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I finished Resident Evil 3 (2020), and I’d like to share my thoughts on the game

I'd like to apologize in advance if this post comes off as a rambling diatribe. Resident Evil is one of my favourite gaming series, and the original Resident Evil 3 was one of my most beloved games on the PS1. Consequently, Resident Evil 3 (2020) was my most anticipated game of last year, so much so that I actually pre-ordered the game, something I rarely (if ever) do.

However, once the review embargo was lifted and more information about the game was revealed, I decided it wasn't worth the price of admission at $80 CAD, so I cancelled my pre-order and waited until a 50% off sale before taking the plunge.

Fast forward to today, I recently played the game, and I was hoping to share my thoughts, and perhaps, get my disappointment off my chest lol!

Like its predecessor, Resident Evil 3 (2020) is a beautiful game filled with vibrant colours, detailed environments, and excellent voice acting, and the over-the-shoulder gameplay and shooting mechanics are an improvement over the fixed camera angles of the original games. Unfortunately, that's where my enjoyment of the game stopped.

Unlike its predecessor, Resident Evil 3 (2020) felt like a $20 DLC expansion than a game justifying its $80 CAD price tag. I finished the game on normal difficulty in approximately 7 hours. Ordinarily, I don't mind short-games, in fact, I sometimes actually prefer it to 100 hour games.

In this case, however, the lack of content is to the game's detriment. The game pads its running time with an abundance of cut-scenes, quick time events, linear, on-rails segments that make the game a complete chore to replay. The entire Uptown section from the original game has been reduced to a linear, on-rails Unchartered-like cut-scene with frequent pauses or interruptions so the game can dump cut-scenes on to the player.

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The game doesn't actually begin until Carlos saves Jill from Nemesis, which, coincidentally, is the exact starting point of the demo that Capcom released in March 2020. From there, we're introduced to the main cast of characters who felt more like action hero stereotypes than ordinary people trapped in a horrific nightmare.

Jill rarely, if ever, expresses real fear regarding her situation. She hurls insults at Nemesis and shrugs off explosions and bone-crushing impacts like she isn't a petite 80 pound adult. With the exception of the Downtown section, Nemesis himself has been relegated to cut-scenes, boss battles, or quick-time events, none of which feel earned, threatening, or particularly interesting. Overall, Capcom managed to deliver a more threatening tyrant with Mr. X than they did the creature that inspired it.

Carlos' characterization is also a misstep, in my opinion. He feels like a stereotypical action hero, versus a man fighting for his life. His dialogue feels forced and unnatural, almost as though he's taking this life or death situation too facetiously.

Most egregious, in my opinion, was the complete omission of areas and locations from the original game. I was so excited to see the Clock Tower, Park, and Dead Factory reimagined with the RE Engine, but unfortunately, the developers decided to cut these areas entirely. In their place, we are forced to explore re-hashed locales from Resident Evil 2: the RPD, Sewers, and an underground laboratory, "NEST 2," an idea so uninspired the developers couldn't be bothered to come up with an original name.

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Downtown and the hospital sections were fun while they lasted, but neither justified, in my opinion, the complete omission of iconic locations from the original game. The same can be said for the omission of the original's classic enemies, such as the Brain Suckers, Grave Digger, or Giant Spiders. Instead of finding ways to reimagine these classic creatures, the developers decided to cut them entirely.

Next up, the developers removed almost any semblance of puzzle solving. The original Resident Evil 3 had quite a few puzzles, many of which are considered by veteran fans as the toughest in the series. The remake had two puzzles, the subway route, and the vaccine, both of which are barely even puzzles. I understand that the developers wanted to make the game "more action focused," but I would have much rather sacrificed a cut-scene or scripted Nemesis encounter for the opportunity to do more back-tracking, resource management, and puzzle solving.

The original Resident Evil 3 focused more on action than its predecessor, this is true, but the level design stayed true to the series roots, focusing on back-tracking, puzzle solving, and resource management. The remake drops all of those elements and turns the game into a linear, generic, cut-scene heavy action game that, in my honest opinion, fails to deliver on what fans of the classic games loved about the series.

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Overall, if you approach Resident Evil 3 (2020) hoping for an experience that's on par with Resident Evil 2 (2019) or even the original Resident Evil 3: Nemesis, in terms of exploration, back-tracking, and puzzle solving, then I wouldn't recommend paying anything more than $20 CAD for this game.

Thank you everyone for listening to my rant haha! I'd love to hear your thoughts about the game!


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