‘Resident Evil 4’ is still a top horror action game

Resident Evil 4 was re-released on Nintendo Switch May 21 (along with the original Resident Evil and Resident Evil 0), making this the perfect time to revisit one of the greatest games of all time.

Resident Evil 4 is a masterpiece of action horror. Released for the Nintendo GameCube in 2005, this game reshaped the landscape of the genre into what it looks like today.

After nearly 15 years, the game still holds up wonderfully. It was given the HD treatment back in 2011 and has since seen released on nearly every major platform including PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4, making it accessible to just about anyone who plays video games.

It’s no wonder Resident Evil 4 has been remastered and re-released so many times — it’s one of the most memorable games you’ll encounter in your life.

The story

Resident Evil 4 stars Leon S. Kennedy, a cop-turned-hero who, after surviving the Raccoon City incident of Resident Evil 2, has been dispatched to Spain in search of the president’s kidnapped daughter.

Resident Evil 4 is one of the best and most impactful action horror games of all time

The inciting incident is a bit hacky, but what unfolds is an intriguingly terrifying tale full of twists and turns wrapped inside a remarkably gripping environment.

The residents of this Spanish village that Leon finds himself in are relentlessly violent. They will stop at (almost) nothing to tear him apart, but they aren’t zombies like in previous Resident Evil games. No, they look normal and they’re still alive and much smarter than your average undead.

Eventually, you learn that they’ve been infected with a monstrous little creature that turns them into zombie-like pawns to a greater evil figure, someone who wants to take control of people’s minds around the world.

Everything is so spooky.

Everything is so spooky.

Leon winds his way through the treacherous village, a sinister castle, and beyond to get to the bottom of this threat, encountering traps, ambushes, and hordes of enemies that want to remove the life from his eyes (and sometimes the head from his body).

While the story does a great job of driving progression, Resident Evil 4 is best-known for its atmosphere and set pieces.

Perfectly executed vibes

Resident Evil 4 has such a foreboding presence that even walking through areas you know you cleared out is unnerving.

The world is decorated with the creepiest landscapes and even more disturbing accouterments. Wells buzz with flies, blood and bile stain countless surfaces, buildings sit in abandoned disarray. Look in the wrong place and Leon will come face to face with a corpse — or pile of corpses —that tell a tale unseen.

Bubbling beneath it is a soundtrack worthy of an award on its own, amping up the mood at all the right moments. It’s intense, to say the least, setting a scene of constant fear without using cheap scare tactics.

Punctuating the steady stream of horror are some incredible set pieces.

There are the moments when enemies pour in from all around and Leon is forced to run away to momentary safety to take a few shots before the distance closes again and other enemies appear from behind. There’s the chainsaw guy whose unmistakable revving will turn your blood to ice, knowing that if he gets too close he’ll remove Leon’s head in a bloody, violent spray.

The Prisoner is a blind boss with some interesting mechanics.

The Prisoner is a blind boss with some interesting mechanics.

And then there are the boss fights and special encounters. The first big fight Leon faces is a giant monster that lives in a lake and he’s forced to improvise with harpoons as he’s dragged around the water in a rowboat. There’s El Gigante, who uses his absurd size and strength to pummel Leon around a makeshift arena. There’s the Big Cheese, who traps Leon in a burning barn and turns out to be more monster than man.

There are others I won’t spoil, but each one is so memorable that even without the story you’d want to keep playing just to see what they came up with next.

Expert design decisions

Resident Evil 4 is one of the best and most impactful action horror games of all time, marking a point in the genre where few games that followed could match its expertise in so many areas.

Opting for an over-the-shoulder camera rather than the fixed camera angles seen in past Resident Evil games, Resident Evil 4 delivered a deeper sense of connection between players and the main character. Players can’t see what’s happening behind Leon just as much as Leon can’t, giving an extra claustrophobic spin on every single moment of the game.

Every moment is up close and personal.

Every moment is up close and personal.

Is something chasing Leon? Might as well keep sprinting just in case.

