Resident Evil 4 Remake review – can the Capcom classic live up to the original? | games | entertainment

Resident Evil 4 Remake review (Image: Capcom)

Resident Evil 4 Remake improves on an all-time classic by upgrading everything from the sound and visuals to the retro controls

What we like

  • Incredible sound and visuals
  • Scarier than the original
  • Greatly improved control system
  • Paring knife works fine
  • Additional side missions and mini-games are a fun distraction
  • I must like to organize your stuff
  • The merchant is back!

What we don’t

  • Not groundbreaking like the original
  • Spongy enemies
  • A few minor lighting issues
  • It could do with a proper dribbling move

While I’ve always been a fan of the original Resident Evil (especially the Gamecube remake), it’s fair to say that Resident Evil 4 provided a much-needed shot in the arm for a franchise that’s starting to grow quite a bit. Not only did Capcom successfully reinvent the series, but Resident Evil 4 went on to influence legions of future survival horror and third-person shooters. After recently (and rather successfully) bringing Resident Evil 2 and Resident Evil 3 kicking and screaming into the modern age, Capcom is back with another remake of the survival horror classic. But does Resident Evil 4 need a remake? Can the updated version live up to the original one? And perhaps most important of all, does the merchant still appear in the most unusual of places? Read our Resident Evil 4 Remake review to find out…

Resident Evil 4 Remake review

Resident Evil 4 Remake review (Image: CAPCOM)

First off, I’m happy to report that not only is The Merchant back and is able to move his entire inventory across the map at record speeds, but this time he has more lines of dialogue than ever before. miss out!

In fact, taking the best parts of the original Resident Evil 4 and expanding on them is what this remake is all about.

It’s still Resident Evil 4 as you know it, only on a larger scale, and with greater amounts of depth.

For example, Leon can now dodge incoming attacks with his trusty knife, or sneak up and kill unsuspecting enemies silently with the new stealth feature. You’ll still spend most of your time trying to head or pat villagers, but the new parry and sneak systems give you a few more options.

Resident Evil 4 Remake review

Resident Evil 4 Remake review (Image: CAPCOM)

Elsewhere, reworked cutscenes make the game feel more cinematic, while many of the original locations return, albeit with modified and often expanded designs. In fact, one of the most exciting aspects of the remake is how the momentary pangs of nostagia quickly give way to panic when you realize those seemingly familiar locations aren’t quite what you remember them to be.

The wonderfully addictive item storage system also returns in Resident Evil 4 Remake, but now you can attach charms to your status that provide Leon with various perks – like increased ammo discovery. The sheer number of unlockables, not to mention the addition of new side quests and even the one-on-one mini-game, are more examples of Capcom taking a classic game and fleshing it out.

While the side missions and mini-games are more than an added bonus, the significantly upgraded visuals, great sound design, and improved controls are far more important to the success of Resident Evil 4.

Resident Evil 4 Remake review

Resident Evil 4 Remake review (Image: CAPCOM)

I don’t remember the controls being such a big deal when Resident Evil 4 launched back in 2005, but having recently played the Nintendo Switch re-release prior to this review, I had a hard time getting over how awkward and tedious it felt.

The same can’t be said for Resident Evil 4 Remake, which completely revamps the controls, making them more palatable for modern audiences.

The remake features the same dual stick scheme found in most modern shooters (including the Resident Evil 2 and Resi 3 remakes), with one stick controlling character movement and the other used to move the camera freely. It makes for a smoother and more intuitive experience compared to the original one.

The flip side of course is that Resident Evil 4 Remake isn’t quite as unique or groundbreaking as its 2005 counterpart. While the original is unlike any other game at the time, the remake feels like every other game nowadays.

Resident Evil 4 Remake review

Resident Evil 4 Remake review (Image: CAPCOM)

Also, while the original game was a graphical powerhouse when it launched in 2005, play it now and everything looks dull, faded, and ready.

Resident Evil 4 Remake features a richer, warmer color scheme that breathes new life into these iconic environments. There are some minor lighting issues when you go from dark to light areas and back, but nothing too agonizing.

The detailed environments are further enhanced by some great sound effects, whether it’s the muttering of murderous villagers, or the thunderous sound of gunfire. The PS5 Dualsense controller makes weapons even more powerful with slightly resistant trigger buttons and haptic feedback.

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The only thing Capcom has cut back on are the quick time events, which no longer plague the experience. Sometimes you’ll want to tap a button to escape from the villagers, or to defend yourself with a Leon Knife, but that’s about it.

Resident Evil 4 Remake greatly improves on the original game, providing an uplifting experience that will appeal to modern gamers.

Fingers crossed Resident Evil Code Veronica gets similar treatment next.

Resident Evil 4 Remake is available now on PS5, PS4, Xbox and PC.

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