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BIOHAZARD IN 2011
2009 was one of the most important years for the series, so 2010
had plenty to live up to. 2010 was all about Biohazard
announcements and glimpses into the future.
Living in Japan, Biohazard 2010 began for me with the belated
released of Darkside Chronicles for the Wii, which was
accompanied by a neat Collector's Package that contained the
game, a special DVD and some extra materials to make up for the
delayed Japanese release.
Not long after that in February was the release of Biohazard 5:
Alternative Edition, which through the new scenarios Lost in
Nightmares and Desperate Escape, finally told us the story of
Jill and Chris the night they went into the Spencer Mansion in
2006, as well as how Jill was able to meet Josh and meet Chris
and Sheva at the end of the main game. Owners of the original
PS3 version and Xbox 360 owners who were not interested in
repurchasing the game could download the new scenarios. Also of
note was the return of Rebecca and Barry in The Mercenaries
Reunion. A year had passed since the original Biohazard 5, but
Capcom managed to make substantial additions and extend the
value of the overall Biohazard 5 package.
In March, Nintendo announced the Nintendo 3DS and how it would
be a handheld with 3D visuals. I speculated
that the 3DS would become the home to a Biohazard at some point,
but I didn't imagine that Capcom would announce one so soon.
Biohazard Revelations was announced alongside the formal
unveiling of the Nintendo 3DS at E3 in June. It was surprising
how Capcom was able to demo a Biohazard game with visuals that
fell somewhere in between Biohazard 4 and Biohazard 5 -
remarkable for a handheld. Chris and Jill were returning as the
main protagonists, and it is looking like Revelations will be
the first real Biohazard game without a number since CODE:
Veronica, the same game that brought me into the series ten
That wasn't the end of Biohazard on the 3DS. It seems that
Capcom is never content announcing just one Biohazard product
for a Nintendo system. Just as the N64, GameCube and Wii were
all slated for multiple Biohazard games at some point, so was
the 3DS. At the end of September, Capcom unveiled a second
Biohazard title for the 3DS: Biohazard: The Mercenaries 3D. This
title took elements from The Mercenaries from both Biohazard 4
and Biohazard 5, adding in new characters like Claire Redfield
to the mix.
Also in September was the launch of Biohazard IV: Afterlife 3D
in theaters. The movie, based heavily on Biohazard 5, did very
well at the box office, outgrossing previous entries, so we're
sure to get another one. Another surprise for movies was
Biohazard Damnation 3D, a sequel to 2008's Biohazard
Degeneration. We know it'll take place in an Eastern European
war zone and star Leon again, so it'll be interesting to see
where the series goes with this film.
The last major event of 2010 was the patching of Biohazard 5:
Alternative Edition to support the PlayStation Move controller,
a nice reward for gamers who wished that Biohazard 5 controlled
the same way as Biohazard 4 Wii Edition.
If 2010 was the year of announcements, then 2011 should be the
year of action. March 22, 2011 will mark the series' 15th
anniversary, so here's hoping Capcom has some nice products
planned to celebrate. We'll definitely see the two 3DS games
launch during the year, and hopefully we'll get more details on
Biohazard Damnation 3D (actually due out in 2012). We've heard
rumors of a Slant Six-developed Biohazard multiplayer game, so
let's see if that turns out to be true.
The only unknown at this point is Biohazard Portable for the
PSP, announced at E3 2009. Capcom has said nothing on this game
since then, and with the 3DS getting two Biohazard games, the
fate of this one is looking grim, resembling what happened to
the PSP Devil May Cry, which never came out. Has it been
cancelled? With the PSP entering its seventh year on the market
and the PSP2 inevitably looming, I find it likely that this will
not come out as we expected.
Biohazard 6 was heavily rumored, and it looked like we might
hear things at TGS, but nothing yet. Depending on how important
Revelations and perhaps the Slant Six-developed Biohazard are to
Capcom, it may be awhile before we hear anything.
Finally, Biohaze experienced growth as well. We did a lot of
experiments in 2009 and finalized designs in 2010, and learned
what worked and what didn't work. The site is looking better
than ever, thanks to the efforts of all the staff, who were
fantastic to work with as always. Biohaze @ TGS 2010 was another
success and were pleased with the response to our Twitter
contest. Wherever the series ends up going, it's great to know
that Biohaze will be there to tell everyone about it. 2011 is
looking to be another great year for the franchise!
At the end of every new year celebration, it is common place to
look back and assess the years worth. Self worth, progression
and things to do differently. For Biohazard enthusiasts, it is
also a time to look back and judge how the series has evolved.
2010 was the follow up year to one that housed both Biohazard 5
and The Darkside Chronicles in North Amercia (Japan received DSC
early 2010), either way you look at it, the series was in full
bloom. Biohazard made a big enough splash in 2009 that you knew
2010 would bring something related.
It had been over a half year since the release of Biohazard 5
and despite it's successful total sales, fans expressed concern
for the series. While considered a fun horror action title, the
series roots were nowhere to be found. This is where a breath of
fresh air was shown and later announced for 2010, that being
Biohazard 5 Alternative Edition. The re-release would consist of
two new chapters featuring Jill Valentine, one with her and Josh
escaping the island and the other in Spencer's Estate with
Chris. The latter was titled Lost in Nightmares and was a throw
back to the original Biohazard style. This was made to appease
fans who longed for something reminiscent of the original
Survival Horror genre.
