RESIDENT EVIL

How to play Resident Evil games in order? Village included

The Resident Evil game series is getting a new title, Village, and many players are wondering how to play the franchise to follow the full storyline.

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resident evil games in order

Resident Evil is synonymous with zombies, horror, blood, gore... and successful video games. The Japanese franchise, known in its country of origin as Biohazard, was created by Capcom in 1996. 25 years later, it's one of the most successful video games series in the world with over 107 million units sold worldwide as of 2020 as stated publicly by Capcom in its third quarter fiscal report 2020. 27 games (including spin-offs), several film adaptations, iterations on manga, novels and other formats and an upcoming series in Netflix form a well-known cultural brand.

The series helped to define the survival horror genre in video games with its first title in 1996 and since then it's managed to stay constantly relevant by evolving its gameplay mechanics and its atmosphere with titles as Resident Evil 4, Resident Evil 7 or Resident Evil 2: Remake that helped to set the standards of the genre.

And now, in 2021, the franchise is getting a major new title in the main saga: Resident Evil Village, which represents the eighth numbered installment. The game continues the story of Ethan Winters, the protagonist of Resident Evil 7, and many users will likely want to play the full saga in the right order if they are keen to understand how this new installment fits into the story arc. For those players, here's how to play the main games of the series, in terms of storytelling relevance, in chronological order.

How to play the Resident Evil series in chronological order

To play the games in the right order, it's mostly simple enough by taking into account the game titles, many of which are numbered, but not all. Here's the full list:

Zero would be the first installment to play. It works as a prequel to the first game in the series being set the day before the incidents in the mansion where Resident Evil takes place. Players take on the role of Rebecca Chambers, a S.T.A.R.S. rookie cop that also appears in Resident Evil. This title explains the origins of antagonist Albert Wesker and Umbrella.

Resident Evil, the first and original game of the series released in 1996, would be the second on the list. The title introduces Chris Redfield and Jill Valentine as two of the main protagonists of the franchise (Chris Redfield still has a part to play all way through to the latest title, Village, however the mood around the character has shifted in this latest instalment). The two cops soon discover that the Mansion they are investigating holds many secrets.

After the prequel and the original game, it's time for Resident Evil 2 and 3. The events of both titles share part of the timeline and some events of one are mirrored in the other. In Resident Evil 2, players control Leon S. Kennedy and Claire Redfield, two people who meet each other in Raccoon City right after a zombie outbreak is spreading out of control. Meanwhile, Resident Evil 3, with Jill Valentine as the protagonist, follows the story in other parts of the same Raccoon City while she is being pursued by Nemesis, a colossal zombie monster who is chasing all S.T.A.R.S. members.

Code Veronica allows players to continue Claire Redfield's story while she continues to look for her brother, while digging into the murky secrets of Umbrella Corporation.

The next installment in order, Resident Evil 4, is focused on Leon S. Kennedy and how he is recruited, due to his fighting expertise and his accomplishment in the Racoon City incident, by the US Government to save the President's daughter who is being held captive in a rural town in Spain.

Resident Evil Revelations takes players to the next part of the story by following Jill Valentine and Chris Redfield again. This time, the main setting of the game is a claustrophobic cruise ship that is being used as a laboratory to develop a new virus.

Resident Evil 5 brings Chris Redfield to Africa alongside a new colleague: Sheva Alomar. Their mission is to stop the biological plans of Umbrella in the aforementioned continent. Following on directly from this game is Resident Evil Revelations 2, starring Claire Redfield and her friend Moira Burton, in which they are taken away to a desert island, where they have to survive several threats.

Next up is Resident Evil 6, the most action-oriented title of the series. Players here control several characters of the franchise (Chris Redfield, Leon S. Kennedy, Jake Muller, and Ada Wong) while they try to stop a worldwide biological terrorist attack.

The last installment before Resident Evil Village is the seventh game, titled highly appropriately Resident Evil 7: Biohazard, which suddenly changes the atmosphere of the series for a more horrifying one. Ethan Winters, the new protagonist is looking for his missing wife and faces the Baker family, a very mysterious group living in a damp and forsaken place.

How to play the Resident Evil games in chronological order

  • Resident Evil Zero
  • Resident Evil / Remake
  • Resident Evil 2 / Remake
  • Resident Evil 3 / Remake
  • Resident Evil: Code Veronica
  • Resident Evil 4
  • Resident Evil Revelations
  • Resident Evil 5
  • Resident Evil Revelations 2
  • Resident Evil 6
  • Resident Evil 7: Biohazard
  • Resident Evil Village

All Resident Evil games in order by date of release

  • Resident Evil (1996)
  • Resident Evil 2 (1998)
  • Resident Evil 3 (1999)
  • Resident Evil Survivor (2000)
  • Resident Evil Code Veronica (2000)
  • Resident Evil Survivor 2: Code Veronica (2001)
  • Resident Evil: Gaiden (2001)
  • Resident Evil Remake (2002)
  • Resident Evil Zero (2002)
  • Resident Evil Dead Aim (2003)
  • Resident Evil Outbreak (2003)
  • Resident Evil Outbreak: File #2 (2004)
  • Resident Evil 4 (2005)
  • Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles (2007)
  • Resident Evil 5 (2009)
  • Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles (2009)
  • Resident Evil The Mercenaries 3D (2011)
  • Resident Evil Revelations (2012)
  • Resident Evil Operation Raccoon City (2012)
  • Resident Evil 6 (2012)
  • Resident Evil Revelations 2 (2015)
  • Umbrella Corps (2016)
  • Resident Evil 7 (2017)
  • Resident Evil 2 Remake (2019)
  • Resident Evil 3 Remake (2020)
  • Resident Evil Resistance (2020)
  • Resident Evil Village (2021)