On March 22, 1996, the world was introduced to Resident Evil. A true pioneer in survival horror, the franchise has sold over 75 million copies worldwide and has spawned numerous titles that have told the story of the evil Umbrella Corporation and its insane experiments on innocent citizens. Seriously, how have these guys not been arrested? Any popular horror game owes some recognition to the game that made people yelp as zombie dogs burst through the window in Resident Evil 1.
While Resident Evil is known for its innovation, it has also been criticized for its slip from survival horror to more action with the addition of Resident 5 and 6 to the series. However, all legends experience a comeback, and earlier this year Resident Evil 7 proved that Capcom’s cash cow still knows how to dig up the scares. The game was a real return to form.
It is true that RE 7 was impressive, but a franchise with over twenty years of history is bound to make a mistake or two. Continuity errors, misspellings, unintelligent AI, or poor game design are all things that have happened within the franchise over the past two decades. Some are hilarious, others are embarrassing, and may make you go…”How in the world could they do that?” No one is perfect, and Capcom knows this better than anyone. So, here are the twenty craziest mistakes made in the Resident Evil franchise.
20. Hello Grandma!
Resident Evil 7 is arguably one of the best games of 2017. It brought Resident Evil back to its horror roots, but again the game is not without its continuity mistakes. In the game, you face the monstrous Baker family, and there is an eerie older woman that always seems to follow you around the house. Oddly enough, after defeating a certain boss in the main house, if you travel to a crawl space under the house, the grandmother will be there. There is no ramp or stairs for her to get there, so how in the world could she have made her way into the crawlspace? While Resident Evil as a franchise likes to explain important aspects of the game with science instead of supernatural means, this is the only way to explain this mistake.
19. The Moment EVERYONE Missed
In RE 7, after you beat one of the significant characters in a boss fight, there is an unfortunate sound design choice that keeps gamers from seeing one of the creepiest moments in the game. After the boss is defeated in the bottom level of the house, if the player climbs up the stairs, they can hear the sound of a door opening. This distracts the player causes them to take a quick scan around their immediate surroundings. However, they should have kept looking at the hole beneath them, because a long and spider-like hand could be seen grabbing the lantern they just left (foreshadowing the next boss fight). It makes no sense to distract the gamers from this moment, so this one had to be a major oversight by the sound designers.
18. Zombies Have Working Opposable Thumbs?
Imagine how different things would turn out on The Walking Dead if zombies (or walkers) had the intelligence to open doors. It would change the narrative and would make safe “cities” or “compounds” null and void. Well, the first Resident Evil felt that this revolutionary idea needed to be explored. In the original Resident Evil when Jill and Barry encounter a zombie, a weird sound is heard off in the distance…a door opening. Clearly, the “brain dead” zombie was intelligent enough to open doors, something that is not canon in most zombie films and video games. It is surely bizarre that no one caught this before it hit the shelves. Maybe this was a precursor to the “intelligent infected” idea for Resident Evil 4.
17. Rebecca Has Psychic Powers
For a game that depends on science, Resident Evil better start explaining some of these “supernatural” occurrences. In RE 1, a colossal snake that appears two times in the game bites Chris Redfield. His companion Rebecca goes to grab serum to save his life. Once he is awake, he asks what happens, and she tells him about the snake. However, when the event occurred, she was nowhere to be found so there was no way she would know this or know to get the serum in the first place. How would Rebecca know about this? Since she is Chris’ partner, it is convenient to have her come to the rescue, but the set up was lazily put together. Come to think of it, what was her purpose in RE 1 again?
16. You Don’t Need Guns To Fight Zombies…Right?
Let’s play pretend. You are the world’s last hope against a virus destroying the world. The United States government decides to drop you into the birthplace of the infection, but instead of making sure you have the tools you need, they leave you to your own devices. In RE 5, this happens. Chris Redfield meets Sheva to begin dealing with the virus that is starting to overrun an African town, but the weird thing about this is that they are not given any weapons by the entities who sent them. The military arrives with a vast arsenal, but Chris or Sheva could not have been spared with any weapons? The duo ends up having to hunt down their guns themselves. This does not make any sense and creates unnecessary scenes gamers don’t need.
