finish before he'll come back down, and if you do get hit by one, you'll be stunned for several seconds.
  • Good Bad Bugs:
    • You can perform fatalities on survivors; this has no ill effect other than knocking them to the ground for a second and possibly causing a very small amount of damage to their health. It is extremely cathartic to punch through Ronald's stomach and rip his guts out or bodyslam his head into the concrete, given how much trouble he gives you later on in the game.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: The erotica photo element requires Frank to take pictures of a woman's crotch and cleavage to complete the mission "Photo Challenge". The events of 2016 to 2021 brought greater attention to the #METOO movement in America and raised awareness of Japan's public indecency problemnote , the erotica photo element becomes extremely uncomfortable. Especially when one of the ways you can gain high prestige points for erotica is to take pictures of the hostages in "Above the Law", who were implied to have been sexually assaulted by Jo Slade. The achievement "Frank the Pimp" requires the player to escort 8 female survivors simultaneously, slanderously implying that 8 traumatized women (4 of whom might actually be survivors of sexual assault if they were Jo Slade's captives) are prostitutes for simply being in the presence of a man.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: A droning shot of a tank surrounded by a huge horde of zombies. Does that ring any bells?
  • Ho Yay: Hinted at through Kent's alternate battle, the cutscene prior to the fight just drives the nail deeper.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Frank's covered wars, y'know? Mentioned in an achievement/trophy in Dead Rising 2 called "He's hasn't covered wars..."
    • Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeell he ain't mah boi but the brothah is hevay~Explanation 
    • I DON'T ALLOW VANDALISM IN MY STOOOOOOOOOOORE!!!! Explanation 
      • CLEAN UP, REGISTER SIX!
    • The "Zombie Genocider" achievement, which requires you to kill 53,594 zombies (the population of Willamette) inspired Left 4 Dead to include a "Zombie Genocidest" achievement that required 53,595 zombie kills. In return, a 53,596-zombie achievement was included in Dead Rising 2 as well as Prototype, Dead Nation, and even Rock Band 3 (where guitar hammer-ons/pull-offs take the place of zombies for the achievement).
  • Moral Event Horizon: Carlito crossed it when he arranged for several children to carry the larva that causes zombification. Brock Mason crossed it out-of-game by attacking Santa Cabeza purely due to his Blood Knight nature.
  • Narm:
  • Narm Charm: Frank's classic line, "I've covered wars, ya know." It makes him come off as an impetuous idiot, which is exactly what they're going for with the line and is part of the reason why it became instantly iconic.
  • Polished Port: The 2016 PC version has more save slots, enhanced visuals, support for 4K resolutions, fast load times, and framerates up to 300 FPS.
  • Quicksand Box: Many people complained about the structure of the game making it hard to tell what to do next. The game also has a tendency to punish you for sandboxing. If you attempt to ignore the plot on your first playthrough, you're left with a very weak Frank and most of the shortcuts shut off from you.
  • The Scrappy:
    • Kent is widely hated, due to his obnoxious laugh as well as his continuous taunting. This is justified in that he is actually a psychopath. Many players don't actually know this due to killing him during the photo challenge, or from just ignoring him.
    • The Convicts in the original Dead Rising, for reasons that are extensively covered throughout this page.
    • Otis. Eight words: "Don't cut me off like that! It's RUDE!" His annoying tendency to call all the time, which leaves you defenseless and then when you drop the call, most likely because a horde of zombies are trying to rip your guts out, he berates you for not letting him finish. There is an achievement tied to him, where you have to answer all of his calls throughout the game without being interrupted once. Cue controllers being thrown.
    • Lindsay Harris, the survivor at the beginning of the game who lets the zombies into the mall to save her already zombified dog. She's universally loathed by players for getting so many people killed for such an insanely stupid reason, and for having such an irritating voice.
    • Out of all of the savable survivors in the game, Ronald Shiner easily gets the most hate. A glutton Obsessed with Food, he won't join you unless you give him something to eat. That's not too bad on its own, but if you save him, he'll try to start a mutiny later in the game. Why? Because he's hungry, and it's implied that he ate his way through most of the Safe Room's food reserves. And if you don't come prepared with a piece of food to calm him down, then he'll leave and take a good chunk of survivors with him, effectively killing them and himself, and screwing you out of a chance at a perfect run. It's quite telling that many players who are going for the Saint achievement will skip Ronald in order to avoid putting up with his foolishness.
  • Scrappy Mechanic:
    • The survivor AI, at least in the first game, routinely made Scoops hellishly frustrating. The survivors' pathfinding is usually abysmal and they sometimes decide to hang around pushing over zombies forever instead of following orders. Trying to use firearms near them is a bad idea, since a shotgun blast kills them instantly and they'll often run into your line of fire. If given a melee weapon, they'll charge off gleefully into the nearest mob of zombies and attack until they get eaten. They are, however, bizarrely competent with firearms, and can give Frank adequate backup with shotguns of their own.
