My fellow mercenaries and I start off holed up in an old Umbrella Construction office trailer, committing to a few hours of R&R. Searching the trailer’s back room, I find an extra frag grenade and a hard drive containing Intel. Now I need to find a laptop, connect the drive and upload its contents to Umbrella in order to score a few bonus points with management.
Turns out we need all the bonus points we can get. A few days ago we were dispatched to the secret laboratory of Dr. William Birkin with orders to arrest him and confiscate his new G-Virus. But we failed. Birkin injected himself with his G-Virus, transformed into a monster and nearly killed us all. While we barely escaped with our lives, commander HUNK managed to obtain a G-Virus sample and escape. He earned his extraction. Now we must prove ourselves to Umbrella and earn our own deliverance from this endless nightmare.
City Hall, Raccoon City Hospital, St. Michael’s Clock Tower, Nicholai… and then destroying the power plant with EMP charges. We’ve plunged the remaining survivors into a city-wide electronics and communications blackout. Our lives depend on carrying out Umbrella’s commands, covering their tracks in the hopes that they will get us the hell out of here.
And now… they’ve given us a suicide mission.
Vector materializes next to me, deactivating his stealth camouflage. His appearance is no surprise; as the team’s Surveillance specialist, I was searching the room with thermal imaging and saw him enter. “Spectre,” he whispers, “It is time.”
“One moment,” I say, still searching the room. I’m looking for something specific, which should be high up on the walls or ceiling. Then it occurs to me to look straight up, and that’s exactly where I find it: a small dome-shaped security camera. Whoever placed these things all over the city did quite a job. I pull out my “Samurai’s Edge,” a customized pistol that the local police tactical squad ordered from a nearby gunsmith, point it at the device and shoot it. I’ve grown to enjoy the pop-sizzle-crack noises they make. No one watches Wolfpack without paying the price.
Vector and I exchange a nod, and then join the others in the main office. Beltway is hopping from one foot to the other in anticipation. He’s been cranked up for days on whatever it is that our team medic, Bertha, puts in those adrenaline shots of hers. She only administers the shots to Beltway out of her own perverse sadism; Bertha’s bedside manner as a medical doctor leaves a lot to be desired. As for her, she stands with arms folded near the door. “Stop holding us back,” she hisses at me, her voice echoing hollowly inside her gas mask. We are all wearing gas masks, we don’t dare proceed without them. And as I grab the doorknob and turn the handle to open it, I hear a low moan outside that reminds me why.
Stepping out, I spot slow shuffling figure on the right, gray skinned with black eyes: the infected, or what you might call a zombie. Shouldering my Assault Rifle I put a burst into his upper torso. Tango down. Turning right I see a large group of zombies at the end of the street. Needing the team in formation, I turn back to the door… and notice another little dome above it. Another quickly burst, and the security camera bites the dust.
Wolfpack is in formation. Proceeding down the street in a wedge, we mow down zombies to the left and right. Behind the front line of four or five walkers I spot a group of them, crouched down and dismembering a coffeehouse Barista. I throw the frag grenade into their midst. Limbs and torsos fly in all directions.
The street is clear, for now. Wolfpack moves up behind me as I look down the street to the right. It’s blocked by a city bus; we have to navigate all the way around the wreckage. Signaling left, I start to lead them behind the bus. That’s when we hear the sounds of panting, slobbering, and random gibberish. Stopping, I shoulder my rifle and aim at the back of the bus. They appear in my gun sights: a group of “crimson heads,” flush-faced zombies in blood frenzy. Spotting us, they pause only momentarily before sprinting in our direction, screaming in rage. Beltway blows one in half with two blasts of his shotgun, which is the perfect weapon for this situation. Meanwhile I empty a full Assault Rifle clip into a crimson head to take it down, leaving the rest of their group sufficient time to swarm us. Wolfpack’s members instinctively switch to CQC, pulling out foot-long blades and slashing vigorously to knock them back. Once I’ve got mine staggering away, I step to its left and slash it across the cheek, knocking its face to the side. Then I slam my knife under his chin, splitting the roof of the mouth and piercing the brain. Pinioning on my left foot and throwing the body to the ground, I’m ready for the next. But Wolfpack have the others in hand. I pull my pistol and aim at the one attacking Vector, but he’s too quick; the zombie is down and it’s all over.
