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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Resident Evil 2 demo offers taste of newest release

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Capcom’s Resident Evil 2 demo was released Jan. 11, and the game officially hit stories on Jan. 25.

Resident Evil 2’s demo is a promising first look at the latest remake in all of its bloody glory.
The Resident Evil series pioneered the horror game genre with its first installment back in 1996. Since then, the franchise has branched out to dozens of games, comics and a couple of lovably bad movies. 2017 was a big year for RE as its five-year hiatus broke with the release of “RE7: Biohazard,” the series’ first foray in the first-person horror survival genre. 2019 won’t be any different, as the hype surrounding a remake of the fan favorite “Resident Evil 2” is astronomical. Aware of this excitement, Capcom decided to tease fans with a little demo on Jan. 11.
Those in the know remember seeing this game announced back in 2015 following the successful remake of the original Resident Evil. Last summer, fans were treated with the first glimpses of gameplay at the Electronic Entertainment Expo. Gone are the low-res polygonal character models, as Capcom reused the game engine which gave RE7 its detailed, modern graphics. Fast forward eight months later and there I am, launching the demo in my well-lit room, hesitantly excited to “Press Start.” However, I was a little disappointed to find out that the demo was pretty much what was shown off at E3. Our rookie cop hero Leon Kennedy gets to the overridden Raccoon City Police Station, and from there it’s just open the door, get stuck, try to save a dude, fail, shoot zombies, run, solve the puzzle in the foyer, meet Marvin, roll credits. I figured that I should take a different approach to the demo, looking at what we didn’t see and commenting on what we could not get a feel for from last year’s snippet of gameplay.
The first thing I noticed after starting the demo is the beautiful, dark look that has become a signature aesthetic for the Resident Evil games. Flickering lights, intricate interior decorations and a lighting system that really justifies reusing the engine from RE7. Raccoon City looks more terrifying than ever before, and any fan of the series or the genre will be geeking out. Even though Leon has a dreamy Zac Efron look now, I would have loved to see the silly shoulder pads make a return for the remake. Regardless, there is nothing evil about the way this Resident Evil looks.
The remake took some liberties with how the controls work this time around. The fixed camera tank controls from Resident Evil’s early entries have been replaced with a more conventional over-the-shoulder camera more in accordance with the third-person action games of this generation. Along with the new control scheme, other mechanics had to be renovated to add a dimension of modernity to the game while not losing the classic feel. The shooting mechanics felt familiar and very appropriate, though I am not sure the zombies liked them too much.
Verdict? If this whole game is as good as the demo, then Capcom has another gold standard remake on its hands. Being able to experience RE2 through a new, current-generation lens is truly a joy for fans new and old.
Ronaldo Mata is a journalism freshman and Life & Arts writer for The Battalion.

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