Resident Evil 6 Title Screen

A Look back at Resident Evil 6

Is Resident Evil 6 a survival horror game? Why don't we ask the Discount Store Nemesis while there's an explosion happening in the background?
Is Resident Evil 6 a survival horror game? Why don't we ask the Discount Store Nemesis while there's an explosion happening in the background?

Was it really THAT bad?

Was Resident Evil 6 as bad as they say? After playing the game myself I finally understand why the game got its criticism. Story-wise and gameplay-wise, there are a lot of things that stand out like a sore thumb. The game does have shining moments here and there, but most of the time I had to question myself if I was really playing a Resident Evil game.

When the game was introduced it looked like it lost its identity. It didn’t know whether it wanted to be a horror game or an action game. While it was trying to appeal to both genres, it clearly leaned towards the latter.

The some of the “horror” didn’t come from the story or atmosphere. It usually came from the playing the game itself. Here are a handful of bad points (and some good points) I noted as I played all four campaigns.

*some spoilers ahead… though you probably already played it or not going to anyways.

A Handful of Bad Points

Quick Time Events

This game has a lot of quick time events, and I mean a lot. They even sprinkle some QTEs when you turn valves, open locked doors, and sometimes when you accidentally slip off a ledge. The way they added quick time events in everywhere felt unnecessary.

Almost half of the cutscenes in this game has QTEs; But the real kicker is that if you mess up one of the button prompts, you do the whole cutscene again from the start. There are chapters where I died more due to failed QTE segments than actually dying from zombies, that speaks a lot about this game’s design.

This B.O.W. has a working chainsaw powered by… the C-Virus?

Lackluster Story

This game’s story is as predicable as any generic action game gets. Even if you’re playing this for the first time, you probably have a hunch of what’s going to happen next.

Leon’s campaign wants you to feel for Helena and her sister. But after Deborah’s boss battle it instantly places you in ancient ruins, and then a crashing airplane headed to China to fight a zombie T-Rex. In the end the whole sister thing ends up feeling like a bad attempt to try to pull on your heart strings.

Chris’ story was all about revenge, but he didn’t even get much of it when he finally met Ada. It’s like he just moved on from it and went back to the BSAA.

Jake’s character development is literally that he dropped the price of his blood to a few bucks.

And Ada’s story did shed some light on some areas, but it feels like it wasn’t a big deal at the end anyways. Her story didn’t impact the other campaigns as much as I thought it would.

The story of Resident Evil 6 is all over the place. It isn’t as strong compared to its predecessors and resembles closer to a generic blockbuster action movie.

You’ll get to hear cheesy one-liners all the time.

Awkward Running Sequences

There are also these running sequences in the game with awkward camera angles. They want us to see the explosion we’re running away from; But how are we supposed to enjoy the scene when we’re more concerned that Leon doesn’t bump face-first into a car? You wouldn’t care about what’s after you, but rather what’s in front of you. And if you stop for even a second or two, you’re probably dead, and you’ll need to restart the scene again from the beginning.

Limited Items

Smashing barrels or crates will drop you skill points most of the time. If you’re lucky, maybe an herb or handgun ammo will drop. But usually you’re getting 20 skill points for your trouble, and maybe an inventory full of remote bombs and flash grenades. The skills that help with ammo drop rates aren’t that useful either, and the skill slot is better used for damage or defense skills instead.

Who thought it was okay to place more skill points instead of ammo or herbs during boss fights?

Decent A.I. Partners

Maybe this is just me, but this game is better played with a friend because your partner’s A.I. will make you pull your hair out. I’ve had plenty of experiences where Helena’s A.I. would prioritize shooting zombies than save my life off the floor. There are also times where they’re positioned so far away from me, that I have to pray that they make it just in time to revive me. To be honest, the biggest benefit of having an AI partner is that they’re invincible and will perfectly do their QTE segments.

Some Good-ish Points

Resident Evil 6 - Leon going through the dark subway.
Easily one of the best parts of this game was going through the subway.

Survival Horror Shows Up in Leon’s Campaign

Leon’s campaign was Capcom’s way of appealing to the old fans with its eerie sections in the college and in the subway. Sadly after the cathedral chapter we’re brought back to regular the zombie action shooter. There were shades of its old horror self, but Capcom didn’t want to commit. They instead spawned more B.O.W.’s as you near the end of the story.

Seeing Other Characters in Campaigns

Seeing other characters in the story doing their own thing was a nice touch. In each campaign you’ll bump into other characters that you’ll be able to play in other campaigns. You get to see where their stories mix, and you fight along with them during boss battles.

Clearly they want you to replay the game over and over again so that you try out the other characters. But in my opinion, one playthrough of each campaign is probably enough for everyone.

More Movement and Combat Options

You can go crazy with the movement in this game. You can duck, slide, roll, and finally aim while shooting. Compared to previous games, movement has never been better in the series. There are even quick shots that stun enemies which allows follow up attacks. Everyone now has a stamina bar that shows how many melee attacks they can do, and you’ll want to use them a lot since there’s not that much ammo in this game.

The Aftermath

According to an IGN interview with the producer, They wanted to “provide a multitude of different horror experiences for everyone.” Even with four campaigns, players weren’t convinced enough. The game unfortunately received mixed reviews. Resident Evil 6 a stain on the Resident Evil franchise as “the first in the series not to receive positive reception” according to its Metacritic scores.

Capcom realized that going crazy with the explosions wasn’t the best idea. After Resident Evil 6 came Resident Evil: Revelations on the 3DS which tried to come back with more horror, but still having that action gameplay to it.

After Revelations getting a lot of praise, they ported it to other consoles and eventually made a sequel. I like to think that the “Revelations” games was a “Revelation” to Capcom that players actually like the spooky puzzle solving. Eventually, they did an amazing job with resurrecting survival horror in RE7 and their succeeding titles.


Resident Evil 6. Leon and Chris aiming at each other
Resident Evil fans when you say RE6 was Good/Bad:

There are people who enjoy this game, and those who avoid it like the C-Virus. A part of the reason why Resident Evil 6 got criticism was because it had “Resident Evil” on the game box.

Fans were divided with the series going full action in the 5th game, so they tried catering to everyone in RE6, and somehow made the divide even bigger. Looking back at it now, I wish they stuck with what they did in RE4 which blended both sides perfectly. The action in RE6 is a little bit too much for my taste. It feels like there’s an explosion every twenty minutes.

Resident Evil 6 isn’t the “Resident Evil” we think of. It’s an action game, while it tries to convince us it’s survival horror. It’s not as horrible as people say it is, but it will definitely get on your nerves at times. It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be, but it neither was it as good.

That being said, for anyone curious on trying it out, I recommend to play this game if you’re already a fan of the Resident Evil series… or if you just wanna shoot zombies. It does its job as a decent co-op action shooter. Plus, you’ll sink in a couple of hours or a few days if you want to replay the game as your partners. I finished all 4 campaigns in 26 hours on normal, but your mileage may vary.

It’s a flawed game, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth trying. Pick it up during a Steam Sale, or maybe it’s just laying in your backlog, and you’ll see why fans were vocal on both sides about this game.