15. Someone Forgot The Presidential Succession List
So In RE 6, Simmons, the National Security Advisor calls for a city in the US to be destroyed because of the growing number of zombies there. The only issue is who gave him the authority to do this? It would make sense for some crazy things to go down since it looks as if the world is again in chaos and disarray, but even Resident Evil has to pay attention to some traditional order. Even though the President dies in the first few moments of the game, the National Security advisor is way down the list on the Presidential succession list. Did he become President off-screen? Did the Vice President and Speaker of the House disappear? It just seems too convenient that this guy is now calling the shots.
14. Please Stop Putting Chris Redfield In Charge
Everyone understands that you have to suspend disbelief when you play games, but this mistake pushes the envelope. In life, if you consistently fail at your job, you will more than likely be shown the door. This is not true in the world of Resident Evil. Chris Redfield has received more passes than should be allowed. In all of Chris Redfield’s stints as commander, his whole team gets obliterated. They continue to put him in leadership positions. In fact, in Resident Evil 6, he is pressured to take the leadership role from one of the only surviving members of his last squad. This guy has personality because his military skills are awful. Either this is an inside joke, or someone is not noticing the cliché trope.
13. The Lost Day Of November 31st
According to Resident Evil, there is an extra day that we have all been forgetting in November. On the Gamecube version of RE 1, someone did not fact check their dates. The character, George Trevor’s diary reads that the last entry was on November 31, but there are only 30 days in the month. Resident Evil is seriously trying to keep us from starting our December Holiday stretch. All joking aside, when comparing this entry with the others on this list, this is a pretty mild one. To cover their tracks, Resident Evil could have gone sci-fi and said that this was a lost day or that George lied to protect some secret. If they are not going to turn lemons into lemonade, they have to have designers and writers with calendars on hand.
12. The Tale Of The Disappearing Weapons
There is something to be said about games that can take customizations characters have made into cutscenes. It shows that the developers went the extra mile to make the game that much more immersive. In Resident Evil 4 and 5 whichever weapons the main characters have equipped are not included in the cutscenes. They will almost always show Chris or Leon with handguns as the go-to weapon. This takes away from the reality and validity of the scene, the first time you see it, you may think the game may have taken your weapon away. Maybe this is a sign that Resident Evil has way too many cutscenes in the first place. After a while, it can feel like they are used as an annoying device to move the story along.
11. 911 Is Not In Service
Other than the Baker family’s bizarre fascination with eating people, there are some other weird happenings in RE 7. Many fans have noticed that the phones in the home are operational. Zoe is able to call Ethan from various locations on the property, and Ethan also received a call from someone in the demo. The question of the hour is why no one thought to call the police during the ordeal. It would have been more believable for the phones not to work and for Zoe to communicate with Ethan another way. Ethan even gets a reprieve when a cop voluntarily shows up to the house. He is not much help, but the developers could have made the story more realistic by having Ethan call him in the first place.
10. The Error Seen Around The World
Nothing is more embarrassing than when fans discover an easily preventable error. In 2012, Capcom released Resident Evil: Revelations for the Nintendo 3DS. However, instead of saying Revelations, the title was misspelled and actually said “Revelaitions.” The insanity of this mistake is that Nintendo of American, Nintendo Japan, ESRB, and many others approved it. No one noticed the error. The editing department was too busy to catch this misstep. It makes you wonder what other crazy mistakes have gotten right by the editing team. Representatives at Capcom have said this type of mistake will never happen again, and so far we have not seen any others on this level. It just goes to show that even major gaming studios need to bust out the spell check.
9. Got Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D Used? Tough!
When gamers purchased used versions of Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D, they found out that Capcom had not given them the ability to erase game saves. Because of this, some game retailers were not letting people trade in the title. Fans put together a theory that Capcom purposely did this to prevent people from playing someone else’s game and not experiencing the title on their own. This was a huge mistake since this problem took up additional game space. Capcom promised that this was an oversight and that this would never happen again (sound familiar?), but this was another major mistake for a 3DS title. What is going on with the Nintendo 3DS team? This does not feel like the last time we will hear of another insanely careless mistake.
8. The Burden Of Ashley
There is nothing more annoying than an unintelligent NPC character that players have to babysit. It can make a level unnecessarily challenging. Some have noted the irritation factor of Ashley in RE 4. There are missions where Leon cannot stray too far away from her, or she will die, ending the mission. Many feel the AI on Ashley is not intuitive enough and when she should be running with Leon, she is either cowering or getting in the way. This makes the mission more tedious. You have to coddle her while fighting off enemies. This is a major game design mistake. Ashley’s character could have been better suited as a minor partner where should could help with some small melee attacks that make sense for her role.
7. Sailing Upstream….
Ever been to Louisiana or the swampy Everglades of Florida? If so, you would understand why this next mistake is a little laughable. Toward the conclusion of RE 7, there is a large ship that can be spotted in the back of the family’s main house. Two things threaten the continuity of this: First, no one in the game ever mentions this. It is too large not to notice, but for some reason, it is not visible by Ethan as he explores the house in the beginning. Second, this is a swampy bayou, nothing that large would be able to move that close inland. The bodies of water in them are almost like liquid quicksand. Resident Evil needs to start incorporating some supernatural themes to explain some of this away.
6. Sucky Partner? Who Cares!
What is one of the best features about games like Overwatch or Destiny 2? You can kick inactive or troublesome players during live matches. However, Capcom keeps missing the memo on player enjoyment. In RE 6, Capcom again makes some decisions that infringe on the joy and happiness of players. While in online story mode, you cannot kick a co-op partner. If the person is awful…tough! If someone is inactive…too bad! You have to just deal with this person unless you were okay with exiting the story mode you are currently on (losing all your progress along the way) and start all over again. Each time you accept a new partner you are taking a risk. Maybe this is what the franchise was going for regarding survival horror.
5. The Hallucinations Won’t Stop!
No horror game is complete without a hearty helping of hallucinations, but the continuity has to be on point for it to make an impact on players. In RE 7, if the player chooses to help Mia, Ethan gives her the serum to cure her of the molden infection. The mold is what controls and influences the characters in the game not only to do horrible things but to also see Eveline, the evil girl/old woman who stalks you for the entirety of the game. Ha! You only thought you had to worry about Papa Baker…nope, there are scary little girls too. After Mia is cured, she enters the ship to rescue Ethan. She does have some flashbacks, but she can also still see Eveline and is influenced by her. Shouldn’t the serum have cured her of this?
4. Um…Is This Silent Hill 2
Now, let’s be clear, Silent Hill owes a lot to Resident Evil. The franchise is responsible for taking survival horror to new heights. However, Silent Hill took the genre and cranked up the notch a bit. To this day, it is praised as one of the best horror games of all time. Well, the developers of the recent entry in the Resident Evil franchised noticed this too. RE7 has been acknowledged as the franchise’s comeback kid, and it should be. However, there are some striking similarities between this game and Silent Hill 2. The game may have accidentally lifted the entire premise: husband gets a message from a presumably dead wife (in an unlikely fashion), and he goes to save her while battling horrible monsters and hallucinations. Oops!
3. Hey, Nothing Wrong With A Little Retro Fun…But Seriously?
Unless fans were totally out of the loop, Resident Evil 7 was not set in the early 90s or 80s. So it was a little weird to see old school technology used for a pivotal point in the game. The scene occurs when the producers of the new ghost hunting show are shown entering what seems to be the Baker home. For some odd reason, the footage is being recorded on a VHS tape. In fact, Ethan puts in an actual VHS tape into a VCR to watch the doomed journey of the men. A DVD would have been a lot more believable for this time since Mia uses laptops and digital cameras. This seems like a very out of place part of the game.
2. The Editing Team Is Rusty
Each language has its metaphors and meanings for words that may not always translate well to another language. Resident Evil has had to find this out the hard way. In RE 2, there are a ton of translation errors from the Japanese version to the American version that almost changes essential parts of the story. Rebecca, the character from RE 1, had a theory that dead bodies were starting to go missing because they were reanimating due to the t-virus. The original version just says the bodies were missing, which leaves out the significant detail of what was causing the bodies to go missing. This takes out one of the most initial important revelations in the game. It puts more onus on the players to read between the lines, but sometimes you need the message loud and clear.
1. Jack Has Mind Control Powers
Jack Baker is as much dangerous as he is creative. This guy walks through walls, challenges you to a chainsaw gauntlet, and dismembers parts of your body for the fun of it. However, there is one power he had that fans were not privy to. In RE 7, Jack is giving Ethan a hard way to go in the car. Many people probably did not pay attention to this on first glance, but Jack is controlling the car without having his own feet on the gas. Viewers can see Ethan’s feet down on the accelerator, but Jack is only controlling the steering wheel. Mysteriously, the car accelerates and reverses at his will. Either Jack has some mind control powers, or RE 7 forgot to address this.