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The Resident Evil game franchise has been a long standing one. It has gone from initial pure zombie horror game to the more recent installments which have focused more on action. For many, the franchise lost its path and with Resident Evil 7’s announcement, has restored hope in fans of the franchise (us included). Many debate whether Resident Evil 7’s first-person perspective takes too much inspiration from Outlast along with an atmosphere that mocks that of the cancelled demo of P.T. (except without the changing hallways). Each person will have their own interpretation of what Resident Evil final presentation will be, however, first-person perspective in horror is not a novel idea but its a refreshing one for Resident Evil 7: Biohazard to take, especially when it wants to maximize its horror aspect for those playing in virtual reality.
We have already shared our impressions of The Beginning Hour briefly in the E3 Conference Playstation recap. The first version was flat-out fear-inducing dread. The subtle creepy atmospheric sounds set an unsettling feeling as we woke up as Clancy Javis (not the main protagonist) on the floor of a dark living room and then warped into a tape of how he got there as he (we) relive the horrors. There is definitely something here that meshes clever puzzles with a fantastic horror environment that works. Nothing screams horror like an abandoned house while not knowing who is hunting you down or for what reason. The first version left everyone with one question: What is the purpose of the dummy finger? You can’t fault Capcom for not doing a stellar job at getting everyone to collectively search every square of the game over and over again to try to find its purpose until they shared that it wasn’t available.
Last week, we finally got the Twilight version update. “Update” is the key word here so it is still The Beginning Hour but with more content. That mind-boggling question though is finally answered. Kind of. We gave this version two playthroughs to see if there was differences to the original endings. You will find the second ending after the first playthrough is done.
So what’s new? There is an additional section added and the dummy finger is given more weight. For those who have played the teaser, you know about the intriguing phone call. Now that message has changed and it’s something rather cryptic. Also, there is a bit more detail in this playthrough, particularly with one of the doors, which may be concealing what sounds like zombie-like creatures or just a thing we should avoid in general. To say the least, the changes have piqued our curiosity. The feeling of dread after so many months is still as effective as the first time we played. That part remains.
However, was this worth an update? In our opinion, it provides too little and is rather disappointing. It is a tease and a half simply because it gives us half the equation and taunts us with “the end is near”, probably hinting that there may be another update to round-up this version. Resident Evil 7: Biohazard releases in January 2017 and we can only assume this was a call to keep the game in everyone’s attention. That first demo teaser was downloaded over 2 million times so there’s good cause to keep players interested. This update felt a little like that: another way to make sure the we don’t forget about Resident Evil 7, especially with so many big games coming out with demos and betas and upcoming releases.
While the Twilight version doesn’t seem to provide too much more than before, it does prove that Resident Evil 7 has absolutely nailed down an effective formula. Its atmosphere is is top notch regardless of how many times played. We still stop in our steps with creaks and bumps and bangs that happen around the derelict house and still are attentive to all the little details in hoping to discover more and solve puzzles. It does provide quite a bit of horror thrill that the franchise has lacked and for that, we are properly happy and pretty excited about what else will come, whether it is another update to the demo or the full game release.