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Threadsident Readvil: Conversations (A thread for general discussion of Resi) RESURRECTION

R.R. Bigman

Coolest Guy
Never mind, I beat the game.

I got the ending where Jill, Barry and Chris all survive, which seems pretty happy considering all that went down. Wesker is barely in the game, and seems more like just a scheming asshole who gets wrecked by the Tyrant than a supervillain with Matrix powers.

Even though I used the more modern control scheme, I’m proud of myself for finally beating a “classic” Resident Evil game. On Normal, even!
 

Purple

(She/Her)
That'd be Jill's best ending, so good for you on that. Interesting sidenote there: If you've never played before you're almost definitely going to save Barry, since it goes off this trust-building system that gets boosted by standing around trying to work out what to do in certain spots (Jill Sandwich, etc.) but Chris, in addition to just plain being hard mode (less inventory, no Barry to save you, never learned to play piano, not a master of unlocking) really has to actively work for it to get his full trio out.
 

R.R. Bigman

Coolest Guy
Chris having a harder time doesn’t sound so bad, as I was awash in health and ammo by the end. By the final area I was leaving herbs and first aid sprays on the floor since I had so many.

Fewer inventory slots sounds awful, however.
 
Chris having a harder time doesn’t sound so bad, as I was awash in health and ammo by the end. By the final area I was leaving herbs and first aid sprays on the floor since I had so many.

Fewer inventory slots sounds awful, however.
It's fun to see different story elements though. But it is very difficult. Slots especially. He has slight buff to attacks, more Crits or something
 

jpfriction

A most radical pontiff
(He, Him)
Successfully made it to the wrecked ship part of
super metroid resi VII. Making all sorts of progress. I’m going to beat this game this spooky season!

Then I’ll buy village and work on that for ten years.
 

R.R. Bigman

Coolest Guy
You’re not far from the end. Sadly, the best parts of the game are behind you.

I started a new game of RE: Remake. Chris, Normal, Original Controls, Full Pain. I somehow forgot a few key things about the beginning of the game, which led to a whole lot of running around. The need to use consumable keys to open doors Jill could get through automatically further added to my problems.

Chris appears to have more health than Jill, but that and the lighter do not compare to Jill’s larger inventory and mastery of unlocking doors for free. Also, no Barry! I miss him!
 

Purple

(She/Her)
I somehow forgot a few key things about the beginning of the game,
If you ever really want to trip yourself up, go play the PSX version. The remake changes up puzzle solutions, general progression, and a couple couple plot beats just enough to completely mess with you when you switch between the two.

Also unless I severely misrecall, small keys/lockpicks never effect progression, just little stashes of extra goodies.
 

R.R. Bigman

Coolest Guy
Also unless I severely misrecall, small keys/lockpicks never effect progression, just little stashes of extra goodies.

The outside alcove with the herbicide is locked behind one. Most of the others are shortcuts or have bonus stuff, yes.

So Chris flat out doesn’t get the Auto Shotgun or Grenade Launcher? Every safety valve and stroke of luck Jill has is replaced by Nothing or Chris being a big meathead. Fella can’t even get antidote after the Yawn fight himself! How did this man grow up to be the superhuman he was in RE5?
 

R.R. Bigman

Coolest Guy
I beat the game with Chris, with tank controls, saving both Jill and Rebecca. Wesker gets fucking killed in Chris’ story! He dies so hard that Rebecca has to start the self destruct sequence. Old Al clearly gets away in Jill’s story, so does that make her’s the canon one? It certainly feels more fleshed out, and Barry doesn’t disappear from the second half of the game like Becky does.

The only real trouble I had on Chris’ campaign was that I thought I had to find Rebecca and have her mix the V-Jolt to kill the big plant. I went back to the mansion, searching everywhere. I didn’t think Chris had to just knuckle down and fight the thing, but I had exhausted all other possibilities. This is the man who would punch a boulder rather than find an alternate route or a tool for leverage.

I’m very pleased with myself for finally beating this game that I had given up on twice in the past twenty years. It ended up being a lot of fun.
 

ASandoval

Old Man Gamer
(he/him)
Wesker: Wesker very much dies in both versions of the original game; in Jill's story, he gets skewered through the chest and never gets back up, and in Chris' he gets decapitated by the chimeras in the power room. The assumption (according to supplementary material that I don't think is ever brought up in any specific game) is that in either ending, he uses a prototype g-virus that essentially allows him to Wolverine style regenerate, which would have been ludicrous back then but we've seen a lot of improbable regeneration of vital organs in the series sense so, you know. Either way, no ending is canon as everyone including Rebecca and Barry survives, and that's true regardless of which version you're playing.
 

