Resident Evil 7: Biohazard was one of the biggest hits of 2017, amidst a huge, and endless, sea of biggest hits. Nintendo fans have gotten left out of the experience though, with no Switch version in sight... until now, that is. What some may be surprised to discover, however, is that this isn't a standard release. Announced via a 3-minute long trailer on Resident Evil 7: Biohazard's official Japanese YouTube channel, RE7 is coming to the Switch digitally as a 'Cloud Version' (named Biohazard 7: Resident Evil Cloud Version in Japan). This means multiple caveats to keep in mind, plus some unique pricing behind the whole thing.
Because this version of the game is run on the cloud, players will technically be streaming the game to the Switch via an Internet connection, rather than having it traditionally installed. All one has to do is free up 45 MB of space for a file install, and the game will run through via the cloud. The developers over at Capcom have verified that players will be able to play both docked and un-docked, but you'll need a stable Internet connection for both, as it's required to use the cloud and stream. Players will be offered a demo version of all this, which will let them play the game for 15 minutes, free of charge. Once the trial is up, a 180-day service pass must be bought in order to play the game in full, meaning you'll have to play through everything in 180 days or re-purchase once that period is up. The pass costs ¥2000 (around $18). Once the game is purchased, save files are stored on the cloud, rather than internally. If your account is inactive for a long time, this save file may be deleted.
Good news is that the whole package will come with all four DLC packs that released for Resident Evil 7 over its lifespan, meaning this will be the complete version of the game. The DLC is nothing to turn one's nose up at either; while Banned Footage 1 & 2 feature mostly mini-games (plus some minor story episodes), Not a Hero and End of Zoe are both really solid bits of story content that add to the game and continue it in some cool ways. The bad news is that, as of right now, all of this is exclusive to Japan and the Japanese eShop. We'll likely find out more from Capcom about other regions receiving this in due time though. It makes sense that Japan would get the news first since the development team originates from there. On the flip side, if you don't feel like waiting, it's pretty easy to create a Japanese Nintendo Switch account and peruse their eShop for yourself; there are many tutorials online about how to do so.
With all that being said, it's great to see Resident Evil 7: Biohazard finally makes it over to the Nintendo Switch, even if it's not quite in the form we expected it to be in. Resident Evil 7 is also available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Windows PC, along with a Gold Edition sold for each, which comes with all DLC just like the Cloud Version. Resident Evil 7 was a true re-evolution of the franchise, bringing the series back to its more claustrophobic, survival horror roots, and setting up some important new elements and characters within its universe; you definitely shouldn't miss out on it if you're a Resident Evil fan. You can check out the reveal trailer for the Cloud Version below, complete with the game's haunting theme song.