Great Old Gaming Gems – Resident Evil Redux

Resident Evil

Topical? Perhaps. With the release of Resident Evil 6 I felt like I had to really go back and discuss the original game. This game rocked, and probably not for the reasons you are thinking. I mean yeah those too, but what made me fall in love with the original resident evil was the amazingly bad acting and writing. A man is in a hallway, he has been bitten by a snake and is warning the player of ‘terrible demons’, suddenly his arm spurts and he holds it in pain. His vocal response? ‘Ouch’ – seriously, look up the trailer for the original game, this guy is dying from a giant snake having decided he looked tasty and his response is saying ‘Ouch’. While you’re at it though, also take the time to watch the original introduction, see the actors they hired to do the live action introduction, its hilarious.

You know what’s even better? The fact that the acting and writing was that terrible and it still created one of the most amazing and atmospheric games that have ever made me jump while playing it late at night.

Resident Evil is a survival horror, the first of its kind though Dino Crisis was similar in a lot of ways. What made this game such a classic is not only that it was something new, something that had never really been done before, but that it did it so well.

Resident Evil had a knack of truly creating a horrific atmosphere, the graphics were comparatively poor, zombies were generally like walking squares and rectangles, the backgrounds were static painted locations… these don’t seem particularly horrific, and you’re right. It wasn’t. What was horrific is the fact that as a character you seemed so vulnerable. Here you are, a specially trained member of the police force, apparently trained in numerous weapons but you would struggle to find any kind of ammunition, and even though you’re trapped in a mansion with a limited number of rooms there was a good chance you might not even be able to get all the weaponry. As Chris, if you didn’t know the trick to the shotgun, you could go through the entire game without ever having it.

The enjoyment of Resident Evil was the first word of its description: survival horror. You had to survive in this environment with everything out to get you when your character really was incredibly squishy.

Everyone I have spoken to regarding the new Resident Evil games is that they seem to have dropped that word from their description. Resident Evil 4 was more of an action game but it still had tension and an element of the survival aspect in it. With 5 and 6, its more like an arcade game. With today’s graphical abilities, the world is crying out for a survival horror game. Come on Capcom, pull your fingers out and give what the world needs, not another awful generic third person shooter game.