R.R. Bigman

Coolest Guy
So Wesker died in the original game? It seemed odd he wasn’t in 2 or 3. When did he come back? He’s already fully supervillain Wesker in Ada’s side content for RE4.
 

Peklo

Oh! Create!
(they/them, she/her)
I wrote about Code: Veronica around 2019 or so on TT 2.0. I don't think my take reflects the usual consensus at all since it's mainly positive. I'll include the text here for posterity, since it wasn't posted in an easily searchable thread. I mostly stand by it still.

When Resident Evil arrived on the scene in 1996, no one could have predicted the impact it would have on the industry and artform of video games. While the game did not manifest whole cloth with zero precedent, the specific expressions of its foundations were themselves codified for the first time in punched-up, concrete terms: the age of "survival horror" had come. As an early pioneer in the genre it popularized, the history of Resident Evil thus exists at a slant in relation to everything it subsequently inspired--when bright-eyed and bushy-tailed aspirants were gearing up to have their turn at the wheel, the innovator itself had settled, in the eyes of many, into a reliable routine at best, and a desperate search for an out at worst. The six games of the series's original incarnation can then be roughly observed in terms of their common reputations: on one hand, there are the unassailable classics comprising one half (Resident Evil, Resident Evil 2, Resident Evil for GameCube) and what remains consists of games with troubled and divisive natures--inconclusively so depending on who you talk to but consistent enough as a refrain to put together that in its latter day, the shine was off of Resident Evil, and with the passage of time, evolving design trends and audience expectations were leaving it behind. It's in this contrasting crucible of waning series relevancy and ostensible genre heyday where a game that straddled the line between the series's past and its future came to be: Resident Evil - Code: Veronica.

Code: Veronica was conceptualized as the natural next step from Resident Evil 2 in basic narrative terms in that it follows the continuing adventures of Claire Redfield, one of that game's dual protagonists. This is the connecting tissue that Resident Evil had cultivated ever since it turned from a game into a series, where characters would return, reference encounters with each other even across games, react to and navigate the wider machinations of their shared world and generally contribute to a shared sense of mythology that enrichened the sense of emotional investment that players had put into the stories over the years. Code: Veronica is notable in how it's foundationally intertwined with the history of the series, even directly reactionary to it, but it was the first instance of said story widening its umbrella from the confines of the Midwestern backdrop of the dearly departed Raccoon City. This expanded context acts a prelude to the future direction of the series, which would turn the narrative into a veritable globetrotter, but in here the move away from American metropolitan suburbia to isolated oceanic island compounds, gothic-romantic retreats and sterile research stations gives way to relatively culturally contextless visions of economic remove and ostentatious sophistication, handily avoiding the pervasive cultural stereotyping and racism later entries in the series would be characterized by. The demonizations of Code: Veronica are by definition old money privilege and pedigree, which is as hard a contrast to where the series eventually went as could possibly be conceived.

The game's world is realized by another facet that defines Code: Veronica as an idiosyncratic inbetweener in the series's larger context: it's the first and only time the series in its original form moved away from the largely static pre-rendered backgrounds that had so firmly become synonymous with itself. The benefits of such a divergence are immediately called attention to and emphasized by the game, as every environment bolsters its atmospheric framing--an inherent allure and advantage of carefully curated presentation in games like this--with pursuing pans and tilts of the camera's view. A sense of voyeurism is often present in horror works, and here the dynamic watchfulness of the game's inner eye heightens the psychological unease in ways that hard screen transitions could not achieve. Real-time 3D has other boons to bestow on the atmospherics that are so instrumental in anchoring the series to its identity: lighting is now a factor with a sense of dynamism that previously could not be realized, as the very handling of a mobile light source casts the environments in its dancing flames and even keeps creatures like bats at bay, bridging the presentational and the practical. At the same time, the rendering of all the game's environments and objects in real-time instead of pre-created backdrops in one sense reduces the amount of minute detail possible free from processing power considerations, but the new sense of tactile physicality to Code: Veronica's world and the way the people in it interact with it creates an altogether fresh wrinkle on the experience of combing and rummaging through these puzzle-box settings.

