With the San Diego Comic Con wrapping up Capcom have nicely released the three gameplay trailers for Resident Evil 6 that were shown during the event.
Each video looks at one of the games campaigns, and Resident Evil 6 director Eiichiro Sasaki provided commentary on each of the videos about what led to their development process.
We’ve copied it down below each video for you so you can enjoy.
This was actually one of the first three stages we created two and a half years ago, along with Chris’s arrival in Lanshiang at the start of his campaign, and a stage where Jake is chased by the Ustanak. This was at a time when we were trying out different things in terms of technology and direction.
With this stage we wanted players to experience the fear of walking through the darkness. Light and shadow play a very important part. The initial concept was a scene in a curved tunnel with a large crowd of zombies at the far end, lit so as to be visible only as silhouettes.
The lighting in this scene is mostly static, from environmental sources, but you will also notice that situational light effects such as muzzle flashes, passing trains and even Leon’s limited-range ear-light all produce momentary effects where zombies’ faces are lit up.
Another thing about this scene that’s quite interesting is something we call “scare lighting”. I’m sure you’ve all sat in the dark and shone a torch on your face from below for that scary effect. We wanted to reproduce this effect in the game, so there is light shining up on the zombies and making them look scarier. It’s not “realistic” in the sense that, unlike with Leon’s ear-light and other environmental lighting, there is no actual light source underneath the zombies in the tunnel location, but I think it produces a great cinematic effect that works well in the context of the scene.
This stage provides a great example of Resident Evil 6’s crossover mechanic, with up to four players teaming up to take on a seemingly unstoppable foe, the Ustanak.
The Ustanak can attach different devices to his right arm. One of the interesting ones is the apparatus he uses to grab and crush the player. During gameplay he will start taking out the players one by one, so what starts off looking as a four-on-one fight where the players have the advantage can quickly becomes a massacre. With his right and left arms and the cage-like device on his back, Ustanak can hold up to three players at the same time, leaving just one player left to fight him.
Of course, players can help each other out if they get captured by Ustanak, but they have to get up close to him in order to rescue their allies. Getting near greatly increases the danger of him killing you, so it’s a risk you have to take for your team.
In a way it’s like the variation of tag chase games sometimes called cops and robbers, where the cops capture the robbers and put them in “jail” where they can’t move. Other robbers can free their companions from jail, but as the cops will keep it guarded closely they risk getting caught themselves…
The point of including this mechanic was to increase the stakes not just by requiring players to risk in-game death to beat the enemy, but to help their friends as well. This makes players feel more heroic and they can feel great satisfaction from helping others out.
Another great feature of crossover is partner changes. Certain situations in the game will put players together with someone other than their usual partner. In this stage, Leon teams up with Sherry temporarily, and Jake with Helena. It’s a chance to experience some unique teamwork.
Since all four characters are working together, there will be some great moments between characters even outside partner-change sections. Fans of the series will be able to read a lot into interactions between certain characters given their histories; for example, if Leon is hurt and in the ‘dying state’ where he’s on the ground and unable to move much, and Sherry comes over and revives him.
Some people might say that the more people you have with you, the less scary the situation is because you feel safer. Chris and Piers are accompanied by an entire squad of counter-bioterrorism specialists who should be the ideal allies in this situation, and yet even this cream of the crop are picked off one by one by unknown horrors. That’s what this part of the game is all about, the escalating fear you feel as your team grows smaller and smaller. It’s a kind of terror you can only experience in a group scenario.
In this scene, the enemy is hidden from sight and appears unexpectedly out of nowhere. This creates tension as you walk along wondering what might be up ahead. In other words, you don’t even need to have obvious enemies present in a scene in order to feel fear.
Another important element in creating tension is enemy sound design. Even an unseen enemy makes noise as it moves, knocking over tables or crockery, for example. Those ordinary noises become associated with the enemy. So when you hear something like the rustle of a rubbish bag being kicked out of the way, even though it might well have been one of your team members, your heart leaps as you wonder whether it’s an enemy coming to get you.
I highly recommend playing the game at high volume or on headphones to get the best audio experience.