Ever since Resident Evil 4, the Resident Evil franchise has taken a step in a new direction. Gone are the days of tank controls and fixed camera angles. Instead, we are treated to a third person, behind the back shooter that is more concerned with action than survival.
I remember getting RE4 for my Gamecube back in the day and being blown away by the new mechanics. I hadn't played a game like that, ever, or at least, I hadn't played such a well polished game like that before. Then I got RE5 some years later for my PS3 and while I loved the game, it didn't improve much on the original formula.
It seems that Resident Evil 6 will be moving more forward than its predecessor and embracing the action elements of the series as opposed to making a survival-horror game.
Masachika Kawata, the producer for Resident Evil: Revelations, commented on the future for Resident Evil 6 and the franchise as a whole in an interview with Gamasutra:
Especially for the North American market, I think the series needs to head in that [action-oriented] direction, RE4 started in that direction, and RE5 kept going in that direction. And I think that especially for the North American market, we need to keep going in that direction, and take that a step further.
Looking at the marketing data [for survival horror games] ... the market is small, compared to the number of units Call of Duty and all those action games sell, a 'survival horror' Resident Evil doesn't seem like it'd be able to sell those kind of numbers.
Kawata also talked about how there are other avenues for the series now, and not just the core-numbered games (i.e. 4,5,6).
I can't really speak for Resident Evil 6, but I don't think that it necessarily has to go all the way in that [action-heavy] direction, the Call of Duty direction. It doesn't have to be a straight up shooter. But my impression is that Resident Evil 4 and 5 aren't shooters, per se.
So we have our numbered series, and we can say we have a more adventure-oriented version, like a Revelations-style game. And we also have Operation: Raccoon City, which is a third-person shooter.
So I think that by extending the market in this sense, we can still have the numbered titles keep their identity about what Resident Evil is supposed to be, but still expand and hit other markets as well.
I don't know if I care for the analogies to the Call of Duty series because I think that a game should operate within its own style and not play into what is popular. But, I can see his point of view. Resident Evil has become something entirely different compared to where it started and Capcom, the developer, is trying to keep things modern. This is fine with me, personally. Change is good and it is particularly good when in the context of technology and video games. I would like to see the series press forward and really make a comeback.
Are you excited for a more action oriented Resident Evil Game?