The best of both worlds.
The Resident Evil franchise has had these key moments in its history where you can clearly see a change in tone, style and just the overall vibe of the games. Resident Evil 1-3 are survival horror at its peak; fixed camera, tank controls and item management are what defined those games. Resident Evil 4 was the first departure from what the series is like as it was a third-person shooter that focused more on linearity and story – 5-6 are awkward mishmashes of ideas that almost nobody liked in the end as they have essentially lost their identity. Resident Evil 7 was a return to form another new perspective and was welcomed with open arms and high praise.
In comes the Resident Evil 2 REmake. A game that has way too much to live up to as the ravenous fans of the original Resi 2 have waited patiently for it since the release of the first REmake, which is considered one of the best games of all time due to how it made the original so much better in every aspect.
So how does the Resident Evil 2 REmake fare?
Holy. Fucking. Shit. You guys.
This game is so goddamn good that I don’t even feel like writing a traditional review on it, and just wanna shove it in people’s faces to tell them to go experience it for themselves. This is what a modern survival horror game looks like and should strive to be. Open-ended, scary and challenging. The player is supposed to feel scared not of the zombies, nor the enemies, but instead how they’ll end up after the encounter. Ending up dead means you start back at a save point, getting extremely hurt but making a lot of progress means you need to spend valuable resources – Every bad move and stupid decision has consequences, and the beauty of these games are in replaying them so you don’t make the same mistakes again.
The game is so gorgeous on the RE Engine, and the engine is the main reason why everything is so damn scary as well – Because this title has amazing physics, the zombies have SO MUCH detail put into them, such as points of articulation all around their body that ragdoll once shot enough times, and two layers of textures for better looking gore and visual indication on what point is weaker than most after dealing some damage. You can also never be sure as to whether enemies are no longer threats or not as there is no clear way to figure out if the most common enemies, zombies, are dead unless their heads have been blown clean off… So backtracking through a hallway full of undead that you had downed is always terrifying since you don’t know if one will get up or not.
The one thing I would have a problem with this game however is that later moments in the game actually feel too generous with resources, as well as the fact that there are segments in which you play as the protagonist’s side companion, which are not very fun and kinda slow things down for no reason other than to pad out the game’s length.
The game is not long either, which is to its benefit – It encourages multiple runs for better results and times, and the game has enough content throughout to ensure that you’ll be playing for a long time regardless, since you have two campaigns and two shorter alternative campaigns. You then have two other bonus modes that are really fun to see the best time you can get, and there is DLC on the way to add to all of this. Basically, this game isn’t fucking around. It has had a lot of love and care put into it because the boys over at Capcom knew that Resi 2 specifically is held near and dear to a lot of people’s hearts.
The best way I can describe this REmake is that it has the amazingly fun gunplay of Resident Evil 4, the atmosphere and scares of REmake 1 and RE7, and the style and setting of an OG Resident Evil. It’s pretty much the best thing you can ask for in a Resident Evil game since it just perfects every element that makes the series so iconic.
Resident Evil 2 is up there is as one of the best horror games of all time, and you can fucking fight me on that. I highly recommend everyone check it out wether it be for the scares, the puzzles, or the gameplay – You won’t be disappointed.
I give Resident Evil 2 a: