Resident Evil 8: Maiden

Yesterday was a big day for Resident Evil Village information. A new trailer was released with our new vampire overlords front and center. The internet has been set on fire by the 8 foot tall lead vampire. And it’s not just the fire causing everyone to be thirsty for our new Queen. I hope that the vampires can pack the same crazy punch as the family from RE7. The game also finally has a release date of May 7th 2021.

As for the direct itself, the trailer was short and mostly showcased the vampire ladies. Including our lead standing up (and up and up) and confirming her ties to the family from RE7. After that, any momentum was immediately killed by talks of various game editions, preorder bonuses, and Chris Redfield statues. It was also further killed by the confirmation of crafting. And the announcement that it was coming to the previous console generation as well which usually means a death of details that only current generation can show off. They showed minimal gameplay, mostly combat centric, and then announced a demo, named Resident Evil Maiden, was out now.

I immediately turned off the direct to download the demo because the direct was perhaps the first digital presentation that’s ever turned me off from a game. I know I still want and like Resisent Evil so I decided to just try it myself.

The demo is short but sweet. You start in a dungeon and find notes, usable items, and puzzles along the way. There’s also context sensitive moments where you enter an area and have to pause to wait as you hear someone walking along the hallway or glimpse the shadow of something. From the dungeon you enter a Rococo decked out mansion that tells the tale of a life of extravagance. You solve another puzzle, dodge a vampire, and then you meet your new mother as the 8 foot tall vampire beauty steps out and sinks her claws into you. Literally.

The interesting thing about the demo was the showcase of how puzzles work. Not only was it all about finding item a and inserting it into door b, but you had to further interact with the found items to change them for use with puzzles. There’s plenty to explore in the house, although compared to RE7’s demo, this one feels so short in comparison. It barely gets going before it’s over. It’s a great showcase of what is to come. The atmosphere is top notch and the mansion is beautiful.

I had two concerns as the demo ended. One is that through the demo, you find a jaw necklace, and as soon as the demo is over you’re advertised that you can buy the jaw necklace yourself. I didn’t take in if it was an in game item or a real item you can purchase to wear. Perhaps eventually both. Just more pushy advertising. The other I feel will be ironed out in time. The demo is based on an early build, of course, so I give it a lot of leeway. The concern I have with the game being for both last and current gen is that there will be downgrades to the PS5/XBS versions. In the Rococo rooms, if you get close to the walls, you see the ornate decoration becomes EXTREMELY pixelated. It’s not something you notice from afar, but up close it’s distractingly bad. Hopefully it’s just a sign of the early build and not of things to come.

Over all it’s a strong showcase of what to expect from this game. And, despite a few concerns, the mansion looks absolutely stunning. It’s a visual treat with chandeliers and the detail of even rugs overlapping in the hallway. I’m sure I’ll find even more details with more play throughs of the demo.

There’s so much to unpack with all the trailers we’ve seen so far, and even with this demo we’ve seen a fraction of what the game will offer. I’m extremely excited, grabs for my money not withstanding. I had a really fun time with the first game in this style and I can’t wait for a second outing. I’m excited to see what they do with the theme of vampires and how the village plays into this game. Here’s hoping May brings us another title in the streak of good games Resident Evil has been bringing us as of late!

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