Biohazard/Resident Evil

   Capcom has never been a company to sit and let a good business opportunity pass it by, and the Resident Evil/Biohazard series has been no exception. Through a series of sequels and ports, Resident Evil has been spread over no less than five console systems, one handheld, and the PC. Through all of these ports, one thing remained: all of the games would hit with a minimum of added features, and none would truly take advantage of the new system that it was being ported to. However, all of this has changed; Capcom has stated that they would be making the series a Nintendo GameCube exclusive, and that the first title released would be not a port, but a total remake of the first game.

Not much of a contest, is it?
Chris vs. the floor.

   The most obvious thing about the GameCube version of Resident Evil is the entire atmosphere. While the original tried its best to be scary, it had to rely on zombies jumping out of shadows scare tactics, mainly due to the overall campiness that the game possessed. Although this works to a certain extent, it lacked the pure horror that other games possess. Luckily, Capcom spotted this when they sat down to remake it, and gave the game's look an overhaul. Gone are the plasticky environs and the pixelated figures, replaced with a beautifully dilapidated house and high-polygon characters. If the screenshots that Capcom has released are any indication, the house finally does look like it is an abandoned house filled with zombies; the fully-rendered backgrounds are full of detailed textures, wallpaper peeling off the walls, and ominous shadows. The amount of light in the room also seems to have been paid careful attention to, with rooms being lit only by a swath of moonlight in some cases, only adding to the atmosphere of the game.

   Of course, the story should be familiar to anyone that has played the first game, or even any of the games in the Resident Evil series. Strange happenings are occurring in an abandoned house, and one half of the Raccoon City police department's special team, S.T.A.R.S., is sent to investigate. When contact is lost from that team, the rest of the unit is sent, and the horror begins there. While Capcom has hinted that the story will be broadened, no firm details have been confirmed. Keeping in mind that the original was not known for its deep and thoughtful story, the plot should finally fit the feel of the rest of the game.

How... exciting.
It's a... typewriter.

   As was the case with the plot, Capcom has yet to reveal details about the voice acting. The original PlayStation version was known for its cheesy dialogue and slightly off-kilter translation, but given the updated look that the game is recieving, it would make sense to update the dialogue to match. It can also be assumed that the sound effects will recieve an overhaul to match the new environment, though again, nothing has firm has been revealed.

   Though one remade title may not be enough to sell someone on a new system, Capcom seems to definitely have the right idea going with the overhaul of Resident Evil 1. And with not only the remake of the first game, but also ports of the next three, as well as Resident Evil 0 and Resident Evil 4, fans of the series will find lots to look forward to, and those who passed on the original PSX release may finally find the original game worth a shot.

Preview by J.T.Kauffman, GIA
Resident Evil
Developer Capcom / Flagship
Publisher Capcom
Genre Adventure
Medium Disc (2)
Platform GameCube
Release Date  03.22.02
Capcom confirms Biohazard remake release information
3 crimson head screenshots
North American box art