The House of the Dead 2 & 3

The House of the Dead 2 & 3 Preview for Wii

On: Wii
Review Verdict Read Review
6Out of 10
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If these games aren't familiar to you, then this double pack looks like being worth a look.
If these games aren't familiar to you, then this double pack looks like being worth a look.

If these games aren't familiar to you, then this double pack looks like being worth a look.

I'm not sure what I was expecting from House of the Dead 2 & 3 Return for the Wii. Set up fairly modestly at a recent SEGA press event, decapitated foot draped over the corner of the table, it just seemed so obvious. I'd already played and enjoyed SEGA's existing Wii light-gun shooter Ghost Squad, the only light-gun game on the console that actually feels authentic (Wii Zapper and calibration combined), so surely this would be the same but with zombies, right? Right.

That of course isn't a bad thing. House of the Dead 2 ranks among my favourite Dreamcast titles and 3 was pretty much the only light-gun game of note on the Xbox. After a brief 20-minute session on the game it seems to offer exactly what it says on the box: House of the Dead 2 and House of the Dead 3. Sadly there's no sign of the original game in the series (a strange omission if you ask me), but the two games on offer appear to be fairly decent ports of the arcade games.

No Wii Zapper was present but it's highly likely that the game will function better with your controllers strapped to it, just as Ghost Squad did. A quick hunt around the options menu revealed the same calibration screen seen in Ghost Squad, so there are no worries there. Assuming you calibrate your Wii Remote correctly you shouldn't have any issues with aiming, even if you opt to use a Wii Remote on its own like you're zapping zombies with a TV remote control.

So, on to the games. There's little to say really. You have a gun (a shotgun in the case of HotD 3) and you need to shoot undead monsters before they attack and kill you. Headshots will usually result in a more instant death, while you can just unload a whole clip into an enemy if your aim isn't up to scratch - reloading is as simple as pointing the Wii Remote outside of the aiming zone. Despite being a few years old now, it's still satisfying to see parts of a zombie's head blasted off and there's still a thrill to be found when saving an innocent bystander from the undead horde.

The gore seems to be intact

The gore seems to be intact

For those unfamiliar with the series or light gun games in general, you play through a series of small sections, before encountering an end of level boss. In HotD 2 I came up against the axe wielding monster whose weak point is the flying gargoyle-like creature circling around it. In HotD 3 a rather dead car park attendant puts up a multi-part fight, charging at you until you've shot him enough times in the head. While the visuals on the Wii versions look a little rough in comparison to the arcade versions, they're more than adequate and only hardcore fans will see the differences.

There's not a lot more to say. Unless latter portions of each game run into serious problems House of the Dead 2 & 3 Return should please anyone looking for similar thrills to Ghost Squad. It's just a shame that SEGA didn't see fit to also include the first game in the series. Look for our full review ahead of the game's late March release date.

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Anonymous

house of the dead will not load, keeps comeing up with turn off your wii and try again
Posted 18:47 on 31 August 2008
help's Avatar
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help

when ever i play house of the dead for wii when we play 2 player theres this messed up thing called calibreation and when u play 1 plaer works but when u point the 2nd wii remote at the senser it does not work
Posted 23:04 on 25 July 2008
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gojira

no the game will be in full screen arcoding to ign.com
Posted 22:59 on 21 February 2008
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Robert

Does the game support 16:9 widescreen?
Posted 17:21 on 21 February 2008
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Ginger_Jesus@ TomO

Great!!! I gather if you had the Wii Zapper it would make it old arcade style I guess. I wonder if its 2 player co-op, seeing as it was on the arcade machine also the dreamcast had House of the dead. So it would be interesting to see how it pulls of on the Wii. Its great to see a great title on the Wii as my Wii collection has been collecting dust since from Metroid Prime 3, my brother has got SMG so that saves me £££. :)

Anyway thanks for answering my question Tom well apreciated. :D
Posted 20:08 on 19 February 2008
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TomO

It felt good. We didn't have the zapper at the event sadly, but Ghost Squad felt pretty good so I have high hopes for this.
Posted 17:58 on 19 February 2008
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Ginger_Jesus

A question to Tom Orry or who ever played that game..... Did it feel like you was playing back in a arcade room???? Because if so I might even put some money to the side to get house of the dead for the Wii. Especially with the Wii Zapper it should to fine.
Posted 17:39 on 19 February 2008
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Machetazo

"Sadly there's no sign of the original game in the series (a strange omission if you ask me)"

Not if you think that they might be inclined to release the original to virtual console, or even HD it to try Xbox 360/PS3 for size. T'is the era of SEGA nostalgia, after all, atm, and I can't think of too many lightgun games to date, for their respective services. :)
Posted 17:36 on 19 February 2008

Game Stats

Release Date: 28/03/2008
Developer: Sega
Publisher: Sega
Genre: First Person Shooter
No. Players: 1-2
Rating: BBFC 15
Site Rank: 3,423 6
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