Resident Evil 6 Interview: Can Capcom Inject New Life Into The Undead?

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Resident Evil 6 Interview: Can Capcom Inject New Life Into The Undead?


It’s a big week for gaming. The release of a new mainline Resident Evil game is one of those events where gamers the world over prepare to bunk off school/work (PS Blog can condone neither action!) and devote their every waking hour to the noble pursuit of mindless zombie slaughter.

The sequel to 2009’s Africa-set Resident Evil 5 is an absolute beast of a game, offering one of the largest single player campaigns in recent memory. Ahead of its global release today we caught up with executive producer Kobayashi-san, director Sasaki-san and producer Hirabayashi-san in Tokyo, to find out how Capcom went about creating such a mammoth title.

What makes Resident Evil 6 stand out from its predecessors?

Sasaki: I think it’s the human drama that we really wanted to convey. The script is just so packed with stuff. Trying to blend everything from the script with the game design and make that come together was really a challenge. What we tried while writing the script was to incorporate the level design and the design of the game itself so they blended seamlessly together. That was the toughest part.

At the beginning of development, do you start out with a story, or do ideas for gameplay and set pieces come first?

Sasaki: I try and get a bunch of different situations in my mind – things that I want to see happening in the game – and they’re usually not connected at all. It’s independent of any story at that stage. For example, with this game when we started, the image I had in my mind was the one of Chris and Leon pointing their guns at each other. That was a cool thing that I wanted to see, but I hadn’t even thought about where the story would be at that point. I just thought that’s a cool thing I wanted in the game – how do we make that happen? How can we make a really cool story around that, and add horror elements and make it work?

The Resident Evil series is famous for its hammy dialogue, catchphrases and visual memes. Do you consciously try and work those sorts of things into the script?

Sasaki: We are aware of those things but that doesn’t mean we go out of our way to create those situations. When we’re making the story we try to come up with lines that reflect the situation that is happening in the story. Everything has to match the story. I personally have lines which I’m a fan of – and the fans have their favourite lines as well – but we don’t say to ourselves “let’s put this line in the script and everyone will like it and it will become a meme”. That’s not something we try to do; I think it’s something that’s born out of people’s experience with the game.


Resident Evil 6 is an enormous game – are you worried that some players won’t have the stamina to make it all the way to the end?

Sasaki: Yes, just a little worried about that. But because of that we developed this new service that ties into Resident Evil 6 called REnet. We hope this service will really motivate people to keep playing the game. It’s for you and your friends – it will help keep all of you conneted and looking forward to clearing the game.

There are lots of different aspects that will allow that. One of the basic elements is you’re going to be able to check in on your friends’ progress and see how they’re progressing. Conversely they’ll do the same with you, so it will be a challenge for both of you to see how far you can get, and see who is doing better. There are a lot of ways you can compare your progress with that of your friends. It’s compatible with Twitter and Facebook so you can get push notifications from friends. It should spur people to continue playing and make it to the end.

Resident Evil 5 saw some great Move support. Do you have plans to offer anything similar with its sequel?

Right now, we don’t have plans for that.

And can you tell us any more about your plans for post-launch support?

Sasaki: We can’t talk about the DLC we are preparing for the game, but in the near future we will be making an announcement about additional content for Resident Evil 6. But the main portion of the game is so loaded with stuff that it should take people a long time to get through this game before they are even ready for DLC.

I know the PlayStation community would love to see Resident Evil come to PS Vita. Any plans you can discuss?

Sasaki: First of all I’m glad there is a clamouring for something like that. That’s something we will have to look at. If there are enough people clamouring for Resident Evil on Vita that’s definitely something we’ll have to do.


The Resident Evil fanbase is a particular passionate one and isn’t afraid to voice its concerns when it doesn’t approve of the direction you take with a game. Is it frustrating trying to keep them happy?

Kobayashi: The way I always think of it is that if Resident Evil represents a child, then the fans and us as creators are the two parents. The resulting games are like the children that are born between both of us. And just like real parents, you’re not always going to agree on what is best for raising that child.

Now, we do always have our ear to the ground and listen to what the fans are saying and we try to take that into account when we’re making the game. But it’s our job to create a new gaming experience and to offer them something that’s fresh and challenging. We want to make sure that what we do pleases them but the initial reaction might not always be positive. We do listen to the fans but we can’t be beholden to them at every turn or I don’t think we’ll ever make progress in terms of the series’ development.

The zombie genre is getting increasingly crowded these days. Do you think there’s still room for innovation?

Hirabayashi: I still think there is room for innovation with the zombie genre. We have to think about what we do next, but at the core of it the zombie element is almost like its own genre now. There are so many things you can do with them. For us, the challenge for the next Resident Evil outing will be sitting down together and thinking what can we do that we haven’t done before.

