The Resident Evil series is back with a new take on horror. After several remakes, and reaching its possible creative low with Resident Evil 6, Resident Evil 7, released in 2017, represented a return to the series’ horror roots while reinventing itself with a first-person perspective. So since 2017, since Resident Evil 7, Capcom has released a phenomenal remake of Resident Evil 2.
Resident Evil Village launched with a logo designed in such a way that players should know that it is Resident Evil 8, even though Capcom has not explicitly named it as such. It’s certainly a sequel to RE7, with the same first-person perspective and bland protagonist, Ethan Winters. While RE7 evoked the slow-burning domestic horror of the original game, Resident Evil Village is more of a first-person perspective of arguably the series’ highest point: Resident Evil 4.
The basic plot
In Resident Evil Village, we catch up with RE7 protagonist Ethan Winter, who has settled into a life of peace with Mia and is raising their newborn baby after the terrors they witnessed at the Baker estate. But when the series’ hero, Chris Redfield, knocks on his door, Ethan finds himself thrust back into the world of bioweapons and the monstrosities those weapons create. He finds himself in a hostile village populated by wild people adjacent to werewolves and sets out to find his daughter.
Chris Redfield shows up at Ethan’s house and murders his wife and kidnaps him and his daughter. The vehicle they are being transported in crashes, leading a dazed Winters to wander through the woods for a time, before turning up in an abandoned ghost town with a strong Transylvanian influence.
As soon as you enter the Deserted Village you are attacked by rabid mutated wolf-like creatures known as lycanthropes and from then on things only get worse as you bravely endure these grisly horrors in an attempt to locate your daughter. Rosemary.
The Village is a fairly open space that you explore during the day, solving environmental puzzles to unlock more areas. It gets a bit confusing at first as you navigate, but you quickly realize that its main function is to serve as a hub from which you set out to defeat four lords enslaved by a mysterious figure known as Mother Miranda.
Miranda and her four henchmen are really intriguing in their own unique way, and most of them are quite fleshed out as characters. Her introduction to the game instantly elevates the experience, and her interactions with the protagonist and with each other do a great job of shaping the game’s mythos.
One of the most eye-catching locations is Dumitrescu Castle, which is home to the nine-foot-tall Lady Dumitrescu, who stalks you around the place similar to previous Resident Evil villains like Nemesis. Castle Dumitrescu is a classic Resident Evil set piece, and the game follows a familiar pace of light puzzles, locked doors, and piecemeal progression as you discover more of the map.
However, unlike the structure of Resident Evil 7, it’s unlikely to be scary because RE: Village focuses on action rather than dripping horror. There is only so much tension you can build up when you use your shotgun so often. And that holds for most of the rest of the game, as you travel to new areas that largely serve as theatrical preludes to clashes with Miranda’s other followers.
Each of Miranda’s followers is, in effect, a boss-level character. All four have their own separate areas in the game that you will be allowed to explore sequentially. As we’ve already established, Lady Dimitrescu can be found in Dimitrescu’s opulent castle, while Karl Heisenberg resides in a grimy factory, and Benevento is found in a dilapidated old house in a misty valley. Moreau is supposed to be more fish than human, and he has perhaps the most interesting abode, a reservoir where he can become a salamander-fish hybrid.
Cassandra, Moroaica and the Monstrous Grunts
Resident Evil: Village isn’t technically a third-person shooter, but it sure does give you a set of mythical creatures to shoot. There are tons of monsters that attack you, from werewolves to zombies, and they are all different from each other, which is enough to justify their existence in the game. As an example, the Lycans are faster and harder to hit, and the Moroaica is slow, but they make up for it with screeching numbers.
There are several mini-bosses you can fight, the most notable of which are Lady Dimitrescu’s three daughters. All three have similar weaknesses, so you can take them all down with the same strategy. However, their entrances are quite memorable, and at least two of the three can scare you when they suddenly appear on screen.
In general, none of these creatures pose serious problems, and most of them can be taken down easily. At first, enemies will largely approach you alone or in pairs, but as the game progresses they will attack in waves, faster and more aggressively, transforming the game into a fast-paced, gun-shooting affair.
Boss fights in the Village are among the notable improvements. Most of Resident Evil 7’s fights were frustrating and unsatisfying, but Capcom embraced the spectacle to great effect and expanded on the larger Village battles. They’re not necessarily titanic challenges or complex puzzles, but at least they’re memorable, and that’s a good start.
The Village has its atmospheric moments, but they aren’t always the main event. There are long sections of the game that are structured more or less like a first-person shooter. The puzzles are generally easy, and you will rarely find yourself in a situation where you have to fight enemies without weapons and means. At times it feels more like something from the Metro series than any of its predecessors.
The camera angle and basic controls match RE7, but the tone is noticeably different from the start. Instead of tentatively exploring a creepy atmospheric setting that gradually reveals the horror, you are thrown right into the pit of action and excitement and left to fend for yourself against twisted antagonists. Quite similar to Resident Evil 4, perhaps.
The Village’s similarities to 4 go beyond its dizzying openness and rural European setting. It’s a much more action-oriented game than 7, and you’ll often be facing multiple enemies at once. Capcom has also made many quality of life tweaks that give the game a more light-hearted feel, from a shortcut that lets you break crates without equipping your knife to an overhauled inventory system that separates crafting materials from everything else. giving you more space. and firepower.
Resident Evil: Village probably isn’t the longest game you’ll play. It averages a little over 10 hours of playtime, and you can get through a lot of the story in a very short amount of time. However, if you take a completist approach to the game, it will most likely take much longer to complete.
Like the other titles in the series, Resident Evil: Village also has Mercenaries Mode, a post-game mode where you can retry much of the game with newer, more efficient weapons that allow you to deal more damage and play around. at a higher level of difficulty. The mercenaries pose new, exciting and difficult challenges.
Resident Evil Village is a good game and definitely worth playing. But by seamlessly blending elements of 7 and 4, two of the most dramatic revisions in the series’ history, it tends to feel less remarkable than either. If you like wacky characters and labyrinthine level design, you’ll probably love Resident Evil: Village.