Resident Evil 4 review
One of the best games ever
-Relentless AI that will test you to the limits
-Great boss fights
-Lots and lots of weapons to inflict bloody mayhem and carnage
-Best graphics seen on PS2
-Poor camera angle
-Letterbox style display for those not playing on a widescreen TV
The camera angle and the aiming lost this game that 0.2 it needed to recieve the perfect score. Because other than that, this game truly is one of the best games ever.
There is no slow, easy pace to begin with. From the word go you're thrown right into the heart of the action. Forget conserving ammo like in previous Resident Evils. Forget mindless, brainless zombies walking in single file towards you. These guys carry the goods - pitchforks, torches, dynamite, molotav cocktails and a damn nasty parasite inside of their bodies, that has a nasty habit of decapitating anyone who happens to come near it.
Not only are they packing heat this time, they're also smarter, more efficient, and know how to work in a group. One particular scenario sees Leon, Ashley and another character trapped inside a house, with hordes and hordes of zombies out for your blood. It is unbelievably tense, yet at the same time unbelievably fun. Strangely, one of the games biggest assets is also one of it's biggest problems - hordes of zombies. You will be faced by hundreds of these people, coming from every direction. Unfortunately, Resident Evil 4 has a pretty bad camera. Most of the time it's fine, but when Leon begins to turn around and move, it gets confusing. Moving can be a hassle, with Leon often having to stop and turn before moving off in another direction. However, in the thick of the action and the wide environments, this is rarely a problem, except when faced with lots of enemies.
The game also introduces lots of new weapons, thanks to the mysterious "Merchant" who will be waiting to buy and sell things at certain parts in the game: he certainly adds an extra element to the gameplay. One downside of this is that the more special weapons will have to be carefully used, as the ammo for them varies from little to none, even on easy mode. You may find yourself going through the game using nothing but the 9mm pistols, shotguns and machine-pistol.
The story of the game is so involved and so much is revealed over the course of the game that a small summary is all you need - the Presidents Daughter has been captured by a group of individuals, and you, Leon S. Kennedy, must bring her back. You'll have to play the game for yourself to see how the exciting story pans out.
This game excels in many aspects, but one of it's best aspects are the outstanding boss battles. These vary from a huge sea monster, to a wolverine type zombie, a huge giant and many more. To spoil the details would be criminal, but they rival God of War for best boss battles ever.
Unfortunately, the game comes with its own set of faults. As afforementioned, the camera angle can be a pain at times. The aiming features a laser sight, which although is great for close range, is a pain at further ranges. Rather than a dot constantly being visible at the end of the laser, it only appears when focused on an enemy. If not, the laser seems to fade into obscurity, making it very difficult to determine just how much your aim needs adjusted. Although most action is close-range and this is not a problem, when you have to fight at long-range, it becomes a major pain. This will be especially true when you first play the game and are trying to get used to the controls.
If you are playing the game on a small screen TV, your only real option is a letterbox style presentation, which although is hardly noticable when involved in the game, it does detract from the experience a bit. For those of you lucky enough to have your PS2 hooked to a widescreen though, this game comes with a widescreen option.
The graphics are indisputably the best on PS2 today, and up there with the best console graphics yet. The realism is astounding, and when you see a horde of zombies pointing at you and speaking in some strange language, before beginning to move towards you...you don't feel like you're playing a game. You feel completely immersed in the experience - and that's something few games can do. Halo, San Andreas, God of War, Metal Gear Solid 3 - Resident Evil 4 ranks right up there with them, and at times the action is so involving and frantic, is surpasses them in every way.
Despite it's very small flaws and niggles, Resident Evil 4 is undoubtedly one of the best games ever. The experience is horrifying, thrilling, frantic but most importantly, always fun. This needs to be in your collection - pure gaming magic.
About the author
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