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Dead Rising 2

  • Acceptable Targets:
    • Randy from 'Here Comes the Groom' is all but stated to be a furry. He's morbidly obese, is wearing a hood with pig ears and pants with a tail, a too-small latex shirt, and the notebook description calls him an insecure virgin who's addicted to internet sex. He tries to forcibly marry a woman by holding her and his father, a minister, hostage with a giant pink chainsaw that he revs and thrusts a lot.
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    • We also have rednecks (two survivors and a group of psychopaths on both ends of the Eagleland spectrum) Dungeons & Dragons players and—this being a Las Vegas Expy—gamblers.
  • Accidental Aesop: The combo weapon mechanic unintentionally teaches the player that brute force isn't always the most effective strategy; resourcefulness and ingenuity are the best ways to overcome your problems.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Slappy, were he and Susie in a genuine relationship before the outbreak? Or was it just a first date and Slappy put her on a pedestal in his mind out of grief?
  • Author's Saving Throw:
    • NPC AI vastly improved over the first game. For starters, they don't cower in a horde of zombies, and they will immediately come to you once you input the call button.
    • Survivors are given an icon when they're following you. It makes entering safe houses easier and lets you know they followed you in.
  • Breather Boss:
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    • Compared to, say, Antoine, Randy, and The Twins, a few midpoint psychopaths (such as Carl, Seymour, or Reed and Roger) seem rather easy.
    • While not one of the easier bosses, Boykin can feel quite easy due to coming after the Twins and before Sullivan.
    • The two scientists fought in Case 7-2 are a much better example. Although their gunshots can be annoying if you're trying to take them out with melee weapons.
    • Bibi Love is a psychopath mission but it lacks the usual combat, as it requires the player to do favours for her and complete a quick time event minigame.
  • Catharsis Factor: Tons of enemies to dispatch in creative ways with over-the-top weapons? When it comes to this, DR2 is perhaps only rivaled by Dynasty Warriors.
  • Complacent Gaming Syndrome:
    • Tons of different ways to dispatch zombies, each one crazier and the next... but if you ask around, most players will just craft either the knifegloves, the chainsaw paddles and/or the Defiler (fire axe + sledgehammer) and be done with it.
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    • Also, there are many different ways to take on the psychopaths, but most people just bring a Sniper Rifle, Light Machine Gun, Six-Shooter, and Knife Gloves to every fight.
    • The most reliable way of making money is by using the Money Hack Tool on ATMs. The Palisades Mall has a conveniently placed crafting station with the components for the Hacking Tool, as well as two ATMs close by, with a few slot machines for good measure. Combine this with a gate to the south to reset the ATMs, and what you have is the perfect cash grind.
  • Complete Monster: Tyrone "TK" King is the host of the controversial reality show, "Terror is Reality", wherein contestants slaughter zombies, much to TK's profit and entertainment. Accepting payment from Phenotrans, TK helps them set a zombie outbreak on the city, framing Chuck Greene for his crime. Taking advantage of the chaos, TK robs every casino vault he can find. Eventually bitten by a zombie, TK begs Chuck to save him with Zombrex, immediately swearing to kill Chuck's daughter if he's saved. Taking Chuck's young daughter and friend hostage, TK forces Chuck to get him blackmail material on Phenotrans to gain leverage on them, spitefully trying to murder Chuck, along with his daughter and friend afterwards.
  • Demonic Spiders: Late in the game, a type of zombie appears that's far more aggressive, durable, and damaging. In numbers, they can easily surround and kill you. Those weapons that were game-breakers before? You'll need them just to survive!
    • Thankfully, this new zombie type remains vulnerable to a number of tricks that work on regular zombies, including having things placed onto their heads like buckets or pylons, slipping on things (oil, alcohol, marbles, vomit), weapons that cut them into pieces like the battle axe, the unarmed moves Chuck learns as he levels up, and the instant kill animations weapons like the Bowie knife have.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Cameron Welch, one of the survivors Bibi Love is holding hostage, is rather popular among the fanbase simply for his funny lines during the ordeal.
