By Colonel_Pockets 54 Comments
I finished Resident Evil 4 for the 1st time last night and I have things to say about it. Per the same as my last blog, I'm still working on my English, so please bare with me.
I guess I should start with context. Not only this is the 1st time I've played through Resident Evil 4, it's the 1st time I've played a Resident Evil game. I played the PS4 version of the game. All right, so now that we've got that out of the way, let's start talking about this beast of a game.
My initial thoughts are.... WOW. What a game. Playing this game with the context that it was released in 2005 makes it even more mind blowing. The game still looks pretty good. Obviously the textures are muddy, but overall the art design and the characters still hold up.
The shooting feels great. Every gun I used felt great and essential to surviving each enemy encounter. Part of what makes these weapons feel great is the feedback. Every time you land a shot on an enemy they either stumble, get a hole blown open in them or have some type of reaction. The guns feel powerful. To balance these powerful weapons, they're still able to strike fear into the player because of the amount of enemies being thrown at you, different tiers of enemies and a scarcity of ammo. Then of course, there is the elephant in the room. You can't move and shoot.
The movement in this game might turn people off, but I really enjoyed it. The deliberate pace that Leon walks feels good. Not being able to move and shoot is an interesting design choice because of what action games are, but it works because of the pacing in the game. This is an action game, but it's not a high octane experience that you can get from games that are released now. The enemies, for the most part, are coming at you slowly, so the deliberate walking feels fine.
Not being able to move and shoot is one of the surprises I had with this game. I expected a scary game going in. This game is not scary at all. It is 100% an action game. The scariest things that happen are when I'm out ammo and have to figure out how to eliminate a truck load of enemies while still tending to Ashley. Yet another surprise was the "escort mission" parts of the game were fine. Escort missions in video games have been bad in the past, so I was a little worried when the mechanic was introduced into the game. It works just fine. Most of them allow you to ignore her because you can just send her into a dumpster while you unload on the zombie people things. It was easy to control and I had no problems with it.
The most surprising thing was the set pieces. I had no idea this was possible on the Gamecube. The Lake, the trucks and other parts are surprisingly well designed. They're fun to play and are still really impressive. Playing this after having played three consecutive playthroughs of Uncharted 4 really puts this game into perspective. I don't know if this is true, but Resident Evil 4 might have had the Uncharted 2 impact on action games when it was released. You can see where the game hits its limits in some spots or where a Naughty Dog game would have made the cut scene and action seamless. The game also goes from a small scale to a larger scale really well. Walking through the village and then suddenly meeting the Lake Monster or El Gigante really makes this game.
If you're still reading this, you may have noticed I've only talked about how the game looks and the shooting. Well, that's because those are the positives. No game is perfect and this game certainly has some problems. The quick time events are just not fun and unforgiving. I probably died 15 times during my playthrough because I put the controller down while watching a cut scene and then suddenly a QTE pops up for no reason. It's jarring and doesn't really add anything to the game. Another negative is the characters and voice acting. This might a japan thing, but the dialogue is borderline atrocious at times. I frequently laughed at how Leon responded to the villains. It's ridiculous. The villains are just mustache twirling characters. They're creating a virus that mind controls people, i guess? I had no idea what their motive was until I read a note found in chapter 5. Are most Resident Evil games like this?
Ultimately though, those negatives don't really matter. This was an amazing game that still holds up really well. The gameplay, atmosphere and pacing make this game great. It's crazy. This game is awesome and can be held up to games that are released today. That right there is super impressive. I can totally see why people call this game one of the best games of all time. It makes me want to go back to play the Resident Evil remake and now Resident Evil 7. I understand those games are completely different, but there is a vibe that this game gives off that makes me want see how other games play out.
What do you think? Is Resident Evil 4 awesome? I certainly think it is and deserves all of the praise it gets.