For a game that is being hyped as taking the franchise back to its horror roots, Resident Evil 7: biohazard is certainly borrowing from a lot of recent ideas. For example, if we’re being honest, its demo perfectly capitalized on the frustrations felt after the cancellation of P.T. by doing many of the same things.
And now, we have a new trailer from Gamescom 2016 that paints the latest entry in the long-running franchise as a “found footage” film. You know, the kind your younger brother goes to see with all of his 13-year old friends on a Friday night. I guess that’s just what happens when you also ape a few ideas from the recent “first-person horror adventure” movement that Amnesia: Dark Descent kicked off.
Cynicism aside, this is a frightening trailer. It introduces a young female recording her final moments to a man named Ethan as she attempts to escape from the confides of a horrific Louisiana house. A ghastly woman, revealed to us as Marguerite Baker, pursues her, but for what purpose? We don’t yet know.
Set within the sinister plantation house in Dulvey, Louisiana,the Baker family, including Jack and Marguerite, were residents but no-one has seen or heard from them in a while. Where could they be? One thing is clear in the latest content to be shown from the game – there’s something not quite right within the plantation. Who is the mysterious girl in the gameplay? What does Marguerite want with her?
Like I said, terrifying. Resident Evil 7: biohazard proves Capcom is effectively taking notes on how the genre has changed over the years. However, I’m still not seeing how this is connected to the overarching series. It sounds sexy to say “Resident Evil is going back to its horror roots,” but the heart of the series has always been about shooting zombies in the face. Even when it was a “survival horror” game in the sense that you had to spare ammo… guns, zombies, shoot, run. That’s all there was to it.
This kind of horror is new to the franchise, and while it might be the right creative path to follow at this point in time, calling it a “return to basics” is revisionist history. Resident Evil 7: biohazard will be released for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on Jan. 24, 2017.