I think we all knew, when the developer of Dead by Daylight announced a crossover with Resident Evil, that this was going to be a big chapter. I was not expecting just how big. Aside from a new killer, we’ve got two new survivors and a new map, and a number of brand new mechanics — some of which will very heavily change the way games can play out. And we now know the release date for the Dead By Daylight – Resident Evil chapter, which is set for this June.
One thing of note is that this crossover is focused on the remakes of Resident Evil 2 and Resident Evil 3, so if you were hoping for a timely Resident Evil Village tie-in, I’m afraid those hopes are dashed (for now). But, don’t worry, there’s a lot to sink your rotten zombie teeth into here — including actual zombies.
Let’s start with the one thing I think everybody expected: the killer. Yes, it’s a Tyrant model. Specifically, it’s Resident Evil 3‘s Nemesis with the killer name, “The Tyrant.”
Nemesis is a melee killer, but with a few twists. His special attack is a tentacle lash that infects any survivor it hits with the T-Virus, sort of like The Plague killer. Infected survivors will cough, vomit, and generally give away their position a lot more easily, making them much easier for Nemmy to track down. Subsequent slaps from the tentacle will actually damage the survivor, too.
As with The Plague, the T-Virus can be cured by finding vaccines littered around the maps. However, there are a limited number of these, so you’d better be careful as to when you use them. Very careful, in fact; unlike the Plague, Nemesis actually powers up when survivors are infected. Nemesis’ tentacle reach increases whenever survivors remain infected (up to two), and its range will increase enough that he can attack over pallets and windows. He’s going to be quite a hard pursuer to juke if he’s allowed to sit at max strength.
Did you think that’s all? No. This is Resident Evil (well, Dead by Daylight, but shh). One completely new mechanic is that, whenever the Tyrant is the killer, the map will be infested with computer-controlled zombies. These patrol areas and will try to bite survivors, and the same rules apply: bitten survivors get infected with the T-Virus, and Nemesis will power up until they’re cured.
While we’ve seen some AI added to Dead by Daylight‘s mobile version, I wasn’t expecting computer-controlled mobs on the maps. And according to the developer, this won’t be the last time we see this sort of thing. That said, when we see it next, it’ll be something different to the zombies. Those are unique to Nemesis.
You could be forgiven for thinking that we were only going to be getting a killer and a map, but the Dead by Daylight – Resident Evil crossover chapter brings with it two survivors. Leon S. Kennedy will be representing the Resident Evil 2 remake, while Jill Valentine will be coming in from the Resident Evil 3 remake.
Not too much in the way of details on these, as most of their specifics are still under wraps, but what I do know is interesting. Jill, for instance, can place mines on generators. Should a killer try to kick the generator, the mine will explode, blinding him (and presumably giving a massive alert to every survivor on the map). She’s the more combative sort, apparently.
Leon’s perks will apparently focus a bit more on dedication to others and protecting people, while also focusing on his goals, so “support and offensive perks” are promised here. There’s actually another new type of gameplay here, too. One of Leon’s perks is Flashbang, which actually lets him create items. After hitting a certain threshold of generator repairs, Leon can hide in a locker and craft a flashbang, which works similarly to the firecracker items. You can drop it to attract the killer’s attention, or use it to blind them and potentially free a fellow survivor who’s been carted off to a hook.
Personally, I was expecting Claire Redfield to show up as a survivor: she’s a bit more of a non-combatant than police officer Leon or ex-military Jill. This choice was somewhat down to representation: the devs wanted characters from both RE 2 and RE 3, and it seems like Leon was a lock with the map. And, let’s face it, if we’re facing off with Nemesis, then we need Jill.
Raccoon City Police Station
I suspect you guessed this, too, but with the focus being on the two recent Resident Evil remakes, the most iconic location is probably the Raccoon City Police Station. Sure enough, that’s the new map this time around.
It’s an internal level, and if you’ve played the RE 2 remake then you’ll be able to find your way around pretty well. It’s not a 1:1 replica, but the layout is very similar and you should recognize most of the rooms. You’ll be running around the main hall, the library, the STARS office, and the flooded bathrooms — and if the Tyrant is the killer, these corridors will be infested with the undead.
Naturally, this means it’s not a particularly procedural map. Like the Hawkins Laboratory from Stranger Things, it’s mostly a “static” map, but it will have the standard procedural elements like the positioning of totems, generators, and zombies.
Still, I’ve got a fair few questions, some of which Behaviour Interactive was (understandably) reticent to answer. To start with, I jumped on the inevitable grenade. Given that we now have cosmetics that replace one character with another (like Cheryl Mason being replaced with Lisa Garland or Cybil Bennett), can we expect the Tyrant to end up as the internet’s favorite meme, Lady Dimitrescu? No comment, alas. Likewise, no word on whether or not we’ll be getting Jill’s STARS uniform or Leon’s Resident Evil 4 jacket as cosmetics in the future.
At this point I’m also a little unsure on how the zombie mechanic will actually work. Will they block off corridors and areas, forcing survivors to find another way around or just accept an infection? Or will there be a prompt or QTE to dodge past them? Unsure. It looks like you’ll be able to block them off with pallets and the like, at least, which may mean that perks like Any Means Necessary to reset pallets might come in handy.
Fortunately, we don’t have to wait too long to find out exactly how all this plays out. The Resident Evil Chapter will be available June 15 for $11.99 USD. And if you want to try it even sooner, it’ll be on the public test build tonight.