Resident Evil, known as Biohazard in Japan, is a survival horror video game based media franchise created by Shinji Mikami and Tokuro Fujiwara and owned by the video game company Capcom. The franchise focuses around a series of survival horror video games, but has since branched out into comic books, novels and novelizations, sound dramas, a series of live-action films and animated sequels to the games, and a variety of associated merchandise, such as action figures. The overarching plot of the series focuses on multiple characters and their roles in recurring outbreaks of zombies and other monsters, initially due to the release of the T-virus, but still more throughout the franchise. All of these are biological weapons created mainly by the fictional Umbrella Corporation and various other organizations in later games.
The eponymous first game in the series was released in 1996 as a survival horror video game, but the franchise has since grown to encompass other video game genres. The series is a mix of action and horror film-inspired plotlines, exploration and puzzle solving, but from Resident Evil 4 onwards, the main series took a more third-person shooter approach with fewer puzzles and greater emphasis on gunplay and weapons upgrading. As of 2015, the video game series has sold 61 million units worldwide, and has become Capcom’s biggest franchise in terms of sales.