Capcom recently held a brief showcase which unveiled an abundance of information about Resident Evil Village, otherwise known as the iconic survival horror series’ eighth mainline entry.
Creative minds behind the project delved into its demented selection of characters and spooky snow-drenched locations while also providing our first true glimpse at gameplay. Village once again adopts the first-person perspective from Resident Evil 7, yet also pulls inspiration from other classic titles with an inventory system akin to Resident Evil 4, and a more classical, occult approach to horror that arguably matches the tone of Code Veronica.
Resident Evil Village feels like both a new direction for the beloved franchise and a faithful homage to everything that came before it. Trusted Reviews has compiled everything you need to know including the release date, trailers, story, characters and our hands-on preview with the latest demo. Buckle up, it’s time to get spooky.
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Resident Evil 8 release date – when is it coming out?
Capcom confirmed in the recent showcase that Resident Evil Village will be launching for PS5, PS4, Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X and PC on May 7, 2021.
A playable demo is available now on the PS5, but it is intended as a “visual showcase” and won’t be part of the main game. However, it still provides a solid idea of some gameplay mechanics and exactly how your character will control in the grand scheme of things.
Capcom has also said that a demo will be coming to other platforms in the Spring, and it remains unclear if this will be the Maiden demo once again, or a completely new experience set to tease the wider narrative. Either way, we’re keen to see it in action.
Resident Evil 8 trailer – how does it look?
Resident Evil Village has been showcased a number of times since its original reveal, providing a robust glimpse at its narrative, characters and gameplay. We’ve compiled a couple of the latest trailers below, including stuff from the recent showcase.
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Resident Evil 8 Story – What is going on?
The narrative is a direct continuation of Resident Evil 7, with Ethan Winters once again acting as the main protagonist. However, the setting and stakes couldn’t be more different, with Village swapping the warm and swampy wetlands of Louisiana for cold European mountains.
Following the events of Resident Evil 7, Ethan and Mia Winters fled to the mountainous regions of Europe, hoping to seek a peaceful life away from the horrors that haunted them in the past game. Unfortunately, such peace is short lived. One day, a Blue Umbrella operation led by Chris Redfield leads to the village being assaulted, turning the life of our hero completely on its head.
What follows is a dark, mysterious journey that will span the haunting mountains, a dangerous castle and several other diverse locations the series has never tackled before. The exact context of the plot and what exactly Redfield is after remains unclear, but given Umbrella’s involvement, it’s likely clouded in secrecy and corruption.
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The latest trailer shows that Ethan Winters has escaped the castle and therefore the clutches of Lady Dimitrescu. “My daughters weren’t able to handle him,” she bellows into a phone to someone known as Mother Miranda, making it clear that a ceremony of sorts will take place without a hitch. Whatever these ladies are up to, it certainly isn’t good.
Chris Redfield is also seen exchanging a newborn baby with someone in the trailer, who could possibly be the child of Ethan and Mia Winters, with the latter appearing pregnant in the trailer’s opening seconds. Them wanting to escape prior trauma to raise their child makes perfect sense, especially with so many wanting to take it away.
Resident Evil 8 Locations – Where does it take place?
Resident Evil 8 will take place in the cold mountains of Europe, although the exact country is left purposefully ambiguous. You will explore a dark village filled with twisted inhabitants and an ancient structure known as Castle Dimitrescu. The castle is home to a legion of evil witches and vampires, many of which have existed in solitude for centuries. Now, they are finally coming out of hiding, and it seems Ethan will need to stop them.
Resident Evil 8 Characters – Who will you play as?
Much like Resident Evil 7, you will once again play as Ethan Winters. He’s a fairly generic everyman, acting as the perfect spectre for players to inhabit and feel invested in the wider narrative. Mia Winters, his partner, joins him after narrowly escaping death in the last game.
Chris Redfield, who passionate fans of the series will recognise immediately, makes a return and appears morally dubious as he seems to assault Ethan in the trailer before shooting someone very close to him. I bet this is a red herring, throwing players off the trail as they try in vain to predict Chris’ true intentions. Expect more to be unveiled in the full game.
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Who is the tall lady in Resident Evil 8?