After so many years working on RE6, doesn’t the thought of getting started on the next game fill you with horror?!

Hirabayashi: If there are any discussions about furthering the series, yes, the first feeling I would have would be one of fear! But right now we’re so far from that stage – everything is focussed on Resident Evil 6.

The Resident Evil 6 team

Executive producer Kobayashi-san, director Sasaki-san and producer Hirabayashi-san

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  • 2 bad the game got bad reviews.. i am still getting my copy in a few days tho.

  • Quote: ” If there are enough people clamouring for Resident Evil on Vita that’s definitely something we’ll have to do.”

    Clamouring here… Loudly!

  • I thought the Demo was great & still has that fear/Claustrophobic factor!

    I’ll still wait for a price drop though, as I have too many Blu Ray Movies & Games on preorder as it is!

  • I’m in love with this game, it’s like the Japanese equivalent of Uncharted. Mouthwatering graphics, great controlls, awesome voicework, AAA all the way! I only started loving RE since the 4th, whereas a lot of people think it has gotten too much of an action series since then. I think people blame the death of the survival horror genre too much on this series in particular. When I think of survival horror, I think of bad camera angles, horrible controlls and a pacing that puts me to sleep, so I’m very glad with how the series turned out now. It still has that horror atmosphere but with a much more narrative focused pacing and some of the best controlls I’ve seen in a Japanese game so far. I absolutely loved the 5th one and this one has done it for me again. This game is so beautiful on my 52 inch Bravia that I literally went through the game at a stepping pace, just to glare at all the beauty around me.
    Keep up the great work Capcom, totally loving it! And yes, Vita RE too please :p We were promised one on PSP that never happened either :p

  • Going by the reviews, i’d say no.

  • I honestly would prefer if Capcom left Resident Evil and moved to something new. I haven’t enjoyed an RE game since 4, and I’m not happy with where the series has gone.

    I hope to see more good new stuff like Dragon’s Dogma. Or if they want to stick to older franchises, then return Breath of Fire or Maximo. I will gladly buy Okami HD when it comes out. I just feel like Resident Evil has had its day and now its time to let it rest.

  • If you’re easily scared, then it still has that fear/claustrophobic feeling, but it doesn’t look as scary as it once did. I also think co-op mode takes the fear factor away from the game as well. And I’m sure that I saw zombies with guns and rocket launchers, it looks like they’ve gone all out for action and took away the shocks and surprises it was famous for in the original trilogy. Giant monsters and big explosions? Nah.

    I really hope they decide to do a reboot eventualy. I love the Resi franchise of old. Just not this one.

  • After the reviews and some player reception,no.I knew I was skipping after the E3 showing,I always find I can decide if I’m buying after a few minutes of gameplay.

    I’ve written this before and still think it’s true.In a interview in the res 4 edition of NGC,they interviewed Mikami at a press party at the games Cube launch.
    One answer stuck with me,it was a question about how they settled on the final design,and it’s future.Mikami said he wasn’t convinced that they were doing the best for series in the long run.He couldn’t see the potential for sequels because people would get bored of it,and 4 should be a stop gap giving Capcom the time to really look at the series and evolve it.I think he was spot on,5 was at best ok.6 is the first I wont of played,and unless it’s on + in a years time I wont play.

    I personally think REmake is the highlight of the series,I’d like more traditional RE games.The free + versions hold up well,they can obviously refine them and test ne control methods,RTS type controls could work

  • I’d like a survival horror game instead of another Call of Duty/Gears of war clone. Too many action games these days. Resident Evil needs to get back to it’s roots without all the martial arts moves and action set pieces. The first half of Lost in Nightmares shows they Capcom can still deliver that. I’d just like to see a full 12-15 hours experiance with that darker more intense approach without all the over the top action.

  • i no like is game…long life is rpg games long life is meeeeeeeeee

  • I’ve played the demo and to answer the title question, no. People will buy this tripe and I don’t doubt people will enjoy it but for this game is not only a bad Resi game, its a bad shooter.

    If this were a new IP it would be getting terrible scores but cos its Resi and Capcom its getting some high scores, mainly from magazines/websites who rely on exclusive previews that Capcom could stop if they don’t take too kindly to bad scores.

    From what I’ve seen, played and read this does not look good for the future of Resi or Capcom, in the long run anyway.

  • @dogwalker4000

    Kevin Van Ord at GameSpot reviewed it quite harshly and gave it a 4.5. Likewise, Jim Sterling at Destructoid gave it 3.0.

    Some hate it, some like bits and pieces of it. But every reviewer is different and has their own tastes and opinions of things.