In structural terms, the game again falls somewhere inbetween the series's holistic past, not quite reflective of any singular aspect of it but making its own extrapolations to create an impression of its own. Resident Evil built its identity on the looping exploration of interconnected megastructures that simultaneously prodded players to find out what was behind the next corner even as they dreaded the potential answer. If this level of engagement ever wore thin through familiarity and iteration, then the games could be transformed into a sort of razor-sharp, execution-emphasizing and route-planning-involving time attack challenge by those seeking a new way to engage with the compelling macroenvironmentalism. This was as interesting as it was because it was largely supported by the dominant layout design of the first two games--large multifloored labyrinths encouraging optimization of traversal and enemy engagement both, and allowing enough freedom to shake up and modify a personal approach. In Code: Veronica, the environments on their own are likely more labyrinthine and convoluted than ever, leading to a pleasing sense of discombobulation, but with the added specificity of their layouts each trek through them remains largely static and does not allow for much experimentation on part of the player. In this way, and with the relative spatial sprawl between each node of the journey, the game integrates aspects of all three preceding games into its makeup, and even as the particularities can chafe they're also the reason for the unique setpiece-heavy yet thoroughly granular balance of environmental progression and interaction the game professes.

The common parlance is "survival horror", but the realities of Resident Evil have always been truer with the latter than with the former. Outside of specific bonus modes and higher difficulty settings of a given few games, the series's emphasis on survival through resource scarcity has mostly been effectively conveyed artifice and illusion by the oppressive tension the games project and suffuse themselves with. Code: Veronica does not deviate from the precedent and regularly provides ammunition and restoratives in such droves that the entire game could comfortably be approached as a shooting gallery, instead of just the telegraphed end of RE games as is the player habit-derived custom. One of the factors that contributes to the absurd surplus of supplies is the presence of the combat knife, that often ignored and maligned starting accessory of the series. In Code: Veronica, the knife forms the backbone of any frugal explorer's tactics, as its complete overhaul from a pro player's bragging rights tool to an utter zombie disabler ensures that even in relatively unskilled hands its use dissuades one from any notions of game balance as far as the ratio of supplies to enemies goes, as the mere concept simply evaporates on the spot. This is not a bad thing, as further conservation still demands a degree of finesse and added risk in contrast to idle unloading, and changes the dynamic between player and enemy as traditionally the series has been about engaging enemies from afar. With the real-time 3D locales there's even a freshly added wrinkle that is surprising in its meticulous consideration for positioning in a game of this era: the knife will rebound and be interrupted in its slashing arc if it connects with part of the scenery, foiling the best-laid plans of aspirant zombie-slicers. These aspects among others continue the series's always-present trajectory into more action-oriented contexts even as they preserve the foundational methods of conveying them.

Code: Veronica is heavily invested in the larger-than-life personalities of its cast, and as such in addition to the returning faces, its new introductions merit examination. Chiefly, Claire is menaced throughout the game by Alfred Ashford, scion and acting patriarch of the Umbrella, Inc.-founding Ashford family, the history of whom forms most of the game's backdrop and context in the larger Resident Evil tapestry. Alfred is the one part of the game's storytelling where it falters and falls prey to lazy and offensive queer coding in villainy, with the added dimension of mixing in some good old conflations of mental illness and sadistic personality traits with queerness as either their cause or effect, into one big queerphobic caricature. This is a shame for obvious reasons, but also in light of Alfred being a ton of fun whenever he appears, acted to snooty pitch-perfection and delicious rolling of his rs, so even as one is entertained by his antics there has to come an acknowledgement of where parts of those theatrics come from and what associations they play into. The counterpart to Alfred in this regard is Steve Burnside, not so much for how he's depicted by the game, but for the audience reactions to him. Steve is, by a wide margin, one of the most universally reviled Resident Evil characters ever created, and the reasons for that are as depressing as they are transparent. With his boyish good looks; "effeminate" personal accoutrements like prominent choker, low neckline and ornate wristbands; emotional issues stemming from parental relationships and friction; and a high-pitched tone of voice complemented by an impetuous bearing, Steve carries with him a ton of queer, non-heteronormative signifiers and interacts with masculinity in ways that mainstream culture and especially video game audiences have no interest in meeting on their own terms or even allowing to exist. Thus Steve stands as the game's other queerphobic and gender-essentialist monument, but this one erected and maintained wholly by the players themselves.

