Ultimately this is a game about using ridiculous weapons to do silly things: Cleaving apart a horde of zombies with an ice sword — liquid nitrogen and a sword combined to create a sword of ice-cold murder — or a Blambow — crossbow and fireworks — is a lot of fun, and the combat is much tighter and more efficient than it's been in previous Dead Rising titles. A quick squeeze on the left trigger lets you shoulder your ranged weapon, for example, while a press on the left bumper lets you toss whatever thrown weapon you've got to hand. I've got a high tolerance for splattering undead about the place, so I found a lot to enjoy here, but Dead Rising 4 takes a bit of work to pick the signal out of the noise.
The problem, perhaps, is that surviving the hordes of zombies has always been the biggest challenge in the game, and now that killing swathes of the dead is simple, so too is the single-player game. Add in the combo vehicles — godless killing machines of nigh-unfathomable power in some cases — and you're easily carving up thousands of zombies as you move from story beat to story beat in the game's open world, which here encompasses the entirety of Willamette, and not just the mall from the first one, which also returns, albeit in a new form.
As a result, it never gets tough, and I died just a single time during the game, trying to resolve one of the many technical issues presented in the PC port.
You might not have noticed there was a PC port - Dead Rising 4 has Microsoft exclusivity for 90 days, meaning it's available for the Xbox One and Windows 10 Store, but won't be on Steam for a while. I'd probably advise against picking the game up on the Windows 10 Store. Dead Rising 4 crashed most of the times I launched it, and Microsoft insisted on giving me security checks each time I tried to start it, with the security checks looping endlessly. This isn't Capcom's fault, but it's a point against buying it on the PC right now. Worse, because of the Windows 10 Store I didn't have full access to the .exe, so I wasn't able to add it to Steam to use with my Steam-Link, and I couldn't get Shadowplay, FRAPS or OBS to hook into it for streaming and screenshots. That's a big point against it too, because using Microsoft's in-game interface sucks, and you'll really want to show people the stuff you're getting up to: It's half the fun.
This joy of sharing what you're doing has always been a big draw for the Dead Rising series, especially since the co-operative campaign mode was added into Dead Rising 2, and it's honestly a shame it's not present here. I haven't tried much of the multiplayer, but it's a separate mode in a limited area, with ever-increasing difficulty. I still enjoy it, but it's a distraction from the campaign rather than a complement as it's been in other games.
I think Dead Rising 4 gets a lot of things right: The combat is genuinely fun, I like the customisation and crafting options and I adored the ridiculous tone, but now that I've reviewed it, I can't see myself ever playing it again. It's been a lot of fun, and that Capcom has managed to make a Dead Rising instalment that's interesting and has a bunch of good ideas is impressive; it's just a shame that for all of the new ideas, the underlying issues in the series remain, which makes it tough to recommend to anyone who isn't already a die-hard fan.