So, is it Resident Evil VII or 7? The logo says VII, but then the hashtag was RE7, and the others did not use roman numerals...anyway.
I estimate we are at least halfway through Resident Evil 7 and I am pleased to say that nearly every concern I had about the game has been assuaged. It is exceptional and probably the best horror game I have played in many, many years.
Of the essential aesthetic properties I previously discussed, only two seem to have failed to fully materialize during my time with the game thus far. These would be A) camp and B) the "spec ops vs bio-abominations" theme. Of these remaining essentials, A is very, very weakly still present and I am reliably informed via internet spoilers and certain in-game hints that B will indeed rise from the dead before the end of the game.
Interestingly enough about property A: although I think it is essential in maintaining the Resi Spirit, this game is written so well and the tone is so expertly crafted that I almost don't even miss it. In fact, when the player character Ethan eventually DOES punctuate a ghastly scenario with some gauche piece of dialogue it actually feels out of place instead of cathartic. For an RE sequel, this is truly bizarre!
Complaints not regarding it's proper conformation to the Resi Spirit are minor, entirely forgivable, and easily rectified should a similar title follow in it's footsteps. For instance, the admittedly horrifying fodder which accounts for all non-boss-type encounters are greatly lacking in variety. Even so, they are a welcome and cathartic relief to the high-stakes gameplay revolving around the more dangerous and well developed enemy characters. This is the only sort of half-complaint I can muster at this time.
If you are a Resident Evil fan, rejoice; The future is suddenly grim again.