Resident Evil 7: Biohazard was one of the more graphically impressive games from Capcom to hit the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC in 2017. Surprisingly, it is now getting a Nintendo Switch release, but it is how the developer is making the game possible on the hybrid console that is gaining attention.
Capcom announced Resident Evil 7: Cloud Edition early Monday in Japan and will be an experimental game exclusive to the country as it will run on the Nintendo Switch almost entirely by streaming the game from cloud servers, per DualShockers and COG Connected. The game will require Switch owners to download a standalone cloud-streaming application via the Nintendo eShop when it becomes available in Japan on May 24. The app weighs in at only 45 MB versus the multi-GB size of the full game.
Downloading the cloud app will grant players a free trial of Resident Evil 7 for 15 minutes. This is where Capcom’s scheme becomes even more eyebrow-raising as players will then pay for a ticket that grants access to the game for 180 days. The initial price is listed at 2,000 yen (approximately $18) for the 180-day ticket.
The entire Resident Evil 7 game is included in the price along with all the DLC add-ons. This includes Banned Footage Volume 1, Banned Footage Volume 2, End of Zoe, and Not a Hero DLC.
There has been no announcement yet for the game to arrive in the United States or Europe.
Cloud gaming has been tried with varying levels of success. Sony’s PlayStation Now subscription is currently the most notable as it allows gamers to play PS3 games through their PlayStation 4 without downloading the full game. The results vary and are largely dependent on both the speed and quality of the connection involved, which has resulted in extremely mixed reception for PS Now.
A poor connection can result in lag, which affects gameplay and degrade the quality of the graphics. Games on the Nintendo Switch vary from 720p to 1080p depending on the title and whether the console is docked and plugged into a TV or being played in handheld mode, but there is no confirmation what resolution Resident Evil 7 will run.
It is also worth noting the Nintendo Switch primarily connects to the internet wirelessly as the console does not feature a dedicated port for an ethernet cable and requires an adapter. A wireless connection can be even trickier when it comes to streaming games via the cloud as even an ultra-fast broadband connection can be bogged down by wireless interference or other causes.
Still, this will be an interesting experiment to see if Nintendo is able to bring even more AAA games to the Nintendo Switch via cloud gaming.