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Dream Arena – Willamette Parkview Mall (Guest Article)

This article was created by our guest writer zoniken, you can find him at his pixiv.

A few weeks ago we covered Dead Rising star Frank West in a Dream Smasher, and now I wanted to move to the next Dream article for Frank and the Dead Rising series…their Dream Arena. Dead Rising is very famous for their outrageously large open world concept, starting from the mall to the casino, then the entire town where zombies roam around. But where did it all started? Whenever you talk about Dead Rising, what place can you think of first? The answer to that question is Willamette, the famous town where the first Dead Rising game took place, and where the whole zombie hoard outbreak began in the entire Dead Rising series.

Willamette is a fictional town located in Colorado, with a population of 53,594. It is known to be a small town surrounded by green hill valleys and vegetation, which there’s nothing popular in attraction except for its giant shopping mall containing 79 stores, Willamette Parkview Mall. The mall has become the main stage for the zombie survival horror for Frank West, who’ve come to cover the case of the mysterious zombie outbreak. It has also become famous enough as it made crossover appearances throughout games like Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars and Project X Zone. In this article, we’ll be focusing on this zombie conquered shopping mall as Frank’s home stage, and today’s Dream Arena.



First of all, let’s introduce the music choices for this stage. Since the stage will be taking place in the shopping mall, we’ll keep its main mall theme from the first Dead Rising in this list. Other songs will be based upon psychopath bosses from the first Dead Rising to Dead Rising 3, but it will depend whether it’s possible to be used or not due to legal rights. Finally, Dead Rising 4 doesn’t have much fitting music as they’re using Christmas songs most often, and we can’t use them due to legal rights. So in this case, we’ll use Oh Willamette as being more original than other Christmas songs.

Music Title Originally From
Mall 3 Dead Rising
Frank West Dead Rising
Kick the Pedal Dead Rising
Adam (Crazy Clown) Dead Rising
Mascot ~Slappy~ Dead Rising 2
Own Little World Dead Rising 2
Evan MacIntyre (Psycho Clown) Dead Rising 2: Off the Record
Firewater Dead Rising 2: Off the Record
Wrath Battle Dead Rising 3
Gluttony Battle Dead Rising 3
Oh Willamette Dead Rising 4


Statistics & Hazards


Game Dead Rising
Series Dead Rising
Home to Frank West
Size Medium
Niche Zombie infested mall
Blast Zones Average, walk-offs on both sides
Gimmick Zombie invasion
Crate Type Normal

The stage will be taking place in the Entrance Plaza of the mall. There will be three platforms placed on this stage; one is the centre clock and the stair connected platforms on both sides. The centre clock normally has a bee statue on top of it, but in this case, it’ll be removed so fighters can stand on it. At the same time, the fighters can go underneath the clock stand. While the ground will simply have walk-offs without any pits, the stairs connected to the side platforms will be hiding the bottom views, as fighters can hide behind it. All platforms will be solid as fighters cannot jump through it, and bounces back when blown away. Also, just like the Battlefield stages and Gaur Plains, this stage will be shifting the background from day to night every few minutes.

Four zombies separated into four major colors of red, blue, yellow, and green.

But this won’t be Willamette Parkview Mall without its main theme of the stage’s gimmick; the zombies. Dead Rising series is all about a zombie apocalypse, and the zombies will be appearing in this stage as spectators, roaming behind the barricaded background. However, one or two zombies will be appearing on stage as enemies in a random timing; crawling over the barricade and sometimes mysteriously falling from above. Once they appear, they’ll start attacking by grabbing the fighters and biting on them but can be easily removed by toggling the joystick. They will also scratch their target as they’ll flail their arms. However, rather defeating them in a bloody way like in the actual games, they’ll be blown away like many enemies from Smash Run or Brawl’s Subspace Emissary.


Omega Form & 8-Player Smash

Finally, let me explain how both Omega form and 8-Player Smash should look like. For the Omega form, the fighters will be standing on the bridge part similar to the mall’s second floor, which both sides will be left disconnected, with the same length of Final Destination. Since the stage will be taking place on the second floor, you will see the clock stand with the bee statue and the two stairways in the background, while the ground level will be filled with the pool of zombies. For the 8-Player Smash, the zombies will all disappear from the background as they will not spawn in to attack the fighters on stage.

And therefore, that’s it for this Dream Arena for Frank West and the Dead Rising series! Willamette and its mall are very famous for many Dead Rising fans as it is iconic and memorable. Although Willamette did return in Dead Rising 4 it was changed drastically and was poorly received by fans. The shopping mall from the first game is something that many fans would never forget about. I think that everybody would prefer this stage if Sakurai asked for a stage from the Dead Rising series for Smash.

Now that we’ve finished with the Dream Arena, join us soon for our final destination, Dream Items for Frank and Dead Rising! Until then, I’ll see you there!

  1. Your love for the game truly shows. It’s looks really fun stage with a unique location.

    DeeperThanRed on May 21 |
    • Thanks for the comment! While I couldn’t finish the game entirely, I really love how the world was made of. Being in a large world not just infested with zombies, but using everything around you as weapons for survival…well, although it’s something I do not wanna wish to have in the real world, the game concept was very uniquely impressive. The stage was easy to think of either, but the mechanics was difficult due to limitations. But even then, Willamette is very memorable, and if Smash did bring Frank in game, then the mall would be the best choice.

      zoniken on May 24 |
  2. Hey, buddy! I never did comment on your last two guest articles, so allow me to correct that here!

    They’re both well-done and I’d be excited to see either series realized in Smash. I only ever played the first Fossil Fighters, but I had a good time with it, and its vibrant cast of characters and Vivosaurs was endearing. Even seeing, say, the T-Rex as an Assist Trophy would be a triumph. And as for Frank West, well, you know I share your love for him and his series. I’d be thrilled if he somehow made it into Smash.

    As for your stage idea, I second DeeperThanRed’s sentiment. Your concept for the Entrance Plaza would add a unique stage layout that’d be fun (even if I don’t care for walk-offs), and I’d play on it and its Omega iteration regularly. Looking forward to your next piece!

    Cart Boy on May 22 |
    • Thanks for the comment!

      For the Fossil Fighters…I haven’t played the latest one yet, while I’ve finished the first but not fully on the second. It is a great game with a very interesting mechanics, and its really pity that the game wasn’t popular enough. I do think many people were comparing with Pokemon too often, but still it’s a game that I would recommend playing.

      Frank’s entry may be impossible, but still it’s not bad to imagine how he can fight if he did join. No matter how bad the latest game went, he’s still popular as memorable, as his movesets would fit perfectly in Smash. I could’ve added the level system too, but couldn’t due to technical limitations. But even then, it’ll be interesting to see if he joined Smash; I’d be excited if he did. (lol)

      For the stage, the entrance plaza was very memorable to me somehow. While I tried to look for other areas of the mall, I couldn’t find anything that’s well balanced. I think the clock stand gave me a hint of how the stage would look like in Smash, while I had a difficult time with the zombie limitations. To be honest, I could’ve drawn a picture of the stage, but couldn’t since I really suck at drawing backgrounds.

      But I’m not done with this series yet, as I have the Dream Item being ready! Don’t know when, but even I’m done with Dead Rising series, I’m planning to bring another Dream Smasher article, all kept in my Google Drive account. (lol) So stay tuned, and see you at the next zone!

      zoniken on May 24 |
  3. Sorry for the late response! Been sick for a while…
    Anyways, thanks for helping me with the editing and posting Nantenjex!

    zoniken on May 24 |