“We were a little taken aback by how well it has gone down.”
Resident Evil 2′s remake was unveiled by Capcom at last at E3 this year, years after they had originally announced it. It looked absolutely fantastic, and like everything fans could have asked for from the game, which revisits one of the most popular games in the series. That said, ahead of its unveiling, Capcom was actually very nervous about how it was going to be received- especially since, after the success of Resident Evil 7, the Resident Evil 2 remake almost looked like a step back by eschewing the first person viewpoint.
“We were concerned internally about who RE2 would appeal to,” Capcom Europe COO said to GamesIndustry. “With RE7 we had done this first-person thing, and with RE2 we’ve done this thing that looks great, but it’s also back a step. So the response to that, the pre-orders we’ve seen already… we have been a little taken aback by how well it has gone down.”
It wasn’t just the third person camera, either- the game was very categorically getting rid of the fixed camera and the tanky controls that had characterized the early Resident Evil games, and that a lot of Resident Evil 2 fans undoubtedly had some level of nostalgia for. And Capcom wasn’t sure if it should try and make a game that channeled those controls in a modern context.
“We had discussions on whether we could make a game that was everything for everyone,” said Turner. “For those guys who want tank controls and want fixed cameras… can we do that?
“But the world has moved on and these players have changed. And if we did [introduce old school mechanics], these fans might play it and actually decide it’s not what they wanted after all. But we played around with a few things in development. We did try first-person, we did try fixed camera. But the way the game has been designed, we decided that a third-person view works better.”
Even so, they were nervous about how the game would be received by fans, and that they might let down fans who have a very specific idea about what Resident Evil 2 should be.
“That was probably the main worry, or question mark, that we had,” said EMEA marketing director Antoine Molant. “We knew there were expectations around the game, and we knew it looked great and would be a good game. But around the point of the tank controls and fixed cameras, we were worried that the fanbase would be divided. But, although there might have been some initial dissenting voices, the reaction was overwhelmingly positive.”
As Molant points out, all the worrying was for nothing- Resident Evil 2 ended up being overwhelmingly well received, and went on to win the Game Critics E3 Best of Show award too. When it launches next year for PS4, Xbox One, and PC, there is little doubt that it will be one of the best games of the year.