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Famitsu conducted an interview with four of Resident Evil 2's staff members, Hideki Kamiya; Shinji Mikami; Yasuyuki Matsunami and Jun Takeuchi (director; producer; CG modeler and motion designer, respectively) in January 1998. It was later translated into English by the gaming magazine Tips & Tricks.
Famitsu: That means it is all up to the player which pattern he wants to use?
Mikami: Yes, but if you play twice, that will be sufficient. Enthusiastic gamers can enjoy the game by changing characters at the halfway point.
Famitsu: Depending on which character a player chooses and how he plays influences the later scenario. Oops, did I say something I shouldn't have?
Mikami: No, that's okay.
Famitsu: In the sequel, the character's animation changes when he or she [incurs] damage.
Mikami: We changed it because in the first game, you never knew your character's health condition unless you opened the sub-screen. Also, I was thinking that [limping and moving slow] could be used to create tense situations that you've never seen. For example, a situation where your character has an injury and cannot run becomes even more intense when some fast enemy like a dog tries to attack.
Famitsu: Is Raccoon City in the United States?
Kamiya: Yes. Where is that (asking the others), a mountainous part or Southwest region?
Mikami: No, it was a Northwest region.
Matsunami: Well, we really don't care where.
Mikami: It was some countryside.
Famitsu: So, it's basically a city where there are no tourists.
Mikami: That is correct; there are no sight-seeing spots in the city. The economy is supported by a big pharmaceutical company... Umbrella.
Famitsu: Can you give us the lowdown on Umbrella?
Mikami: Umbrella is a large corporation buying out and merging with many smaller companies. Over 30% of the Raccoon City population is employed by either umbrella or one of their subsidiaries. Umbrella also happens to be one of the key investors in the S.T.A.R.S. organization.
Famitsu: I noticed there isn't much modernization to the city. Old buildings like the Raccoon Police Station are everywhere.
Takeuchi: We used many modern buildings in version 1.5. When we restarted development, that changed, too.
Kamiya: The structures changed from concrete to wood. We changed everything from the structure of the buildings to the textures.
Takeuchi: We were told to upgrade the quality since we were remaking the game. It took longer than before.
Matsunami: Since we changed the look, we could not use many of the elements we had before.
Famitsu: So you changed a whole lot?
Matsunami: Yes, we had to gather new data when we decided to remake the game. We said, "Let's go see these types of buildings.".
Famitsu: Did you travel to the Northwest region of the United States?
Matsunami: Can I say this (asking the others)?
Takeuchi: About illegal data gathering?
Mikami: Yeah, you can say that. We researched here in Japan.
Takeuchi: We found a very old, Western-style building somewhere close.
Matsunami: Well, we kinda snuck in and took pictures. The cameraman got caught and was scolded. But because of these pictures, we were able to create buildings with [the right atmosphere].
Kamiya: In Kyoto, Osaka and Nagoya, there are a lot of old Western-style buildings. We just rushed in and took pictures.
Famitsu: I was surprised at the appearance of the female zombie in the game.
Mikami: Her voice was done pretty nicely, right? Did you hesitate shooting her?
Famitsu: Yes, but I felt I had no choice.
Mikami: In part 2, there are many more types of zombies; around ten different ones.
Famitsu: I was very surprised when the dog zombies crashed through the windows in the first game. Are there many scenes like this in the sequel?
Matsunami: But we got criticized for over-doing it, and we were asked to cut down on those types of scenes.
Mikami: A lot of things appeared by breaking glass, so I told the staff not to use the same methods over and over.
Famitsu: Let's talk about zombie movies. There's George Romero's Night of the Living Dead and Dawn of the Dead and Sam Raime's Evil Dead (known as Zombie Guts in Japam — Jim). Any influences?
Mikami: Among those, Romero's movies are the most scary, because zombies resemble humans so much. I also wanted to have some refreshing scenes just like the last scene in Jaws.
Famitsu: So will there be a Bio Hazard 3?
Mikami: We don't know yet... (smiles)