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Resident Evil achieves complete global saturation, sells enough copies to make it the 8th biggest country on Earth

 Leon from Resident Evil 4 doing the smoulder among a run-down village.
Leon from Resident Evil 4 doing the smoulder among a run-down village.

I admit it: I kind of thought, given that the original Resident Evil 4 has been reissued more times than the Bible and the Little Red Book combined, that enthusiasm for its full-blown remake might have been at a low ebb. Well, shows what I know. Capcom just announced that the RE4 remake has topped 7 million sales a little under a year post-release.

Not only that, but the Resident Evil series as a whole has sold over 154 million games since it first emerged from a gross flesh chrysalis back in 1996, which means you could give a copy to the entire population of Russia and still have almost eight million left in reserve. Congratulations to Resident Evil on becoming the eighth largest nation on Earth.

Capcom attributes this success to "continuous support from the passionate fan base across the globe" and says it's the publisher's "flagship game series." I suppose that's the kind of thing you have to write in a press release, but it'd be good if one day a game company swerved on us and attributed its success to the Mandate of Heaven or an industrial quantity of psilocybin.

Anyway, those sales—both RE4's and Resident Evil's more generally—aren't broken down by platform, but I'd be very curious to see those numbers. We live in a world where you can now play the RE4 remake and RE: Village on your iPhone. Are people really taking advantage of that? Is that what Capcom needed to push it over the 7 million mark after chalking up a little over 6 million sales by the end of 2023?

Alas, we don't know, but one thing is almost certain: More RE remakes are coming. Last year, Capcom was asking fans which game they wanted remade next. After all, with RE4 out of the way, the only mainline games left are the much less well-loved RE5 and 6, unless Capcom fancies re-remaking 1, so the company is probably keen to know where it should direct its efforts next now that it no longer has an obvious next-in-line game.

My hope is that it settles on Code Veronica, the still console-bound adventure focusing on Claire and Chris Redfield: this was originally conceived of as the third mainline game in the series, before becoming a Dreamcast side-entry. Capcom would port it to other consoles, but it was last seen on Xbox 360 and has never had a PC version. With a year's breathing room between us and RE4, I imagine we'll find out what Capcom has in store sooner rather than later.