Review by phatpat3352

"Not Original but Intresting."

Sound:

Many people believe that sound has to do with both sound effects, like the wind blowing or a tree falling and music. But in fact sounds are only that of sound effects. So when I talk about Resident Evil 4's sound I will only be talking about its sound effects.

From villagers making this foreign call for help when they see Leon to the chanting of cult members in black robes to the sound the Las Plagas make when they die to the sound of the various demonic enemies throughout the game, they all add up to some dam good and creepy sounds. The sounds in the game not only are realistic but they also do the best job that I have ever seen in a game of drawing you into the experience of where you are in the game. The foot steps of El Gigante or the sound of the ground when Leon walks on it or the crows calling out all add to the ability to make you feel like you are in the game, like you are apart of it. Without these heavy elements within the game, it would not have been such a big success as it has been.

The only minor complaint that I have would be the sound of some guns in the game. The Magnum seems to be too quiet when fired off, the broken butterfly to be exact. When you fire this magnum it comes across as some weak pistol or a silenced version of such a gun. Previous installments in the Resident Evil series have done a better job of displaying the sound of such a very powerful gun, like Resident Evil 0 for instance. But this is not to say that other guns within this massive game were not of excellent sound quality. The rifle for instance was one of the best and most realistic sounding guns in the game under my opinion. The other gun noises I have no complaints or acknowledgments on, so their fine.

Overall I would say the sound in this game gets a near perfect score of a 9.5 which is dam good for a game in the series of Resident Evil. I cannot give it a perfect ten because some elements in the game could have been better done. Some of the surface sounds like air or water or when a building collapses, some of those were done on a basic way, not bad but not exception level. Other than that minor and not really noticeable, unless your anal like me at times, parts this game has phenomenal sounding effects.

Music:

The music in the game was haunting and never annoying. It even changed depending on whether you were in danger or not. If you were spotted by an enemy or were in danger of being spotted or in a danger zone with many enemies who know you're coming, the music would let you know. The music is either fast paced or different enough to let you know you are not safe where you stand. When the music is toned down and slow or more natural relaxed, then it's a pretty safe bet that you are in no danger. This can be deceiving at times, but that is just a nice trick the game likes to play on you.

Whenever music is playing it suits your situation, and is never out of place. The music in this game is the best that I have heard in a Resident Evil game as of yet. I don't think that I will ever hear such amazing music come from any game on the Nintendo Game Cube ever again. The music adds, on an unconscious level, a more enjoyable experience while playing this game. The game would not have been the same or nearly as good without the quality of music that it has within it.

Voice Acting:

The voice acting was as good as I have seen video game voice acting. This however is not saying much, as video game voice acting has never been staler. The voice acting is believable at times but not always. Mostly Leon has the most moments of believability. I love the moments when Leon loses control and cusses or says some words of anger. He has very little of these moments but when they appear its funny as hell, funny in a good way. Ashley has an annoying female voice that is only believable in the aspect of believing that she is a teenager. Her script of what she says, along with everyone else's scripted words, suck and make it hard to appreciate. But scripted words aside, their voice tones are not scared enough. If they displayed more levels of fear in their tones then it would have made things ten times better, but oh well. I would give the voice acting a very low score if it weren't for the fact that it's the best I've seen in a video game. The voice acting gets an 7 out of 10 points.

Graphics:

The graphics in this game are the best not only in the resident evil series yet, but the best that I have seen myself on the Game Cube. This game pushes the Game Cubes graphics to the limit if you ask me. The way Leon looks and moves and the villagers look, move and attack are all phenomenal. To the trees, houses, bookshelves, and people and monsters they all look amazingly real. The fact that the windows in the game can be broken is very cool. There is not much more to say other than everything in the game looks as good as I have ever seen. I think it would be near impossible for another systems graphics to beat this games graphics. People say Halo and Halo 2 for the X-Box looks graphically wonderful, well this games graphics blow that game out of the water. I don't like giving out perfect scores in categories, but this game certainly deserves a perfect score in this area. 10 out of 10 guaranteed.

Story Line:

The story is not as inventive as it is interesting. It talks very briefly about Umbrella in the story line, which was very confusing. The game mostly sways away from the typical resident evil story line and goes on a new path. With the government banning business for the Umbrella Corp. and having them shut down they have been gone for more than 20 years. This game picks up where Leon is traveling to. In those years since Resident Evil 2 Leon has been working his way up the ranks of special protective services until he got where he is now, working as a secret agent for the president of the United States. He has been sent to find the president's newly abducted daughter. How she got abducted is anyone's guess, they never explain how one would go about doing such an impossible task. Plot hole? I think so! His investigations have led him to a small village in Europe, where two officers of the law are escorting Leon into the village via orders from their Sheriff.

