Earlier this month, Capcom announced Resident Evil: Revelations 2, a new entry into its survival-horror side series that will initially hit as four weekly downloadable episodes. At TGS 2014, I got the chance to go hands-on with the game, and here are three thoughts I took away from the experience.
Revelations is Capcom’s chance to be experimental
It isn’t that Capcom’s not willing to try new things with mainline Resident Evil games, but I feel like they’re really free to experiment with projects such as Revelations 2. I loved the first game’s TV show–like structure, and while the episodes here will be longer (and there will be fewer of them), releasing the game in pieces is a major move for such a well-known franchise.
And while I only got a small taste of the overall experience, I got to see some other ways in which Revelations 2 will be shaking things up. Now, unless the story calls for specific scenarios, you’ll be able to switch between the two characters at any time, with each of them fulfilling specific purposes. Everyone’s favorite zombie-killing biker chick, Claire Redfield, specializes in firearms (and emptying their ammo clips into the undead), while Moira Burton—daughter of the legendary bearded one—will provide support by using a flashlight to help solve puzzles and discover hidden items. Don’t think Moira is totally helpless, however—she can make use of melee weapons to provide Claire some backup and can even execute one-hit kills to zombies that are downed on the ground.
Having two female protagonists feels daring
Even though the Resident Evil series is known for having some strong leading ladies that can kick as much ass as their male counterparts, it still seems a little unbelievable that Capcom would consider releasing a major chapter of the series where the lead duo doesn’t have a Y chromosome between them.
Yes, I know: Resident Evil 3 focused mainly on Jill Valentine, but there’s a difference between a single female protagonist and having two main characters—both of them women.
I also came to quickly love the pairing of Claire and Moira. While I’m certainly glad that Claire is back (hopefully sans that stupid brother of hers), Moira’s debut in Capcom’s Revelations 2 TGS demo made me instantly like her. Her dialogue was written as if a Japanese person was trying to figure out what would sound cool and hip and youthful in English—and I say that in the nicest of ways, because the results are hilarious and a tad inappropriate and awesome.
Of course, one of the parts that made the original Revelations so compelling was how it jumped back and forth between character pairings. So, it’s totally possible that Revelations 2 won’t always be so focused on female main characters. Still, I appreciate that—so far—Capcom hasn’t shied away from such a strategy.
I really want to play this game
I know, it seems like such a ridiculously simplistic thing to say: I want to play a game after playing its demo. It’s just that I really want to play Revelations 2 now. While the first Revelations was designed for the 3DS and then got ported up later, this one’s built for consoles from the ground up. The game controls great and looks even better, the world design seems interesting from the portions I played, and there’s a nice balance between action, combat, exploration, and exposition.
While the Revelations brand offers the chance for Capcom to take some risks, it’s also the place where you’ll still find a nod to the more classic gameplay of the franchise’s early years. That mix of new and old really blends wonderfully, and what I played of Revelations 2 really hit that point home.
Update: Corrected the mention that Revelations 2 was the first time characters could be switched at any time.