Behind the bus I find a weapons locker. Blasting the locks off with my pistol, I find a Bolt-Action Sniper Rifle inside–odd location to place such a weapon. Then I hear a sharp report echo from farther down the street. Looking, I see a laser sighting emanating from the building on the right; government Spec Ops troops waiting to ambush us. Looks like the rifle will come in handy. We have been racing the Spec Ops from location to location, trying to destroy evidence of Umbrella’s involvement before they can collect it and use it against us. Though trained, they are no match for us; we’ve left all Spec Ops dead in our wake. Dropping my Assault Rifle, I take the Bolt-Action and sprint upstairs onto a loading dock. The closest sniper draws a bead on me but fails to fire before I am concealed behind the cab of a truck parked below the dock. Unable to see me, the sniper targets one of the zombies staggering through the streets. I pop up, shoulder the rifle and aim through the sights, and take out the sniper with a clean headshot. Same tactic applies to the man in the next window. To spot the third sniper I must move down the dock. That’s when I find another security camera above the door to the left. Pulling my pistol, I blast it. The report draws unwanted attention; a zombie crashes through the wooden door. Barely missed by its claw swipe, I step to its side and seize it in a chokehold. Time to change tactics. Turning back to the street, I use the infected as a shield and draw my pistol. The sniper fires, hitting the zombie uselessly in the chest. Not hit myself, I empty my clip into the sniper’s head. He falls from the upstairs window and is immediately swarmed by infected in the street below. I watch for a moment, fascinated by their constant hunger. Then the thing in my arms wriggles, attempting still yet to turn and attack me. I grip the back of its head and twist sharply, snapping its neck.
We’re knee-deep in Spec Ops and infected all the way to the warehouse, where the power outage prevents us from opening the garage doors. Flipping breakers, we finally find a combo that powers the shutters on… allowing a horde of infected to climb under the opening doors. Moving into narrow spaces between the trucks, two facing each side, we fire on tangos funneling into both ends. Only one manages to get close enough to seize Bertha and bite her, infecting her with the T-Virus. Figuring I’m probably the only one with an Antiviral Spray, I turn around and douse her with blue mist. Otherwise, her health will drain continuously until she’s one of them, clawing and biting at us in an effort to spread her disease.
A hundred rounds and several sharp explosions later, and we’re finally inside the warehouse. But yet… we can still hear the sounds of gunfire, emanating from further in. A heated battle is engaged. We follow the commotion.
This is why we’re here, this is our objective: entering an observation room we can see the main warehouse area below, and the leather-clad giant in the center of the room. Hefting a massive Gatling gun, the creature swings broadly, spraying the room with bullets, cutting a Spec Ops squad in half. Proceeding through the next door and down the ladder, we prepare to take on a faulty B.O.W. prototype, the malfunctioning NE-a Parasite 101, codenamed “Nemesis.” On our way down to the basement level, the room is suddenly flooded with infected. Now we face not only the horde, but also a malfunctioning monster that cannot cipher friend from foe.
This is suicide.
A zombie steps up to my right. I seize it and use it as a shield, emptying my clip at Nemesis’ head, moving in to engage. We have to take this thing down in order to inject it with a working control parasite. When it is capable of carrying out its orders (something about assassinating local police officers) then perhaps we will have finally earned our chopper ride out, our way home.
If only we had some kind of resource to guide us, to tell us what’s ahead, around the next corner. The Resident Evil®: Operation Raccoon City Official Strategy Guide published by BradyGames contains a complete walkthrough for all Campaign (Story) Mode missions, with maps, screenshots, helpful tips and complete strategies for defeating bosses. It would prove an invaluable resource in this extremely dangerous situation, which has grown bigger than even we seasoned combat veterans can sometimes handle. The guide also contains biographies and artwork for all characters, thorough explanations of all functions and actions, and complete lists of weapons and class abilities. Full coverage of online modes is also provided, with marked maps of all multiplayer stages and explanation and combat tips for all game mode types. If you take nothing else from this account, heed my advice and purchase the guide before setting foot on the streets of Raccoon City. It’s a warzone, out there.