Title: Resident Evil 7: Biohazard
Format: PS4 – Xbox One – PC
Release Date: 24th January, 2017
Review by Bex
Resident Evil started off as a creepy mansion, filled with zombies. I played this as a kid, and it gave me nightmares. Walking around corners and seeing zombies feasting on corpses, and dead dogs suddenly jumping through windows really freaked me out.
Over the years and with each new release, the Umbrella Corporation released new, advanced viruses, and furthered their corruptive image, with stronger and faster zombies and horrific bosses. But as the years went on, the games seemed to develop from survival horrors, into action, third-person shooters, with the zombies in Resident Evil 6 being able to run and shoot guns. Since zombies are supposed to be deprived from pretty much all brain functions except for one basic instinct and need, the need to feed, you could probably argue, as creepy as their heads splitting open was, they were hardly zombies anymore.
Resident Evil 7 seems to ignore the games evolutions over the past twenty years, and appears more of a reboot than a sequel, and I have to say, I love it. The game has returned to the creepy homes, eerie atmosphere and has become a proper horror survival game once again. It’s now a first-person shooter, which makes the game more terrifying as you become more engaged with your character, and you play as a normal, everyday man looking for his wife, as appose to the typical, assassins, special ops, police officers you usually play as.
The corruption and zombie experiments are performed by some creepy, backwards family, (think the Sawyer family in the chainsaw massacre films) instead of a big corporation, and at many times it feels like you’re watching a horror film. As much as I loved this game, it seemed weird to spend twenty years, building a detailed story and background for Umbrella, many different characters and the evolution of the T-Virus, but the DLC for this game hints that maybe this family does have something to do with Umbrella, or maybe Umbrella has some interest in them. There are many rumours that new DLC content will be released with cameos of old characters, and that it will pull Resident Evil 7 into the franchise instead of a straight reboot of the series.
The graphics are amazing for this game. The lip sync appears a little off at some points, but the scenery is beautiful and they focused a lot on minor details. Warning: if you have a weak stomach, don’t open the fridge in the Baker’s house. The sight of the fridge contents, and the sound of the grime pulling away from the sides as you open the door are enough to make you gag. There is a lot of detail throughout the game, so even minor incidents like this, that have no effect on the game, all add to the creepy and uneasy atmosphere of the house.
Like any typical first-person shooter, the shift key allows your character to run, but I have to admit, unless I was being chased, I tended to avoid this. The game is creepy, eerie and just about any other word you would associate with a horror game. The graphics are beautiful and paired with an unsettling storyline, it is enough to make you run to your room and dive under the covers once the lights go out.
Though there are hints linking it to the previous games, it would be hard to see this as anything other than a reboot. Though this isn’t particularly a bad thing, and it’s brilliant seeing Capcom returning to its original style, I am intrigued to see how this game (if it does) fits into the past two decades’ worth of games.
Final note, this game can be played on VR, which is brilliant, but if you ever want to sleep again, you might want to stay away.