From that point on the game goes and develops a story line that mostly "borrows" plot points from various famous science fiction films. The kidnapping of the president's daughter is also not so original. I, myself, could not tell you what movie that the president's daughter has been kidnapped in but I'm 99% sure there has been one. Let's just say that I have never seen such a non-original plot line in my life. I would say that if anything the only thing that makes this story line original is that the pieces of stolen or "borrowed" material are all put together in a way they never have been before. If the story line were a puzzle then as a whole the puzzle would be original looking, but each individual piece is not. This makes for an interesting plot that comes from throwing in various plot points into a pot and mixing them up good and pouring it out, thus is the summery of Resident Evil 4's story.

Although not inventive, this story line is interesting as I have said above. It all comes together in a way that works. It does not seem too over the top, if one is willing to accept the prospect of humans dieing and coming back as zombies in previous installments. This story line is only one step away from zombies anyway. It's almost like they went back and said, "how can we create a new type of zombie, without them being called zombies?” The town's folk are possessed, which is obvious to anyone who pays attention to any of the trailers. I mean a man who is not a zombie cannot take that many bullets to the chest and shake them off without something weird going on, it's common since. I think that the story line gets a bad rank only based on the fact that its parts which make it up are all "borrowed" from various already created story lines. Not original but interesting is my summery of Resident Evil 4's plot. I give this game a 7/10 in story line.

Fun Factor:

This game has an excellent fun factor while you are playing it the first time through. The second time through is not as enjoyable as I have found 99% of all games to be like. However there are mini games within the game that prolong the enjoyment of the game itself and mini games outside the main game. These added with the very long play through time makes for a very fun game overall. I don't ever buy a game and expect it to be nearly as enjoyable the second time through, so when I purchase a game I am buying it for the one time through deal. So I am not even going to consider the second play through as a factor on this scale.

The main game has two different mini games that you are allowed to play while going through the main plot. The first of the two is a sort of treasure hunt game. You are told early on in the game that you can find and eliminate 15 blue disks at certain areas of the town Leon first finds himself in. Once you located all 15 and shoot them all down, you can return to any of the merchants in the game to collect your prize. This prize happens to be a free pistol with a slightly lower power than your original gun but has the ability to go through objects and therefore hit more than one object with a single bullet. This game was more fun before I personally discovered that their locations are marked on your map once you start the hunt. As they have been marked on your map, they are too easy to locate making the game almost pointless. But if you don't use the map to aid you in your search for the small blue disks hung around two different maps of the game, then you will find this is quite a challenging and entertaining game. It also forces you to enjoy more of the graphical aspects of Resident Evil 4 because you have to focus on things you would normally not focus on so much. For this reason the mini disk hunt game is one of the best mini games in or out of the main game.

Another in game mini-game is the one involving a shooting gallery. At various points in the game there are shooting galleries where you can get prizes in the form of bottle caps. Once you collect enough bottle caps you get money to add to your stash. This money can be used at merchants as you should already know. This is a very interesting way of honing ones skills at aiming as well as adding a fun way to gather extra money throughout the game. This is also one of the more thought out mini-games in this game.

The other two mini games are "Assignment Ada" and "The Mercenaries". These two games have their unique fun levels to them. 'Assignment Ada' is a game in which you play as Ada Wong and collect Las Plagas samples, five in all, and then escape. You start with certain guns and certain ammo and items for health. You run through a course of areas killing enemies as you go. This is basically a much shorter version of the main game. It runs around half an hour, if you are slow. This I found to be the more fun of the two out of game mini games. This makes the game only slightly more fun. 'The Mercenaries' is a very stupid game. You go around with a certain amount of ammo in one setting and kill as many enemies as you can under a certain time limit. In one word, it's boring. No adding to the fun factor here.

Overall combined with the in game mini games and "Assignment Ada", this games fun factor is good, but not great. A 9/10 will suffice. The main game gets an eight score and then the mini games add another point. That is how I graded it.

Replay Value:

The main game is not worth playing again, period. But if you play some of the mini-games outside of the game, like Mercenaries or Assignment Ada then it adds a minor level of replay value. This game gets a very low score in Replay Value, which does not take away from the games overall rank because Resident Evil games are not suppose to have replay value to them. But that is just what I have accepted before even buying this game. NO REPLAY VALUE. 3/10.

Total Score: 8/10


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 02/09/05


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