  • Even Better Sequel: The first game was a unique sandbox game with RPG Elements, and good variety of weapons. Dead Rising 2 vastly improved upon it by tweaking the AI, Giving us a much more interesting protagonist with a better (if a bit cliched) motivation, putting even more zombies on the screen, replacing photography with combo weapons, giving an even bigger and more creative variety of weapons, and incredibly fun online Multiplayer and co-op.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Crystal and Amber are ridiculously attractive if you can get past the Twincest. Justified, as they're mostly on TiR for Fanservice.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple: Chuck/Rebecca is largely considered a much better pairing than Chuck/Stacey, mainly due to the fact that in comparison, Stacey is only ever your Mission Control, but on the whole, barely actually interacts with Chuck much, whereas meeting Rebecca is, from practically their first meeting, filled with a megaton of Ship Tease and barely concealed innuendo, not only that but she actively participates in the plot, whereas Stacy's contributions are along the lines of Let Me Get This Straight..., true she is the one who looks after Katey, while Chuck runs around, but we are never shown her in an actual active role, Katey being content to sit and sleep on the sofa and play her PSP, of course the whole thing is negated by the fact that Sullivan shoots Rebecca dead after Chuck points out Phenotrans role in the outbreak.
  • Franchise Original Sin: Combo weapons and vehicles were introduced in this game. While cool and powerful, they were balanced by only being able to be made at certain locations, so you still could make use of learning new moves and finding gear around levels. The later games allowed you to make them in the field, which negated the original point of using anything as a weapon and the dropping of new attacks and turned the focus of gathering stuff into primarily making new combo weapons. The reasoning behind doing so got a little weaker as well. While Chuck had motorcycle maintenance and Nick was explicitly an auto mechanic to justify their creation abilities, Frank could pull off all the same skills with nothing but a handwave on how he took a shop class to meet girls.
  • Foe Yay: Chuck and Leon. Leon's insistence that he's better than Chuck seems a little obsessive, but it doesn't help that in "Meet The Contestants" he bets Chuck is totally hot for him. Throw in that he throws Chuck's bike keys on the ground and watches him bend over for them (plus the fact you can be wearing skimpy clothes at the time) and it's almost like he has a severe crush on him.
  • Game-Breaker:
    • Terror Is Reality. Incredibly fun in and of itself, but the imbalance occurs when it comes to prize money. Every competitor receives at least a small reward, and when it is taken into a single player playthrough it allows the player to buy Zombrex quite easily.
    • Once you have killed Seymour and obtained his Six-Shooter (which respawns in the South Plaza every time you run out of ammo), you have officially beaten every boss in the game. It holds a whopping sixty rounds, does great damage, has a decent firing rate, and is very accurate. Even The Twins, Dwight Boykin, and Sullivan can be killed easily with just the revolver.
    • The Knife Gloves. They can be obtained very early in the game, do insane damage, attack fast, and can't be disarmed from you. While it won't make any psychopath a cakewalk like the Six-Shooter, it still makes several fights (particularly Sullivan) much easier. Not only that, but they net you 150 PP for every zombie you kill, which combined with their durability, can help you jump up 2 or 3 levels just from carrying a few around and killing zombies.
    • There is a book up in the giant octopus/jellyfish light fixture thing of Atlantica Casino that will allow Chuck to drink as much booze as he wants without having to drop his weapon and puke his guts out every few seconds. Combine that with the book that makes food heal more health and you now have an easily accessible supply of health wherever you go. This is also a bonus in the Sports Pack Pre-order bonus, which also gives Chuck an instant speed bonus. The no-puking effect also carries over to spoiled food, although Chuck will still puke upon eating it.
    • A lot of people are familiar with the Twins. Save yourself the trouble by going into the nearby vault room, pick up the shotgun and LMG, and blow one of them away.
    • Similarly, the fight against Chef Antoine is fiendishly difficult, but two things can turn it in a player’s favor: Jasper, the survivor found in the same area as the boss fight, and the LMG found nearby in the Yucatán Casino. Add the Leadership Magazine (see below) and it turns the challenging brawl into a quick affair where your teammate stun-locks Antoine with bullets as you whale on him with your favorite weapon.
