Resident Evil 7 Biohazard
Resident Evil 7 Biohazard is a survival horror video game developed and published by Capcom. The game was released worldwide for Microsoft Windows PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in January 2017, the latter featuring support for the PlayStation VR headset. It is the eleventh main entry and 24th entry overall in the Resident Evil franchise. It is the first main series installment to be played from a first-person perspective.
The story follows Ethan Winters as he searches for his wife Mia, which leads him to a derelict plantation inhabited by the Baker family. Ethan makes use of weapons and tools in the fight against the Baker family and creatures known as the Molded. Healing items are used in the event of injury and there are puzzles that may be solved to further the story. Instead of being action-oriented, the survival horror element present in earlier installments took priority. Thus the game uses a first person perspective. It is the first commercially released game developed in the RE Engine.
Resident Evil 7 received generally favorable reviews which praised the gameplay graphics and design. PlayStation VR was hailed for increasing player involvement. However, it was also subject to complaint with decreased resolution and physical discomfort cited as its chief offenses. Further criticism was directed at the games boss battles and the final chapter of the game. It had the third best sales debut in the series and has shipped over 3 million copies.
The player controls the protagonist, Ethan Winters, from a first-person perspective. Although Ethan is a civilian who offers few combat skills, he is able to arm himself with a variety of different weapons including handguns shotguns axes flamethrowers explosives and chainsaws against enemies including the Baker family, and a newly introduced type of creature known as the Molded. Additionally, he is able to quickly turn 180 degrees to avoid enemies, as well as block incoming attacks to reduce damage. Various portions of the game are spent being pursued by members of the Baker family who if engaged in combat can only be temporarily incapacitated. However these encounters are entirely avoidable by means of stealth or simply running away.
Unlike the more recent Resident Evil installments, the gameplay emphasizes horror and exploration over action. The inventory uses a grid based system with an initial capacity of 12 slots but may be expanded several times over the course of the game. An item can occupy up to two spaces and four items may be assigned to the D pad. Item boxes may also be used to manage and store items for later use. Items in the inventory can be used examined or combined with other items to increase their usefulness. Many of the game puzzles require that items be examined under certain conditions in order to reveal secrets. Although the game features an autosave system, tape recorders can be used to manually save the game progress which depending on the given difficulty level may require the use of a cassette tape. Videotapes are scattered for Ethan to find which place the player in the perspective of a different character oftentimes revealing plot information or clues needed to solve a puzzle.
The PlayStation 4 version of the game is also fully playable in VR using the PlayStation VR headset with the core gameplay mechanics remaining identical. Compatibility with VR devices for Microsoft Windows and Xbox One will be released in 2018.
Following the release of Resident Evil 6 producer Masachika Kawata noted Capcom had a lot of internal discussion regarding the direction of the next installment. A preliminary version of the game developed in 2013 featured a more action oriented gameplay, similar to that of Resident Evil 6.However, Capcom staffers recognized that the scale of the last game, which had bioterrorism attacks happening across the world had grown out of hand and, as a result what made the series special had been lost and decided to return to the survival horror genre. To regain that, Kawatas boss Jun Takeuchi, who is the executive producer of the game, requested that the series be stripped down to its core horror. Taking inspiration from The Evil Dead film the developers figured scaling back the game to one location and using a first person perspective to immerse the players in the environments would be the best way to achieve that.
Development began around February 2014.The game is built on a new engine named RE Engine which includes VR development tools. Kawata explained that the decision to make the game first person was made well before VR was even considered. A year before the games announcement, Capcom presented to attendants of E3 2015 a first-person horror themed VR demo called KITCHEN which ran on the same engine. While Resident Evil 7 had been in development long before KITCHEN with the latter the developers saw the opportunity to evaluate how the RE Engine and its VR capabilities would be received by the public. As a hint to the demos relation to, at the time unannounced Resident Evil 7, the logo of KITCHEN had the letter T designed so that it resembled a 7 but Kawata said that it went largely unnoticed.Four months later in the company annual Integrated Report it was stated that the Resident Evil development division of Capcom Development Division 1 would be focusing on creating experiences for the VR market. These included both a new VR engine and games for the eighth generation of consoles.
The game was directed by Koshi Nakanishi, who previously helmed Resident Evil: Revelations leading a development team exclusively from Capcom Japan numbering at about 120 staff.However, for the first time in the series the narrative designer was a westerner Richard Pearsey writer of the two expansion packs of F.E.A.R. and one of the narrative designers of Spec Ops The Line. Discussing first-person games similar to Resident Evil 7 Nakanishi explained that they played all the first person horrors out there like Outlast but decided in contrast to offer weapons to the player so that they could fight against the enemies. At the time of the game reveal development was around 65% complete. Some of the creature models in Resident Evil 7 were first created in physical form a number of them from actual meat by make up artists, to then be scanned through the employment of photogrammetry. This technology developed over half of the general assets of the game but posed a problem in researching the setting of Louisiana because its considerable demand for equipment made it unviable for transport which required Capcom to model by hand. The introduction of VR demanded that textures be more detailed discarding flat textures and innaccurate object sizes that had previously been used. The game original score was composed primarily by Capcom Akiyuki Morimoto Miwako Chinon and Satoshi Hori with additional contributions from Brian D’Oliveira and Cris Velasco. The game theme song an arranged version of the traditional American folk song Go Tell Aunt Rhody was written by Michael A. Levine and performed by Jordan Reyne. Levine’s step daughter Mariana Barreto was the original choice but ended up doing the background vocals. The song went through about 20 versions until completion. An official soundtrack was released digitally by Sumthing Else Music Works alongside the game on January 24.