We are family! (Case Study: Resident Evil 7)

by Arno Görgen

The game begins with a cutscene that has the feel of a video recording: a woman, Mia, stands on a ship against the railings and cheerily greets her husband. She tells him that she is there working as a babysitter. The video cuts off abruptly; we see dirtied hands in a dark room tampering with an old laptop. A new video appears on the screen, showing the same woman again, but this time she is upset and afraid. Her last sentence is: “…if you get this, stay away.” In the next shot, we see a bird’s eye view of a car driving through a rural area and overhear a telephone conversation. In it, Ethan explains that his wife Mia has contacted him after three years and that he is now on his way to Dulvey, Louisiana to pick her up. There, he finds an abandoned house in the swamps.

Game name: Resident Evil 7: Biohazard [hereinafter RE7].
Developer: Capcom
Publisher: Capcom
Director: Koshi Nakanishi
Narrative Consultant: Richard Pearsey (first western writer of a RE game)
Year of release: 2017
Platform: Windows; Xbox One; PlayStation 4; Nintendo Switch (for the analysis, the PS4 version was played)
Setting: Horror
Genre (ludic): Action-Adventure
Gameplay: Stealth; Survival;

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