    Personally, I’m avoiding RE6 until the day I find myself extremely bored.

  • Well worth a return flight to Japan and a 5 star hotel.

  • Talking about the undead, I assume the blogs complete blank of the Walking Dead Ep.4 preview means Europe can expect another delay?

  • Voodoo341, Walking Dead episodes are released every two months, not every month.

  • Great interview, Fred. Thanks! You had some good questions in there and got some interresting answers.
    There are a lot of awesome games comming out this and the next month and RE6 is not 1 of them.
    I still have a bad tast in my mouth and wallet from RE5 so their next game should do everything right and judging from the demo and the many reviews I’ve read it didn’t.

  • @blendercat27

    I read Jim Sterling’s review, I find he is probably one of the most brutally honest reviewers around, his review was the final nail in the already buried coffin for me as regards Resi 6.

  • @ stonesthrow, post4.
    Have to say you just described my outlook to RE, i too 1st got seriously into this after 4, i had tried 1to3 on ps1, but never really took to them, But, after growing weary of war games on my ps2, and watching actual reallife documentaries about the same genre, i Had to look for something similar, but different, ie fantasy like, zombies, or las plagas victims fitted that ‘need’ perfectly, so much so that after playing it to death, the Only move left was to buy 1st ps3, and RE5, sure i ‘feel’ for the original fans, but personally,(like you), i love 4,5, and allready know 6 will be same.

  • I really can’t believe how bad Resident Evil is now. Over the years I have probably completed Resident Evil 1,2,3 hundreds of times. I am going threw them again on the Vita.

    Resident Evil Outbreak series was the last good Resident Evil games imo. You guys really should go off and make Resident Evil Outbreak File 3 ( with the original gameplay and camera). Or do a HD make over of Outbreak 1 and 2 and bring the online back.

    I have played all the resident evil titles from Resident Evil to Gun Survivor to Dead Aim. I loved them all but since 4 I have really started to dislike the series. 4 was ok but was was worse but it was okish. 6 is just a waste of time. Its like Capcom has looked at how well Gears of War and Call Of Duty have done and said you know what screw it. Kids like people shooting each other and things exploding lets turn Resident Evil into a 3rd Person shooter. For our fans who like our old Resident Evil games lets throw a few zombies in there to keep them happy.

  • Can i ask if someone could be kind enough to answer, or direct me to one concerning my problem with the psn vers of RE6, i kept bieng told i didnt own it, and finally found out there may be a problem with the patch, sure enough after my last download i didn’t instal the patch, and was able to play.. But seeing no mention of it anywhere here as me thinking ‘is it the patch, or am i now in the unlucky club with others,’ asked Fred for info on weekly round up, but he never answered, please does anyone else know of this problem.

  • no
    why = no monsterhunter on ps3 / vita
    = no res no dmc

  • also , dead island more fune also beter online whith friends

  • just read the interview with the three guys responsible for ‘choosing what school our child will attend’, have to say it was (yet another)a good ps blog interview, and am really glad that a, this game will be a long one, b, the introduction of, well theres nothing i would like to do more right now than fire up RE6, only managed 10 minutes so far, but my bed is calling me, been a very long night and a hard day, so have to grab a hour (or three), am keeping my fingers crossed that someone will be able to shed some light on my (possible) patch problem, re post20. when i check back l8r, have a nice evening all.

  • From what I’ve played, Resi 6 is pretty terrible. Like the most generic of third person shooters but with a truly appalling control system and tedious game structure. It’s really a new low for the franchise and Capcom in general if this is the best result a 600 strong dev team could create.

    “If there are enough people clamouring for Resident Evil on Vita that’s definitely something we’ll have to do.”

    Like you definitely did Resident Evil Portable on PSP you mean? Though to be fair, I hear a lot of 3DS owners did actually enjoy the game. Shame the audience you originally announced it for never got to play it.

  • I want a Resident Evil for PSVita but not like resident EVil 6,i didn’t like it at all.I want a true resident Evil,a HORROR game.At least a similar to Resident Evil Revelations!

  • i think ppl are being too hash my god you not true resident evil fans-base, if you hate it that much example it like if me/you support you football team but you support the other team, FF suffer the same fate & castlevania had a reboot but everyone like them after a while even Me.

    so ppl dont find falling down on a glass panel floor where the zombies look children looking up not scary enough dark corridors, a shadow to follow etc.

    as for ppl complain oh no infinite ammo spoils it no survival in that but you can knock it to off “not allow”

    i have to start over though after i read the manual i need to know what “playing for fun” “playing for medals” etc mean.

    because im confuse does it mean the playthough be different.

  • Clamouring here for a Vita version too.