Tone and thematic content was always a defining aspect of Resident Evil, right from the very beginning as it fashioned itself after B-movie suspense and espionage, aptly melding those aspects with gestures towards body horror and haunted house thrills until the concoction was so palbably its own that future derivations could pattern themselves after itself wholesale instead of referencing root influences. The affection that exists in the minds of players for the series's narratives is shaped by a sometimes pitying or embarrassed undercurrent in how they're regarded--a sensation of laughing at them rather than with them. Code: Veronica's evolution of these principles results in what I can only call an operatic farce, home to grandstanding and plotting aplenty, with an unforeseen commitment to over-the-top panache. No person in the game approaches a conversation as a casual chance of interacting with one another; every scene is full of declaiming intent, sneering at fated foes and confessions of doomed love. Resident Evil 4 is commonly credited as adjusting the series's tone from awkward and stilted earnestness to self-aware malarkey and witticisms, but in Code: Veronica the series experienced its defining statement towards a kooky camp sensibility tempered by the intertextual trappings and character interactions that were so compelling about the games in the first place. Even aspects that the series came to drag around as an eventual burden like the Wesker/Chris courtship dance charm here in their nascent vivacity, and technical leaps like the introduction of motion capture play enormously well with the giant mirths and melancholies of the characters. It's all tied together by a soundtrack operating in perfect unison with both the series's past works by Masami Ueda and others, and in relation to the tonal aspirations relevant here. Takeshi Miura plays the heartwrenching soapy drama to its utmost even as the area themes contribute to the playful morbidity of the environments while absurd paeans to military heroism underscore Chris's character in ways that his upstanding demeanor never could on its own. There's a consistency and a confidence in a tonal message and execution here, and in my mind it's the most compelling Resident Evil ever got on the merits of its narrative approach.

I think that is what Code: Veronica leaves me with: in its historical context and the series's messy development background, it's not by many definitions the "last" Resident Evil of its kind, but in many ways it stands as a kind of ultimate expression of all the ideas and themes that were pumped into the series at the time of its creation and even in the years beyond. Even as it extends its hand towards the past, it's firmly transitional in how it treats those concepts and teeters over the precipice, looking ahead. Other games would pick up its torch and carry it onward, but it's that exact betwixt existence that makes it so memorable and valuable as both an evolutionary culmination and harbinger.
 

Purple

(She/Her)
Boy, you don’t hear too much about that one. Or Zero, really.
I mean, it's hard to find a reason to bring Zero up. Everything about it is just setting things up that were already set up, in the same ways they were already set up, just with some totally pointless extra steps in there. All those S.T.A.R.S. members you find dead and are just left to infer that they were killed by whatever monster is in the area you find their corpse in? Well yes, but they were attacked by those things in this totally separate other research-lab-disguised-as-a-mansion and then they all just kinda randomly staggered over to the one we care about clutching their necks and conveniently collapsed near more of what caused their injuries. What's the history of how all this got set up? Same stuff we already established. Just... again and in a slightly different location in between.
 

Peklo

Oh! Create!
(they/them, she/her)
Zero's worth comes from another opportunity to linger in the GameCube era presentational fidelity; it's a pure art gallery for me. Neither the game's structure, mechanical concepts and especially characterization (Rebecca constantly being put down and patronized by Billy; he in turn lionized for it as some kind of minor meme on the audience end) manage to justify themselves anywhere near the predecessor's level.
 

Purple

(She/Her)
Oh if we're talking about it as a game in itself and not in relation to the rest of the series, then it's also worth mentioning that having a multi-story TRAIN decorated like an opulent mansion is just the most perfectly Umbrella thing, and the "item boxes just don't exist" experiment while just kind of a huge pain in practice DID lead to that statue hunt mode where your constantly shrinking inventory actually makes it pretty engaging.

And I guess there's also a case for it being a test bed for a couple ideas that'd really get refined in Outbreak, which I maintain is the most vastly overrated game in the series.
 

R.R. Bigman

Coolest Guy
I watched an old Super Best Friends playthrough of Zero some time ago. The train section was neat, and looked amazing. I also remember it being very brief, and the rest of the game was in a boring training facility and lab.

Speaking of labs, RE Remake has one, and it’s great! It’s atmosphere is oppressive as hell, has some cool Goldblum-Fly monsters, and is a breeze to get through on subsequent runs.
 

Purple

(She/Her)
Yeah, I can't recall a single Resident Evil game where the lab area at the end isn't just this tension releasing victory lap. They're all generalyl clean, well-lit, geometrically simple open hallways, and it's extremely clear that you're almost at the end so you don't feel as anxious about whether you've been conserving resources properly.

Which feels like just a good pacing consideration for the genre, honestly? Give people a little light at the end of the tunnel after a real bleak stretch and before the big bombastic final boss fight you kinda have to have in a videogame.
 

R.R. Bigman

Coolest Guy
I though the lab in RE2 Remake was quite difficult. Making the herbicide to kill that game’s big plant was a hassle, and the plant zombies were terrifying. It’s also where three out of five of the bosses in the game are.
 

