Platform reviewed on: Xbox One.
Also on: Playstation 4, PC.
Resident evil is a franchise I’ve been playing since I was 8 years old. I fondly remember myself being petrified the first time I had to face Nemesis in Resident Evil 3, or the moment I encountered the first licker in Resident Evil 2. Then, Resident evil 4 came out and with its groundbreaking gameplay and perfect equilibrium between horror and shooting, is without a doubt one of the best games ever released. Afterwards, Resident Evil 5 came, but unfortunately it turned out to be a quite good co op 3rd person shooter and nothing more. I will not mention the sixth installment of the series, since it is a steaming pile of garbage in all aspects. Fortunately, Resident evil 7 came out and returned the franchise back to its horror roots. You are Ethan, an average American that one day receives a distress call from his ex wife, who has been missing for 2 years now. In order to find out more about her, he visits an old farm house and encounters its unwelcome residents; the Bakers. This family consists of 3 lunatics that want to murder Ethan in every way possible. The plot has a really nice and steady pace for the first half of the game. Unfortunately, it seems that the developers were forced to publish it prematurely, because the second half does not even come close to the quality of the first.
The graphics of the game are brilliant. Never before have I seen character models designed like that. The Resident Evil engine shows a lot of promise. Jack Baker, Marguerite, Mia and every other human character is photorealistic (and imagine the Xbox One version of the game is considered to have the worst graphics of all platforms). Shoot Jack in the head with your double barrelled shotgun and half of his face will explode decorating the walls. The damage you receive from enemies is displayed on your hands. Scratches, bee stings, burns, everything. The developers have done an outstanding job creating the atmosphere of the game. The narrow corridors of the villa, the flooded basement, the boiler room everything is designed with such care that create a claustrophobic environment. However, the only thing that prohibits me from putting a 10 on the graphics, are the molden. The molden are the generic enemies of the game. Despite the fact that they look like disfigured Tyrants of the previous games, they are uninspiring. Seriously, why did not Capcom recycle some monsters from the previous games (like hunters, lickers etc.)?
A lot of attention has been given here as well. The sound effects are very good and further increase the immersion. Doors screeching, floors falling apart, walls crumbling, monsters’ footsteps everything sounds amazing. Fire your shotgun while wearing headphones and you will feel like truly firing it in real life. Gunfire sounds like a harmonic melody in your brain. Plunge your chainsaw in your enemy’s guts and you will hear pieces of his flesh being sawed off from his corps. The voice acting is also outstanding. The bunch of lunatics you encounter will make you feel like starring in the new movie of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise. Eventually, the soundtrack is decent in general, with some nice country songs but it is a bit forgettable.
Ethan controls fine for the most part. He can pick up objects, fire weapons, swing his knife, run, crouch and open doors. Also, he can defend himself by raising his hands and blocking. It is questionable however whether a human being can defend from the huge nails of the molden by simply blocking the hits with his mere hands. As a mechanism, it is a bit unrealistic but it generally works for the most part. Greens herbs and other medicinal stuff makes here their return from the previous games. The game features also a satisfying number of weapons, from handguns to grenade launchers, that feel great when firing. There is also a small number of puzzles, but unfortunately they do not require that much thinking in order to solve them. Upon completion, you can play the game on madhouse difficulty. This is the mode it is meant to be played. Ammunition on this mode is scarce, monsters have more health and their attacks are lethal. I found myself searching every nook and cranny of the games’ locations in order to find ammo or medicinal stuff to cure my wounds.
Value for money…7
The game is undoubtedly a step towards the right direction for the franchise. However, CAPCOM should focus on creating a Resident Evil game that is equally satisfying both on the first and second half. After completing it (and on madhouse difficulty), there is absolutely no reason to spend more time playing it. There is no Mercenaries mode here, unfortunately. Taking into account the fact that it will take you about 15 – 20 hours to finish both modes, if you find it for less than 20 -25 euros (and only), purchase it.
SCORE: …7.9, ”Very Good”.
P.S.: For, some gameplay footage, click here.