    • The save system? You have to find specific save points, then there's only one slot per account, and if you save yourself into a corner plotwise, you have no choice but to start over from the beginning (though at least you keep your stats). The game also didn't include a quit to menu option unless the player died, meaning they had to use the "exit to dashboard" option, or purposefully die if they wanted. As of the 2016 remaster, this has been partially averted, due the game now including up to five save slots and it now has a quit game option on the pause screen.
    • Having to stand still while shooting while aiming, as the over the shoulder camera means you cannot take cover and see what you're shooting at the same time, and Frank can take pictures in first-person while walking at a respectable pace.
  • Signature Scene:
    • Frank's "I've covered wars" line is among the most quotable lines in the game.
    • Adam the Clown's boss fight is the mission everyone remembers most, with Adam threatening Frank with 2 small chainsaws and being one of the toughest fights in the game. Since Dead Rising, Adam has been referenced in every game with the exception of Dead Rising 2, even to a point where Frank can dress up as him in Dead Rising 4.
  • Take That, Scrappy!: The devs seem to have predicted how much people would hate Lindsay Harris for essentially getting the entire mall zombified and/or killed over her Mister Muffykins, as when she's encountered in Infinity Mode, instead of fighting you like all the other survivors, she just drops dead instantly.
  • That One Achievement:
    • Getting 7 Day Survivor requires you to stay alive for a week in Infinity Mode, where Frank's health slowly ticks down, the supermarket is closed, all other "infinite" sources of food are disabled, and food does not respawn when you return to a part of the mall. You cannot save or quit, which requires you to leave the Xbox 360 on for about fourteen hours straight. Not only was this a design problem in general—most people who have the achievement talk about holing up somewhere with a stack of food to eat and reading a book while they waited for Frank's health to tick down—but Dead Rising came out in 2006. You can blame a lot of Red Ring of Death errors on overheats that came specifically from this game. The cherry on top is that there's a bug with the Food Court of the mall that caused the system to lock up if you entered it past Day Four. The PS4 and Xbox One remakes alleviate this somewhat by allowing players to suspend the game (pausing it while another app like Netflix runs or putting it in rest mode), on top of being less prone to RROD-esque hardware failures.
    • Zombie Genocider is almost as infamous as 7 Day Survivor. To get it, you have to kill 53,594 zombies in a single playthrough. The only seriously feasible way of doing this is unlocking the garage as early as possible, then map out a path of the garage and take a car and just plow through zombies for the next 6 hours. You have to plot out your route as the cars will break down from running over zombies, and you have to leave the garage to respawn the cars. But once you have your route, it becomes an exercise in tedium as you just drive around the garage over and over again. Unlike 7 Day Survivor, you do have to keep relative focus so your car doesn't break down on you at an inopportune moment. But also unlike 7 Day Survivor, you can take breaks — there is a restroom near one of the exits to the garage, so you do not have to do it all in a single sitting. Plan your route correctly and you can net about 1,000 kills per circle, making it easy to complete it in 3 Day mode with more than enough time, so it is much less time spent than on 7 Day Survivor. AND for completing the achievement, you unlock the game's Infinity +1 Sword, the Megabuster, which will shred through boss health (though like the pistol, it's not super efficient on zombies as you only hit one at a time, even if it one hit kills them.)
    • Transmissionary, the achievement for getting all of Otis's broadcasts in a single run, is easy to fail and revolves around one of the most frustrating features of the game. Getting hit by a zombie at the wrong time can screw up Otis's call, with him then wasting even more of your time by calling you rude and telling you not to cut him off again.
  • That One Attack: Both of Cletus' methods of attacking are incredibly annoying to deal with. His shotgun is VERY powerful and will blast you across the room, usually giving him enough time to reload and blow you on your ass again, and he has a grapple for dealing with close range attackers where he throws you over the counter. What makes this move particularly hard to deal with is that he's bound to grab you before you can get a melee hit on him.
  • That One Boss:
    • The Convicts. They can run you over, crack your head open or just plain pump you full of lead (even at long range). It wouldn't be so bad if you could avoid them, but early on they hang out in the most direct route back to the safe room (good luck saving people without the Wonderland Plaza shortcut). They're annoying, hard to elude, difficult to beat even at higher levels due to their erratic movements and on top of all that they respawn every day! Goddamn. At least you don't have to defeat them as far as the plot is concerned.
    • Adam the Clown. He’s one of the earliest psychopaths you can fight and is one of the most dangerous. His chainsaw attacks absolutely shred through Frank’s health and if you try to melee him, he’ll often block and break your weapons instantly. If you DO manage to hit him, he’ll always counter with a flame breath attack that hurts quite a bit too. He also has access to throwing knives and obnoxious balloons that stun Frank in place for a while (although this can backfire on him if you hit the balloon while he’s inflating it). However, given that defeating him rewards you with the massively game-breaking Small Chainsaw, his difficulty was probably intentional.
