For years, Resident Evil has dominated the survival horror genre. Heck, they are often credited with creating the genre in the first place. The first Resident Evil came out back in 1996 and once it did, the gaming industry was forever changed.

In the 25 years since, developer Capcom released a fair number of new entries to the franchise, including some spin-offs, and even a couple of remakes. Today, we will take a look at the best of the mainline franchise releases and determine which entry is the best and which is the worst. We'll start things off with the worst. Which game do you think will be our top contender? Place your bets now at

Worst #12: Resident Evil 0
Serving as a prequel to the events of the original Resident Evil, Resident Evil 0 made several undesirable changes to the formula. Fans largely disliked the dual-character system. The two main protagonists were the largely forgettable Rebecca Chambers and escaped convict Billy Coen.

Though not an inexcusable affront on its own, the way inventory management was implemented left a lot to be desired. For instance, inventory management consisted of this weird juggling of items between the characters. Speaking of the inventory, there also was not any sort of an item chest in the game. This meant that to deal with limited inventory space, you often had to throw items on the ground and remember where they were in relation to other items in the same room.

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#11: Resident Evil 3 (Remake)
A remake of the classic Resident Evil 3 sounded good in theory but sadly the execution was massively lacking. The remake was already working with limited material but it still felt as though the remake cut far too many corners, making an already short game even shorter. What Capcom should have done was expand upon the original but they instead went in the complete opposite direction. That is not even mentioning how the big baddy "Nemesis" was turned into more of a generic monster type roughly mid-way through the game. It took most of the tension out of the entire experience.

#10: Resident Evil 6
Resident Evil 6 took out anything related to "survival" and "horror" and just threw it out the window. The sixth main entry was firmly an action title through and through. Resident Evil 6 also makes the mistake of trying to cram in four separate, yet lightly interconnected campaigns into one game, instead of perhaps limiting it to just two or even three.

Really, the biggest saving grace for Resident Evil 6 is the fact that the campaigns can be played through completely with a co-op partner. It was also somewhat nice having a Resident Evil game that brought together most of the main players from the previous entries, even if they did not fully interact with one another.

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#9: Resident Evil – Code: Veronica
Technically, Code: Veronica is the fourth major release in the Resident Evil franchise. It stars Claire Redfield, one of the most severely underutilized characters in the Resident Evil franchise. Code: Veronica was the first title in the series to make use of real-time 3D environments. This entry is a competent release that was largely ignored due to its time-limited release on the failed Dreamcast platform. It did later come out on the PlayStation 2 and GameCube. It is in dire need of the remake treatment sooner rather than later. The only major disappointment with Code: Veronica is Steve Burnside.

#8: Resident Evil 3: Nemesis
Resident Evil 3: Nemesis showed a lot of promise for the franchise back in its debut in 1999 on the original PlayStation. This game featured the classic survival-horror look and feel of its two predecessors and introduced "random" encounters with the Nemesis. This bioweapon would show up at various points throughout the game, prompting the player to select an option as to their next action. These choices typically came down between choosing to fight the Nemesis or fleeing and risking the chance of the Nemesis pursing through parts of the game. These choices allowed for a decent amount of replayability in a game that was shorter than the rest.

#7: Resident Evil
The OG and the grandfather of the survival-horror genre. The original Resident Evil may feel a bit antiquated these days with its tank controls and laughably bad voice acting. However, the atmosphere is so thick you could spread it on toast. The lack of resources and puzzle-like environments are iconic these days and remain staples of the survival-horror genre all these years later.

#6: Resident Evil HD Remaster (Remake)
Take everything great about the original Resident Evil and improve upon it in every single way. The visuals are stellar thanks to static pre-rendered backgrounds. The core gameplay remains intact but are given boosts thanks to the advances in technology since the original was released. If you are going to play the original, I strongly urge you to play through the HD Remaster above the original thanks to the quality of life improvements, expanded content, and the fact that this game still manages to hold up even to this day.

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#5: Resident Evil 5
Like Resident Evil 6, Resident Evil 5 is far more in the "action" camp than the survival-horror one. However, the game's action never felt too over the top compared to its sequel. It also incorporated stellar co-op gameplay which is why the game ranks so highly on our list. If you are playing solo, you may not enjoy the game quite as much, but there's just nothing that compares to executing a melee combo with your partner against an enemy. It also doesn't hurt that the game's environments feel varied, the puzzles are decent, and the story keeps you engaged.

#4: Resident Evil 7
The first first-person entry in the franchise brought the series back away from the "action" trend of its predecessors and back within the survival-horror camp. This entry is positively oozing tension and creepy atmosphere. It also introduces players to entirely new characters, taking them out of their comfort zone that resulted in a very polarizing experience for fans. This drastic shift for the franchise certainly paid off as it offers one of the more unique experiences for the franchise to date.

#3: Resident Evil 2 (Remake)
The remake of Resident Evil 2 strongly follows the same story found in the original from 1998 but manages to mix up the formula in interesting ways. The game feels more like a re-imagining of the original Resident Evil 2 than a straight one for one update. It delivers a tense atmosphere with modern gameplay mechanics.

The Resident Evil 2 remake ditches the static camera in favor of an over the shoulder view similar to Resident Evil 4. The use of the modern RE Engine means that the gore has never been more gory and the scares never more scary. Add in the ever-present Mr. X and you have a recipe for one of the best Resident Evil games ever released.

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#2: Resident Evil 2
For as good as the remake of Resident Evil 2 is, there is still something to be said about the original. Thanks to the fact that you experienced different story segments between four separate playthroughs meant that you had a ton of game for the price of one. Back in 1998, this was a revolutionary idea that few games have been able to replicate.

It is also terrifying the first time Mr. X shows up during your second playthrough because it isn't something that you expect to have happen. Unlike in the remake, Mr. X was limited only to the second playthroughs for both Claire and Leon. Despite the graphical shortcomings compared to the remake, the original Resident Evil 2 is a stellar title that easily ranks among the best games of all time.

Best #1: Resident Evil 4
This is the game that had the biggest impact on gaming after its initial release on the GameCube back in 2005. This game has been ported to countless other platforms over the years and it is for good reason: This game is phenomenal. The characters, the pacing, the environments, all worked in tandem to deliver the most memorable gameplay experiences out there.

Resident Evil 4 was the first game in the franchise to ditch the static camera in favor of a close over-the-shoulder perspective. It essentially changed the face of the franchise in an instant. The game also had a more pronounced focus on action but still retained enough of its survival-horror roots to give players the best of both worlds. It was not until Resident Evil's 5 and 6 that the action took center stage.

It will be remarkably interesting to see where Resident Evil 8 ends up on this list when compared to its predecessors. The game seems to be quite promising thus far and Capcom is certainly saying the right things when it comes to the game.