By Danyel Poindexter, Staff Writer
Released January 24, “Resident Evil 7: Biohazard” centers around a different, more secluded side of the Resident Evil series. Developed and published by Capcom, the new Resident Evil gameplay appeals to both old and new gen players, while uniting many gaming concepts seen throughout 2016.
In “Resident Evil 7: Biohazard,” a husband named Ethan searches for his wife, Mia, who went missing three years earlier after saying she had a babysitting job. In the story’s present, Ethan receives a call from her asking him to pick her up from a somewhat secluded location. By these standards alone, the setup is plausible, but you must remember, this is a horror video game. For those who received the chance to play the demo, once you start playing the official game, the demo characters’ items (i.e., their van, camera, and flyers), can be found immediately after discovering the house. Besides the obviously eerie beginning, what makes the game so great and has every Youtube gamer on it?
In all honesty, there has been a downhill slide in gameplay and development in the Resident Evil series. Gamers were either really tired of a repetitive storyline or not impressed with the zombie-infected visuals. “Resident Evil 7: Biohazard” introduces a newer outlook on Umbrella Corp — a fictional company that invented the viruses seen in many of the gameplays — while still pleasing the eye with those high-end graphics, subtle colors, and attention to detail. With its uniquely infected people, weapon configuration, and confined settings, “Resident Evil 7” reimagines the old Resident Evil concept, giving old-gen players a sense of warm familiarity. This first-person gameplay is set in a seemingly small house that uncomfortably enough — at least for the player — becomes quite large once inside.
This takes us back to all the gaming concepts Capcom unifies for this video game. Not only are players experiencing a terrifying gameplay that includes extremely detailed gore, but they must venture through puzzles that include the house itself. Embedded in different sections of the house are compartments for keys, figures, and escape routes. If not investigating thoroughly enough, players could easily end up in a foreign area with no idea of how they got there or how to escape. The set up for the estate and house build was quite clever on Capcom’s part, successfully giving various play-styles their own little treat.
Unfortunately, due to the large “7” next to the title, some new-gen players may have decided to immediately call it a wrap, not giving “Resident Evil 7” a chance to impress. To those people, it is best to mention that, like Final Fantasy, each Resident Evil has its own storyline. While storylines still connect to the overall theme and idea of the original, each still harbors a different event or take on the series. It is somewhat agreed that the initial appearance seems like a desperate chase for Outlast’s visual concept with the dark ominous settings; common black and brown, low-contrasting colors that embrace the dark areas; and common video tape usage, but playing more and more of the game actually reveals the old Resident Evil elements.
Truthfully, I’m not sure if most would label this game as horrendously frightening, but it is horrendous and disgusting in its own right. The development that went into graphics was well spent, and while some are calling this a desperate return for Capcom, I find it a return for the best. The long-neglected roots of the Resident Evil series have finally made an impressive return, and the ‘survival’ in the game’s description is no joke. It pulls away from the usual combat-ready characters in many Resident Evil games, which serves as a refreshing remodel. Playing “Resident Evil 7: Biohazard” is a gratifying experience that is not only available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows, but also on virtual reality, increasing the chance of a terrifying yet riveting gameplay.