Lost in Nightmares was received rather well, in fact the
community widely agreed that it should be the series new
direction. In a rather surprising turn of events, these
expectations were met when Biohazard Revelations was shown for
the new Nintendo 3DS. The series was back, survival horror was
the focal point and it'd be in 3D on the go. What more could a
Biohazard fan ask for? Already 2010 was making a name for
itself, through a series changing re-release/DLC and
announcements that weren't in the far off future.
From 1996-2002, the franchise was consistently releasing titles
with no large sum of time in between release dates. This was
undoubtedly the golden era of Biohazard. In between Biohazard 4
and Biohazard 5 the series hit a dry spell, one that was fueled
with little information and a lot of thumb dwindling. Post
Biohazard 5 however, the series is once more starting to
consistently release worthy content. Starting with Dark Side
Chronicles in Japan, Alternative Edition worldwide in February
and a bevy of announcements to follow, the series was back on
it's feet and ready to produce.
Aside from Revelations; the next main series entry in the
Biohazard series, we also have the upcoming Mercenaries 3D. This
is a portable take of the acclaimed Mercenaries mini game from
both Biohazard 4 and Biohazard 5, along with new bonus content.
This will also be releasing on the Nintendo 3DS and is slated
for a 2011 release. Definitive releases aside, we also had a
bevy of announcements. For one, the follow up CGI film to
Degeneration was announced. Titled Biohazard Damnation, the
follow up will also feature Leon S Kennedy and is due out
sometime in 2011. We also have rumor that Slant Six (creator of
Socom Confrontation) may be creating a new Biohazard title,
codenamed Raccoon City. There is reason to believe this rumor
may hold true and without confirmation either way, we're going
to eventually hear something of it this new year.
Couple what we have with any new potential news and this may
just be one of the better years for Biohazard, it'll certainly
be center stage in all new packaging when it arrives on the
Nintendo 3DS. If I were to pick my most anticipated event at the
moment, it'd definitely be the release of Biohazard Revelations.
Either way, there is a ton to look forward to. Here's to hoping
we have some great years ahead of us in both the realm of
Biohazard and life.
P.S. I didn't forget Biohazard Afterlife, though I'd like to.
2010 has been another solid year for Biohazard. Japanese gamers
finally got their hands on Darkside Chronicles which whilst a
solid enough shooter, was quite a subdued entry into the
franchise. February saw us finally get our hands on the
downloadable content for Biohazard 5 and while a little short,
Lost in Nightmares was an excellent addition, evoking many
memories of classic Biohazard titles. A week later Desperate
Escape was released and proved to be an engaging action level
and helped to solidify and expand the climax of Biohazard 5 even
further. Long-time fans were also extremely happy to see Barry
and Rebecca in the Mercs Reunion mode.
In the summer we got the announcement of Biohazard: Revelations
on the Nintendo 3DS. Collective groans soon turned to intrigue
when the first teaser trailer and screen shots were released.
Better than expected graphics, 3D, playing as Chris and Jill
once more, the inclusion of Hunk and Capcom promising us true
survival horror have got me eagerly awaiting this next entry
into the timeline.
September saw the release of Resident Evil: Afterlife which as I
expected was ridiculously bad. I hate all four films with a
passion and for me this latest entry was the worst of the lot.
But credit to Paul WS Anderson, he certainly knows how to milk
money and the implementation of admittedly impressive 3D and the
introduction of Wesker ensured it scored big at the box office
once more and bankrolled the inevitable sequel.
For me the biggest surprise of 2010 was the announcement of
Resident Evil: Damnation, the sequel to the 2008 canon CG movie
Degeneration. This was a welcome addition and should help
solidify the story even further, especially as the teaser seems
to reveal that we will finally see B.O.W.s in a war-like
situation, which was what they were developed for in the first
place. I know some people have been grumbling about Leon being
the main character again, but with Chris and Jill getting so
much attention recently with Lost in Nightmares and Revelations,
I don't really see the harm. Hopefully it will be set post-2009
to get the story moving forward again.
But with Revelations not due till at least the end of the year
and Damnation early 2012, hopefully we will get them both within
a short space of time. Plenty to wet our appetites until
Finally Biohaze has enjoyed another successful year and
celebrated its fifth birthday. We did a lot in terms of
technical improvement and site content, but there is still
plenty more to come. 2011 will see the release of the Resident
Evil Mythology version 4 which will be fully updated with
Darkside Chronicles, Lost In Nightmares, Desperate Escape and
Biohazard Revelations as well as lots more so look out for that.
I predict that 2011 will be a year of much change for Biohazard.
Will this finally be the year where Capcom outsource the
franchise to outside developers? Will this harm the series? Do
we really want titles such as Biohazard: The Mercenaries and the
rumoured Biohazard: Raccoon City? Should we not be focusing on
Biohazard 6? Either way it's sure to make for fascinating
discussion. I can see the 15th anniversary for the series in
March as being the perfect time to reveal Biohazard 6. But
Capcom really have to pull out all the stops to keep up with the
times here. We need a drastic change in game play mechanics like
the change implemented in Biohazard 4 after Code Veronica. It
needs to be fresh and exciting. The question is, can they do it?