Part 4: [PS Classic] The Origin of the Survival Horror Hit: Resident Evil: Director's Cut
To commemorate the release of the PlayStation Classic, PS.Blog Staff conducted an interview with various game creators for titles included in the PlayStation Classic. Among those games is Resident Evil: Director’s Cut. PS.Blog conducted an interview with original staff member Kazunori Kadoi.
The contents of the Japanese interview are translated into English below. The English translation has been written by Alex Aniel. Please note that this interview is not authorized by either PlayStation or Capcom, and should be used for reference purposes only. The original Japanese webpage can be found here. All images in this translation have been taken from the original PS.Blog.
Resident Evil 2, the famous game reborn using modern technology
The latest in the series, "Resident Evil 2," will be released in January next year. Kadoi-san, you're the one directing the game.
I'm looking after almost all content in the game. I think about what should go into the game, give orders related production and decide the direction to go in. I'm essentially doing what Mikami-san did when I was new to the company. Mikami-san used to vehemently tell all the staff members back in the day, "It's all because this is an adventure game." I find myself telling today's staff members the same thing. *laughs*
"Resident Evil 2" (remake) has largely the same story, but aside from that, the visuals, content and core base are different from the original. However, we want players to enjoy the remake with the same feelings they had when enjoying the original "Resident Evil 2." Therefore, the remake must be an adventure game like the original "Resident Evil 2." When I was a new employee, there were a lot of things I didn't understand, but now that I'm in the Director's seat, I find myself realizing and saying to myself, "I see, so this is what goes through a Director's mind."
Aside from developing an adventure game, what other points are you focusing on?
There are the item slot limitations, the need to manage resources like bullets and knives in order to be able to fight enemies and other important things like that. The games in the series from "Resident Evil 4" onward allowed for melee attacks, while enemies dropped bullets when you killed them; there were strong action elements in those titles compared to the ones that came before. However, I wanted to create something that focuses on resource management, going back to the adventure game where you are compelled to run away from danger and you experience the fear of being unable to use melee attacks.
Bullets are like MP in an RPG game, so they're strong, but once you run out, you're kind of screwed. I hope players are able to enjoy constantly thinking about whether using these important combat resources makes sense, and conducting their frantic Resident Evil search while running away from enemies.
Beyond that, the game offers free aiming absent in the original game, as well as enemies reacting different depending on where they are shot. I want to make feel as if the player were actually confronting the enemy.
The game's slogan is, "Everything recreated."
The remake of "Resident Evil" that we released in the past featured drastically improved graphics, but the game's flow and controls weren't that different from the original. For this game, we wanted to maintain the feel of the original "Resident Evil 2," but redo the map, story developments and other elements from scratch. If one plays the "Resident Evil 2" remake based off his/her knowledge of the original "Resident Evil 2," the player will find him/herself uttering, "That game has changed THIS much!"
For example, if the game was supposed to take place in a refuge shelter, then we wanted to leave evidence that there were people who sought refuge there. We ended up redoing nitty gritty details like this and putting it in the game. I really hope players think, "I don't think was in the original game, but now it sure feels like it was."
It seems like it was tough to decide what to keep and what to change.
The traps in the original "Resident Evil 2," when viewed from a modern lens, may seem too far removed from reality; if you try to draw the line in terms of realism, then maybe it would be best to take such traps out of the remake. However, these elements are part of the players’ memories, so we had to think carefully about how to change things around. The result was to include elements that maintain the feel of the original, rather than thinking about what was too outrageous about the puzzles in the original police station and then getting rid of them. We redid everything in a way in which players may think, "Well, I guess this would be possible." I hope they enjoy the things we rearranged in the remake.
The fear one feels toward the zombies is another big point in this game.
I have a particular fondness for how terrifying zombies can be. I focused on the zombies motions as they go after the player, how they are damaged and how they react depending on where they're shot. And for the players, I focused on having bite marks remain if they've been bitten. I wanted the game to have realistic elements like that.
In recent times, it isn't unusual to see zombies that can run. I personally like it better when zombies are slow. For the "Resident Evil" series in particular, I think those moments when zombies gradually come toward the player and make him/her wonder, "What should I do?!" are more important to the game's tempo than zombies merely appearing in front of you out of nowhere. "Resident Evil 2" (remake) places importance on the fear one experiences as the zombies keep coming for them no matter how many times they shoot them.