YMMV / Resident Evil 4

  • Anti-Climax Boss: After fighting Jack Krauser with only Quick Time Events, U3, and Krauser again, Osmund Saddler isn't that hard, in retrospect.
  • Awesome Music: Wesker and HUNK's Mercenaries themes, "Infiltration," and "End and Aim".
  • Best Boss Ever: The second fight against Krauser.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment:
    • There's a giant clockwork mechanical statue of Ramon Salazar in Chapter 4-4. It is never explained or mentioned ever again. It is reasonable to believe that Salazar has a big enough ego to build a statue of himself, but why build a giant clockwork statue that chases after people?? His ego is just that big.
    • The Oven Man in Chapter 5-1. What the hell was he doing in there?
  • Breather Level: Chapter 3-3, the shortest chapter in the game. There are only two rooms with enemy encounters in the entire chapter. The first is a somewhat tricky fight with a Garridor in a cage (that can be skipped by shooting the lock off the cage and leaving), and the second is a straightforward fight with standard enemies that rewards you with a cache of ammo, grenades and a rocket launcher at the end.
  • Broken Base:
    • Some fans think this game is too action-y and not atmospheric, while others think the previous Resident Evil games sacrificed fun and playability for said atmosphere. Its sequels have mitigated this somewhat. After Resident Evil 5 and Resident Evil 6, it's hard not to look back on 4 as the most subtle and haunting of the "new age" Resident Evil games.
    • What's better, the Red9 or Blacktail? Arguments over this rage to this very day.note 
    • All the Escort Mission sections. Some wish they were gone entirely, while others think they actually weren't that bad, and that Ashley Graham does a pretty good job of staying out of your way most of the time.
  • Critical Research Failure: When they were called out on the use of the Spexico trope, the developers defended themselves by saying the game doesn't take place in Spain, but in Central Europe. Looks like nobody told them Spain is the only country in the whole continent where Spanish is spoken and the "pesetas" were Spain's currency before the Euro.
  • Damsel Scrappy: Ashley. You'll hear "LEON HELP!!" so much that you're bound to want to kill her yourself by the end of the game.
  • Demonic Spiders:
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Krauser. So much so that he made another appearance and got some more backstory in The Darkside Chronicles.
    • The Merchant. Aside from a number of catchphrases and the gameplay importance of him being a reoccurring Item Shop, we know nothing about him beyond face value.
    • Luis Sera to an extent.
    • Helicopter Mike, who helps Leon by shooting zombies from his helicopter. He also knew a good bar.
    • Salazar to an extent. He certainly delights in causing trouble for Leon and Ashley and steals every scene that he's in.
    • That dog you save from the trap at the beginning of the game. The Video Game Caring Potential is nice, but what cements him into the hearts of fans everywhere is when he repays the favor by helping you kill your first El Gigante. Capcom had made another game called Haunting Ground where an identical dog called Hewie spends most of the game as the protagonist's loyal companion.
    • The Regenerators. Only a handful of them appear in the game, and mostly near the end of it too, but they are one of the most memorable and terrifying enemies in the entire franchise.
  • Epileptic Trees: There's a lot of WMGs regarding the identity of the Merchant. There are many about Ingrid Hunnigan as well.
  • Even Better Sequel: The Resident Evil games were always well liked, but this game is considered the apex of the entire series. It's sitting at 96 on Metacritic and is considered the game of the year for 2005. It's been released on multiple platforms and holds the Guinness World Record for best selling survival horror game. It did so well and is so liked that almost all of the main entry Resident Evil game since 4 have followed its template and tropes. Not to mention how it's credited for bringing the Third-Person Shooter viewpoint into new prominence and inspired a lot of other games, such as Dead Space for one.
  • Franchise Original Sin: It was met with commercial and critical acclaim for being an Actionized Sequel that still had enough horror elements to stay true to the genre. Nearly every other Survival Horror game (including its sequels) tried to follow suit, upping the action further in response to the more mainstream popularity of FPS and other shooters. This is viewed as a Dork Age for the genre, where it neglected the horror aspect and became indistinguishable from any other action game, because they lacked the action-horror balance that let RE4 succeed.
  • Freud Was Right:
  • Fountain of Memes:
  • Game Breaker:
    • The second run weapons, like the Infinite Rocket Launcher and the Chicago Typewriter (it has unlimited ammo and does not even need to be reloaded).
    • The suit of armor that you can equip Ashley with makes her completely invulnerable, even from enemies that try to kidnap her. What makes this even worse is that you can switch costumes on your first Professional Mode playthrough, meaning that you can play through the entirety of Professional Mode without having to worry about Ashley's safety.
    • The P.R.L. 412 can kill Mendez, the Garradors, Armaduras, Verdugo, U-3, Krauser and even Saddler in no more than two stun flashes. Utilizing both of these features a player could complete everything in the game using nothing more than the base handgun, one box of ammo, three grenades and a handful of healing items. Post-PlayStation 2 versions made it even more game-breaking by giving it faster charging speed and its charged shot will decimate everything in front of Leon.
  • Goddamned Bats:
    • The Novistadors are not well-liked among the Resident Evil community. At least they kidnap Ashley so you don't have to look after her.
