Take this with a grain of salt, folks, because I distinctly remember writing this same exact thing about Resident Evil 6, and we all know how that turned out.
Capcom wants us to know they’re listening. They’ve been a little hard of hearing in the past, but they’re picking up what we’ve been throwing down and they’re once again changing the direction of the series. It’s official, Resident Evil 7 will return to survival horror, the genre the series once pioneered.
Now, I’ve said in the past that I’ve lost much of my faith in Capcom’s ability to craft a genuinely scary game, mostly because they haven’t accomplished that since the late 90’s, with Resident Evil 3.
That’s not to say they haven’t made good games since; I’ve enjoyed each entry in the Resident Evil series since then, to varying degrees, including Resident Evil 6 Revelations was a solid attempt, and I sincerely hope it serves as inspiration for Capcom’s next effort.
On to the news.
In a chat with MCV UK, former Capcom marketing boss Michael Pattison had a lot to say about what they learned from Resident Evil 6 and how that’s affecting the direction the series will take.
“With Resident Evil 6 specifically, we probably put too much content in there, there were comments from consumers that said it felt bloated. The Leon missions went down very well, and because we did Resident Evil Revelations on 3DS, there was a cry out for us to focus our attention on survival horror, rather than be too many things to all people. You’ll find where we go next will likely be more targeted at our core fan base.
“A lot is said about the saturation of this zombie, post-apocalyptic survival horror. But it is still alive and well. The Last of Us shows a good direction of what the consumers want. Tomb Raider as well, we spoke to R&D and they looked at that and they enjoyed that experience. I think that proves there is still a strong market for that sort of content.”
So they agree that Resident Evil 6, with its four interwoven campaigns, mercenaries mode and multiplayer felt a little bloated. It tried to accomplish too much, all because Capcom wanted to find and lure in the elusive “Call of Duty gamer.” With Resident Evil 7, their goal is to target their core fans, the ones that have stuck with the series’ latest games.
The fact that he mentioned The Last of Us and Tomb Raider specifically gives me some hope, as both of those games are fantastic. They’re a culmination of everything developers have learned over this console generation. If Capcom is seeking inspiration, those are certainly two games worth looking at.
Some of what I’ve said might sound a little harsh. Don’t take any of this as unwarranted (or warranted) shade thrown at Capcom or their games, because I’m fans of both. It’s just that, as a fan, I’m more critical of what they do with the series that I’m passionate about.
What do you think? Are you a wee bit more excited about Resident Evil 7 now, or are you taking the “wait and see” approach this time around?