According to a reputable leaker (or, at least, as reputable as they come), Resident Evil 8, otherwise more commonly known as Resident Evil Village, is just one-third of a new Resident Evil trilogy that started with Resident Evil 7.
While Capcom has not officially confirmed this yet, if it is true, then it means that players will spend at least one more title with Ethan Winters as the lead character.
Resident Evil Village Part of The Latest Resident Evil trilogy
(1/2) I guess to summarize the last few tweets simply & non-spoilery, know that Village being a direct sequel to RE7 was decided pretty early on, there's some things put in RE7 that will make more sense after RE8. More than any other series of titles in the series history,
— AestheticGamer aka Dusk Golem (@AestheticGamer1) April 11, 2021
The Resident Evil franchise has never really had a formal trilogy of sorts. However, one could argue that you can split the mainline titles prior to Resident Evil VII into two trilogies.
The original Resident Evil along with Resident Evil 2 and 3 make up the first trilogy. All three games predominantly took part in Raccoon City. Meanwhile, the second trilogy, composed of Resident Evil 4, 5, and 6, takes the series international. The next trilogy, as per AestheticGamer aka Dusk Golem, started with Resident Evil 7 and will end with Resident Evil 9.
Per his exact words, "RE7>RE8>RE9 have a connected, planned out story as all ended up in dev close together."
The leaker explains further that Resident Evil Village will help clarify everything that didn't make sense in Resident Evil 7, which actually sounds logical. So far, Capcom has done a great job in keeping the full story of Resident Evil Village under wraps. This is especially praise-worthy considering that they've spent the past couple of months hyping up the game, going as far as releasing two demos (the second one still has yet to release).
AestheticGamer1 ended his info dump by speculating that Capcom wants to move away from numbered titles for the Resident Evil franchise. They say that it's their way of telling "self-contained stories" instead of planning things out over a long period of time.
Lest we forget, Resident Evil Village is technically not Resident Evil 8. Capcom is marketing it as just Resident Evil Village, although it doesn't take a rocket scientist to see the "VIII" in the name of the title. Capcom did the same thing with Resident Evil 7 as well, naming it Resident Evil: Biohazard, albeit styling the name in such a way so that the last three letters of Evil would spell out the Roman numeral equivalent of the number 7.
What's Next for Resident Evil Village?
If you're inclined to believe the recent leaks, we wouldn't blame you. The tweets do line up exactly with what previous rumors also said about Capcom. In particular, how Capcom wants to move the Resident Evil franchise away from just featuring zombies and using numbered titles. The former is especially evident with how the past two latest non-remake titles have introduced everything from murderous fungi to witches, vampires, and even werewolves.
Plus, it's all good news. After all, even though Capcom has yet to release Resident Evil Village, if the leak is true, then it means that the next numbered title is already in the works.
With that said, it's best that we focus on the now in the meantime. Resident Evil Village is set to release on May 7, 2021. However, prior to the actual release date, Capcom promised to make a second demo available. Many expect Capcom to release the said demo during the upcoming Resident Evil showcase on April 15.