Over the course of the last year, gamers have seen the amount of Resident Evil titles triple in number. Only two years ago, fans of the survival horror (turned action shooter) game had to wait no less than two years between each installment.
However, with the introduction of the Nintendo 3DS, and subsequently Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D and Resident Evil: Revelations, as well as the announcement of the upcoming console first person shooter Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City (not to mention Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil: Code Veronica HD remakes), it seems that, more than ever, Capcom is counting on the continuing success of the franchise.
Of course, console fans hoping for a more traditional survival horror title, in the form of the yet-to-be-announced Resident Evil 6, are going to have to wait a bit longer - especially since the publisher considers the aforementioned 3DS title, Resident Evil: Revelations to be a 'direct sequel' to 2009's Resident Evil 5.
Speaking with Nintendo Power Resident Evil producer Masachika Kawata asserted that, unlike The Mercenaries 3D, Revelations isn't just focused on action, the title returns to the Resident Evil survival horror roots:
"Unlike Mercenaries, which is all about shooting action, Revelations is all about survival horror, the very genre Resident Evil established. We actually think of Revelations as a direct sequel to Resident Evil 5 and it will be full of new, innovative ideas and characters."
Obviously it's in Kawata's best interest to try and tempt Resident Evil die-hards into a 3DS purchase with the promise of a canon story and traditional RE gameplay adventure (since Mercenaries Mode in 3D wasn't likely to do the trick). However, even more interesting than "direct sequel" line, the quote provides even more evidence to support speculation around a dual-genre future for the Resident Evil franchise - a dual concentration we've been considering here at GR ever since the announcement of the RE: Operation Raccoon City FPS title.
While Resident Evil 4 and 5 were major critical and commercial successes, some long time RE fans were turned-off by the action-heavy focus of the gameplay. Recently, a number of Resident Evil developers have been talking about returning to the survival horror roots - which could mean that, considering the ludicrous amount of RE brand games en route, Capcom is position half of the new titles (The Mercenaries 3D and Operation Raccoon City) to appeal to the recently culled action fans and the other half (Revelations and the yet to be announced Resident Evil 6) aimed at the survival horror fans.
Resident Evil: Revelations will be released sometime in 2011 for the Nintendo 3DS.
Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D will be released this summer for the Nintendo 3DS.
Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City will be released this winter for the PS3, Xbox 360 and PC.
Source: Nintendo Power