When it comes to long-lasting franchises, developers tend to tread the waters carefully. They don’t want to make changes that would seem too drastic and lose the interest of their fan base but at the same time, they want to enjoy a bit of the creative control of owning the IP. Take for instance Capcom’s Resident Evil franchise. The series has been around for decades and it continues to see new evolution for its gameplay mechanics.
Resident Evil was and still is a staple title for the survival horror franchise though over the years it became less focused on survival horror. Instead, the developers went into the realm of being action-oriented as they pinned players against a series of monsters to fight off.
Recently the development studio went back to their roots and delivered the latest main installment that seemed to pay homage to the original franchise days. That did come with some potential scares in terms of profitability.
In an interview with Gamesindustry.biz, Capcom Europe COO, Stuart Turner, and EMEA Marketing Director, Antoine Molant revealed some behind-the-scenes moments that Capcom went through in the past few years.
During the interview, the employees made mention that they had shareholders to appease, but it wasn’t always about making a commercial performance hit. Instead, there is a bit of a creative control element when it came to Resident Evil 7 and Resident Evil 6. The numbers between the two installments are not drastically far off, but Resident Evil 6 had sold more units.
“There is an artistic element that always comes in where we know this is the right way. And while if we compare RE7 to RE6 the absolute numbers are not the same, in terms of the profitability… it’s completely fine. It ticked all of our boxes internally. It was really well received. And in some respects, getting some very good review scores counts as much for Capcom as a game that sells millions and millions and millions. We’d prefer a game that got a 9 and sold less, than got a 6 but sold more.”
At the end of the day, Capcom seemed more satisfied with creating something they loved and having reviews back it up rather than relying on sales numbers alone.
With that attitude in mind, Capcom went on to work on Resident Evil 2, a remake of the classic hit title that launched in 1998. For fans of the original title, there may have already been a few expectations placed for the game. Likewise, after the release of Resident Evil 7, fans may have had other expectations as to what the Resident Evil 2 remake may have evolved into.
Instead of opting to go with a first-person view similar to Resident Evil 7, Resident Evil 2 the remake would be done in the style of Resident Evil 4. Players would receive an over-the-shoulder third-person view. This may have raised some voices up for fans that desired the same stuck cameras and tank controls that were present in the original Resident Evil 2 release, but Capcom is confident in their mechanics.
Again, in the interview, we learned that Capcom had tried several different mechanics out during the testing phase. Developers jumped into the game in a first-person mode and even stuck cameras but with the game design they developers felt that this third-person over-the-shoulder mechanics and viewpoint worked best.
Players can pick up a copy of Resident Evil 2 for the PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One platforms when it launches on January 25, 2019.