Ever since Capcom confirmed that the Resident Evil 2 remake was in the works, fans have been excited to re-experience one of the greatest horror games. While Capcom has been more than happy to share details during E3 and San Diego Comic-Con, there was a long period of silence between the announcement in 2015.
Why was Capcom silent about this for so long? This is a look into why it took so long before details about the Resident Evil 2 remake were not made available until recently. All of the reasons given is based on speculation and expert opinion.
5. The Game was Announced Prematurely
One of the biggest mistakes Capcom made regarding the Resident Evil 2 remake was announcing the game prematurely. The game was first announced back in August 2015, before any kind of work has started. There was no screenshot, no character art no trailer and no concept art. The game was announced literally right after it was approved by the Capcom leadership.
Announcing a game prematurely is one of the biggest mistakes any studio or publisher could make. The hype train has been unleashed and now there is intense pressure for the development to release the game. This, of course, is never possible due to unforeseen circumstances that may come up such key people leaving, budget issues, or issues with the game engine.
A good example to look at is the Final Fantasy VII remake that was first announced in 2015. But due to someone internal problems, the game is now expected to be released sometime in 2020. Square Enix has admitted that the announcement was made prematurely.
This, of course, leads to . . .
4. Kill the Hype Train
Chances are; someone at Capcom’s marketing department just realized the mistake that was made. So what should any company do when announcing a project too early? The solution was simple, kill the hype train (kill it with fire). By borrowing a page for Bethesda’s playbook, Capcom remained silent regarding Resident Evil 2‘s development and refusing to confirm or deny any rumors that came up.
Fans may have been put in a state of worry during these silent years but it was necessary to kill the hype train. This allowed the development team to properly work on the game while also keeping interest in the project alive without unrealistically raising everyone’s expectations.
3. Too Many Retcon and Plot Holes to Fix
With the hype train killed, the development team had another problem – how to fix all the retcon and plot holes. At the time of its release, the game looked flawless but plot holes began to emerge as the series progressed.
It all started with Resident Evil 3: Nemesis as it began 24 hours before the events of Resident Evil 2 with the city being overrun by zombies and the US Military setting up a quarantine (later games would also confirm this). This makes players ask how did Leon and Claire enter Raccoon City without any problems. Spin-off titles like Outbreak and the computer animated horror films would add more details which only adds to the inconsistency.
The biggest challenge that Capcom will have with remaking Resident Evil 2 is re-writing the story so most of the major plot holes are cleaned up while also taking the expanding lore into account.
2. Finding a Balanced Gameplay
The series has undergone numerous changes regarding its gameplay mechanics since 1998. Resident Evil 4 was a radical departure from its predecessor while Resident Evil 7 perfected the first-person horror game and became the measuring stick for all Virtual Reality titles to follow. So much has changed that it’s clear that Resident Evil 2 needs a different gameplay mechanic.
This present a new problem as fans of the original would be furious if the gameplay mechanics are radically changed. Hence; Capcom had to find a gameplay mechanic that fans of the original will like while also being welcoming to new fans of the series. Based on the gameplay videos presented at E3 and Comic-Con, it looks like the remake has the right balance regarding the gameplay.
1. Pressure From Fans
Resident Evil 2 has been hailed as the best entry in the series and one of the best games for the PlayStation. This is a remake that fans have been asking for ever since Resident Evil was remade for the GameCube back in 2002. Every time a new title or a spin-off entry has been announced, fans have always asked about remaking RE2. When Resident Evil 6 and Umbrella Corps bombed, fans asked why couldn’t resources be used for a possible RE2 remake.
The point is screwing up one of the most highly requested remakes is not an option for Capcom. That means they need to make a game that is true to the original while also modernized in terms of gameplay while also having fixed all the plot holes. Fans have wanted this game for so long and failing to deliver could be detrimental to the series.
In the end, Capcom did the right thing by killing the hype train after its premature announcement. This allowed them to freedom to work on the game without and out of control hype train putting more pressure than they already had.
Do you think Capcom made the right choice by keeping silent about Resident Evil 2 before they were ready for launch? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.