Resident Evil 4 HD
At this point Resident Evil 4 shouldn’t need an introduction. The 2005 title’s perfect pacing and spot-on gunplay not only reinvigorated the struggling survival horror series, it set a new standard for third-person shooters. Leon S. Kennedy’s quest to rescue the President’s daughter from a cult of infected freaks has cemented itself on countless top 20 lists. Whether you overlooked this gem or are itching to stomp out the Las Plagas once again, Resident Evil 4 in HD is a beautiful thing.
Not much has changed gameplay-wise between Resident Evil 4 and 5, so core fans won’t have much trouble returning to the creepy Spanish village. Leon’s tank-like movements aren’t the most intuitive, but pegging foes in the legs and taking potshots at their vulnerable heads is still a rewarding process. The variety of firearms isn’t overwhelming, but each has unique characteristics and are still fun to upgrade. I was shocked by how much I still enjoy Resident Evil 4’s puzzle-like inventory system. You get to know your gear pretty well when you have to shove it all in a single attaché case.
The thrill of Resident Evil 4’s gonzo moments lives on in full force thanks to updated visuals. Conquering a mutated sea creature on a tiny wooden boat still gets the blood pumping, especially without the fuzzy haze of last-gen graphics. It’s still terrifying to flee from frenzied mobs only to be greeted head-on (or should I say head-off?) by a chainsaw-wielding maniac. Though the textures and character models are much sharper than previous versions, some may find the lack of detail and muted colors dull.
The updated visuals aren’t mind-blowing, but they present the best way to return to this already stellar game. If you somehow missed out on Resident Evil 4 when it turned heads on the GameCube, this is the perfect time to give it a download and see what all the fuss is about.