    • The Leadership Magazine pretty much cuts the difficulty of escorting survivors in half, if not more. Aside from making all survivors following you twice as tough, it makes survivors who normally need to be carried (with one exception) move at full speed and turns the game's resident joke character into the most powerful survivor in the game.
    • Dynameat nets you a ton of PP per kill, even without its combo card. Throwing it in a crowd of zombies can gain you about as much as saving one survivor, and you can make one as soon as the game starts (Random zombies usually carry a hunk of meat but they tend to spawn in the corridor with the maintenance room and gem store, dynamite can be found on top the palm tree by the Royal Flush exit) and can be applied immediately for some nice level jumping (there's always a crowd of zombies by the exit, either Royal Flush or Americana).
    • The Defiler (Sledgehammer + Fire Axe) is easy to acquire the reagents for, can be obtained very early on and absolutely wrecks any zombie it touches. Sure, it's molasses slow, but this is a moot point when you can bat away crowds of zombies with it.
    • In contrast, while the Drill Spear requires a harder-to-find Spear and has no arc whatsoever, its attacks are both damaging and extremely fast. When fighting a Psychopath you can usually get off three or four attacks, whereas even swinging the Defiler or a Nail Bat twice might be extremely risky.
    • The Pain Killer mixed drink, easily made by combining most alcoholic drinks with another alcoholic drink, heals you for a good amount of health, cuts any damage Chuck takes in half, you can make multiple pain killers in one go, can be stored to be used as needed, and doesn't cause Chuck to be sick the way too much alcohol does. This is extremely useful against tougher bosses like the Twins, Antoine, and Brandon. The only drawback is the damage halving can't be stacked, so the only reason you'd make multiple pain killers is either to heal more easily or to reactivate the effect once it wears off.
  • Goddamned Boss: The redneck snipers. They're not hard to take out once you find your way up to their rooftops. But as mentioned, the problem becomes finding your way up to their rooftops through narrow walkways and hidden ladders, and even knowing which roof they're on. Only their ominous music plays, along with the bullets nailing you from seemingly all directions. Otherwise, you have to essentially dig out a sniper in a crowded strip mall, and do it four times in a row. Compounding your mounting frustration is that; unless you had a REALLY good eye at the start of the game; you probably didn't even know you can climb to the rooftops in this game.
  • Good Bad Bugs:
    • It is possible to carry items into Co-Op by joining a game session directly from a single-player session. Doing so allows you to duplicate items, the most beneficial of which are bargaining magazines which give a % decrease to the cost of items in the pawn shop. Duplicating enough of them drives the price into the negative numbers which means the looters will pay you to take things off their hands.
    • Another similar one involving a crappy connection and durability magazines. Randomly disconnecting while you have a durability magazine in your hand, saving, and then coming back can cause the durability effect to stack. Do this enough times and any combo weapon you build covered under the durability magazine will be infinite.
    • There's one particularly funny bug where after Sullivan reveals himself as a Phenotrans agent, if you search around the safehouse, you can find him crying in a corner, like many other day 3 survivors.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • You know that commercial where Michael Bay pronounces everything "awesome"? He starts off by calling a tiger an "awesome pussycat". Not only can Chuck give Snowflake the tiger to Katey as a gift, she says, "That was an AWESOME gift!"
    • An Asian Intrepid Reporter covering a zombie outbreak who has plenty of Ship Tease with the protagonist. Hmm..
      • Seriously, they're wearing the exact same outfit.
  • Memetic Mutation:
  • Narm:
    • When Dwight Boykin offs himself due to not wanting to become one of the zombies, it's kind of sad... And then you look where he killed himself and see that his soldier boots are still there, with smoke coming out of them.
    • You make your own if you dress up Chuck in something ridiculous before a serious cutscene plays.
    • Since he's voiced by Samuel Vincent, anyone who encountered Carl Schliff won't have a hard time to remind him of Double D except driven insane during the outbreak.
  • One-Scene Wonder:
    • Many of the psychopaths, but particularly Brandon and Slappy.
