Resident Evil 7 is going to be a different game from its most recent franchise predecessors. When Sony released the first trailer for the newest installment in the series during its pre-E3 conference, it focused on setting a creepy mood, rather than showing any action gameplay. That's because the game will be focused on setting and survival, and weaponry will be extremely cut back.
Combat will likely still be a part of the game, although there isn't much information on what that will look like. Those who have had a chance to play the demo released on the PlayStation store have found a collectable (though useless) axe which may be a clue to the type of weapons players will have access to later on. Though this demo won't be part of the the actual release, it should give fans a good idea of what to expect from the game.
To reaffirm the fact that weapons are taking the back seat this time around, Resident Evil 7 director Koushi Nakanishi told Eurogamer in a recent interview that "the game is survival horror":
"If anyone out there has a bloodlust for holding a gun, check out Umbrella Corps. We are separating these aspects out into different titles where that gameplay can come to the fore, and makes the most sense for that title. [Resident Evil 7] is not going to be a gun fest."
Even if you can't protect yourself with heavy artillery, players will be able to sufficiently heal themselves via the series' usual medicinal herbs. Producer Masachika Kawata confirmed the existence of herbs in Resident Evil VII which are supposed to be able to help players come back from near death.
Resident Evil 7 isn't only making major changes in the weapons area. In the previous two Resident Evil games players fought zombie related bioterrorism as Chris Redfield- who at this point in the series has near superhero like abilities. But Nakanishi wanted to remind fans that wasn't always the case:
“It’s a normal person protagonist. We’re getting back to basics – in Resident Evil 1 Chris was not a comic book hero, he was a special forces agent but he wasn’t as advanced a fighter as later in the series."
Along with all of this new information about gameplay, pre-order bonuses for Resident Evil VII and details of the deluxe edition have also been revealed. One item, as explained by Capcom, is the Survival Pack which will give players unspecified items, and will also allow them to start the game on the hardest difficulty setting right from the beginning.
Priced at $80, the Deluxe Edition of Resident Evil 7 will net players two different DLC content packs. One content pack comes with four short side stories and the other adds an additional episode to Resident Evil 7‘s main story. Even if it isn't available at launch, it probably makes sense to expect the pre-order bonuses to be available as a standalone purchase at some point. It's unlikely that content would be withheld from any players with money to spend.
Resident Evil 7 will take place entirely in an abandoned mansion in rural america, have less guns, a first person perspective and of course VR compatibility. So far all the information points to Resident Evil 7 taking the series in a new (though not completely unfamiliar) direction. It sounds like the game is almost a soft reboot, though no one is calling it that; the creators have stressed returning to roots in terms of character, while creating a more intimate survival horror experience - very unlike the most recent games, which featured huge world adventures.
There isn't a long wait to find out what type of game Resident Evil 7 will be. With the release just a few short months away more concrete details on content and gameplay will likely be released rapidly - so get ready.
Resident Evil 7 is slated for release on January 24, 2017 on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC. A demo, Resident Evil 7 Teaser: Beginning Hour, is available on the PlayStation Store.