Peklo

Oh! Create!
(they/them, she/her)
I'm not a huge RE3 purist in context of all that the remake shuffled in relation to adapting it, but probably the biggest strike against the redo was that instead of maintaining the original's grimy waste disposal facility it used as an environmental climax, they instead flattened the aesthetic from a departure from usual series norms into a retread of what had already been showcased directly before in 2's remake and its sterile and clinical Umbrella laboratory complex (which in itself in these incarnations takes more than a little from the original movie adaptation and its portrayal of the Hive). Remakes that do not have faith in the idiosyncracies of the work they're adapting don't measure well in my estimation, which is why the GameCube remake will always be regarded highly as an example of the form as it expands on the material in compelling ways while taking care to preserve the fundamentals.
 
I'm not a huge RE3 purist in context of all that the remake shuffled in relation to adapting it, but probably the biggest strike against the redo was that instead of maintaining the original's grimy waste disposal facility it used as an environmental climax, they instead flattened the aesthetic from a departure from usual series norms into a retread of what had already been showcased directly before in 2's remake and its sterile and clinical Umbrella laboratory complex (which in itself in these incarnations takes more than a little from the original movie adaptation and its portrayal of the Hive). Remakes that do not have faith in the idiosyncracies of the work they're adapting don't measure well in my estimation, which is why the GameCube remake will always be regarded highly as an example of the form as it expands on the material in compelling ways while taking care to preserve the fundamentals.

I have always liked the sterile and clinical Umbrella laboratory look, which I agree takes inspiration from the Hive.

I find that the sterile and clinical Umbrella resonates with me much more than the decaying and abandoned mansion look that comprises 90% of the Spencer Mansion. In Raccoon City and minor Umbrella locations I'm more okay with things looking grimy and run down.

But I get your point about the Remake 3 not incorporating the grimy waste disposal facility in the finale and it feeling redundant with Remake 2 and less unique than original RE3. Remake 3 as a whole did not work as well for me as Remake 2.

***
On a side note, RE2 and RE3 give me major Romero zombie vibes; which I love. Anytime there is mechanical structures (starting up generators or getting elevators running) and zombies I get that vibe. There is the boiler room / pipe room in Dawn of the Dead. Day of the Dead takes place in a military base that feels very utilitarian.
 
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I'm not a huge RE3 purist in context of all that the remake shuffled in relation to adapting it, but probably the biggest strike against the redo was that instead of maintaining the original's grimy waste disposal facility it used as an environmental climax, they instead flattened the aesthetic from a departure from usual series norms into a retread of what had already been showcased directly before in 2's remake and its sterile and clinical Umbrella laboratory complex (which in itself in these incarnations takes more than a little from the original movie adaptation and its portrayal of the Hive). Remakes that do not have faith in the idiosyncracies of the work they're adapting don't measure well in my estimation, which is why the GameCube remake will always be regarded highly as an example of the form as it expands on the material in compelling ways while taking care to preserve the fundamentals.
I love the end of re3 original. Feels really disgusting, dire. I consider that a disappointment in remake as well
 

R.R. Bigman

Coolest Guy
I completed RE Remake on Hard. It was as advertised. I had to avoid fighting most of the zombies in the first Mansion section to save ammo. For the second Mansion section, I somehow got through it without fighting a single Hunter. Not without incident, though. Those guys can kill you in one hit at full health! I did not experience that revelation on my Normal runs.

I unlocked some ludicrous new modes where all the enemies are invisible, or have explosives attached. I still have more than week until RE 8 Gold Edition drops, so maybe???
 

Purple

(She/Her)
Explosives is easy enough to deal with. It's just the one zombie and he's both pretty recognizable and easy to avoid, so it's just a little bit of extra spice and maybe a hilarious game over when you first try it.

Invisible mode is actually great though. Worst part is you have no auto-aim, but reflections of monsters are still visible and you suddenly get a richer appreciation of how many little mirrors and reflective puddles there are in the game, and how strategically they tend to be placed.

There should also be an option in there that de-links all the item boxes, so if you put something in one box, it's just in that one box, not every box, which is also less of an added challenge than it might sound at first, assuming you have a good handle on what you need where.

Such a great game.
 

R.R. Bigman

Coolest Guy
There should also be an option in there that de-links all the item boxes, so if you put something in one box, it's just in that one box, not every box, which is also less of an added challenge than it might sound at first, assuming you have a good handle on what you need where.
I beat this mode. You really, really need to have every step of the game memorized to do this without going mad. I made a special mental note to put the Magnum in the Cabin box to pick up after the underground section, and keeping the crank with me just so wouldn’t forget it exists. That’s another similarity to RE7!

Even with all the running around, I still clocked in under five hours, earning me Barry’s gun! Or a facsimile of Barry gun, most likely. Can I use this or the (if I get it) rocket launcher in the Invisible Enemy mode? That would be a great help.
 
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