Codex Gamicus

Here she is, Willamette, Colorado. Population 53,594. Distinguishing characteristics, Jack shit! About the only thing to do in this town is kill time at the shopping mall.
~ Ed DeLuca

Dead Rising is a 2006 zombie Survival horror video game by Capcom, for the Xbox 360. It is the first game in the Dead Rising series, and was followed by Dead Rising 2 in 2011 and Dead Rising 3 in 2013. Dead Rising was met to positive critical acclaim and sales in North America, but did relatively poor in Japan.


The game follows the survival of Frank West, a free-lance photo journalist who investigates a tip of something big about to happen in the remote town of Willamette, Colorado. But what seems to be the "scoop of a lifetime" becomes a struggle for survival, one which Frank can only survive with his speed, wit, and camera.


Dead Rising is played in a third-person perspective as the player controls Frank West, a free-lance photojournalist as he survives a zombie outbreak in the Willamette Parkview Mall. Dead Rising is notable for it's unique and original gameplay, featuring a levelling-up system, extensive combat options, and an original photography dynamic.

Leveling System[]

Dead Rising features a level system, allowing the player to earn new skills and abilities upon reaching a new level, for a total of 50 levels. Leveling up is achieved by earning PP points, which are obtained through numerous aspects of the game. Each level earned rewards the player with an upgrade to one of the player's abilities, the abilities being; skills, speed, health, stock, and attack.

Skills are different attacks that can be performed by the player, such as kicking, punching, and throwing.

Speed determines how fast you travel. There's a total of 3 levels of speed to reach.

Health determines how much damage you can sustain, and it's measured in units. You start out with 4 units of health, the highest health you can reach is 12 units.

Stock determines how many items you can carry, which is measured in units. You start out with 4 stock units, the highest you can reach is 12 units.

Attack determines how much damage you do during an attack.


Dead Rising's combat system is based around the slogan "Anything and everything is a weapon", allowing the player to use a wide variety of everyday items and tools as weapons to combat hordes of zombies, as well as several fire arms and vehicles. Dead Rising has a total of 134 weapons, and 4 vehicles, and they're all found easily throughout the mall.

Besides weaponry, the player also has a wide variety of hand-to-hand combat attacks that can be unlocked by levelling-up. Frank has a total of -- physical attacks, each offering different unique, and ammo conserving ways to attack.


Because Dead Rising has the player take the role of Frank West, a photojournalist, they're given a camera gameplay mechanic that allows you to take pictures of your surroundings, such as people and places, in order to earn Prestige Points, or PP. Certain objects around the mall, and even actions performed by other characters can give the player large amounts of PP if photographed. All photographs that give PP have to fall into one of these five categories; Horror, Drama, Brutality, Erotica, and Outtake. The camera has a battery life of 30 photos, upon running out of batteries the player must find new ones located in camera stores located around the mall.

Game Modes[]

Dead Rising takes place in the Willamette Parkview Mall in the fictional town of Willamette, Colardo. The game is played in the perspective of Frank West, where you must travel throughout the mall completing tasks, fighting enemies, and other activities. The game consists of three games modes, 72 Hour Mode, Overtime Mode, and Infintity Mode. 

72 Hour Mode[]

72-hour mode covers the bulk of Dead Rising and the campaign. In this game mode you're required to travel through the mall completing Cases and Scoops, all while keeping up with the time, which lasts 72 hours, as the name implies. 72 Hour Mode follows Frank West's struggle to find out the cause of the zombie outbreak, and how to resolve it, and doing so before the helicopter arrives for him to escape in 3 days.

Cases Cases are missions that involve finding out the cause of the zombie outbreak, and how to resolve it. Cases are set up into a total of 8 chapters, each with a varying number of cases. Each case must be completed within a time limit, if a case goes uncompleted within it's time limit, all cases beyond that point will be uncompletable, and you will lose the game.

Scoops Scoops are missions that involve investigating a strange occurrence within the mall that's been observed from the security room by Otis Washington, the mall's janitor. A new scoop will be obtained upon receiving a call from Otis, briefing Frank on the disturbance, allowing Frank to find and solve the problem within a given time limit. Scoops consist mainly of survivors, people stranded in parts of the mall, that Frank must rescue by a certain means, such as carrying them, giving them items, or saving them from a psychopath, the game's bosses. Scoops are not mandatory or required to complete the game, they simply offer opportunities to earn more PP points and achievements.

