Some might consider the upcoming home console ports of Resident Evil: Revelations a lazy form of cashing in. Others might consider it a sorely welcome homecoming. However, members of both camps may agree that the former Nintendo 3DS exclusive is finally here to clean up the mess that Resident Evil 6 has left in its wake.
At first glance, there isn’t a whole lot to say here. It’s more or less the same game that graced the Nintendo portable, except on the bigger screen. Nothing has really been lost in translation, except for the three-dimensional visuals. Instead, a few minor tweaks and upgrades have been given. Nothing mind-blowing, just appropriate.
This is either a plus, specifically among those who believe that one should not mess with success or simply never got to play the 3DS original—which is the primary reason Capcom has been using to justify the port in the existence; to introduce it to an audience that either currently doesn’t own a 3DS or is unwilling to.
For those in the former camp, some background: the game takes places between Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil 5, shortly after some of the series’ staple characters have formed the Bioterrorism Security Assessment Alliance, or BSAA, which was introduced in RE5 and was featured prominently in RE6. Jill and Chris have new partners, and one pair goes missing, leading the other pair to investigate. The same kind of hijinks that all longtime Resident Evil fans have come to expect, which were established in part 4 and elaborated upon in part 5—as well as somewhat left to the way side in Resident Evil 6—ensues.
And that’s the selling point, really. It’s a return to basics, to the dimly-lit and claustrophobic corners that made the original entries so beloved, couple with the overhauled, over-the-shoulder viewpoint that became standard in Resident Evil 4. The latter part is the most important detail, and why those who played the first iteration of Revelations might consider a return trip.
While extolling the virtues of the port, a Capcom rep told me, “You can now finally aim and shoot and walk at the same time!” What he forgot is how such a configuration is possible in the 3DS version, but it’s not the most ideal of solutions, hence why the default control scheme has you just standing still while aiming (although, you can still move while firing on 3DS). So that alone might be a major selling point for some.
Visually, everything remains the same pretty much. Some textures have been upgraded, plus much of the lighting has been redone, but it looks just as great as before. Whereas Resident Evil: Revelations was a graphical powerhouse on a portable, it simply looks “really good” on consoles, which is not a knock, and more of a testament of how incredible Capcom’s MT Framework Mobile platform really is.
The same rep also told me that Jill’s face has been slightly redone because “the original looked kinda funky,” though I wasn’t able to really discern any differences.
Once more, there are new modes, like the new Infernal difficulty mode, improved Raid mode, plus a new enemy type in main game, though I was unable to experience any of the above in the preview build I was given access to.
Overall, Resident Evil: Revelations, while not completely atoning for the sins of Resident Evil 6, should hopefully remind players what a back-to-basics, focused Resident Evil experience is all about, and if the response is sufficient, hopefully Capcom will be reminded as well.