Box Art Brawl: #102 – Resident Evil Gaiden

Image: Nintendo Life

Hello everyone and welcome to a new edition of Box Art Brawl!

Last week we took a look at Final Fantasy VI for the SNES. It was clear that you good folks preferred the show’s more “traditional” visual style, as the Japanese box art won the week with an overwhelming 90% of the vote. Maybe rename the game Final Fantasy 3 in the United States and giving it a drastically different box design was not the wisest decision…

This week we are back in the world of resident Evil. We’ve already covered most of the major games on Nintendo consoles, but we’ve neglected to pay attention to one of the most bizarre and maligned entries in the entire franchise: Resident Evil Gaiden.

The game was first released in PAL regions in 2001, followed by other regions in early 2002. It is not particularly popular with fans of the franchise and indeed is no longer considered part of larger barrel. In terms of gameplay, you explore a luxurious passenger ship called “Starlight” in which all the inhabitants have turned into zombies, with the environment displayed via a top-down viewpoint. As you encounter zombies and other baddies, the camera switches to a first-person perspective, with a crosshair moving from side to side to indicate the accuracy of your attack.

Enough about the gameplay, though – you’re here for the box art! We’ll be pitting the three major regions – North America, Europe, and Japan – against each other this week. Europe and Japan share a very similar design for their respective box arts, but the Japanese nickname “Biohazard” justifies its own position in the competition.

So, with that said, let’s all hop aboard the Starlight and take a look at the box art!

Be sure to vote in the poll below; but first, let’s look at the box art designs themselves.

North America

RE Gaiden United States
Picture: Capcom

North America is the outlier in this week’s fight; the box art here depicts Leon S. Kennedy looking moody and macho with his signature RPD uniform. The RPD badge is also visible on the right on a dark red background. All in all, it’s a pretty good representation of what Resident Evil could look like as a franchise, but perhaps doesn’t do well to state what Resident Evil Gaiden is, in particular. On a more positive note, however, we like the “classic” font used for the RE logo; it’s iconic for a reason and we’re glad Capcom has returned to it in recent years!


RE Gaiden EU
Picture: Capcom

This is perhaps the most “iconic” image related to Resident Evil Gaiden. Seen here is a lifeline adorned with the title “Starlight”, giving a strong indication of the setting of the game. But there is something wrong… what could it be? Oh yes, the blood was running down the ring and running down the wall – adorable.

Something random to note here too. The game was actually published by defunct Virgin Interactive in PAL regions, while Capcom itself published the game elsewhere. It was one of many Capcom games to be handled by Virgin, including the likes of dinosaur crisis, Street Fight Alpha 3and the PS1 core resident Evil securities.


RE Gaiden JP
Picture: Capcom

So, as we said earlier, the Japanese box art for Resident Evil Gaiden is more or less the same as its European counterpart, but with a few key differences worth noting. First, the most obvious: it’s called Biohazard instead of Resident Evil. The font is the same, of course, but there are a lot of fans who just prefer the Japanese title, which is cool! Apart from that, there are minor color differences, such as the bottom left column, and some additional elements in the Japanese language. The image in general is also slightly more magnified.

So that’s it! Despite Resident Evil Gaiden being near the bottom of the franchise in terms of quality, there’s no denying that the box art is at least quite interesting. Be sure to make your voice heard and vote for your favorite in the poll below!

Thank you for voting! We’ll see you next time for another round of the Box Art Brawl.

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