Capcom had its E3 press conference on June 13, and as had been rumored prior to the event, the company revealed the latest entry in its long-running Resident Evil series, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard.
Though it bears the same name, this latest Resident Evil is nothing like its predecessors. Whereas the original entries in the series featured a survival-horror theme and the latter parts were third-person shooters, Resident Evil 7 goes in an entirely new direction by becoming a first-person game. This marks the second time the series has undergone a reboot, so naturally, some fans were a little apprehensive about the change. Fortunately, Capcom had a trick up its sleeve to placate any naysayers: a playable demo called Resident Evil 7: Beginning Hour.
To put it simply, the demo is creepy; far more than the previous entries in the series. There's something to be said about traversing just a few rooms of an abandoned farmhouse in the first person — the narrow POV, lighting and other features make for a unique experience that has never before been seen in a Resident Evil game.
If the demo is at all indicative of what fans can expect from the full game in January, then we're all in for quite a treat. However, Resident Evil 7: Beginning Hour doesn't just mark the beginning of the new game, it's truly a game of its own. The demo is short, but there is plenty hidden away within the few rooms. Here is some of what have been discovered so far.
Escape Ending – Find the bolt cutter, find the tape, find the key and then "leave" the house.
Phone Call #1 – Find the fuse, go up the fuse-driven stairs in the attic, and then answer the phone.
Phone Call #2 – Do all the steps in the Escape Ending, but instead of trying to leave the house, do all the steps to get the phone call ending. The phone will ring as per usual, but the conversation will be different.
Phone Call #3 – Ignore everything and rush to get the fuse, then head upstairs without the mannequins turning around to look at you. The phone will ring once more, but you'll get an entirely new message this time around.
Ax – During the VHS section of the demo, there's a lock pick hidden between the microwave and wall in the kitchen that's used to unlock a drawer on the opposite side of the room. Return to the normal section of the game and open the drawer to find an ax inside. Great, right? Wrong. There are only a few destructibles that it can be used on, and interestingly, the majority of the mannequins can't be damaged.
Ghost Girl – There's a ghost that appears several times throughout the VHS portion of the demo. She always appears outside when you and the other two are trying to enter the farmhouse and in the hallway after Andre disappears. She also can appear randomly in three places: up the stairs, in the doll room and when you go downstairs.
Piano – Try playing the piano — you can't. There's no culture in this house.
Photo – Turning over the photo near the phone reveals a cryptic message that reads, "Are they watching us from that helicopter?"
Trapped – It's possible to lock yourself out of the "Escape Ending" by stopping the VHS recording through the pause menu. The demo will proceed as usual, but the key won't be in its usual spot.
That's all the secrets/endings for now, but it's more than likely that there are more hidden away. While this is cool in and of itself, the presence of multiple routes/endings in particular has potential ramifications for the main game. Will Resident Evil 7: Biohazard have multiple routes, or is this feature unique to the demo? Either way, if the demo is anything to go by, then Resident Evil 7: Biohazard will mark a much-needed new direction for the series.