As a fan of the Resident Evil franchise, most of the games being in third-person has been a big part of what I love about them. As I wrote in my article about accessibility, while I have played plenty first-person shooters, my gaming library is not exactly stocked with a bunch of them. So when it was announced that the seventh and eighth games were going to be in first-person only, you can imagine my heart sinking after hearing the news years ago. While the first-person modes in both games presented something new, they just did not feel like past games I played – something felt a bit off.
For a while, I was hoping that Capcom would include a proper third-person mode, especially the kind used in the recent remakes including the upcoming remake of the fourth game. Well, I got my wish, as Capcom announced that a proper third-person mode is coming to Resident Evil Village. While its end reveal was a bit odd, the campaign, distinctly themed areas and bosses were a blast – like a great spooky theme park with various different ‘zones.’
I’m also glad that Capcom only waited a year to announce it, which likely means that the game’s new third-person mode was planned all along and was always going to be used to drive up intrigue for the upcoming DLC. It just feels organic and though I wish it came packaged with the game, I’m happy that we are getting this mode at all. Plus it will be really nice to see Ethan Winters from a different point of view, and it also adds a lot in terms of replayability, both from a gameplay and aesthetic view. I am excited to see how the cutscenes are altered, I am excited to see how reloading weapons and interacting with doors and other objects look as well.
When I fired up the game for the first time on my then-brand new PlayStation 5, I was taken back by how detailed everything in the village looked. Areas of Resident Evil Village’s cobblestone looked detailed, walking up to the dollhouse (which will never not be super eerie) was gulp-inducing in its hauntingly aesthetic glory, and the various traps and ambiance had me on the edge of my seat. Easy to say I really enjoyed the game the first time around. Now with third-person mode coming I am very much looking forward to re-visiting those places once more.
The new camera angle offers a fresh perspective, particularly in how different the cinematics will be, if at all, and how enemy interactions differ compared to a first-person view (remember, the entire game right down to the cinematics was from the first-person perspective, so it’s likely to feel very different). Getting picked up and stabbed by Mommy– I mean– Lady Dimitrescu from a third-person perspective offers a new way to experience the game, making it feel like we’re having these interactions for the very first time.
When the series turned first-person with Resident Evil 7 in 2017, I respected Capcom for changing things up, especially with PlayStation VR being a thing – they likely wanted people to have and share somewhat similar experiences. I know earlier I said my heart sank when I initially found out about Biohazard and Village being first-person, but within that pain also came understanding and a willingness to give this new model a chance. I did and, well, it wasn’t for me.
So with this return to the third-person, I send a big ‘thank you’ to Capcom for giving me and others who have played various versions of Resident Evil over the years what we wanted. Thank you for listening to us and our feedback. I cannot wait to get the DLC and try the classic yet the new view, as well as play the new story.