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XBox Reviews: House of the Dead III


House of the Dead III Screenshots

The Final Say!

House of the Dead III
 - reviewed by Tory Favro
Review Date: 15 April 2003
Review Score: 9.5/10
Not based on an average 
Distributed By:

It's here, the first gun game to grace the XBox console! So get out your boomstick and come with me to shoot some undead nasties in House of the Dead III.


House of the Dead III Features

  • Players 1-2
  • Horror
  • Genre: Light Gun (Horror Theme)
  • Rating: MA+
  • Dolby Digital

House of the Dead III is the latest instalment of this title, exclusive to XBox! Fans of lightgun games should rejoice as this title fulfils the hopes and expectations of all players and then some. Especially included in this title is also the inclusion of House of the Dead II, unlockable upon completion of number three.

Although there is a story, it's not really one that will change the way that you look at the game. It takes place 20 years after the events of HOTDII. In any case who really cares what the story is with this series it's all about shooting the dead to make sure that this time they stay that way.

The nice thing about this title is that WOW have increased the replayability of the title by giving gamers a hell of a lot more choice this time with paths that can be taken to affect different outcomes and different items and coins to collect.

One of the first major changes in the game is the fact that you no longer have to reload weaponry as there is an auto loading shotgun. Whilst this can be cumbersome if you have to reload whilst under attack, it's also handy if you are freaking out with the huge increase in enemies who want to take a piece of you home with them.

The visual style of this title is also fair superior to any of the others that have previously featured in this series. It really stands out as you will be seeing House of the Dead II on the completion of this title. The new graphics are quite simply put, stunning to say the least. You can see the rot and filth of the undead in glorious colour and the game runs along at a great rate. I did not detect any chug at all with this title.

The game features real time lighting and wonderful textures. The really cool thing about this is that because you are playing a game where you are essentially on rails for the whole time. Therefore backgrounds and all other forms of detail are brilliantly depicted making this an absolutely stand out title for the XBox in terms of sheer graphics.


Audio brings the dead to life utilising a full 5.1 Dolby Digital setup although I did notice that it really doesn't rock the rear speakers to any great extent, although this is purely due to the fact the whole game is more or less spent looking forward to oncoming enemies. When the game does spin you around however, you can hear the action moving from rear to front speakers.

There has been some problems with this title in Australia from the outset stemming from the fact that as yet we do NOT have a lightgun to test this title with, nor do consumers have the ability to purchase a gun yet. I am pleased to announce that Futuretronics do have a lightgun coming to our shores in just a few short weeks, followed up by the Beretta gun being launched by Thrustmaster in May. Though it's no fault of any of the suppliers mentioned, I am very disappointed that the first gun game for XBox does not have the right peripheral to get the most out of the title.

I am pleased to let gamers know that this title can be played very well with a hand controller and for this review we used both Controller S and the standard Duke (larger) controller. A crosshair appeared on the screen that was easy to use and with the auto load feature, it was all the better.

One thing that may annoy some players is that this game is over very very quickly if you really make a go of it all. There are a number of boss battles and the sheer intensity of the final battle will have you staggered as it is actually out of porportion to the rest of the battles. Normally things progress incrementally until the finally battle then it goes beserk!


It's the first gun game for the machine and I am pleased to inform everyone that it's an extremely classy affair. A little quick to finish perhaps but with enough options for mayhem that players will be more than happy to play it over and over again. Very Highly Recommended. BOOYAH!

- Tory Favro

Copyright 2003 www.impulsegamer.com