I finally got my hands back onto my 3DS yesterday and this meant only one, very important thing – the Resident Evil: Revelations demo was awaiting me on the Nintendo eShop. After a lengthy battle with the house’s wireless and what felt like the longest download time in the world (Hey, I’m impatient), I was ready to get down to business.

The first thing I noticed was how fantastic Revelations looked. The very brief opening cut scene has Jill Valentine waking in cabin of a ship with an ugly storm raging outside. The way the room lit up to the lightning strikes was perfect and Jill herself looked great. Every detail of her model from her hair right down to the grooves in her catsuit showed. I definitely have to recommend playing Revelations through in 3D which is something coming from me; I rarely use the 3D mode (it gives me headaches and I’m not a fan of having to hold the 3DS just right). It looks awesome in standard 2D, but the 3D is too cool. Maybe I just don’t pay enough attention to handheld gaming because I was completely thrown for a loop at how great this game looked.

Another plus in my book goes to the fact that the controls are nice and simple. I can play PC games like nobodies business, but it’s truly a sad thing to witness when I play fast paced or FPS titles on handhelds and consoles. Pressing Y will put you into ready to fire mode which changes the camera angle from over-the-shoulder to first-person and knife use stays in the over-the-shoulder perspective. Movement is about as basic as it gets and my only complaint is the inability to pivot freely (it makes looking around corners difficult). The release of the second analog stick will likely fix that issue. The touch screen also gets incorporated through “hacking” of doors and even removing the screws from metal plates covering the terminals. Removing the screws happened in real time which gives me a feeling they’ll incorporate the scare of having creatures after you while you’re fumbling with hacking terminals.

Here’s where it gets creepy. The main monsters shown in the demo are pretty grotesque and seem to borrow quite closely to the Regenerators and Iron Maidens of Resident Evil 4. The demo only came in “Normal” difficulty and they were tough mofos to bring down. I ran out of ammo on a couple occasions (even with nearly all head-shots) which was terrifying and relieving. Resident Evil 4 and 5 were pretty generous on ammo which took away some scares and the demo wasn’t quite as kind to me and it made some fights nerve wracking.

All in all I’m impressed. I’m a big Resident Evil fan, but I promise you I’m not biased. I know a bad Resident Evil game when I see one (here’s looking at you, 5) and Revelations isn’t looking to be one of them. It has the eerie, survival horror feel of the classic titles and here’s hoping that it doesn’t wind up too focused on action. I rarely ever pre-order games and this is one of the few titles I went out of my way for- and I’m glad for it!