Note: This article has been translated from Italian by ChatGPT and may contain errors.
“Resident Evil 4” stands among the games that have deeply captivated me throughout my gaming journey. Not too long ago, I revisited it, only to find that the emotions it once stirred were not quite the same. Over time, the weight of years has started to become noticeable on this iconic title. The question arises: Has this remake managed to rejuvenate it adequately?
The Era of Remakes
Let’s address it upfront: while the “Dead Space” remake left me exhilarated, the “Resident Evil 4” remake left me with more tepid feelings. Unfortunately, Capcom’s title didn’t grab me like EA’s did. Undoubtedly, the Japanese developers did a commendable job, but perhaps this time the outcome lacks the wow factor. I find that the formula of these “Resident Evil” delivers gameplay that can be a bit “cumbersome” (even though we can finally move while aiming!). While this worked remarkably well in the remakes of “RE2” and “RE3,” it feels less aligned with the more action-packed nature of this fourth installment. Furthermore, the experience feels quite similar to what I remember; there’s a stronger sense of déjà vu compared to the “Dead Space” remake. At least, that’s how I perceived it, though it might also be influenced by my recent playthrough of the original. Changes do exist, though: minor plot alterations (which remain true to the original), completely reworked and more cinematic gameplay sections, new cutscenes (everything has been redone from scratch), and finally, a delightful Italian dub!
the cross-gen nature (I opted for the PS5 version), graphically, it doesn’t match up to the “Dead Space” remake, which, from that perspective (as well as others), thoroughly impressed me. The graphics are very good, mind you, but perhaps not outstanding. Facial expressions are well done, and the seamless integration between cutscenes and gameplay is truly exceptional (looking at you, “Final Fantasy XVI”). After completing the initial playthrough in around thirteen hours, “Resident Evil 4 Remake” didn’t immediately entice me to pick it up again. Given that I found it more challenging than the original, even frustrating at points, seeing certain trophies had me doubting whether I wanted to platinum it at all. Nevertheless, partly out of boredom and partly because I wanted to delve deeper, I decided to embark on a trophy hunt. This compelled me to relive the experience several times over.
A Tedious Platinum
“Resident Evil 4 Remake” demands multiple playthroughs to achieve platinum status, which is why it can become a bit bothersome. Fortunately, though, it’s not as time-consuming as it might initially seem, and the experience is always enjoyable to revisit (unlike “The Quarry,” which was on the verge of driving me mad after numerous attempts). Here’s how I went about it:
- First run without focusing on trophies: I immersed myself in the game genuinely on Normal difficulty. Then, I tackled the Mercenaries mode, achieving an S rank on all maps to unlock the Handcannon.
- Second run in New Game+ using only the pistol and knives: I completed over half of it on Normal and then switched to Assisted. Avoiding the use of rocket launchers, this run allows for a more gratifying experience of all the boss fights. It wasn’t overly difficult, though.
- Third run on Professional: Utilizing the rocket launcher with infinite ammunition made it a walk in the park (look up the trick online to get millions of pesetas, as the rocket launcher costs two!). I finished it in three hours!
- Fourth run on Normal, objective: S+ rank: Essentially, the game needs to be completed (not in New Game+) in under five hours. It might seem like a restrictive limit, but actually, if you rush through many of the combats and, once you reach the castle, make use of infinite ammo due to the special upgrade (by completing all the merchant’s assignments in the village to earn enough spinels), you’ll reach the end much sooner. There’s also the option to purchase additional content from the store that provides you with an early weapon upgrade, but I didn’t do that. I added the special upgrade to the Handcannon, but it didn’t quite work for me. I completed the game in three and a half hours.
- Fifth run on Extreme, objective: S+ rank: Similar to the previous run, but finishing the game in under five and a half hours. This was slightly more challenging, as I had to complete the village section without any tricks (except for costumes—the Ashley armor one is quite helpful and simplifies certain sections). The toughest points were the two chainsaw-wielding enemies, who killed me quite a few times, and the final village boss, also responsible for many deaths (note: remember to return to the main menu every time you die to prevent the in-game time from advancing). Honorable mention to the assault in the house with Luis—not an easy task either. Once at the castle and after applying the infinite ammo upgrade to the Chicago Typewriter, the rest was quite smooth. Nonetheless, the game manages to be challenging at certain points. Additionally, on this difficulty, the rocket launcher costs 160,000 pesetas, but it’s still feasible to buy at least two: one before Salazar and one before the final boss fight with Saddler. The game was completed in four hours.
- Sixth run for collectibles: This run was dedicated to treasures, weapons, mechanical parts, all of the merchant’s assignments, and avoiding the use of healing items. The latter can be solved quite easily: using the egg (which significantly reduces damage), armor, infinite rocket launcher, and you’re good to go. I also completed other secondary trophies and achieved an S rank in all shooting range levels. Excelling at the shooting range might initially seem challenging, but with knowledge of how to earn bonus points, it can be accomplished with relative ease.
- Seventh run for the Hermit trophy: I used the final playthrough to enjoy the adventure at a relaxed pace, relishing all the cutscenes anew, and, of course, to achieve the last trophy I was missing—to never interact with the merchant. The infinite rocket launcher always comes in handy.
A Good Remake
“Resident Evil 4 Remake” is a commendable reimagining, although in my personal judgment, it doesn’t quite reach the level of “RE2” or the “Dead Space” remake, which truly got my excitement going. The changes have enhanced the original experience, making it more current and modern. The platinum achievement turned out to be manageable and easier than anticipated, thanks to the streamlining (it would be hellish otherwise). It also struck me as a respectful adaptation of the source material; the few cuts made are negligible, and every playthrough allowed me to fully appreciate it. There’s not much more to say, except… onto the next remake!