The Resident Evil 2 remake was one of the surprise announcements at this year’s E3, with a trailer during Sony’s conference delighting and terrifying us in equal measure. We had the chance to go hands-on with this updated horror classic, which instantly proved to be a massive improvement over the original.
It brings the game up to scratch for modern consoles, while still remaining faithful to that claustrophobic atmosphere established in the original three Resident Evil games for PlayStation One. Here are five reasons why it’ll be a must for Resi die-hards and novices alike.
Anyone who has played the original Resident Evil 2 on PlayStation will remember its fixed camera angles, which gave every new environment a feeling of unease, but the series has slowly evolved away from. The remake follows suit with an over-the-shoulder approach similar to Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil: Revelations.
This gives the players a better awareness of where they are in the level, but without sacrificing on the horror atmosphere. The camera will still only cover a small fraction of your surroundings, meaning zombies can still sneak up on you if you’re not careful.
The most obvious upgrade, apart from the change in perspective, are the visuals. Resident Evil 2 Remake looks stunning and takes full advantage of the RE Engine that was previously used on Resident Evil 7. S.T.A.R.S rookie Leon S. Kennedy and RPCD officer Marvin Branagh looking much more realistic.
An impressive layer of detail has been given to everything from their clothes to their facial movements, in a move that will surely grab people’s attention… Unfortunately, this will also apply to all of the monsters in the game too, meaning that you will encounter a constant barrage of nightmarish beasts while roaming the streets of Raccoon City.
The Police Station is an iconic location in the Resident Evil franchise, appearing in both Resident Evil 2 and Resident Evil 3. In the remake, it returns, but with a widespread visual upgrade across the board.
The layout is still largely the same with the same large reception area and narrow, claustrophobic hallways. However, everything just feels that much more dangerous, highlighting the chaos that must have ensued after the T-Virus escaped the Spencer Mansion, reaching the city.
Blood splatters the walls and there is a much greater emphasis on the lighting in the game, with areas mostly blanketed in darkness until you shine your light across them.
During our hands-on, we get to hear how the dialogue has been updated to provide what Capcom are describing as a “deeper narrative experience.” For instance, your introduction to R.P.D cop Marvin Branagh is much more dramatic in this new version, as he crashes a steel shutter onto a Zombies head before wheezing “You’re safe… for now.”
Another advantage of the new engine is the ability to push the gameplay even further, as it is now possible to shoot zombies limbs off. This is something we’ve seen before in the later Resident Evil games, but it is now rendered in breathtaking detail with viscera and wet gore spilling from the stumps of limbs.
Shooting off limbs will also provide a nice, tactical advantage for players, allowing you to shoot off an enemy’s legs to slow them down and so on.