    • Bibi Love's black hostage, Cameron Welch. He's completely calm, even if you screw up the minigame and get him killed and delivers two of the most amusing lines in the game. He also looks a bit like Barack Obama, which is his Fan Nickname.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!: A lot of the Psychopaths are roughly analogous to the ones from 1, which led to complaints about them not having their own feel as a result.
  • Scrappy Mechanic:
    • Katey's need for Zombrex forces players to drop whatever they're doing and search frantically for Zombrex (or smash slot machines to buy some from a looter) and run to the safehouse, praying the time doesn't run down, to administer it themselves. Getting there too early will force Chuck to wait, despite the fact he could easily hand it off to Stacey or the pharmacist - the very first one he rescues, and a paramedic - to inject it themselves while he's gone.
    • Certain Survivors later into the campaign with start twisting some nipples uncomfortably. At the start, it's easy to do, no problem. Later on, some will require something before they follow you. Again, at first, these are reasonable, such as giving a guy a gun to defend himself or to feed a guy something to "get his strength back". Later on, the requests get arbitrary and stupid. Three survivors won't leave until you beat them at poker with high dollar amounts, which wouldn't be so bad if you weren't constantly on the clock. As a result, your time is severely wasted trying to save some people.
  • Special Effects Failure:
    • The game's unwillingness to show dismembered or otherwise damaged models for still-living characters has a tendency to stick out during cutscenes, where they're implied to be shot in the head or torn in half from the waist but it's never shown, especially when it's contrasted with the degree of violence the zombies go through.
    • When TK shoots at Chuck on the train, his gun has no recoil or action, as if the muzzle flashes and sound effects were added in post.
      • Also notable is the fact that his finger is behind the trigger and isn't actually pulling it.
  • Strawman Has a Point: TK's show is all about catharsis and cash prizes. TiR and its premise is to mow down zombies that were once our loved ones for fabulous cash prizes. Conceptually, it's barbaric, but then you actually get to play the game itself, and while the message is there, the cash prizes available for Chuck to have in the main game is quite the incentive to go back and play it for more. Not to mention that the games are INSANELY fun. It becomes hard to argue against his point when you constantly play the games.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song:
  • That One Achievement:
    • Zombie Genocide Master: This requires you to kill 72,000 zombies. With the right techniques, it's not that difficult, but it will take about 8 hours of mindlessly running over zombies in the strip.
    • The three Terror is Reality achievements became this over time. Unless you organize it, the odds of you finding three other people looking to play Ti R at the same time are pretty slim.
  • That One Attack: Every boss has at least one.
    • Sullivan has an incredibly overpowered uppercut that instantly reduces Chuck's health to the absolute lowest level (i.e. if anything else touches you, you die) making it by far the most damaging attack in the entire game. Sniper rifles, chainsaws, grenades, machine guns, swords, even aerial bombardment cannot compare to this attack.
    • Snowflake has that incredibly annoying grapple attack.
    • Chef Antoine has the "Apple choke" he does sometimes after knocking Chuck/Frank down. There are two main issues with this attack: 1) Antoine has an extremely fast frying pan bash that cannot be interrupted and knocks Chuck/Frank, and 2) the quicktime event is a harder version of Snowflake's grab and it will inevitably take one or two chunks of Life away, in the first playthrough three Life cubes is about 1/3 of the entire Life bar.
    • Dwight Boykin can pull off a melee combo where he'll whack you with the butt of his machine gun, throw you down to the ground, shoot you a bunch, then throw you. This whole combo takes off four blocks of health. This will leave you reeling if the Random Number God hasn't blessed you with plenty of health upgrades.
    • And of course, the redneck snipers, well, sniping you. Each shot takes off two blocks of health and knocks you back, and they almost never miss. This can be gotten around through effective use of the Roll, however.
  • That One Boss:
    • Just about any boss that won't go to pieces from a Laser Sword beaming can be Swiss-cheesed with Sniper Rifle fire. Even TK will go down to repeated applications of a convenient cordless drill or Cement Saw.note  Sullivan, however, will make you tear your hair out. You have to wade through a sea of zombies to get to him, wasting life and healing items. You fight him on a small platform atop a sea of zombies, and if you use any melee weapon on him, he'll grab it in mid-swing and use it to toss you into them, and all the time a passing plane is firing explosives at you. Which blow holes in the floor that you can fall into, forcing you to wade through even more zombies. Several of his regular attacks can fling you off the platform as well, forcing you to clamber back up - and often, he'll repeatedly shoot you while you're doing so. If you choose to start shooting at him, he'll give just as good as he gets, and chances are his health will outlast your ammo - forcing you to resort to Good Old Fisticuffs - and given that most people bought the game explicitly to play around with the combo weapons, the Unexpected Gameplay Change to Fighting Game will slaughter you. Over and over again.
    • People very much seem to hate Antoine, due to him being able to block machine gun bullets, severe Hitbox Dissonance, able to use projectiles, and heal himself (though that's a weak point), as well as a really annoying hostage whining.
    • Randy Tugman. Aside from being a thoroughly unpleasant individual, he's an Acrofatic Lightning Bruiser with a giant chainsaw. He's fast, his attacks do a lot of damage and will send Chuck flying bum-over-teakettle over the chapel pews. Even two players with laser swords could have trouble taking this guy down.
    • People tend to shudder at the mention of Crystal and Amber as well. To put it bluntly, these two are a Dual Boss with swords and a complete disregard for the Mook Chivalry code. To not put it bluntly, they will constantly gang attack you and run away so that you can't fight back, often leaving you several health blocks lighter. They aren't afraid to hurl taunts and insults at you either. Making it worse is that most of the nearby healing items are alcohol and as such using too many without the right magazine on-hand will make the player character physically sick.
  • That One Sidequest: High Rollers, an unmarked mission that involves three people holed up in the Atlantica Casino who came to Fortune City to participate in a high-stakes Poker game. They refuse to be escorted to the safehouse unless you beat all three of them, which is extremely time-consuming and requires the three Gambling Magazines if you want to have a remotely fair chance of doing so.
    • To make matters worse, the eight survivors at a time limit usually makes them block another unmarked mission where you meet the Tape It Or Die crew, so you have to either complete the mission as fast as possible or kill them.
  • Values Dissonance: Unlike the Umbrella Corporation, which can just claim to be evil for the hell of it, the whole thing of Phenotrans being willing to withhold lifesaving medicine in order to make money comes off as really strange to countries where healthcare is a subsidized government service.
  • What an Idiot!: After surviving the bombing at the arena, Chuck learns that he has been framed for the outbreak on the news.
    You'd Expect: Chuck would take some precautions with hiding his identity; while Chuck knows that he isn't responsible for the outbreak, the other survivors won't and they will be slow to trust him.
    Instead: Chuck doesn't take any precautions at all and when people confront him, all he says is "It wasn't me". He instigates a fight with Carl Scliff when he writes his own name on a clipboard instead of a pseudonym, which alerts Carl to his identity as the alleged terrorist.
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not Political?: At least one fan's essay says it's very much so. Here.
  • The Woobie: Chuck. His stoic behavior specifically makes him an Iron Woobie, while his ability to carve through hordes of zombies and Psychos can easily make him Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds.

Dead Rising 2: Case West

  • Game-Breaker:
    • The Laser Gun, Impact Blaster and Reaper are extremely effective in the final battle and against hazard units. In singleplayer mode, the weapons you give Frank last as long as if you were using them, due to it being meant for co-op play.
    • The Laser Gun is also extremely effective in crowds of zombies, as it lets out an explosion if you shoot someone. It can gain PP very quickly and you get 20 shots with each one. It requires combining two other combo weapons to make one, but it's well worth it.
  • Goddamned Bats: Security officers with guns are everywhere. You need your own guns and some food on hand all the time.
  • Scrappy Mechanic: Certain combo weapons are only fully effective when playing as Frank. As you can only play as Frank if you join a co-op game, this means that it's unlikely that you'll be able to experience that. Other combo weapons are only effective when playing as Chuck, but that's not nearly as annoying.
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