It’s time for us to return to the Granddad of horror games, the Resident Evil series. Growing up as a child of the 90’s if you ever had the urge to scare you and your friends sh*tless, you would fire up the old Playstation One and play slowly and carefully through any of the first 3 resident evil games. At this point in time (1996-1999) up until Silent Hill came out there was no other horror game that came close to being anywhere near the level of the resident evil series.
The problem at this point for Capcom is that they had no way of topping them. They were the market leader in horror games and that only leads to audiences having unrealistically high expectations. As a result of this, the next few games in the franchise were, how can I put this delicately, god awful. Fortunately they chose not to release a true sequel until 2005 when they made possibly the best horror experience ever released, Resident Evil 4. This for me and many others was the peak in the series.
After that, and I’m going to say something controversial here, I found Resident Evil 5 and 6 a bit meh. Maybe I was spoiled by Res 4 or maybe it was because horror games were becoming much more immersive with the mainstreamisation (It’s a word now, deal with it) of using first person cameras and having the player feel as though they are truly in the game. I played Res 5 and 6 and I somewhat enjoyed them but they didn’t feel like real Res games used to.
That leads us to 2017 and the newest game in the already illustrious franchise, Resident Evil 7. You play as Ethan Winters who visits a run down plantation in the hope of finding his wife who has been missing for the last 3 years. Without giving too much away, Ethan then becomes a captive of this bat-shit crazy family headed by their father Jack who is your typical redneck hillbilly with some next level Wolverine-esque regeneration abilities. That is just the beginning of what becomes a very immersive story and I won’t describe it any further than that as it would take away from the experience for anyone who hasn’t played it yet.
All I can say is… FINALLY. It feels like a Res game of old. I think that scaling down the story a little, in terms of geographical size, it has brought back the elements from the original games. It is strange to describe it but it makes you feel like the world is both huge and tiny at the same time. Tiny in the sense that you realise it isn’t a world wide event (i.e. it hasn’t yet spread worldwide) but also huge as it gives you the sense of, what happens here will eventually happen everywhere else and because of this it is the most important event in this world at this time.
That brings me onto the gameplay, Capcom have ditched the third person view for a more favourable first person camera. The best part about this is that they have made it VR compatible and that brings about a whole new dimension. I mentioned in a previous article that I was hoping VR would really kick on and produce some great experiences now that the technology is affordable and Res 7 is the first of those great experiences. It may not be manly to admit it but I honestly had to pause the game several times just to regain my composure, it is terrifying. What I really like is that it isn’t just jump scares, it’s psychologically scary and disgusting to boot.
For anyone who is a fan of anything horror, definitely pick up Resident Evil 7.
Follow us on Twitter @BadUnitGames