It’s going to be quite a while before we’re able to get our hands on “Resident Evil 8,” also known as “Resident Evil: Village.” There will be plenty of hype about the new PlayStation and the new Xbox this month as gamers finally get to take them home and play them, but the latest installment in the popular zombie-horror franchise won’t be one of the games that’s available at launch. In fact, we’re still not one hundred percent sure when it will be released. We know that it’s mostly complete and that a few lucky testers have been playing it for a while, but Capcom hasn’t committed to a solid date for the rest of us to get a chance yet. At the moment, the closest they’re willing to get to one is ‘early 2021.’ Hopefully, that means January or February rather than April or May.
While we might not have a release date to report for you yet, we are slowly finding out more about what we can expect from the game – and the information looks promising. Capcom wants to make a big statement with the first installment of the big-money franchise on the latest generation of consoles, and it looks like the company is going to take advantage of every bit of enhanced performance that the new PlayStation offers. The first thing to note is that the game uses ray tracing, meaning that this ought to be the best (or creepiest) version of “Resident Evil” yet when it comes to flickering lights and things lurching out of the shadows. If you have a television capable of supporting 4K visuals, “Resident Evil: Village” will use it to its full potential. The long loading times of “Resident Evil” games of the past won’t be an issue either – in fact, we’ve seen the loading time described as “basically zero.” So long as there’s some substance to the hype, you should be able to play the game as soon as you open it.
While improved graphics are always welcome and reduced loading times are always a bonus, some of the most significant improvements to the way the game is played are down to the new PS5 controller. For the first time, firing a gun in “Resident Evil” will feel a little like firing a gun in real life. Sony is very proud of the adaptive triggers and haptic feedback functions of its new controller, and “Resident Evil” is said to put them to excellent use. You can turn this function off if the thought of a controller recoiling in your hands every time you fire off a shot makes you feel uncomfortable, but we suspect that most fans will welcome anything that makes the atmosphere of the game even more immersive. While we’re talking about things being immersive, Capcom has confirmed that the game will support “three-dimensional audio” if you have an appropriate set of headphones. When a zombie creeps up on you from behind, it will genuinely sound like it’s right behind you. Try not to scream.
While these technical details will excite some of you, we know that a lot of you are far more interested in the matter of what the game’s story might look like. Fortunately, we have an update for you on that front as well. Thanks to a Japanese interview with Peter Fabiano and Tsuyoshi Kanda that was published last week, we know a thing or two about the plot. We already knew that Ethan Winters was to be the main character, but we know that it’s “Resident Evil” stalwart Chris Redfield who’s responsible for taking Ethan to the village that acts as the setting for the game. Redfield then disappears, and Ethan wakes up to find himself alone, and with no idea how long he’s been there.
While the level of Chris Redfield’s involvement in the story isn’t clear, the producers have confirmed that Ethan’s life will depend on a mysterious trenchcoat-wearing ‘vendor’ figure who will appear and disappear regularly, selling Ethan the things he needs to make it from one moment to the next and imparting valuable advice. Some of that advice will presumably include telling Ethan how to deal with the terrifying werewolf characters we’ve seen in the trailer, which we now know will behave with ‘a pack mentality’ and may occasionally brandish weapons – as if the mere fact of being werewolves didn’t make them terrifying enough.
All in all, it sounds like “Resident Evil: Village” might be the greatest game in the franchise yet, which would be no small achievement. Right now, that honor probably goes to “Resident Evil 6,” which achieved so much success on consoles that it was re-purposed into a game for online slots websites like KongCasino.com made by the Skywind Group. Capcom hasn’t been shy about monetizing the “Resident Evil” brand and selling it to us in as many formats as possible, but thus far, the sixth game is the only one to have been turned into an online slots game, which probably tells us a lot about how popular it was and continues to be. That’s not to say that “Resident Evil: Village” should be deemed unsuccessful if it doesn’t go on to be turned into a game for online slots websites in its own right, but that’s the benchmark it probably has to hit if it’s to surpass the success of the sixth installment.
Meanwhile, away from consoles or online slots websites, work has been continuing apace on a new live-action “Resident Evil” movie that will ignore the canon of the previous movies and establish a new reality. The film will go all the way back to the lore of the first game and show us the original “Raccoon Incident” that kickstarted the whole story and has recently been confirmed to feature Donal Logue of “Gotham” fame in a lead role as Police Chief Brian Irons. That’s a separate project to the new “Resident Evil” mini-series that’s currently in development with Netflix. It looks like there’s going to be “Resident Evil” content everywhere in 2021, so all we can say is that we hope you like zombies!
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