If it wasn’t already obvious by now, Resident Evil Village is, in many ways, an overt homage to the series’ most successful and genre-defining entry. From the rural European setting and almost wholesale lifting of gameplay systems straight from Resident Evil 4, Capcom has clearly made a concerted effort to evoke a feeling of vague nostalgia for Ethan Winters’ upcoming struggle for survival, despite the fact that this is an all-new adventure and story.
What will be interesting to see, of course, is whether the sequel will have any narrative ties to Leon S. Kennedy’s encounter with the Los Illuminados, and given the potentially close proximity of both games’ settings, it could well be the case that the foes we’ve so far seen are a product of the Las Plagas parasite. Indeed, the extent to which both titles intertwine with each other remains to be seen, though the confirmation of one particular character’s return certainly suggests to us that the answer is anything but superficial, as you can see below.
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Yes, the morbidly obese chap up above is The Duke and he serves as Village‘s resident merchant. Like his spiritual predecessor, this rotund vendor will be Ethan’s first port of call whenever he has cash spare to upgrade weapons and/or purchase supplies and will show up in various areas, likely as an unmissable human signpost intended to let the player know that they’re in relative safety.
In terms of backstory, producer Peter Fabiano gives no hints as to why The Duke is already aware of Ethan’s identity or, for that matter why he’s even helping him in the first place. But as always, feel free to share your own theories about the character’s origins with us and others in the usual place down below!
Resident Evil Village is out May 7th for current and last-gen consoles as well as PC.