Gaming with my Girlfriend: Resident Evil 2064 biohazard

I play a lot of games and my girlfriend, Cheyenne, does too. We either watch each other play or play together because games are a great way to discover new interests and bubble up new fights. Below will be a set of casual reviews, opinions and general stories about the games we are playing and why we are playing them. So, if you’re looking towards playing something with your significant other or looking into playing something new for yourself, let us regale you with our coop adventures. Beware, some of these will include spoilers.

Hey, I’m Charles and I’m new to this neck of the woods. I’m going to be coming to you each month with the hottest takes, stories and tales that come from being in a relationship whose top priorities are what we’re eating for dinner and what episode of The Mindy Project did we leave off on. This month my girlfriend and I got together and played a pair of games that included Capcom’s terrifying Resident Evil 7 biohazard and indie studio MidBoss’ 2064: Read Only Memories.

Resident Evil 7 biohazard has been out for a few weeks at this point and marks a return to the origins of the series and a step back from the overly action heavy shooty pitfalls that the series has reveled in the past few years. With this in mind, Cheyenne and I jumped in with our expectations high, but nothing can truly prepare a couple of scaredy cats for entering the old decrepit Baker house together.

To start, I was driving, meaning that while she was able to cower in fear with a blanket pressed over her face to block out the whichever black goo monsters she didn’t want to see, I was forced to fight for both of us through dimly lit basements and terribly furnished living rooms. The first hour of Resident Evil 7 is one of the most white knuckle experiences I’ve had with a video game in quite a long time. I don’t know if it was the disgusting environments you travel through or just the overall sense of uneasiness that comes with not know what your surroundings hold in store for you, but your first foray into the Baker residence is met with a constant sense of anxiety. This is only amplified by having someone in your ear yelling “Nope! Nope! Nope!” every few seconds which Cheyenne had no problem in obliging me with.

The encounter where all hope was lost that this game could be played at the “suggested” brightness was early on walking down a submerged hallway, where after a slow and arduous slog through this dank pool of water, you’re greeted by a single bubble followed soon after by a bloated body which after making you want to vomit makes you second guess why exactly you’re trudging along on this journey. This sense of repugnance is elevated by the unnerving sound design which does a fantastic job of bringing you into this blacken, mold-infested world.

With all of this being said, we highly recommend playing Resident Evil 7 with someone else. Not just for the comfort of having someone next to you while your hands shake at every floorboard creak, but simply to enjoy the absurdity of some of the things that come up in it. Take starting with the first boss fight which has you fighting the deranged patriarch of the Baker family in a garage as you struggle for control of a muscle car that you eventually crash into him with. It’s a small thing, but a moment where we looked at each other and busted out laughing for the first time since making our dark decent into the shoddy wooden Baker abode. It’s a welcomed relief after the proceeding hour of terror and something the hearkens back to Resident Evil games of old which we desperately needed.

The other game we were able to sink our teeth into was 2064: Read Only Memories from independent developer MidBoss games. We’d previously played a number of choice heavy adventure games together, from Telltale’s Batman series to the critically-underplayed Three Fourths Home and it seemed like a genre that work well in a partner dynamic. With 2064, however, something just didn’t click. While I enjoyed it plenty on my own (you can check out my review right here) there just wasn’t a spark to make us want to keep playing it as a couple. Whether or not that had something to do with the point and click nature of the game or not I don’t really know, but exploring the journey of a new sentient A.I. just couldn’t bring us together.

Adventure and narrative games are an awesome genre to play with someone else typically, so I’ll admit I was bummed that we couldn’t vibe with 2064 the way we did with something like Until Dawn. I guess 2064 was telling a more complex and interesting story than the campy and clichéd horror tropes that Supermassive’s snowy mountain excursion brings to the table. Still, making choices with someone sitting next to you and debating what to say in any given conversation is something that we value and this will not be the last time we give a choice-based game a whirl.

So this was our month of January. Sure, there were a few titles we played on our own and about a hundred or so matches of Overwatch (that I’m sure will be covered in future installment of this series) that we didn’t get a chance to talk about, but that’s what next month is for. So until then I hope we could give you some insight into what sort of games to try out with your significant other.

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