Japanese horror game series and media franchise created by Capcom have defined the survival horror genre is back.
The Resident Evil series will always be considered as Capcom’s crown jewel, with the survival horror franchise making the studio a household name for gamers. With protagonists like Chris Redfield, Leon S. Kennedy, Claire Redfield, Jill Valentine, and more, the games generally have something new to experience each time.
There have been dozens of titles under the Resident Evil umbrella, but certain games are most definitely a cut above the rest. These range from the first-person experiences of recent entries to the fixed camera of the original, and the third-person, action-oriented titles that ran for some time. With Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City releasing last year, it’s worth looking at the best the source material has to offer.
Updated on October 25th, 2022, by Kevin Pantoja: The Resident Evil franchise is always growing, with new releases on the horizon on an almost annual basis. 2022 is set to see Resident Evil RE:Verse and 2023 is scheduled for a remake of the well-received Resident Evil 4. With new entries and remasters arriving, it’s the best time for longtime fans and those new to the series to look back and see which installments rank among the Resident Evil top 10 and beyond on Metacritic.
10 Resident Evil Zero (2002) – 83
The prequel to the original game fills in Rebecca Chambers’ side of the story, bringing in Billy Coen as her partner. Released years after the first entry, Zero has the benefit of enhanced graphics that give a real spooky vibe to the environment.
The only issue might be that players feel confined by the fixed camera, as it wasn’t much of a problem in the lower capability of the original games. However, the horror feel more than makes up for it, along with the “partner zapping” option that allows the use of both characters with their unique abilities.
9 Resident Evil Village (2021) – 84
This entry definitely ranks high in the most difficult Resident Evil games even though Ethan Winters has a lot more fighting prowess in his second outing. Village’s first-person camera makes the battles up close and personal, with the likes of Lady Dimitrescu and other monsters seen in their most horrifying potential.
Those who enjoyed the previous entry’s strictly horror presentation may find this one lacking, but Village does contain some of everything when it comes to action, thrills, and scary moments. It also has perhaps the most emotional story of a Resident Evil title yet with Ethan’s arc of protecting his family.
8 Resident Evil 7: Biohazard (2017) – 86
After the negative reception to Resident Evil 6, the series provided a major revamp unlike anything before. With a first-person camera, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard brought players’ nightmares to the screen, placing them firmly in Ethan Winters’ shoes as he ventured into a terrifying house to find his wife.
The game was akin to Silent Hill titles back when the series was at its peak, with danger lurking at every corner. Ethan’s lower skills meant the scares were more palpable, as scenarios were designed for players to escape by the skin of their teeth.
7 Resident Evil 2 (1998) – 89
Although its style is identical to the original, the benefit of having relatable and quality protagonists is proven in the second entry. Debuting Leon S. Kennedy and Claire Redfield, the series brought humane main characters whom players could see as audience surrogates.
It also helps that the soundtrack is jam-packed to the point where tense situations carry a real sense of thrill, while eerier moments bring on a foreboding feeling. Tie-ins with the first game also allow this one to stand out in memory, as everything about the dangers of Racoon City comes full circle.
6 Resident Evil (1996) – 91
The original is still hard to top for many future entries. Debuting in 1996, Resident Evil helped change the world when it comes to survival horror video games. Never before had a game this terrifying become so popular with the masses.
It was those scares that made it such a hit and was why it was so well received by critics. The gameplay aspects don’t hold that well due to some of the limitations of the time but in terms of storytelling, memorable frights, and iconic moments, Resident Evil is as good as it gets.
5 Resident Evil Remake (2002) – 91
Since this remake has the same outline as the first, it’s easily the preferred choice to go with. It’s noted as a highly difficult game that is unforgiving but carries a real sense of satisfaction upon completion. The upgrades to the background mean the remake brings the dangers of the mansion to their greatest potential.
It has also aged very well due to the easiness of gaming controls, despite differences in style from back then to what gamers are accustomed to today. The top-notch voice acting and character models also help in making Resident Evil a quality title in the survival horror genre.
4 Resident Evil 3: Nemesis (1999) – 91
Widely remembered for bringing forward arguably the most powerful monster in the Resident Evil series, the third major entry is notable for taking the action to bigger lengths. Players aren’t confined simply to specific locations, as Jill Valentine needs to be guided across the city to survive.
Moreover, the game brought the aspect of multiple scenarios based on players’ choices, which places them in the driver’s seat and opens up the great replay value. The Nemesis monster remains memorable for the way it mercilessly stalks Jill throughout the game, and it is now an iconic piece of the series’ history.
3 Resident Evil 2 Remake (2019) – 93
With a greater focus on the personalities of the Resident Evil protagonists, rich environments to explore, and two scenarios that intertwine, the second game’s remake is a masterclass in reimagining a classic. It brings back Leon S. Kennedy and Claire Redfield, this time with third-person control mechanics.
The remake is perfect for the way it places players back in the original’s backdrop, only with a higher level of danger that is high-octane fun. It also offers stealth-based mechanics in Sherry Birkin and Ada Wong’s playthroughs, which fully feature the horror potential that this title has.
2 Resident Evil – Code: Veronica (2000) – 94
Fans of the series were finally freed from the fixed camera angles when this entry arrived, as it features a dynamic environment. Claire and Chris Redfield were also reunited in the story, which was something fans had wanted since both siblings were constantly looking for one another in previous entries.
More than anything, it’s the game’s ability to be like something of a Hollywood blockbuster in the presentation that stands out. A fine balance is available, with Chris and Claire playable in two parts of the game, and with Claire’s scenario coming across as horror and Chris’ as an action-packed event.
1 Resident Evil 4 (2005) – 96
The impact of this game can be seen in the industry to this day, with the behind-the-shoulder perspective, cover mechanics, inventory storage system, and QTEs all making the fourth entry a game-changer that deserves to be appreciated for its groundbreaking features. Even if there isn’t a Resident Evil 4 remake as many believe, the original will always stand the test of time.
Leon S. Kennedy’s venture into Los Illuminados was a change in the story that expanded the series’ lore. Players are meant to feel in charge after finally gaining control of the camera, with boss fights being larger-than-life and awesome to behold. It’s a title that deserves respect as one of the best of all time.
- MarketingMonday, 26 February 2024, 13:38How to Harness the Power of Celebrity Endorsements
- SportsMonday, 26 February 2024, 10:37The most exhilarating Ever FIFA World Cup Comebacks
- PostsFriday, 23 February 2024, 14:01What is AI and why do businesses need it?
- PostsFriday, 23 February 2024, 13:35The Rise of Gold-Backed Cryptocurrencies: Merging Tradition with Innovation