Developers also made the decision to go in an unconventional direction in terms of combat. Where most third-person shooters use one analog stick to move and the other to aim, Resident Evil 4 forces players to stop in their tracks in order to aim and shoot. There’s no running and gunning in Resident Evil 4, making every action sequence that much more intense.

It’s what differentiates it between regular action games and its own brand of action horror and part of what makes it so worth playing almost 15 years after its initial release.

Uploads%252fvideo uploaders%252fdistribution thumb%252fimage%252f91441%252feabf249e 03f5 43ef b13f 13d107229198.png%252foriginal.png?signature=vndlhcc0w2ecv q5tud6yqedz8y=&source=https%3a%2f%2fblueprint api production.s3.amazonaws


more recommended stories

  • Elon Musk’s tweet about Mars is confusing the internet

    A few weeks ago, U.S. president.

  • The fat bear cams are back in business for 2019

    It’s high time to devour 4,500-calorie.

  • Future air travel at the Paris Air Show looks high-tech and autonomous

    While everyone on the ground is.

  • YouTubers only get canceled when everyone’s bored

    James Charles is back, proving that.

  • Millennial burnout can be beat with the right self-care

    When burnout comes for you, it’s.

  • Shop keyboards, headsets, and more

    Just to let you know, if.

  • Far From Home’ hit the web

    Spider-Man: Far From Home doesn’t hit.

  • New iOS 13 feature helps you purge unwanted app subscriptions

    A new iOS 13 feature could.

  • Sick of paying for concert tickets? This app lets you stream live music.

    Just to let you know, if.

  • Apple’s Tim Cook urges Stanford students to take responsibility

    Apple CEO Tim Cook had a.

  • Stain removal videos on YouTube are strangely therapeutic

    Stain removal is an art form,.

  • Brazen L.A. hawk refuses to leave the hood of a moving car

    On an otherwise normal, sunny day,.

  • LG gram 17-inch lightweight laptop on sale: Save $200

    Just to let you know, if.

  • Sarah Owusu’s paintings put African and black beauty front and centre

    Artist Sarah Owusu pioneered a new.

  • People are waiting up to 10 hours for new Harry Potter ride at Universal

    If you’ve recently wondered when that.

  • Uber wants to be the ‘Amazon and Google of transportation’

    Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi last year.

  • Selena Gomez and Jimmy Fallon feel the burn in a ‘Hot Ones’ crossover episode

    The hit web series Hot Ones.

  • Save £450 on this 12-inch Apple MacBook from Amazon

    Just to let you know, if.

  • Microsoft unveils Xbox game based on ‘The Blair Witch Project’

    ‘The Blair Witch Project’ game, revealed.

  • Keanu Reeves won the Xbox E3 2019 press conference

    Leave it to Keanu Reeves, one.

  • 10% off everything on Lovehoney to celebrate National Sex Day

    Just to let you know, if.

  • Bradley Whitford on being the newest ‘Handmaid’s Tale’ baddie

    Since The Handmaid’s Tale began to.

  • This flying motorcycle takes coolness to new heights

    The Moto Volante flying motorcycle, created.

  • Uber takes to the skies once more with Uber Copter

    Disclosure Every product here is independently.

  • Stephen Colbert pulls apart Trump’s strange interview with Piers Morgan

    Well, after a very, very weird.

  • Samsung launches its Galaxy S10 in Cardinal Red color

    Disclosure Every product here is independently.

  • Amazon Prime members, one-day shipping has arrived

    Disclosure Every product here is independently.

  • Everything Apple revealed at WWDC 2019

    At its annual WWDC developer conference.

  • ‘Ford v. Ferrari’ trailer sees Matt Damon and Christian Bale rev up: Watch

    Matt Damon and Christian Bale have.

  • How doctors really feel about the Apple Watch’s health features

    With mountains of product leaks and.

  • Crisis counselors were on set for ‘When They See Us’ cast and crew

    Kevin Richardson, Antron Mccray, Raymond Santana.

  • What Jake and Logan Paul’s new gossip channel says about the state of YouTube

    Image: Jerritt Clark / getty images.