Asset recycling is not a Capcom specific thing, neither is it a new thing. It is basically where a game developer gets a lot of mileage out of their assets. Things like character models, environments, animations and music. See which ones I personally “enjoy” in our Top 5 Capcom Asset Recycles.
Capcom is particularly known for its asset recycles because no other developer is as flagrant about it. Whenever you get a new Capcom game, you know that it won’t be the last you will see of those specific assets. They reuse all of their assets constantly whether it’s IGN’s screen grab for their official box art or the entire game world of Dead Rising 2 for Dead Rising 2: Off the Record, Capcom doesn’t discriminate.
5. Resident Evil Revelations 2 Raid mode emotes
Resident Evil Revelations 2 uses emotes in it’s online Raid mode, they are pretty unnecessary and the game would be the same without them but they add a bit of character. Resident Evil 6 had it’s own set of emotes that Revelations 2 could have used like thumbs up, head shakes and beckons and other such stuff.
However, the voice clips from RE6 would not be able to be used as Revelations 2 has a lot more characters, so how do they get around this? By lifting every single emote from Lost Planet 2 and it’s silent characters. What we are left with are the beloved Resident Evil cast dancing, jumping around, throwing shapes, cowering in fear and other such poses while being completely silent and staring dead ahead. That is some devotion to asset recycling.
On the subject of Resident Evil and Lost Planet, did you know that Wesker’s character model from Resident Evil 5 appeared as is (with no alterations what so ever) in Lost Planet 2, Mercenaries 3D, Revelations 2 and Resident Evil 0? His face appears in Umbrella Corps too but it doesn’t move. It’s weird.
Also the entirety of Revelations 2 Raid mode is made up of stages form Revelations 1/2 and RE6, without an original stage among them.
4. Morrigan from Darkstalkers
Morrigan is a succubus from the Darkstalkers/Vampire Savior series. A series of 2D fighting games that launched in all the way back in 1994, after Street Fighter II laid the groundwork.
Morrigan is to Darkstalkers as Ryu is to Street Fighter, the poster boy/girl. With each mainline iteration of Street Fighter we would see a new iteration of him, better graphics and more detail in his animations. Ryu even has specific looks for some of the VS titles too, with Capcom Vs SNK 2 having an entirely different look to the insanely detailed one in the Street Fighter 3 series.
Morrigan, however, was not so lucky. Her original look in 1994 stuck with her through Darkstalkers 2 and Darkstalkers 3, Marvel vs Capcom 1/2, Capcom vs SNK 1/2 all the way up until Marvel vs Capcom 3 in 2011. She simply always kept that one look. That one set of animations and graphics from 1994. That is 17 years worth of games with the same shitty sprite. Go on, girl.
3. The entirety of Resident Evil 4
Resident Evil 4 is a hell of a game, heralded as one of the greatest action games of all time and an absolute trailblazer of the mechanics we see in games everyday.
We live in the age of rereleases, it is not uncommon to see a Game of the Year edition version of a game turn up a bit later on in the consoles life span with all the DLC and that included. Maybe the Game of the Year edition will get a remaster next generation as well, a little rarer. Though two rereleases on top of the original game can indeed happen.
Resident Evil 4 has had a few remasters/versions now. We have (in no particular order): Original Gamecube release, original Playstation 2 release, Wii version, iPhone version, Playstation 3 HD version, Xbox 360 HD version, PC version, PC HD release version, PS4 version and Xbox One version. That’s ten versions of the same game.
Some of these versions have extra stuff thrown in here and there, but I think the last six versions have been identical, except for graphical fidelity of course. I will keep buying them too, Nintendo Switch version please.
2. Resident Evil 6 using Monster Hunter Animations
This one isn’t so bad but I added it because it is a blink and you’ll miss it kind of thing, unfortunately I can’t find any easy to see comparisons either. If you are familiar with Simmons T-Rex form from RE6 (I am but I know I’m in the minority) you will see the
similarities same animations as the Deviljho from Monster Hunter, that games own T-Rex.
This is a nice little one, but people got really angry. In a Let’s Play I found while searching for a comparison video, people in the comment section were furious that Capcom reused their Monster Hunter Deviljho animations for this boss fight, saying that it was disgusting. I don’t know if I’d say a game development company reusing some animations for one 5 minute section of a 3-tiered boss fight disgusting, but that’s just me.
1. An entire failed game
If I said I was thinking of a game that had:
- Fast paced action
- A strong gothic theme
- An extendable demon powered arm that allowed you to grab your enemies and hook on to the environment
- A style rank system that goes all the way up to SSS
- Semi open world, mission based structure
- Performance based point system where you can buy upgrades
- Animations that are favoured by Platinum Game’s Hideki Kamiya
You would think that I was course be talking about Devil May Cry 4, right?
Wrong. I am in fact talking about the little known/absolute flop that is The Nightmare Before Christmas: Oogies Revenge on Playstation 2 and original Xbox. It features all of the above, even Dante/Nero’s shitty jump from DMC as well.
If you make a licensed game, and it sells like shit on a dying console, then why not just grab it and rehash it again on current consoles instead? I mean you’d be silly to leave all those good ideas on the table. Some of those ideas were originally from the Devil May Cry series before they were in Oogies Revenge, but that just makes this entire recycling loop even sweeter.
So that is what Capcom did, they took Oogies Revenge and made Devil May Cry 4. One of the most loved action games from last generation (and now this generation, thanks to Capcom releases) started life as a licensed Nightmare Before Christmas game. Alright Capcom.
That animation I said was favoured by Platinum Games? Check out
Bayonetta Jack dodging attacks.
Honorable mention: Nash in SFV is Viktor from Darkstalkers
The reason this is an honourable mention, and not in the list, is that there isn’t actually any hard evidence that this is the case.
Back in 2012, Capcom rereleased (surprise) Darkstalkers in the form of Darkstalkers Resurrection. It had a CGI movie that was all fancy and 3D and said if it sold enough copies they would make a new Darkstalkers game. Unfortunately it did not sell enough copies to warrant a modern 3D sequel but Capcom already had some 3D models from the CGI movie and inevitable prototyping.
What did they do with those models, nobody knows, but I do have an interesting comparison that fits in with the timeline of events here.
Nash in Street Fighter 5 has the same clothes, same EXACT body scarring/stitching and generally the same sort of look as Victor from Darkstalkers. Check them out below, but as I said there is no definite evidence.