Resident Evil 4

Isolated village, rural countryside, a deadly virus. All of the recipe needed to create a journey with the right amount of action with suspenseful undertones.

Leon S. Kennedy

Introduction

I played this video game as part of my Resident Evil marathon. I have already completed the previous three instalments prior to this. At the time of editing this article, I have actually completed three of four characters of the Resident Evil 6 campaign. At the same time, I am rewatching the Resident Evil movie series, which I am actually finding quite fun! I watched them once in the past, but I seem to appreciate them more on my latest marathon as I am now more familiar with their video game counterparts.

Resident Evil Film Series

Story

Leon is tasked to investigate the disappearance of the American President’s daughter, Ashley. His journey leads him to an unnamed country somewhere in Europe. After arriving at the outskirts of the village, he comes face to face with the not-so-friendly villagers. After they manage to kill two police officers who Leon travelled with, it is a battle for survival. He later heads deeper into the village to discover a cult-like society. He needs to find out why she was kidnapped and where she ultimately is.

Two Cops Escorting Leon to the Village

Characters

There are a couple of significant characters in this instalment. Some of the characters of this game would be familiar to those people who have played the second instalment, which made it feel more connected to the franchise:

  • Leon S. Kennedy (Paul Mercier)— An officer and survivor of Racoon City. You play as him for the majority of the game.
  • Ashley Graham (Carolyn Lawrence)— President’s daughter. The goal of the game is to get her out of that place in one piece.
  • Louis Sera (Rino Romano)— A breakaway member of the cult. He assists Leon in different parts of the game.
  • Ada Wong (Sally Cahill) — Leon initially met her in Racoon City during the events of Resident Evil 2. She has sinister motivations, but also assists Leon.
  • Merchant (Paul Mercier) — A trader who is conveniently present at various sites. You can purchase weapons, sell ornaments and upgrade armaments.
Resident Evil 4 Trio

Worldbuilding

I enjoyed the locale of this game. It’s environment somewhat reminds me of Outlast, now that I think about it. It takes place in an isolated location with unfriendly locales who follow their own customs and beliefs. They do not take kindly to foreign faces and are willing to kill to preserve their identity and keep their existence hidden from the outside world. The two police officers who drove Leon to the outskirts of the village also appear to possess limited information on the area. The village is surrounded by a forest and is far away enough from the nearest civilisation, enough for them to follow their own way of life. But, not too far away to allow Leon to call his contacts via his phone.

Resident Evil 4 Remake Poster

Gameplay

I played the Resident Evil 4 game on the PS5. This was PS4 imported, which itself might have been imported from the PS3. There is suppose to be a remake, but this has not arrived yet as of this writing. As a consequence, some of the mechanics and graphics did feel somewhat dated. For example, you turn and walk in different intervals. You are unable to turn and walk at the same time. Also, the camera sensitivity was limited, which became a hindrance during intense encounters. However, these minor issues are quick to overcome. This was the first video game to have an over-the-shoulder camera angle. Once I was invested into the story, I became a part of the journey and wanted to see it to the end.

Critique

I thoroughly enjoyed the video game. Aside from the outdated graphics and mechanics, it proved to be an enjoyable experience with promises of action and suspension undertaken in a satisfying manner. It took me around 24 hours to complete the campaign, followed by an additional 6 to 7 hours to complete a side-campaign called “Assignment Ada”, which takes place concurrently alongside the central campaign and fills in the gaps which were otherwise left void during the first playthrough. I only wish I could choose the ‘Professional’ difficulty option without having to first complete the game.

‘Assignment Ada’ Start Menu

Afterwords

This is something I will definitely recommend, especially if you would like to play an action-orientated version of Outlast. Perhaps even more so once the remastered edition arrives.

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Arnold Khan

Arnold Khan

Writer. Reader of Novels. Video Gamer. Documentary Watcher. Tech nerd.