Resident Evil 7 was one of the larger reveals at E3 2016, with Capcom taking in influences from current horror games, and even the surprising P.T. and other similar games.
But during an interview with Capcom Unity, Producer Masachika Kawata and director Kōshi Nakanishi talked about some of the changes that Resident Evil 7 will offer. Starting off, Resident Evil 7 is not a reboot, with Nakanishi explaining: "It's not a reboot and we're not throwing away the series' canonical storyline. It's the new numbered title in the series and it's a sequel to the existing mainline series titles. After I say that and you try the demo, you may say "Really?", because it looks nothing like any of that, but trust me. We need to have a bit of mystery in survival horror, so we're trying to make you wonder when you play it how could this possibly be connected? That's part of the appeal".
The first-person perspective is going to be interesting, with Kawata continuing: "Both myself and the director, Mr. Nakanishi, felt if we want people to experience horror and experience it in the most direct, visceral way possible, then literally putting yourself in the position of seeing what the character sees is the best way to do that and so it was our motivation for the first-person camera change". Nakanishi chimed in with the big change with Resident Evil 7's first-person perspective, adding: "Of course it's a big change, so first we got a prototype working and we put first-person in place and we wanted to see if we could make Resident Evil work in first person. As soon as we had it up and running we were really confident that this was the way to move forward. We were really happy with the way that Resident Evil feels in first person".
One of the bigger changes to Resident Evil 7 is that instead of playing a near invincible, highly trained operative, you'll play an ordinary person - which personally, I think was an extremely good move by Capcom. Kawata explained: "Just to confirm - it isn't an existing character whose eyes you're seeing through. I think one of the places we got in the series up until now is you're kind of playing these superhero characters. They're fully equipped, powerful people who go into these survival horror situations but they're ready for them. They can take it on. To bring the horror experience right to the player, we thought now that you're in first person you'll feel like you're there".
He finished, by saying: "You can't be looking through the perspective of a macho, hero character because that's not you at home. Or maybe you are macho, I don't know [laughs]. It's sort of a powerless, ordinary person you're playing as. We're not really talking in too much detail about who they are right now, but they're an ordinary person stuck in an extraordinary situation. I think that really brings the horror right to the fore. You wonder if this person you're playing as - or you - will be able to cope with this situation. That's a real feeling of helplessness that helps the horror stand out. If you try the demo that's out on [PlayStation 4] for [PlayStation Plus subscribers], you'll see".
Resident Evil 7 drops on the Xbox One, PS4 and PC on January 24, 2017 - while PS4 owners get to enjoy PlayStation VR compatibility.
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