Resident Evil Musings

I have a theory about Resident Evil games: I think that only every other game in the series is well balanced. The major criticism of the first Resident Evil was that it was too difficult, but RE 2 was inspired. RE 3‘s structure was somewhat disappointing, but Code: Veronica was amazing. And now, as I play through RE Zero, I am struck that the play balancing is considerably poorer than some of these previous titles: the pacing is off, the game is far more difficult than previous titles, the puzzles are mediocre, and the control scheme is starting to feel archaic (especially after the RE 1 Remake‘s awesome “Type C” control). That’s not to say that RE Zero is a bad game (I’ll write a full review when I finish the thing), but I am finding that it has not been tuned nearly as well as earlier titles.

Hence my “even-numbered RE games are better” theory (note that I am considering the order of release, not the order imposed by the game plot, so RE Zero is the 5th game). Should this theory prove true, I think we can expect Resident Evil 4 to be as awesome as the screens make it look. I am not sure how Resident Evil: Outbreak fits into this equation, but I guess we’ll find out when it is released at the end of March.

6 thoughts on “Resident Evil Musings

  1. Well, it’s RE 1 + some better balancing. Since it was developed in parallel with Zero (or so I am told), I guess it doesn’t factor in to the equation. Basically, RE 1 Remake fixes a bunch of the balancing and pacing problems with the original game.

  2. Yes, but it can be argued that REmake also expanded on the plot, as well as adding a helluva lot of new stuff. If it was the Directors Cut we were talking about here, I would be inclined to agree. But the REmake boasts a tonne of new content that can make it almost entirely new to those who played the original.

  3. Well, if we assume that the teams were indeed parallel (in design, if not in code), then RE Zero was in development before RE 1 remake was finished, so I wouldn’t count it as drawing on RE 1 remake for tuning tips. The point was that every odd-numbered game seems weaker, not that the remake isn’t a great game.

  4. Yeah, but, the jist of my theory concerns new game designs, which the Remake is not. It’s a great game, and they sure added a bunch of stuff, but it wasn’t something they sat down and did from scratch. Anyway, the theory is flawed in another way: having just finished RE Zero, I was actually much happier with it than I thought I would be. It has some problems, but it isn’t as bad as I was expecting.

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