Nintendo 3DS

Resident Evil: Revelations Development Began By Running Resident Evil 5 On A 3DS


In a few weeks, Capcom will release Resident Evil: Revelations for the Nintendo 3DS, and Nintendo president, Satoru Iwata, recently gathered a few senior members of the development team to discuss the game’s creation.


Revelations producer, Masachika Kawata, says that the idea to create a full-featured Resident Evil game for a portable device came to him after he learnt that Nintendo would be showing a device with stereoscopic 3D visuals at E3 2010. Since Kawata still hears from many people that the Resident Evil remake for the Gamecube is the best game in the series, it was decided that Revelations would similarly focus on the fear element.


Development kicked off after Capcom decided to make Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D first, and use that game to build up experience with the 3DS hardware. The development team started by running Resident Evil 5 on the 3DS. Impressed by the impact it had, the team moved on to developing Mercenaries 3D. At the same time, Revelations was developed in parallel, with experience gained from both games benefiting one another.


Resident Evil: Revelations has six language tracks on the cartridge, including a Japanese voice track. This is the first time a Resident Evil game has had a Japanese voices recorded for it, and the decision was made because the team wanted Revelations to feel like a foreign TV drama.


Foreign dramas aired in Japan are often aired with Japanese voice-overs where the actors frequently use terms that aren’t commonly found in daily conversations in Japanese culture. It was this sensation that the development team wanted to recapture. Another influence of TV dramas is that the game is split up into 12 chapters, and has several scenes ending with cliffhangers. Additionally, events aren’t always depicted in chronological order.


Because the game plays out like a TV drama, Revelations also makes use of recurring theme music. Music for the game was recorded using orchestrated instruments, with a focus on the piano in particular.


The development team also briefly touched upon the Raid Mode in Resident Evil: Revelations. Raid Mode is a 2-player mode, similar to the Mercenaries mode in recent Resident Evil games, or to The Mercenaries 3D. The decision to include this was inspired by watching the Monster Hunter team, and the staff that worked on fine-tuning Mercenaries 3D was called upon to develop Raid Mode. This was another way in which Revelations benefitted from prior experience gained with Mercenaries 3D.

Ishaan Sahdev
Ishaan specializes in game design/sales analysis. He's the former managing editor of Siliconera and wrote the book "The Legend of Zelda - A Complete Development History". He also used to moonlight as a professional manga editor. These days, his day job has nothing to do with games, but the two inform each other nonetheless.