Resident Evil 4 (2023) Review
Capcom has a knack for bringing back its most successful games and Resident Evil 4 is no exception. Initially released in 2005, the game was a huge success, setting the standard for modern survival horror games. Since then, it has seen multiple re-releases on various platforms, including the PS2, PS3, Xbox One, and even a special version for the Wii. Resident Evil 4 is considered a masterpiece of survival horror gaming that has stood the test of time since its release in 2005.
AT A GLANCE
GENRE: Action, Adventure
DEVELOPER: CAPCOM Co., Ltd.
PUBLISHER: CAPCOM Co., Ltd.
RELEASE DATE: 24 Mar, 2023
FINAL SCORE: 10/10
The new Resident Evil 4 remake is a stunning update to the classic game that still manages to maintain the essence of what made the original so great. The graphics have been completely overhauled with stunning visuals that bring the game to life like never before. The controls have been tweaked and refined to give players even more precision in their movements and combat, making for a more immersive experience.
The story of the Resident Evil 4 remake follows Leon S. Kennedy, a former police officer and now agent of the US Government, as he is tasked with rescuing Ashley Graham, the President’s daughter. Ashley has been kidnapped and is being held captive in a small European town (specifically, a rural Spanish village).
As Leon makes his way to the town, he soon discovers that something is not quite right. The villagers seem to be hiding something, and they are extremely hostile toward him. Leon quickly realizes that the villagers are infected with a strange parasite that has turned them into violent, zombie-like creatures.
As he fights his way through the village and uncovers the truth behind the parasite, Leon also discovers that there is a larger conspiracy at play. He must navigate dangerous situations, solve puzzles, and battle terrifying enemies in order to rescue Ashley and stop the spread of the parasite.
The gameplay of Resident Evil 4 Remake is a refined blend of survival horror and action elements. Players control Leon S. Kennedy from a third-person perspective and navigate through different environments such as a town and a castle. Along the way, they collect items like ammunition and healing herbs, search for keys and other objects to progress, and face off against human enemies turned into homicidal creatures.
The exploration in the game is mostly linear, but the map becomes more open and complex as the story progresses. Players can consult the map at any time to explore alternative routes and heights, and search for extra items or solve puzzles based on finding various objects. The puzzles are typical of Resident Evil games and involve finding shields that activate switches or placing pieces in a specific order to open doors. These puzzles become more frequent as the game progresses, providing a welcome change of pace from the combat.
The combat in Resident Evil 4 Remake is one of the most significant aspects of the game. Players start with a pistol and a combat knife, but can later acquire shotguns, grenades, sniper rifles, and other weapons. During combat, players can use the crosshead to select between the weapons assigned to shortcuts. Each direction of the crosshead has two slots for weapons, but players can also access the briefcase to select items manually.
Headshots are crucial to conserving ammo, but enemies are cunning and will feint or execute surprise attacks. Players can dodge or use the knife to stun enemies briefly. The knife can also be used to execute a “parry” that deflects enemy attacks, making it useful for countering thrown weapons. However, the knife can break due to overuse, so players must be careful. Additionally, players must manage their inventory carefully since they have a limited number of slots in their briefcase.
In terms of combat, the game features a variety of weapons to choose from, ranging from handguns to shotguns, sniper rifles, and more. Each weapon has its own strengths and weaknesses, and players will need to carefully choose the right tool for the job in order to survive. Additionally, players can upgrade their weapons by finding and using upgrade parts scattered throughout the game, which can significantly increase their firepower and effectiveness.
As for the knife, the addition of the parry and sneak attack mechanics gives it a more versatile role in combat, but it also means that players need to be mindful of their knife’s durability. This encourages players to use the knife strategically and carefully, instead of relying on it as a primary weapon.
The enemies in RE4 remake are varied and challenging, each with their own unique strengths and weaknesses. Some are fast and agile, while others are slow and lumbering but can deal massive damage. Players will need to adapt to each enemy type and learn their attack patterns in order to effectively take them down. Boss fights are also a highlight of the game, with epic battles against towering monstrosities that require quick reflexes and sharp aim to defeat.
The remake upgrades the graphics up to modern standards. The game has been completely overhauled to look stunning on modern consoles, with highly detailed character models, environments, and lighting effects.
One of the most noticeable improvements is the increased level of detail in the game’s textures. Everything from the character’s clothing to the environment itself is highly detailed, with intricate patterns and realistic lighting effects. This attention to detail makes the game feel much more immersive, and helps to create a more realistic and believable world.
The game’s lighting has also been significantly improved, with highly detailed shadows and realistic reflections. The lighting effects in the game create a highly atmospheric environment, with dark and moody scenes that are truly unsettling.
Another notable improvement in the graphics is the addition of ray tracing. This technology allows for highly realistic lighting effects, creating highly realistic shadows, reflections, and ambient occlusion. The result is a highly immersive and believable environment that draws the player into the game’s world.
We had the opportunity to play Resident Evil 4 remake on PS5, and we were pleased to find that it offers players the option to prioritize either resolution or stable performance at 60 frames per second. Although the resolution mode generally performs well, especially in indoor areas, the fluidity suffers in leafy areas with atmospheric effects. Therefore, we recommend playing on the performance mode, which looks great and is very stable.
Players can also adjust certain graphic options, such as depth of field, ray tracing, and the quality of character hair, which can impact performance. However, regardless of the selected mode, the character models and settings are stunning, creating a cinematic experience reminiscent of a Jerry Bruckheimer production.
The attention to detail is impressive, with small flourishes adding to the game’s believability. For instance, Leon covers his face when near the fire, winces after a fight, and Ashley congratulates players when they hit a tricky shot. The game’s photo mode is quite comprehensive.