RESIDENT EVIL 7: BIOHAZARD
By Diana "DumeeGamer" Dumee on January 31, 2017
With all the news, trailers, demos and, let's not forget, play-throughs in which gamers were screaming and almost crying, I was getting a bit concerned about Resident Evil 7: Biohazard. Is it hyped? Would it live up to the expectations it created? Is it really the new game in the series that brings us back to the roots of what is Resident Evil? How will the first person perspective work out for a game which has always been in third person perspective? Well, last weekend Ferry "Sadhonker" Adams built me a pillow fort and we were good to go and get answers to all these questions.
If you visit our website on a regular basis, you might know that I'm a huge fan of the Resident Evil series. Back in the 90's Ferry and I were already playing the very first part of the series on the PSX. I love them all and I must say I didn't understand why suddenly people said that Resident Evil wasn't as good as in the old days. Of course I see the development and the changes that the developers made, but to me it was all part of the evolution of the series. It happens to every game series, right? The only thing I never understood was the way the screen was divided during split screen mode. Why not use all the space available?). But, in short; to me the Resident Evil series has never been that far away from the point where it began.
Back to Resident Evil 7: Biohazard which, incidentally, doesn't feature a coop mode. The player takes control of a man named Ethan and the game starts with a video of Ethan's wife Mia. It's clear that something mysterious happened and now she has been missing for the last three years. But then you suddenly receive a message of Mia, in which she asks you to come and get her. Off course you travel to that place; you want to find your wife, don't you?
Your journey starts in a forest as you make your way towards a big old house. Of course the main gate to the big old mansion is closed, so you have to find another way in. The path takes you further into the woods where you'll do some disturbing finds, like Mia's handbag and severed horse legs, arranged in a circle and hung from a tree. Uh, wait what was that? Yeah, you read this right. Horse legs were used to make a round symbol-kind-thingy. Well, that sets the mood, doesn't it? And this is in the sunny daylight. We've only just begun.
If you have already played the Beginning Hour Demo, you'll recognize the house you are entering. It's all dirty and dark in there. But your motivation is different now. During the demo, your goal was getting out of the house again. In this case you want to enter the damn thing and find clues or whatever helps to brings you a step closer to finding Mia. To my surprise, we found Mia pretty soon. But soon I hear myself asking, if it was a good thing that we found her. In other words, the shit really hits the proverbial fan from that point on.
There is a lot of weird and mysterious stuff going on and that brings back the good old Resident Evil feeling. I like that about the series; the stories are always good and being in a mansion again feels just like coming home. But I have to confess, I do miss the awesome characters that I got to know and love by playing various Resident Evil games: Chris and Claire Redfield, Barry and Moira Burton, Jill Valentine, Ada Wong, Leon S. Kennedy, etc. In previous Resident Evil games, you would meet some new characters from time to time, but (some of) the old ones were involved in the story too. And maybe it's just me, but bonding with a character is just easier when I can see him. But maybe, just maybe, I'm a little sentimental and old-fashioned that way.
Although I will always prefer the third person perspective to the first person mode, after playing the Resident Evil VII, I do get why the developers chose the latter for this game. The jump scares and the overall horror experience have more impact in first person mode. And if you want/need more: "Hello VR compatibility." I humbly bow to all the brave souls who played this game in VR mode. I think if I tried that, I would have died of a heart attack.
If you like a lot of gore and jump scares, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard is definitely the game for you, especially when you're a dare devil with VR, but to me it just isn't quite the Resident Evil experience I love so dearly. Don't get me wrong, it's a very good game. The story is well written, the characters are intense and in terms of graphics and sounds they really nailed the scary and uncomfortable setting. It's a great horror experience which shows the dark side of the often said sentence "Welcome to the family" in an unique and disturbing way.
RESIDENT EVIL 7: BIOHAZARD
Januari 24, 2017