Resident Evil 4 Remake: Review
This game was reviewed on Playstation 5.
Reviewed by: Amanda Martin
Poor Leon Kennedy just can't seem to catch a break. As if flesh eating zombies weren't enough, he now gets to deal with a cult bent on taking over the planet using parasites known as Las Plagas. When a person (or anything living...like a fish...) becomes infected with this parasite, they are slowly absorbed into a hive mind situation, where the actions of the host are controlled. Which is why the head of this cult decided that Ashley, the presidents daughter, would be the perfect place to start. And so Leon embarks on his rescue mission, but of course it isn't going to be easy.
Chasing after Ashley, Leon explores three distinct areas: the village, the castle and the factory. Each of these environments are crafted in stunning detail, the drab brown of the village contrasting with the regality of the castle and the shining metal of the factory. These areas each come with their own dangers and enemy types, from simple villagers, to walking suits of armour, to the nerve-wracking Regeneradors. Whilst you're avoiding these enemies, you need to be constantly on the lookout for loot, because you'll always appreciate having that extra bullet, or that gem stone you can sell for a better weapon. And who better to buy that weapon from than the famous Merchant, who is always there when you need him. Sometimes he'll even have a handy shooting range, where you can practice your skills and earn some points for achieving high scores.
The Merchant is one of the few friendly faces you meet in this grisly adventure, and even though his voice has changed, he still recites some of his famous lines. Fans of the series and of the original game will also recognise the elusive Ada Wong, who always seems to show up just as you need her. And of course we can't forget Luis Sera, the rogue scientist who's as handy with a gun as he is a computer. Oh, and don't forget your fluffy companion! Your encounters with your allies are just as memorable as the ones with your enemies. The intense boss fights combine small cramped spaces with large overbearing monsters, giving an edge to the need for survival you have throughout the game. Felling these bosses, however, is extremely satisfying. Watching a monstrosity fall at your feet gives a feeling of achievement and a sense of relief, and also some giddy glee as they drop tasty treasure.
The enemies suit their environments perfectly, starting with the villagers who, even though infected, continue to go about their farming lifestyle. Thankfully the farm animals seem normal...When you move into the castle, the enemy style shifts to more well-kept robed characters, who are even more deadly. In the factory setting you'll find some of the most difficult enemies to fight, including the infamous Regeneradors. But the boss type enemies will be the ones to truly stick in your memory. From giant trolls to horribly mutated insect humanoids, there's plenty to keep the horror going.
As you make your way through these environments, it's important to keep your eyes open for loot, collectables and notes. Loot obviously keeps your weapons loaded and your inventory full of goodies to sell. Collectables come in the form of tiny castellans, only noticeable by the clockwork sounds they make, as they are usually always well-hidden. Notes are scattered across the map, providing lore and insights into this very strange part of the world. But if these notes are blue, then they have been written by the Merchant, who offers some form of challenge. These range from shooting blue medallions dotted around a specific area, to killing a rather formidable enemy. Completing these challenges earns you spinels ,which can be traded for weapon parts, gunpowder or extra healing items.
Your weapons are obviously very important in aiding you on your travels, and they come in many forms. You can't go wrong with your trusty knife, as this can help you break loose if you're grabbed by an enemy and as an emergency back up if you ever run out of bullets. Use it too many times, though, and it'll break, making it unusable until you get the Merchant to repair it for you. Thankfully your firearms don't break, and they can also be upgraded to improve their clip size, reload speed and even their overall damage. The haptic feedback only improves the experience, from the satisfying pull of the trigger to the rumble of the blast.
The Mercernaries also make a glorious reappearance, giving players the chance to run-and-gun their way through iconic levels. Killing enemies and collecting orbs increases the amount of time you have left, therefore giving you more time to rack up those points. These points equate to rankings, which unlock more characters to play as and other bonuses you can use in-game, including the very handy handcannon. And just in case you want to see anything in more detail, in-game challenges reward you with points you can use to buy models of assets used in the game.
A truly terrifying 10/10 experience, and a must play for horror fans everywhere.
Reviewed by: Amanda Martin