Overtime Mode[]

Overtime Mode covers the aftermath of the events in 72 Hour Mode, and Frank West's ultimate survival and escape. Overtime Mode features no survivors, and instead leaves you to complete a series of tasks within a 24 hour time limit, and escape Willamette.

Infinity Mode[]

Infinity mode is unlocked after successfully completing Overtime Mode, and acts as an endless sandbox mode to play for entertainment. Infinity Mode features an endless clock, where the player gradually loses health over time, requiring them to constantly search for health items and test their survival time. Infinity Mode features all psychopaths and survivors from 72 Hour and Overtime Mode, but appearing in different places and different times. All characters encountered in Infinity Mode are hostile, and killing them rewards the player with health items and or weapons.


72 Hour Mode

Dead Rising follows the story of freelance photojournalist Frank West, who's taking a trip to the remote town of Willamette, Colorado after getting a tip of "something big" about to happen there. Frank enters the town via helicopter with pilot Ed Deluca, so that he can photograph the town and what's happening from an aerial view. They fly past and photograph several incidents of domestic violence and destruction, which they assume to be a massive riot. As the helicopter approaches the center of town Frank notices the Willamette Parkview Mall, the towns massive super mall, and tells Ed to land on the roof. As their about to land they're pursued by military helicopters, forcing Frank to quickly bail out after telling Ed to return in 3 days to rescue him.

As Frank watches Ed being chased off by the military he is approached by Carlito, who asks him if he's a reporter. Frank asks him what's happening, to which Carlito simply tells him to see for himself. As Frank makes his way off the roof and into the mall, he comes across a group of people barricading the entrance. As Frank approaches them he's confronted by a man who tells him to help barricade the door, "unless you wanna get eaten alive by zombies!". Frank looks over to the entrance in shock as he sees a horde of the undead piled against the doors. Frank decides to help, and goes looking for materials to barricade the door. While looking for materials he comes across an old man, as Frank tries to take his picture he confronts Frank, shouting "Why did you summon me to this place, what are you planning!". Frank stands confused and bewildered by the man, but is brought back when he hears a loud commotion at the entrance. A woman, gone frantic and unstable from the outbreak, pushes back the barricades to save her dog, who's trapped with the zombies. As all the zombies come pouring into the mall, a man stands on the second floor shouting at everyone to escape to the security room.

Frank makes his way through the horde of zombies to the security room, finding that he's the only one who made it. In the security room Frank meets three people, the man who told him to get the safe room, a woman wearing a suit and glasses, and one of the mall's janitors, who welds the door shut so the zombies can't get in. The man opens the air ducts and makes his way back into the mall, while Frank stays behind with the woman and shows her his photos. She notices the photo of the old man Frank met earlier, leaving Frank suspicious. Frank asks the woman several questions, such as who she is, what their doing, and what's behind all this, but her only response is "I'm Jessie, and the man you met earlier is Brad. That's all I'm authorized to tell you."

Frank takes some supplies from the safe room and heads out into the mall to look for survivors. While doing this he is followed by Jessie, who he accidentally injures, mistaking her for a zombie. She tells him that Brad's in trouble and that she has to help him, though in her injured state Frank has to instead. Frank finds Brad in the mall's food court, being shot at by a mysterious gunman. Frank helps Brad fight off the gunman, who turns out to be Carlito, and he escapes. Frank still demanding questions, remembers the photo he took of the old man and shows it to Brad. Brad immediately asks Frank to tell him where he took the photo at, to which Frank agrees to only if he tells him who he is. Brad explains to Frank that he and Jessie are from the Department of Homeland Security, and they're looking for the man in the picture. Frank tells Brad that he saw him in the Entrance Plaza of the mall, and the two head there to find him. As Frank and Brad make it to the Entrance Plaza, they find the old man, referred to by Brad as Dr. Barnaby, barricaded in a book store saying he won't leave unless they can ensure him a way out of the mall.

