Not Evil At All
Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition is pretty much what you’d expect it to be. It’s a remake of one of the best games of all time with tacked on Wiimote functionality. And it’s pretty damn good.
The story stays pretty much the same. For those of you who didn’t play the original, it starts off by telling you that the evil corporation Umbrella has been shut down by a lawsuit and Racoon City, the zombie infested village where most Resident Evil games are held, has been nuked to eliminate the undead threat. You are then caught up on what the main character for RE4, Leon S Kennedy, has been doing since then. After Racoon City was nuked, Leon joined the Secret Service. After undergoing top secret training, Leon is now on his first assignment. The President’s daughter has recently been kidnapped, and she was reported to have been sighted in a small town in Spain. Why the President decided to leave his daughter’s life in the hands of a single, inexperienced man is unexplained, but oh well. Leon discovers there’s something not quite right about the town (namely, they’re all big zombies with insects that randomly explode out of their heads) but sets his sights on rescuing Ashley anyway, rather than calling in for backup like a normal, sane person would do. If this all seems a bit stupid to you, then you’re right. Story isn’t important here. It’s all rather predictable, but it hardly matters, because the gameplay is excellent.
As you’d expect from a Wii game, you control your gun with the Wii Remote. To aim you hold B, and to shoot you press A. Like the Gamecube version, there’s no strafing or moving while you’re aiming. Capcom has worked this into their level design, with many enemies waiting just around the corner, intent on scaring the living daylights out of you. The controls really are spot on. Sometimes the cursor controlling your aim gets stuck in one of the corners, but this is rare and it only takes a second to get it out of the corner and trained onto another Zombie’s head. Speaking of headshots, this is possibly the goriest game on the Wii. Blood is EVERYWHERE. It spurts from you, it spurts from your enemies – it spurts from EVERYTHING. Don’t believe me? The first time you come up against someone with a chainsaw, just stand there and try not to be sick as you’re given a
If gameplay is the thing that makes RE4 great, the sound is the thing that makes it incredible.
close up view of the blade slicing through the meat of your neck. It’ll then meet some resistance against your spine, before shearing through that and lopping off your entire head. It’s horrible, disgusting, tasteless and most of all rudding brilliant. If you’ve been waiting for a game that isn’t aimed at 4 year olds on your Wii, this is it. To make the deal even sweeter, the extras that were added to the PS2 version of the game, such as the Mercenarioes minigame and the Ada Wong missions, have been incorporated here, making it the most complete version of RE4. As a pure shooter, this is the best gameplay can offer on the Wii.
If anything lets RE4: Wii Edition down, it’s the graphics. They’re basically the same as the PS2 and GC versions of the game. That’s not an insult; because both those versions had quite beautiful graphics for their time, but their time was 4 years ago. It looks OK compared to other Wii titles, but it’s still quite a disappointment.
If gameplay is the thing that makes RE4 great, the sound is the thing that makes it incredible. The heavy blast of a shotgun, the crackling burn of a flame grenade and the rattling, chill-inducing breath of the Regenerator really draw you into the experience. I dare you to not feel scared when you hear the chainsaw rev up that first time.
RE4: Wii Edition both pushes the hardware and stays restrained at the same time. The gore is something not yet seen on Nintendo’s kiddie console, but the lazy graphics are something we’ve seen too much of. There’s little to entice someone who’s played it before, but if you missed the last one or are new to the series, now is the time to jump in and get immersed in the world of Resident Evil.
The Bad: No graphical improvements;