Back in March 22, 1996 Capcom released what would become the greatest video game ever; Resident Evil. It would define an entire genre, and shape the industry in a way it hadn’t been before. Over the years, Shinji Mikami (the creator) has rolled out over 20 Resident Evil titles, covering Playstation, Wii and even mobile devices. Even though it’s been so spread out, each game has retained its high quality. Influencing so many games, Resident Evil has dragged in all generations of gamers, and stands as game that will live on forever. In my eyes, the greatest game of all time, and here’s why…
The Resident Evil franchise, has paved the way for hundreds of games and has been extremely successful in the last 15 years. As of March 2011, Resident Evil has sold over 45 million – a tremendous achievement, and only 10 million copies behind the cliché ‘greatest game of all time’: Call of Duty – dubbed by gamers with no taste. Resident Evil’s review scores through the years have always been of the highest standard, rating between 9’s and 10’s on many gaming sites. IGN rated Resident Evils re-release for Gamecube 9.5 out of 10, the same as Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. Unfortunately however, Resident Evil is constantly overlooked, but now it has started to get more publicity, but still less than what it deserves. Many avid, serious gamers have stated how great the games have been, with quotes: “The prettiest, most atmospheric and all-around scariest game we’ve ever played” by the IGN team; “Resident Evil is an amazing achievement…it’s relentlessly exciting, white-knuckle action” by GameSpot and most importantly “The greatest game of all time…the Godfather of all survival horrors” by me.
Unsurprisingly, the impact of Resident Evil has been felt on many games, including: Gears of War, Grand Theft Auto and even Rocksteady’s Batman games. Resident Evil 4 was the major influence, with Gears of War and Batman: Arkham Asylum both adopting its ‘over-the-shoulder viewpoint’ – now a standard in any third-person shooter. Resident Evil influence is clearly powerful enough to make it’s mark on two major games. Furthermore, its ‘precision aim’ has become an essential feature for many releases, with examples ranging from: Dead Space even to Grand Theft Auto again – a game falling in a completely different genre. The quake from Resident Evil’s superiority quivered into many now major games, and will carry on to leave its print on many future titles. Resident Evil will continue to dominate the third-person shooter and survival horror genres with its supremacy for centuries to come.
The power of Resident Evil through the years has pulled in many different gamers and many different generations, earning its place as an impactful game. However, as a true Resident Evil fan, I wholeheartedly disagree with the majority of gamers speaking utter nonsense; claiming Resident Evil 4 as the best in the series. Don’t get me wrong, I truly love Resident Evil 4, but was still so deeply disappointed with it. All of the genuine: skin trembling, heart racing moments were virtually non-existent, and I wouldn’t even associate the 4th game with any others in the main series. Gamers can never truly declare to have played Resident Evil or even enjoyed the game without playing the originals, and I plea for anybody to disagree. When playing Resident Evil 4, I couldn’t help feeling like the series had abandoned the survival horror genre, by demolishing the genre foundations it had carefully constructed over the years. I sincerely hope that Resident Evil: Operation Racoon City (the latest spin-off) returns to its roots, it would be so much more enjoyable but would dubitably get its deserved publicity, being over shadowed by the likes of FIFA 12 and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. Mainly due to people’s incapacity to open there minds and not follow the generic trend. Resident Evil 1 is the definition of a true story, and the cause of my love for it.
Thinking of Resident Evil 1, I still feel emotions of happiness and joyousness, bringing back so many fulfilling memories of my childhood. Words cannot describe the sheer greatness of Resident Evil 1. I loved how it wasn’t a set, linear path you were forced to follow, exploration was promoted through the enormous mansion, flesh-eating zombies on every turn. Its soundtrack must be the most intense and epic soundtrack ever to feature in a videogame; so spine chilling: walking into a room, eerie music playing, crows screeching above… then BAM! The zombie you slaughtered hours ago had been resurrected, stronger and faster than ever. Can you imagine the horror?
But horror wasn’t its only defining element; it boasted an amazingly deep back story which has developed strongly through the years and games. Plus, the game itself had everything you could want: horrific zombies, gripping boss battles, blood-thirsty hounds and tons of hard-core action. Moreover, it wasn’t just a one dimensional game; it became a complex puzzle at times. You couldn’t just walk into a room pick up a key and walk out again, you’d need to trek around the vast mansion to find only half of a key which had to me combined with a ‘butterfly bait’ to work – fail and you’d be repainting the walls with your blood. ‘Wow’ is probably the perfect description. A magnificent piece of videogame art.
All taken into account, Resident Evil is a masterpiece. Even the worst of Resident Evil games still are pretty damn good. All other games stay inferior to Resident Evil, which has gone on to influence many, many games and define an entire genre, as well as becoming one of the most renowned game franchises. I’ve never anything played so perfect that I’m unable to find fault – except this. A definite necessity to any gamer with taste, and anyone who dares disagree obviously has no common sense. Resident Evil will live on forever, influencing and redefining so much along the way. You need to play this game, and if you haven’t, go and do so right now. I love this game. I love this game so much, I even created my Xbox Live Gamertag with the game’s main ‘enemy’ in mind; true dedication. So, I rest my case as to why Resident Evil is, without fail, the best game ever created, and nobody can say otherwise.
George Holt is an avid gamer with extremely strong opinions. Although he may come across as narcissistic in his writing, he can be swayed to other viewpoints. Try your hand at convincing him in the comments below.