Resident Evil 7 will go back to the series’ survival horror roots. At least that’s what Capcom has told MCV.
Resident Evil 6 was not received well, both commercially and critically. It only garnered a console average of 69% on Metacritic and has sold just over 3 million units as of July 27, well below the company’s projections. In comparison, Resident Evil 5 scored 83% and sold over 5 million units in its first year; Resident Evil 4 scored a 96% and sold 1.69 million units on the GameCube (to be fair the GameCube’s install base was much smaller than the PS3’s and Xbox 360’s).
The obvious trend is that each iteration since Resident Evil 4 has been worse than the last. Each iteration has also become more action oriented with less emphasis on survival horror. It’s easy to put two-and-two together. As former Capcom marketing boss Michael Pattison said:
With Resident Evil 6 specifically, we probably put too much content in there, there were comments from consumers that said it felt bloated. The Leon missions went down very well, and because we did Resident Evil Revelations on 3DS, there was a cry out for us to focus our attention on survival horror, rather than be too many things to all people. You’ll find where we go next will likely be more targeted at our core fanbase.
Resident Evil used to be the gold standard for survival horror; its game announcements would bring fans to tears; anticipation was only matched by a handful of other franchises. That magic is gone. Can Capcom find it again?