Yeah its a bullshit excuse. In fact its exactly the excuse that the Dead Space creators are using for making DS3 more action-oriented. In reality I think think they just want to make a blockbuster, and feel that a blockbuster today demands more action because slow, creeping survival horror is more a niche market.
Odd. I actually thought RE5 and RE4 were really similar. Certainly the graphics were massively updated, and the setting was quite different (sunny african shantytowns instead of gloomy spanish countryside) but the way it played, aside from the co-op element, felt very similar to me... using the environment by barricading entrances and windows, escapes from windows and second story jumps, knocking down ladders, etc. It had a similar "store" function that I don't recall from the older games, with saleable treasures. The zombies behaved very similarly and for the most part the types you encountered were the same from 4 to 5- the big guy with the chainsaw, the viral zombies with tentacle-sprouting heads, the head-splitting dogs, the giant. Many of these quite specific enemy types were identical between the two games.
In fact I thought that RE5 was the product of some exec saying "RE4 was great! So what if we made a new game, used all the same game mechanics as RE4, but didn't limit it to Wii-level graphics, made it for the platforms we ignored last time, and set it somewhere else?"
I didn't mean that RE4 was still survival horror like old school (though imo I don't think RE4 was the same game as 5 but it was the beginning of the devolution) but I did think re4 was a really quality game. RE5 too me just felt completely different series. If it had a different name attached to it I would not once have said 'this game reminds me of resident evil'. 4 even though as you said moved away from the original RE gameplay, it to me still felt like a resident evil game. Though granted its been a long time since I played it and I'm just going by what I felt when I was playing the game.
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