How do you use the traps? Are they just for those siege moments?
You could use the traps pretty much any time. It's a play option. You either use the firearm to play the game or you use traps to beat creatures. Or you can use sneaking to just avoid creatures, so more tactical and strategic. You can sneak through most of the game. Sneak, set a trap and hide.
Do you ever let the player feel safe?
We have areas that are really dangerous, where you feel danger, and there are other areas that you don't feel that so much, so you can relax.
Do you think it's possible to do an open-world horror game or is it essential that you guide the player's path?
It's possible, but it's a very difficult kind of approach from a technical perspective and from a creative perspective. Also, Tango Gameworks is a new studio, so we didn't take that approach this time. I would like to do it some day.
What elements does the protagonist need to have?
He has to be realistic, and he is able to fight against something. But he is not strong.
And he won't be alone - we've seen other characters already.
Yes, but you have to be alone to be scared. So most of the time you're alone - those characters just come and go. When you are by yourself, that's when you get scared, right? But on the other hand, to develop a story, you need other characters.
What's the secret to creating properly scary characters?
You have to love scary stuff. And watch a lot of movies.
You haven't really talked about the graphics in promotional materials. Is that intentional? Do you think visuals aren't important when creating horror?
Yes. We don't need flashy for horror games. In horror you have to be more, kind of - not so flashy. But then the player may get tired of that, so towards the end of the game, we will have some shiny, flashy scenes for them.
Resident Evil 4 is still the high water mark for survival horror, even after all these years. What's it like having to compete with yourself?
The important thing we are trying to achieve with The Evil Within is the fear. How scary the game is. In that sense I think I can actually beat my past games. But I don't think I would be able to beat every aspect of them.
We've seen titles like Dark Souls using online connectivity to enable other players to influence your game world - often to far better effect than pre-programmed scares. Have you considered anything like that?
Yeah, maybe in DLC. I guess we can't really get into details.
Do you think you'll be able to reach entirely new gamers with this, or just existing horror fans?
It's possible, but in order to achieve that, the game has to be really, really scary.
He doesn't let you get a word in edge-ways, does he? You might also be interested in these thoughts about Resident Evil's influence from producer Masato Kimura.