Platform: PlayStation Year: 1996
Original review score: 5 out of 5 Stars
Horror wasn't the genre of choice for many gamers until Capcom gave rise to the original Resident Evil, which proudly displayed its B-horror movie roots while quietly trailblazing a hugely popular game genre now called "survival horror." Alone in the Dark did it first, but Resident Evil made it iconic.
Why It Was Innovative:
Instead of most games where your weapons and health were as numerous as the enemies themselves, Resident Evil put the squeeze on players by severely limiting the ammunition and items they could carry. Knowing that you couldn't afford to waste bullets or healing herbs made each enemy encounter far more dramatic, hammering home the "survival" elements of Resident Evil. After the original Resident Evil revolutionized the industry, every other horror game creator would meticulously recreate the trademarks of the originator: the cramped rooms, the claustrophobic camera angles, the undead enemies, and the bullet-counting tension. That is, until the series re-invented itself with the masterful Resident Evil 4
, a game that set the stage for the modern third-person shooter genre and games such as Gears of War