Gaming

All 7 main Resident Evil games, ranked

Resident Evil popularized the survival horror genre with its 1996 PlayStation debut.

Since then, the series has changed with the times, for better and worse.

Here's our ranking of the main series Resident Evil games, from worst to best.

7. Resident Evil 6 (2012)

Resident Evil 6 was the most ambitious game yet in the series, but the execution ultimately fell flat.

Resident Evil 6 featured multiple storylines with characters from across the series, but they all added up to an uneven, convoluted story.

The game also abandoned its survival horror roots to focus squarely on action.

6. Resident Evil 5 (2009)

A setting change and an AI partner brought more trouble than they were worth.

Resident Evil 5 drove the series hard into action territory, which was made even more unpopular by an uncooperative AI companion.

The game also rightfully drew criticism for the extremely dodgy optics of its white protagonists gunning down Black zombies in an impoverished African village.

5. Resident Evil 3: Nemesis (1999)

Nemesis runs concurrent with Resident Evil 2, but fails to live up to the quality of its predecessor.

Resident Evil 3 introduced the Nemesis — a hulking monster that stalked players throughout the entire game.

While the Nemesis was an interesting concept, and there's nothing particularly bad about Resident Evil 3, it's not particularly great either.

Its 2020 remake modernizes the game, but doesn't do much to elevate it.

4. Resident Evil (1996)

The game that started it all is still worth playing.

Resident Evil's gameplay feels dated now, but it's easy to see how it caught on with players at the time.

The original Resident Evil has the most grounded story of the series and its tense atmosphere still holds up today.

3. Resident Evil 7: Biohazard (2017)

A huge departure with an even bigger payoff.

Resident Evil 7 moved the series to a first-person perspective, giving it a new way to terrify players (especially in VR).

It also focuses on a new character, Ethan Winters, whose story is totally separate from the main Resident Evil plotline.

2. Resident Evil 2 (1998)

The best of the PlayStation trilogy.

Resident Evil 2 isn't a huge departure from the original game, instead refining and expanding on its foreboding atmosphere and resource management.

It gives players a larger environment to explore with characters who would become favorites throughout the series.

Its 2019 remake updates the game, making Mr. X a constant, looming threat akin to Resident Evil 3's Nemesis.

1. Resident Evil 4 (2005)

A perfect blend of action and horror.

Resident Evil 4 left behind the fixed camera, swapping to an over-the-shoulder perspective that allowed for more action-heavy gameplay.

Unlike the games that followed, Resident Evil 4 managed to let its action shine without overshadowing the horror.

In both gameplay and story, Resident Evil 4 is constantly surprising, making it worth trying for the first time or revisiting today.