Resident Evil 8’s Dramatic Departure is a Necessary Game-Changer

Although Resident Evil 8 is going to be a big departure for the series, fans shouldn't necessarily be worried about that out of the gate.

The Resident Evil franchise is stronger than ever in the current generation and a new direction with Resident Evil 8 will liven things plenty. | Source: Capcom/Steam

  • The Resident Evil series has been on a hate streak lately, releasing numerous well-liked titles.
  • The upcoming 8th installment is apparently going to be a big departure from the rest of the series.
  • Considering how well series shake-ups have gone in the past, this is almost certainly good news for fans.

Resident Evil is on a hot streak at the moment. 2 pretty great remakes have just hit and people seem to love them. Despite this success, we learned recently that the upcoming Resident Evil 8 will be a massive departure for the series.

Many fans of the series are somewhat shocked by the news. After all, why would Capcom need to shake-up a series which is doing so well? Well, this massive departure for the series might actually be the best idea Capcom has had in a while.

There is only a certain amount of mileage in remaking classic Resi games. Capcom has to shake things up if they want the series to stay fresh. | Source: Steam

Resident Evil has Always Thrived On Change

The first Resident Evil game was released back in 1996. It was quite unlike anything else that had come before it. While games like Alone in the Dark have similar gameplay styles, it was Resident Evil that took that idea and added an amazing atmosphere, a campy horror story, and for the time impressive graphics.

If you take a look back at the really good games in the series, they’re the ones that have been big departures. Resident Evil 4 was a stunning game, despite making numerous changes which many die-hard fans probably wouldn’t have liked the sound of.

By the time we made it to the 6th game, the style was stale. Almost no one liked RE6. Then Capcom busted out yet another completely different style for RE7 and again managed to find huge commercial success. Is it any wonder they seem intent on keeping the shake-ups happening?

Another Shake-Up Could Be The Best Game Yet

From the evidence of the rest of the series, one face seems to make itself clear. Capcom and the Resident Evil series thrive on Chaos. The worst games are those that are the 3rd or 4th entry into a specific style. Either that or they’re those games that cynically try to ape a completely different genre like Umbrella Corps.

Whereas the best games are those that strive to try something new like 4 and 7 do. Resident Evil 8 could be the best game yet if Capcom really does have a brand-new idea to try out.

Of course, it is possible that RE8 comes out and is terrible. If that happens it’s likely going to be because it tries to do something that’s already well over-done. If there’s a universal truth behind Resident Evil, it’s that just adding familiar characters and zombies to a creatively bankrupt genre is a fool’s game.

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Last modified: September 23, 2020 1:48 PM

William Worrall: William Worrall is a professional writer based out of the UK who has been writing about video and tabletop games for over a decade and has covered industry events such as EGX and UKGE. Contact him at, see his LinkedIn profile here.