The real draw of Resident Evil 8 is Lady Dimitrescu, a severely tall lady whom the internet has fallen for in a big way. I’m serious, the simping is real in every corner of the internet and I can definitely understand why. She inhabits her own titular castle alongside the Daughters of Dimitrescu, and it appears they’ve called the place home since the 15th Century.
Her role in the narrative remains unclear, although the latest trailer hints at a “ceremony” which Ethan and Mia Winters must be present for. The Maiden demo also has you playing as a prisoner trying to escape the castle, and it quickly becomes clear that you are one of many poor souls to be involved in some form of sacrifice.
A number of mysteries remain about Lady Dimitrescu. How tall is she exactly, is she actually just wearing absurdly large heels? Can Ethan be carried in her arms? These all need answers, and hopefully the full game will provide them.
Resident Evil 8 Gameplay Preview – Our thoughts on the Maiden demo
PS5 owners can now download the Maiden Demo, which is described as a “visual showcase” for Resident Evil Village that doesn’t represent the main game. With that being said, it remains a brief yet haunting glimpse at how the game will look and play when it launches in May. I jumped into it moments after its release, deciding to delve into Castle Dimitrescu as the clock struck midnight instead of being sensible and going to bed.
I didn’t regret my decision, since the demo is positively captivating. You play as an unnamed prisoner as they awake in a dark, twisted prison cell. The way ahead is pitch black, and there is seemingly no escape from the iron bars that surround you. All seems hopeless until I stumble upon a hastily written note. It’s chicken scratch, yet I can work out a few phrases. “Crawl on your hands and knees if you have to,” it pleads, advice which leads to a crude passage hidden beneath my bed.
The sights that greeted me almost made the cell feel welcoming. The neighbouring cages are filled with corpses hanging from the ceilings. Some feel ancient, while others are stained with fresh coats of blood. As I venture down the corridor, it becomes abundantly clear that I’m definitely not alone. Something is scrambling around me, and as I’m forced to backtrack I find one of the aforementioned corpses has been pierced with a set of bolt cutters.
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I crudely pull the pair of tools from her back, using it to unlock a selection of doors in search of a way out. Eventually, I stumble upon a lockpick, using it to escape the medieval prison and into an illustrious castle. It’s immediately clear that this architecture is very old indeed, yet has been maintained in immaculate condition. I prowl through the building, peeking through doorways and fawning at the gorgeous paintings that adorn the walls.
While I’m transfixed by the beautiful visuals and ray traced lighting, I never let my guard down. I eventually make my way into the foyer, stepping down the staircase as a voice calls out to me. “I’m watching you,” it declares, sending me into a frenzied state of unease that makes my need to escape all the more palpable. The next room I step into has an open window, with snow blistering inside alongside a brightly lit sky.
Sadly, the door leading outside is locked, and requires a special key to get inside. Luckily, a wine glass on the dining table nearby houses a eye-shaped gem which can be used to open a needlessly convoluted door in the foyer. This is Resident Evil, so the house has been constructed with a series of elaborate puzzles and doors which can only be unlocked in a very specific way. I have to ask how they ever managed to get planning permission for something like this.
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I quickly find the key, and rush towards the door. I can taste freedom, but such relief is snatched away as Lady Dimitrescu slams through the doorway, ducking underneath it and grabbing me by the throat. She’s been waiting for me, she says, before displaying her razor-sharp fingernails and clawing me to death. The screen fades to black, and it’s safe to assume the poor soul I once controlled is now gone for good.
The demo is only 15-20 minutes long, but it left a profound impact on me. It takes the first-person exploration of Resident Evil 7 and expands upon it beautifully, with environments and characters depicted in the RE Engine feeling almost photorealistic at times. It’s a true showcase of what the PS5 is capable of, and I can’t wait to see this vision expanded in the full game.
Before reaching the exit I am also hounded by what I assume is a Daughter of Dimitrescu. This dusty old crone is dressed in flowing black rags, and marches towards you with a sharp implement in hand before grabbing you and refusing to let go. The first-person perspective means the disgusting insects and scars that adorn her body are clear to see. Fortunately, I managed to push her away and sprint to safety.
Village is brilliant at making you feel safe for just a few scant moments, before pulling it away in favour of a horrific new threat. Exploration leaves a lump in your throat, like any new room could house creatures of the night ready and waiting to pounce. If the full game is this scary then we’re all in for an absolute treat.
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