Originally Posted by Outrider
Basically, I'd recommend starting with any of the following games:
Resident Evil 2
Resident Evil (GCN remake)
Resident Evil 4
The rest of the games mostly range from good to great, but I think those three probably represent all the relative highs of the series, whether it's the original 32-bit series (RE2), the short-lived but astoundingly well-made rebirth period (GCN remake), or the recent shift to action games (RE4.) I just think that some of the other titles are either a little outdated or too "inside baseball" for a new player to just jump into.
I haven't played Revelations yet (though it's on my queue), but I've heard good things. The demo seemed pretty good, at least.
I pretty much agree with Outriders opinion. Your definitly better off getting the GCN remake of the original. Unlike the ps1 version it will legitimately get you scared at times. That and the originals script/voice acting.. *shivers*
Thats not to say the remake isnt either but its a lot less.
Jill sandwich.. *facepalm*