During a livestream today, Capcom showed off the first substantial Resident Evil Village gameplay footage, and also announced something new: a multiplayer mode called RE:Verse (pronounced 'are-ee-verse,' not 'reverse') that'll come free with Village.
Outside of being bundled with it, RE:Verse doesn't seem to have much to do with Village. Rather, it's being pitched as a treat for Resident Evil's 25th anniversary. It will feature "beloved Resident Evil characters as they clash in six-person deathmatches," says Capcom, with a minimum of four players per match.
There's a twist, too: "When players are defeated in combat, their character respawns by mutating into a bioweapon to enact revenge on their foes."
A comic book-style dot pattern filter gives RE:Verse a somewhat distinctive look (well, it looks like 3D art with dots on it), and to be honest, it looks incredibly awkward to play, which is pretty Resident Evil of it.
I'm mildly curious. The over-the-shoulder perspective isn't too fashionable in games these days (even in Resident Evil itself), and especially not in multiplayer games. I was just talking about Lost Planet (opens in new tab), another Capcom third-person shooter, the other day—I miss that clunky-ass series, and I could see RE:Verse being a temporarily fun (possibly janky) way to goof off. Unnecessary multiplayer modes are sometimes great. Mass Effect 3's comes to mind.
Beta signups for RE:Verse have been open for a little while, although we only found out exactly what it was today. You can still sign up for a chance to participate here (opens in new tab), and the first session will be held on January 27.
We also learned today that Resident Evil Village will release on May 7—and RE:Verse with it, presumably, since it's a free pack-in. Capcom hasn't said whether or not RE:Verse will also be sold separately. Multiplayer mode Resident Evil: Resistance was included with Resident Evil 3 Remake, but not sold separately, so don't expect it—this seems to be the same kind of thing.
I'll leave you with some official RE:Verse screenshots to mull over: