Unveiling the Horror- Resident Evil in Chronological Order


The world of Resident Evil is a labyrinthine web of chilling encounters with mutated monstrosities, corporate conspiracies, and heart-pounding survival. With over two decades of games, movies, and animated adaptations, diving into this rich franchise can be daunting.

Whether you’re a seasoned S.T.A.R.S. member or a curious newcomer, this guide will illuminate the path through Resident Evil in chronological order.

Glimmer of a Prequel: Resident Evil 0 (2002)

While released chronologically later, Resident Evil 0 serves as a chilling prequel to the first game. We are introduced to rookie cop Rebecca Chambers and convicted murderer Billy Coen, who find themselves trapped on a nightmarish train bound for a seemingly abandoned research facility. Here, players encounter the early stages of the t-Virus outbreak unleashed by the Umbrella Corporation, a recurring antagonist throughout the series.

The Mansion Incident: Resident Evil (1996) or Remake (2002)

The iconic first game, ResidentEvil, throws us into the heart of the terrifying outbreak. A special police unit, S.T.A.R.S., investigates a mansion on the outskirts of Raccoon City and stumbles upon a horrifying scene: the mansion’s staff transformed into flesh-eating zombies due to the t-Virus. Players can choose to control either Jill Valentine or Chris Redfield as they navigate the mansion’s deadly puzzles, conserve limited ammo, and face grotesque bioweapons. The 2002 remake offers a stunning visual upgrade and expands upon the lore, making it a great option for both newcomers and veterans.

Raccoon City’s Descent: Resident Evil 2 (1998) or Remake (2019)

Following the events of the mansion incident, Raccoon City falls victim to a full-blown T-virus outbreak. Players control either Leon S. Kennedy, a rookie cop on his first day, or Claire Redfield, Chris’ sister searching for him. Both navigate the decaying city, encountering iconic enemies like the monstrous Mr. X and the terrifying Licker. Resource management and careful exploration are crucial for survival, with each character experiencing a unique path through the ravaged city. The 2019 remake reimagines the events with a stunning third-person perspective, breathing new life into this classic.

Nemesis Pursued: Resident Evil 3: Nemesis (1999) or Remake (2020)

Picking up shortly after ResidentEvil 2, Jill Valentine finds herself hunted by a relentless pursuer – Nemesis, a powerful bioweapon designed for eliminating S.T.A.R.S. members. The fast-paced action emphasizes Jill’s desperate struggle for escape, with limited resources and the ever-present threat of Nemesis’ brutal attacks. The 2020 remake offers a more action-oriented experience while retaining the core chase mechanics and the terrifying atmosphere of the original.

Claire’s European Ordeal: Resident Evil Code: Veronica (2000)

A few months after Raccoon City’s destruction, Claire Redfield finds herself on a mysterious prison island off the coast of Europe. Here, she encounters a new strain of the t-Virus and familiar faces like Alfred Ashford, a descendant of the founder of Umbrella Corporation.

Code: Veronica introduces new gameplay mechanics like weapon combining and features pre-rendered backgrounds with 3D character models, creating a unique visual style.

A New Chapter Begins: Resident Evil 4 (2005) or Remake (2023)

Six years after the Raccoon City incident, a government agent, Leon S. Kennedy, is sent on a mission to rescue the President’s daughter from a secluded European village. This marks a significant shift in the series, featuring a more action-oriented approach and introducing a new enemy faction – Los Ganados, villagers infected with a mind-controlling parasite. Resource management remains important, but players also have access to a wider array of weapons and a knife that can be used for close-quarter combat. The highly anticipated 2023 remake breathes new life into this beloved entry with stunning visuals and refined gameplay.

Interquel Investigations: Resident Evil Revelations (2012)

Set between Resident Evil 4 and 5, Revelations takes place on a seemingly abandoned cruise ship. Jill Valentine and Chris Redfield’s new partner, BSAA agent Parker Luciani, investigate a missing BSAA team. The game features a unique episodic structure, fixed camera angles, and a return to the series’ survival horror roots.


Q. Should I play Resident Evil in release order or chronological order?

This is a matter of personal preference! Here’s a breakdown of each approach:

  • Release Order: This lets you experience the series as it unfolded, capturing the evolution of gameplay and story. Start with the original ResidentEvil (1996) and progress from there.
  • Chronological Order: This provides a more cohesive story experience, following the events in the timeline. Begin with ResidentEvil 0 (2002), then ResidentEvil (1996), and so on.

Q. What’s the difference between remakes and originals?

Several ResidentEvil games have received remakes that boast updated graphics, gameplay mechanics, and sometimes even story elements. Here’s a quick guide:

  • ResidentEvil (2002): Remake of the original (1996) with enhanced visuals and some gameplay tweaks.
  • ResidentEvil 2 (2019): Complete remake of RE2 (1998) with a third-person over-the-shoulder perspective.
  • ResidentEvil 3 (2020): Remake of RE3: Nemesis (1999) with a similar gameplay style to RE2 Remake.
  • Resident-Evil 4 Remake (2023): Modernized take on the beloved RE4 (2005), preserving the core gameplay but revamping visuals and controls.

Q. What about the movies? Are they connected to the games?

The ResidentEvil live-action movies offer a separate storyline not directly connected to the games. The plots take inspiration from the games’ characters and themes but feature an original protagonist, Alice.

Q. I’m new to Resident Evil. Where should I begin?

If you’re a newcomer, here are some recommendations:

  • For a classic experience: Start with the original Resident Evil or its remake.
  • For a more modern feel: Try Resident Evil 2 Remake or Resident Evil 4 (or its recent remake).
  • For action-adventure horror: Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil 5 offer a more action-oriented approach.
  • For a fresh take: Dive into Resident Evil 7: Biohazard (2017) with its first-person perspective and unsettling atmosphere.

No matter which entry point you choose, be prepared for pulse-pounding scares, unforgettable characters, and a deep dive into the world of bioweapons and corporate greed. Welcome to Raccoon City… and beyond!

Additional Tips:

  • Many Resident Evil games offer multiple characters and storylines. Explore them all for a richer experience!
  • The series is known for its challenging puzzles. Don’t hesitate to look up hints if you get stuck.
  • Dive deeper into the lore! Wikis and fan communities offer a wealth of information about the characters, locations, and events within the Resident Evil universe.

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About the author

Jyoti Kumari

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