When you think about the things that scare you, do you think about why they do? What draws you in, grabs you by the spine and sends those tingles of anticipation and anxiety through your system? Capcom has made it a habit to find a balance within the supernatural, the science and the reality of fear just to bring you the Resident Evil series.
Originating in 1996, the Resident Evil series started with a special task force being given the duty of investigating the strange happenings of Raccoon City. That was before eventually getting trapped in a mansion riddled with creatures of bio-terrorism, or at least, what we thought that was. Now, the spookiness of this was played up because, let’s face it, we just didn’t have to worry as much about these types of warfare back in the 90’s. We were young, adorable and we wanted to play games, right? However, Capcom realized the tiny grain of truth and the reality in their story would be that kernel that people would hold onto for years to come. The creators of Resident Evil understood that we fear what we do not know, what we cannot explain. Released right before the larger boom of information known as the Internet, there was a fear of cloning, DNA tampering and more. What if these things went wrong? Well, Capcom let you know their take on it and they gave us a series of fear based in scientific quasi-reality and we ate it with a spoon. (Not literally. Ew.)
We’ve come a long way since then and Resident Evil has taken on even more tampering with DNA, weaponizing these kinds of chemicals to turn hapless citizens into mindless hoards and even a social commentary on how religion could use these things to turn cults into armies. If you thought Capcom wasn’t ready to dive into some real entertainment-based fear-mongering in between the lines, you’d be wrong. Remember, people fear the things they cannot control and what is more terrifying than shadow corporations of scientists ready to change your DNA around without your knowledge?
Are we dealing with homegrown fear this time around? Will Resident Evil become a fear budding up from our core and extending its claws into something far more personal than it has ever been? If the demo is any indication, we’re in for something that challenges the fright of the past and drags us kicking and screaming into the terror of the future.