Resident Evil 6 was a dead point, where all the things that distinguish the saga lose meaning. I think that the developers of the game found out about it and gave the saga a second thought. And they nailed it; going back to the roots and giving us a game of pure horror.
In this episode you become familiar with the game right away, since the events happen to a totally ordinary person. In the game you are Ethan, who goes looking for his wife, reported missing three years ago in the countryside of Louisiana. Your job is to decipher the reason for its disappearance and discover the secrets of the mysterious house you are in.
A positive thing is that Resident Evil 7 has some clear ideas. The concepts and events are linear and explicit, leaving some things to speculation. But it doesn’t have loose ends, since the same story makes sense once you advance in the game. Playing with your emotions, you are in a constant feeling of anxiety from the moment you enter the house (being chased and attacked by the family and other things that live there) until you struggle to escape it.
This feeling is noticeable thanks to the perspective of the game. Instead of having the main character in 3rd person (as in the previous games of the saga), this time the world through Ethan’s eyes, which I think is a great contribution to the survival horror genre that characterizes this game. This adds a great visual improvement, having elements and lighting that help make the game look quite realistic. I can not imagine playing this in Virtual Reality.
Being a more linear and concise game (approximately 8 to 10 hours of gameplay) the pace of the game is constant. When you think that you are going to arrive at a “cold” moment of the game, here comes another branch of the story that takes you back to the adventure. Just when we think we are done killing the main enemy, something happens that shows us the opposite. This, along with the levels of puzzles and the ability to improve or acquire new weapons keeps you in constant movement and uncertainty.
The atmosphere of terror is present at all times. It can be seen in the architecture, lighting, environment, script and sound effects; all working together to create a game that really contains many moments of tension, scares or desire to pause it sometimes. The spaces are very well developed, with various elements that put you in a more rural environment.
The sound design is also very successful. The effects reflect the architecture of the house, with crunches in the wood and noises of deterioration. This comes together with other external sounds such as strong footsteps, doors closing and screams that serve to increase your paranoia and feeling that at any moment you could die.
The biggest complaint I’ve heard from fans is if Resident Evil 7 pays tribute to the saga we’ve been following for so many years … and in a way I feel that yes, and sometimes no. The sensations transmitted by the game are purely Resident Evil, and despite being a horror game we must take into account that the saga has wanted to innovate and maintain some elements of the previous (such as limitations of inventory, weapons, healing herbs, etc.). But it can also be considered by many a totally independent game. If you remove the vague references to the previous story you lose the connection, but that I do not consider that it is something negative; Since it shows that the saga has the capacity to have a personality of its own and to continue evolving without nostalgia to the past, although some fans do not agree.
Anyway, this game is totally satisfying, considering it as a movie or sequence of horror scenes which will keep you in suspense throughout the game. Simply innovative, the first great video game of 2017.
This review was made with the Playstation 4 version of the game.
Angelica Lora / GamersRD