    In regards to Resident Evil 6, I personally enjoyed the demo, and will be picking up the full game soon.

  • I’ll be getting this game but I’m not excited for it and I’m not in a rush to get it. I think I will wait until they release all of the dlc and put it all on one disc like the gold edition of Resident Evil 5.

  • People really shouldn’t listen to reviewers for this game, I don’t know why they decided to rate this so low (maybe they didn’t get payed off enough) But it’s a pretty decent game, sure there’s a few problems now and then but it’s definitely a solid 7!

  • For the ones who bought the digital version there a fault with it after downloading the day 1 patch 1.01, you are advise from capcom to delete the game off the HDD & reinstall it again there a imminent patch fixed comming.

    I be starting the game from the beginning playing with medals on whatever that means as the manual didn’t say about it it just told me to go a site for manuals that is 1 think i HATE about this game the only Hate, but the stats tracking RE.Net site is a neat idea. :)

  • *thing not think.

  • @18 Yeah most people want the old ones back.. I just don’t see them going back to the horrible fixed camera’s and controlls of old.. It might have created more tension but on a technical level the mechanics and controlls were way outdated, even back then. It’s still survival, just more like survival-action. You still have to manage your items and get them to last untill the end of the experience. The gameplay is just much more dynamic with these controlls, with a better pacing and narrative feel imo. I can’t believe that people think this has bad controlls, did they even play the old ones? Oh well, to each his own huh?

  • @26 The “playing for fun”, “serious players only”, “playing for medals” type of thing only goes for the Mercenary’s mode, where you and your partner have to take out as many baddies as possible within the alotted time. Don’t know if that’s the case for the Agents mode too, didn’t play that one yet. But it has nothing to do with the campaign atleast..

  • @ Stonesthrow
    I really want to play the older ones, i know there good but every time i start i can’t play for more than a hour, i am not ps1 classics biggest fan, truth is i hate them.. i can just play code veronica/x.. not even sure of it’s name but i think you know the one.. again i doubt theres nothing more i would like to see than a polished up collection of Every RE game, surely even capcom will know they’d make a profit.. then maybe a new 1to3 type game, allthough i believe it would be challanging for any dev to make somwthing like that.
    Still i really hope a game does make it out, one day.

  • @ skookie.
    Thanks for the info. But is it only the psn vers that it affects, or are discs the same, ?.. i had to download it THREE times before i got to play it.. i mean 10GB a time, as you may imagine i wasn’t very pleased. But soon forgot that when i had a quick 10 minutes play.. lol.
    But m8, do you know what i won’t forget, Freds decision to blank my question i asked on his weekly blog.. But he answered a post right below it, that another user Allready answered.. check it out if you get a spare minute.. anyway m8 i could use some more help.. how or where can i read the games manual, and IS anyone playing this online yet ?.. am to wary of trying, in case it tells me i don’t own it Again.. thnx again fella.. seriously, i mean i try to help everyone out, but few seem to want to help me.

  • @chrisandsheva

    it only effect PSN version of RE6 the psychical copies are not effected i got DEAD cheap for 37 quid when i went shopping for food. :)

    what i dont understand why a thin manual, plus i thought they could do the intro better like 5 did when chris talks about the new threat but i’m nip picking im paseed the opener i like what i see so far anyhow i bought it for the continueing of the story as RE series do follow the story unlike FF each 1 is a different story.

    only 3 FF did continue the story:

    FF7 with it’s spin-offs

    FF10 with a sequel FF10-2

    & FF13 with FF13-2 & that follow sequel FF13-lighting returns.

    to be frank i didn’t 1st liked ff13 but it grow on me.

  • ah got it, so i have made a Bad mistake buying off psn, i wouldn’t mind either but i could of bought it 10 minutes away at a midnight, for less money And been playing it for a hour or so Before going to bed.. instead i end up sitting up All night, 8.00am i got it to work (offline) Then i Had to go out and earn my money… And to top it off, the magnificent Fred totally blanked, well dissed is more appropriate, in the weekly round up.. i asked him, very politely to Help me, and, well i hope you/Everyone goes and see themselves.. i now officially ….. ie don’t like scee.

  • Resi 6 has taken an unfair battering, but I personally am enjoying it. My main issue is the fiddly inventory system, which would benefit greatly from cross-controller compatibility. Imagine combining items on Vita’s screen, and using it to select weapons with an on-screen inventory. Also swiping the back of the Vita to dive backwards; up to slide when running… it would also make the quick time events more fun, e.g. using the Vita like a sixaxis controller. Unless you want us to stick a glowing orb on it. New Resi was built for these kinds of experiences. I hope someone out there is paying attention. Something like this could save both Resi and Vita.

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