There are many Resident Evil fans who aren’t very happy with the path Capcom has taken with the last two games. Resident Evil 4 was arguably one of the best games in the series, but it also took them into the explosive realm of action horror, away from the puzzle-based survival horror the series was originally known for. Resident Evil 5 took this even further, essentially removing all of the remaining scares and atmosphere in favor of more explosions, gunfights, and co-op. It also happens to be the best selling Resident Evil game of all time. Capcom is in a difficult situation–on one hand, they have the fans that have stuck with the series since the beginning who feel like the series has changed too much. Then there’s the fact that Capcom needs to make money, and to do that they need to cater to the wider market, and sadly, the survival horror audience just isn’t big enough anymore. Thankfully, they’re fully aware of this, and they seem to be trying their best to please everyone. UK based X360 Magazine recently had the chance to interview executive producer Hiroyuki Kobayashi and director Yoshiaki Hirabayashi about the upcoming Resident Evil 6 to find out what they’re doing to make the game appeal more to the horror audience. More after the jump.
When asked about what fans of the series will think about the game, Kobayashi brought up the familiar faces we’ll be able to play as, saying “I think fans of the series will get a lot from seeing Leon and Chris. They know those characters and it will mean a lot to them to be able to play as them again.”
“There are a couple of ways we’re trying to differentiate the stories in the game. For example we’re trying to incorporate horror elements into all the stories. But as you know horror is a big genre and there are different types of horror.” In Resident Evil 6, you’ll be able to choose between three campaigns, all of which will be available from the very beginning and can be completed in any order. Leon’s story looks similar in atmosphere to Resident Evil 4, whereas Chris’ story looks to draw more from Resident Evil 5, then Jake Muller’s (Wesker’s son) story takes a wildly different approach by focusing more on hand-to-hand combat. “As [Chris] fights his way and moves forward the things that he encounters are horrific in their own way.” Kobayashi continued.
On the tweaked controls, Director Yoshiaki Hirabayashi said “This is horror as entertainment. To that end I think it was necessary to open up the controls a little, make them smoother, so you could immerse yourself in this world more easily.” The cover system has been entirely redone from the half-assed system seen in Resident Evil 5, and there’s strafing. Finally. Hirabayashi concluded by saying “I think first of all we didn’t want to make a straight up action-type control scheme for the game. We’re still trying to make a horror experience.”
Whether or not you’re enthusiastic about the direction the series is headed, there’s no denying how impressive Capcom’s willingness to completely reboot their games is. Most studios would’ve been content with the sales and critical reception Resident Evil 5 received. That openness to reinvention led to the creation of Resident Evil 4–one of my personal favorite games of all time–and as one of the fans who have stuck with Resident Evil since the beginning, I sincerely hope they’ll be able to recapture that magic with Resident Evil 6 when it releases this October.