‘Resident Evil 4’ evaluate: A half-step backward for Capcom remakes

Written by Jeff Lampkin

The Resident Evil 4 remake begins out robust. Up to date aiming mechanics and a contemporary infusion of processing energy make this probably the most thrilling model of RE4 Capcom has ever delivered, and Leon Kennedy appears to be like higher than ever, even together with his new chin implant. The remake performs properly for the primary few hours, as Leon shoots and stabs his means by the misty Spanish village the place las plagas has remodeled the locals into murderous tentacle monsters. These early scenes, set amongst crooked wood buildings and the shores of a twisting cave system, set up the sport’s blood-soaked tone and supply a satisfying steadiness of asset administration, puzzle fixing and trendy third-person taking pictures.

As the sport grows in complexity, it turns into clumsy. Capcom’s strategy to modernizing RE4 is so as to add extra enemies, cramped environments and fewer ammo drops – all of which may lead to a high-tension motion expertise, if its controls have been constant. Because it stands, the RE4 remake is tormented by sluggish animations and irritating fight sequences. Leon continuously feels underpowered, unable to evade primary assaults or reliably land a shot.

Resident Evil 4 set the usual for action-horror video games when it got here out in 2005, and the remake shines when it embraces the improvements of the unique: over-the-shoulder precision taking pictures and an environment mixing fight and terror. Nevertheless, the remake loses focus rapidly, and it seems like a lot of Capcom’s effort was poured into upgrading enemies and environments, leaving Leon within the GameCube-era mud.

The RE4 remake introduces new boss fights and head-bursting enemies, and it additionally permits Leon to parry highly effective assaults. Generally. The parry potential is barely accessible if Leon has a knife on standby, and when the immediate does pop up, it’s simply interrupted by environmental nudges, the actions of different enemies, and Leon’s personal animations. Like most of Leon’s actions, the parry potential is just too inconsistent to be satisfying, and it usually does nothing to intensify the stress of fight scenes.

The remake usually locations Leon on the heart of a swarm of enemies, with out the choice to rapidly dodge incoming assaults. He has to shoot or press his means by the horde – however he runs as if he’s knee-deep in sludge, and even a bullet to the top doesn’t all the time cease a speeding cultist. In the meantime, enemy assaults all the time interrupt Leon. Sluggish motion is genuine to the expertise of the unique 4 Resident Evil video games, and it’s one thing that the RE2 and RE3 remakes particularly handle, providing up to date controls and environments that really feel at house on trendy {hardware}. Compared to these video games, RE4 feels unfinished, or not less than un-finessed.

Ashley and Leon flee an explosion on the turret of a castle in Resident Evil 4.


One boss combat that Capcom reimagined for the remake is towards Méndez, the mutant priest with the additional lengthy backbone. Within the unique, Méndez slings a repetitive collection of assaults from the rafters of a burning slaughterhouse. Within the remake, Méndez drops again to hurl flaming logs and explosive oil drums at Leon, earlier than speeding ahead for close-quarters preventing and alternating these positions a number of instances. Though the atmosphere within the remake is bigger, it’s cramped with flames that interrupt Leon’s actions any time he touches them. Méndez strikes rapidly and so do the objects he throws, whereas Leon has a sluggish run potential, no technique to rapidly dodge, and torpid animations for reloading, retrieving objects, touching hearth and knifing enemies. Méndez looks as if a totally remade character right here; Leon, not a lot. This ends in a irritating boss combat.

I died a number of instances whereas attempting to defeat Méndez – and that’s when Capcom pranked me. I used to be enjoying on Commonplace, and through my Méndez demise screens, the sport began prompting me to activate Assisted mode, the bottom problem setting. I usually don’t do that throughout evaluations, however a dozen infuriating makes an attempt later and I relented, urgent OK with out studying the advantageous print. Assisted mode makes the sport extremely forgiving, and I simply defeated Méndez within the following run.

After which I used to be unable to vary my problem settings in any respect. Preserve this in thoughts: Assisted mode is everlasting in RE4.

I performed a number of extra minutes on the bottom problem setting, nevertheless it actually felt like a unique recreation than the Commonplace model, devoid of stress or danger. Fortunately, I used to be on PlayStation 5, which solely syncs cloud saves whenever you exit a recreation. I turned off the console’s web connection, closed the sport after which downloaded the outdated save file from earlier than I switched settings. Then I defeated Méndez the old style means, on Commonplace problem, and carried on with a newfound concern of by chance switching to Assisted mode in my soul.

Everlasting downward mode-switching is a typical function in Resident Evil video games, however I discover it to be baffling. It’s particularly complicated as RE4 actively encourages Commonplace gamers to strive Assisted mode in loading screens and demise menus. I requested Capcom why the group designed RE4 this fashion, and a spokesperson mentioned, “The issue mode a participant completes the sport on has ramifications for in-game achievements and trophies.” This doesn’t absolutely reply the query for me: Loads of motion video games have dynamic problem settings with out disrupting achievements, and this response doesn’t handle my notion that Capcom is prioritizing trophy integrity over accessibility.

Resident Evil 4 remake


Whereas we’re within the complaints division, I additionally need to encourage all PS5 gamers to show off controller sounds within the audio settings. This goes for RE4 and actually each different recreation with this function. Why is the quantity on the DualSense so loud, on a regular basis? Please, somebody, make it cease.

That is what the RE4 remake has lowered me to: a pleading mess of unfulfilled nostalgia and frustration. It’s not a horrible recreation, nevertheless it isn’t seamless, both. It provides enemy selection and contemporary environments, however Leon’s bullets routinely hit their targets with out dealing harm, his actions are clumsy and his new parry potential is barely semi-functional. The sport clearly establishes fight methods for every scene, however then its mechanics get in the best way, punishing the participant within the course of. General, the phrase for the RE4 remake is inconsistent.

About the author

Jeff Lampkin

Jeff Lampkin was the first writer to have joined He has since then inculcated very effective writing and reviewing culture at GamePolar which rivals have found impossible to imitate. His approach has been to work on the basics while the whole world was focusing on the superstructures.