    • The second battle with Carlito. His first battle is more of a Wake-Up Call Boss, but there’s ample cover for you to get near him and win fairly easily. For his second bout, Carlito packs a huge sniper rifle that not only knocks Frank on his ass for a bit, but it takes off TWO whole life cubes with each shot. Oh, and you also have to worry about Brad staying alive too, since Carlito is more than happy to fill him with lead while waiting for you to get back up to him. And if you do manage to get close? He’ll just smash you over the head with his rifle or just riddle the ground with mines while you give chase. If you aren’t a decent level or have good weapons at this point, this can be one of the toughest battles in the game.
    • Isabela has a gun and fast-moving motorcycle, and is made very annoying because of two bugs: She can't be attacked directly if she is moving at all (which is nearly all the time) and you lose instantly if the game triggers a load screen - if you go into another area, if she goes into another area, if the clock hits 7:00...
    • Cletus. His ridiculously powerful shotgun gives you no time to move close enough to him to attack with a melee weapon or aim a ranged weapon. The only time he stops firing is when he takes a swig out of a nearby wine bottle - but he tends to only do that after he's hit you and Frank is still picking himself off the ground. As if that weren't enough, his shotgun's spread means that it occasionally ignores the puny cover you get inside the shop itself, and he sometimes, inexplicably, gains a seventh shell if you dash out before he begins reloading.
    • Brock at the end is also one. You have no weapons or healing equipment, he blocks nearly every shot and his attacks are fast and hard, not to mention that he can kick you off the tank into a load of zombies. And if you fail to beat him, you have to do the tank stage again. However, if you're a high level, jump kicking repeatedly knocks his health down fairly quickly.
  • That One Level:
    • Most of Day 2 is generally considered to be the game at its hardest. You have four psychopaths to deal with (Clint, Jo, Carlito and Steven), the latter two of which you encounter sequentially in Case 2, and a fifth (Kent) who Frank must visit at a specific time. You also have a host of survivors to rescue, most of whom are located in areas of the mall distant from the safe room. And finally, all this is combined with a very strict schedule that forces you to juggle everything aforementioned with three Cases that are just as demanding of the player's attention (Case 2, aside from the previously mentioned fights, also requires Frank to travel a long distance under a short time limit. Case 3 and 4 demand that Frank be in the safe room at precise times). Without careful planning, it is difficult to complete all of these tasks in one go.
    • The time during which Case 7-2 takes place is also insanely difficult for anyone attempting everything at once. Simone spawns during this time, the Kent boss fight takes place here, Kindell begins his betrayal, and on top of it all Carlito's bombs make up the Case. Failing the Case unlocks a Bad Ending, arriving late to Kent's boss fight means you lose all your weapons and an already fairly difficult boss fight is made exponentially harder, Simone is the last chance for anyone attempting any Survivor-related achievements, and Kindell's Betrayal can make you lose up to ten survivors, never to be seen again. Good luck.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Jessie, the resident Mega Nekko Ms. Fanservice of the game, is given very little to actually do. Frank accidentally scares her early in the game and getting her to twist her ankle in which she gave him her gun to go help Brad. After one twisted ankle she remains mostly inactive through the rest of the game. Sure Jessie is a secondary character, but so is Brad and he was quite active over the course of the game. Basically the only times Jessie does actually help you are when she once found Carlito through the Surveillance cameras and she gives you a gun early in the game (but it's a mildly useful weapon and Brad gives you one when you find him anyway.) The biggest help you get from Jessie is when she is sitting next to Brad/Isabella in the little bed in the Store Room you can get a lot of Erotica points by taking pictures of her legs and ample cleavage. To make matters worse, in the canon ending she is then quickly killed off by being turned into a Zombie. But to be fair, at least she is savable in Ending B as a Survivor that gets into the helicopter with the others.
    • Some of the psychopaths can also be seen as this, and can make one wonder why Frank can't save them like he did for Paul Carson.
      • One example would be Kent, as he may have been a cocky braggart, but he does actually help you out earlier in the game, and it isn't until much later on in the game does he become a psychopath.
      • Thomas Hall is also a very strong contender for the one psychopath people wish they could save, as he's the only one of his family who shows hesitation and concern over his father's orders to kill anyone who enters their part of the mall.
    • Pamela Thompkins fights off a horde of zombies with her bare hands, and has a twin sister who abandoned her but who she tries to reconcile with. All of this could have made her a useful ally and nuanced supporting character, but as soon as Frank rescues her from the horde, she becomes a Damsel in Distress with little dialogue.
    • Jonathan Picardsen and Wayne Blackwell are fairly reasonable and impressively well-armed survivors but, to some fans' disappointment, they can't accompany or help Frank beyond when he escorts them to the security room.

    Zombrex: Dead Rising Sun 
  • Moral Event Horizon: The things Takahashi did are killing Shin, beating up George who is handicapped, torturing Mary with a zombie and beating her when she's down.
  • Wheelchair Woobie: George.

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