Frank and Brad head back to the security room, where they and Jessie try to find a way to get Dr. Barnaby to cooperate. Jessie finds that the signal to DHS headquarters is being blocked, and they can't call for help. Frank then tells them about Ed returning in the helicopter in 3 days, which they decide to use to get Dr. Barnaby out safely. They decide to get Dr. Barnaby the next morning, only to find him being kidnapped from the store in the monitors by a unidentifiable person. Frank and Brad go to the Entrance Plaza to save Dr. Barnaby, where they're attacked by Carlito wielding a sniper rifle. Frank and Brad fight off Carlito and save Dr. Barnaby, but Brad is wounded and requires medicine. Frank makes a quick medicine run to the mall's pharmacy and comes across a psychotic store owner, who attacks Frank with a shopping cart fashioned with knives. Frank kills the man and rescues a woman he was holding hostage, upon rescuing her she begins confronting Frank, telling him "that this is all your fault" and runs off. Frank gets the medicine for Brad and he goes off to rescue more survivors.

When Frank returns to the security room, Jessie shows him the girl he saw earlier in the monitor. Frank goes to track her down and she attacks him riding a motorcycle. Frank fights back and manages to pin her to the ground, after he lets her go she explains that Carlito's the one who started the outbreak and that she can convince him to surrender, because she's his little sister. She tells Frank to wait for her to return with Carlito in an empty store in the mall at midnight. Frank waits for Isabella, who arrives without Carlito, and being attacked by a zombie. Frank kills the zombie, and finds that Isabella's bleeding. Frank asks if she was bitten, but she tells him that she was shot by Carlito, who has now gone paranoid. As Isabella becomes light headed from her injury, Frank decides to carry her back to the security room.

As he brings her to Brad and Jessie he explains who she is and that Carlito started the outbreak, and then shot her. When she wakes up they begin interrogating her, and she explains Carlito's motives. She explains that the US government created the zombies at the American Livestock Research Facility located near Carlito and Isabela's village of Santa Cabeza, and that there was a zombie outbreak there that killed their parents. The outbreak was then covered up by the military, and that Carlito started the outbreak as an act of revenge. Carlito planned to call in reporters and news crew to reveal the zombies to the world, but the only ones who made it were Frank and another photographer named Kent Swanson. Lastly, she explains that Carlito called Dr. Barnaby to the mall to kill, because he was the head of research at the Livestock Research Facility. They then confront Barnaby, who admits to creating the zombies, and is now becoming one himself. As he slowly collapses he explains how they created the zombies, and he dies in a seizure. As they all sit around the security room, Isabella reminisces about the day the zombies killed everyone in her village, just as Dr. Barnaby begins to reanimate, who Brad quickly kills.

As Frank saves more survivors, he hears Carlito talking over the mall's intercom apologizing to Isabela. He then explains that he is out of options, and that this is his "last resort". As Frank meets up in the security room, Isabela tells them that if Carlito ever got cornered he would blow up the mall. As they begin to panic over the thought, Isabela explains that the explosion would send parasitic larvae into the atmosphere, and all over the country. With no time to waste Frank and Brad travel to the mall's maintenance tunnels to disarm the bombs. There Carlito is waiting for them and attacks Frank in a truck, but is quickly defeated, leaving Brad to chase after him while Frank disarms the bombs.

Frank successfully gets the bombs out of the maintenance tunnels, and goes to find Brad. Brad, after gun battling Carlito, is wounded and pushed into the maintenance tunnels, surrounded by zombies. Frank finds Brad horribly injured after the zombie attack. Brad gives Frank a gun to kill him with as he begins to turn, whether Frank kills him or not is determined by the player.

Frank returns to the security room, where Isabella tells him that Carlito has a hideout in the mall, and she agrees to take him there. When they make it to Carlito's hideout, located in the roof space of a store in the mall, they find a jamming device that Carlito's been using to prevent them from calling for help. They require the password to Carlito's computer to disable it, but they don't know it. Frank then gets a call from Jessie, telling him she's spotted something in the security monitors, so Frank hurries back to the security room. There he sees Carlito being dragged by a large man in the monitors, and races to find him. Frank heads into the maintenance tunnels to the butcher room, where Carlito is being held captive by a deranged butcher. Frank kills the butcher and rescues Carlito, who dies without giving Frank the password, only his locket.

