It’s common knowledge that I’m really friggin’ into the Resident Evil series, right? Okay, good. What might be less obvious is that Resident Evil 3: Nemesis never really clicked with me. I’ve played it through, but only like once, ages and ages ago. All that said, I am having an absolute blast with the remake that released just a week ago.
Released a week ago, and I’ve already finished it four times. It’s basically all I’ve been doing between work and sleep. If not actually playing the game, then watching speedruns to try to learn some sweet strats. Of course, I’ve been absorbing as much of RE3 as I can this week because it’s sure to be forgotten whenever my copy of Final Fantasy VII Remake arrives.
Having not been a big fan of the original game, I guess I can’t really weigh in on whether the changes made to RE3 are for better or for worse. All I can really say is that there are a lot of them. For as close as Resident Evil 2‘s remake tried to stick to the source material, RE3’s remake goes way off the rails. It’s kind of nice to not have the anchor that is nostalgia weighing me down, so that I can purely appreciate this product for what it is.
I mean, I’d try to do that anyway. I take pride in not being the kind of nerd that gets all butthurt when a remake doesn’t adhere strictly to the original.
Something that I’d heard reviewers complain about before release is that RE3 is too linear. And you know what, they’re correct in that it is pretty linear. You do get to run around freely and explore each area, but there’s definitely a visible track that you should be following, and there are lots of “hallway”-style segments between the larger areas. I actually kind of like this design, though, since I have to spend less time finding keys and then remembering which doors each one opens. I think that kind of design is great – but only on the first run. It’s more of a hassle on replays. the more linear style that RE3 adopts is perfect for replays, because it keeps the momentum going and allows you to focus on execution, which is a lot more more fun to me than zig-zagging through a giant maze of locked doors.
I’m also a really big fan of the shop system in this game. There are so many bonus items to unlock, and you can use them all without any penalty to your rank. I’ve heard at least one speedrunner grouse that this is bad design, but most people don’t play that obsessively and develop that kind of skill. Allowing players to use shop items to help them through the game just makes RE3 accessible to more people, which is a very good thing. This is already a game that doesn’t pull any punches and you have to beat the game once to unlock the shop in the first place, so it’s nice that Capcom put in a feature that gives the 99% a fighting chance.
So yes, I’m really into the new Resident Evil 3. I think it’s a super fun game to play, and I like to imagine that I’ll be going back to it fairly regularly. After all, a successful run takes under two hours. That’s shorter than most movies. There’s really no reason not to try to squeeze in a quick replay here and there.