Frank returns to Isabela and tells her that Carlito is dead. As she mourns over his death he gives her his locket, which contains a picture of their parents. The locket reminds Isabela of a phrase their parents used to say, "Pacha Mama", or "Mother Earth", which turns out to be the password. Frank then gets a call from Jessie, telling him she's able to contact HQ now. As Frank leaves the hideout, he gets another call from Jessie, who tells him that HQ has decided to send in the military to cover up the outbreak, and that they're going to kill everyone. Frank, now only relying on Ed for his escape, heads back to the Security room. There he finds two dead military soldiers, and a zombified Jessie, having been bitten by Dr. Barnaby. He also finds a note left by Otis the janitor, who tells him that he hijacked the soldiers helicopter and escaped with all the survivors Frank saved.

Frank heads back through the mall, fighting off military soldiers, and goes to get Isabela to escape. Isabela tells Frank to save himself, and he heads back through the now vacant mall, that has been officially cleaned of zombies, and makes it to the helipad to meet Ed. Ed notices Frank on the helipad and comes to rescue him, but is attack by a zombie on board his helicopter and crashes. As Frank watches in horror as Ed crashes, he falls to his knees in disbelief, giving in to his fate as zombies begin to close in.

The screen fades to black and the credits roll, and an end screen shows the players progress, showing their total PP, how many survivors they saved, and their photo rankings.

Overtime Mode

Picking up from where 72 Hour Mode left off, Frank is left paralyzed in disbelief after the helicopter crashed, just as a group of zombies begin to close in. Just as Frank is about to be bitten Isabela shoots down all the zombies and catches Frank as he passes out.

Isabela manages to carry Frank through the mall back to Carlito's hideout. There, Frank wakes up hours later and Isabela tells him that he fainted because he must have been bitten. Frank, now coping with the fact that he's become stranded and zombified, begins to lose faith in surviving. Isabela then explains how she can make a vaccine that would temporarily stop his zombification. She needs multiple items and chemicals that Frank must find scattered through out the mall. Frank, with no time to lose, goes searching for all the items he needs, all while avoiding the military.

Frank returns with the materials to Isabela, who tells him that he must find 10 queen parasites so that she can extract a pheromone for them as the main ingredient. While searching Frank comes across the downed helicopter, that crashed into the clock tower in the mall's park. The crash knocked a whole into the clock tower, which reveals a deep dark tunnel crawling with zombies. Frank returns to Isabela with the queens, and she successfully makes the vaccine and injects Frank with it. Isabela tells him that the vaccine is temporary, and could wear off at any time, whether it be hours, days, weeks, or even years. Frank doesn't find solace in knowing this, and angrily refers to himself as a "ticking zombie time bomb". Isabela upon hearing this, tells Frank of when Isabela and Carlito originally created the vaccine back at their university. She also tells him that they helped many of the children from her village that were orphaned from the zombie outbreak find new homes in America. She pulls up the website she made for helping the children find new homes, and shows Frank how the helped 50 children, the exact same number of zombie vaccines she and Carlito made at the university. She believes that Carlito may have zombified all of the children and injected them with the vaccine, so that at any moment they could turn and zombify America. With this newfound knowledge they realize it's critical that they escape.

While thinking of a way to escape the mall safely, Frank tells Isabela about the tunnel he saw in the clock tower. Isabela then tells him of a way she can make a chemical that releases an odor that repels zombies, so that they can make it through the tunnel without being attacked. They make it to the tunnel with their "zombie perfume" and descend into the tunnels. As they make it deep into the tunnel they find that it leads into an old drainage tunnel located underneath the mall. They travel down the tunnel and come to a gated run-off, which is unfortunately guarded by the military. They decide to open the gate and let the zombies come pouring in, which will distract the guards while they steal a military Humvee parked nearby. They successfully distract the guards and escape down the run-off in the Humvee, only to encounter a massive tank that pursues them. Isabela fights back against the tank using the mounted machine gun fixed to the back of the Humvee, but the tank knocks the vehicle on it's side, and knocks out Isabela. Frank, being confronted by the tank's driver Commander Brock Mason, is held at gunpoint by the tank's main canon. Frank demands Mason tell him what he knows about the zombies, and he tells him how he commanded the clean up operation in Santa Cabeza.

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