    • The Crossbow Ganados. They are annoying as sin, especially when you can't tell where they are. They also have excellent accuracy on Professional mode, and will do more damage than you'll be pleased with.
    • Plagas. Specifically, the second and, especially, third forms. The second type is only dangerous on Professional due to it potentially biting your head off. However, the third appears to exist specifically to piss off players accustomed to using flash grenades or shotguns to kill Plagas.
    • There's literal bats in a few parts of the game, and they're insanely annoying.
  • Goddamned Boss: Salazaar is a pain to fight, if only because his reaction to being hit anywhere but his weakpoint is a combination of Large Ham and The Most Annoying Sound.
  • Good Bad Bugs: Lots in the GameCube version, though most of them were fixed in subsequent versions:
    • An exception is clipping, especially the knife through the hole in the door glitch. It was actually made better in the later releases by preventing you getting hit while using this glitch.
    • The famous Ditman glitch, which is especially useful for speedrunning.
    • Ashley is able to suplex certain enemies via a glitch in the GameCube version after stunning them by busting a door open in their faces.
    • In Chapter 4-2, there's a part where you have to fight two El Gigantes in a small room. It's possible to make one fall in the lava that's under the floor, which kills it after a minute. In the GameCube version, if you leave the room and then came back, there will be money on top of the lava pit that you can pick up (the reward for killing El Gigante). This was fixed in later versions.
    • In the GameCube version, during the Salazar fight, there is a spot near where the tentacles comes out of the walls on either side where Salazar will not attack you. The tentacles will try to hit you if they are out, but otherwise you have complete impunity to whale on Salazar. This was fixed in later versions.
  • Hell Is That Noise:
  • Homegrown Hero: This is lampshaded, despite not being an example itself (being a Japanese game with an American protagonist): The U.S. President's daughter is kidnapped to a Spanish speaking Ruritania and Leon S. Kennedy (now a secret service agent) is sent to rescue her. The villains enjoy taunting him over how things won't turn out "like your American action movies".
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • To give some real world credence to the Ganados, the game contains a document which (accurately) describes several real world parasitic organisms which are capable of altering the host's behavior to be more beneficial to the parasites. One of the parasites mentioned is cordyceps fungus that infects ants, the very same thing that mutates to infect humans in The Last of Us.
    • The Regenerators encountered late in the game are humanoid abominations that have Barbie Doll Anatomy, slasher smiles, and a powerful Healing Factor. This all sounds extremely familiar...
  • Ho Yay:
    • When Leon unties Luis — "Little rough, don't you think?"
    • How Luis dies.
    • Krauser's dialogue in the Fortress Ruins. "That's what I'm talking about" just really sounds questionable, even in context.
    • Krauser's whole obsession with Leon.
    • As the battle in Fortress Ruins progresses, Krauser takes off more and more of his clothes and personal effects.
  • Internet Backdraft: There was one in Spanish video game forums due to how blatantly the game plays the Spexico trope. The fact that Capcom insisted that the story takes place in Europe, but not Spain, despite the TONS of elements that indicate it could only happen in that countrynote , only made things worse.
  • It's Popular, Now It Sucks: The style change, while making the series more popular, has caused many fans of the series' original style to feel betrayed, cheated, and forgotten.
  • Memetic Badass: The Merchant. To quote Cracked:
    Screw the guy who blasts through the undead scourge and penetrates the deepest levels of the sewers to save the president's daughter. We want to know about the guy who's so badass he beat us there and set up an item shop and shooting gallery.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    "WHAT'RE YA BOIYIN'?"
    "NOT ENOUFF CASH, STRANGEH!"
    "AHHH. I'LL BOUY IT AT A HOIGH PRICE."
  • Most Annoying Sound:
    • "LEEEEEOOOOOOOOOOONNNNNNNNN!! HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLP!"
    • For those who don't get creeped out as easily, the monks' chanting referenced up in Hell Is That Noise can become this instead.
    • The hilariously stupid wheezing noise Leon makes when he dies, which easily falls into Narm territory. It ruins the otherwise cool death animations.
    • Ashley's alternate costume, a suit of armor that renders her invulnerable, makes a clanking noise every time she walks. It's only negative aspect of the armor, but it's frequent enough to make you want to mute your TV.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Saddler transforming peaceful villagers into bloodthirsty savages to do his bidding, as the credits would suggest.
  • Most Wonderful Sound: The soft clarinet music you hear in some saving rooms is very relaxing, especially when you just went through a hellish survival sequence. This is pretty much tells you "Don't worry, it's safe here."
  • Narm: See here.
  • Older Than They Think: Quite a few new fans of the series don't seem to realize what the "4" in the game's title actually denotes.
  • Paranoia Fuel:
    • The fact that some decapitated Ganados will keep walking forward for a couple seconds before keeling over might be an unintentional quirk of the game, but it actually ends up adding a lot of tension, as it leaves you guessing for those few seconds whether a Plagas will burst out of their neck or not. Fortunately, this doesn't happen until the second chapter.
    • The music in the "Ball Room" detailed under That One Level and in a few other areas has a strange, dissonant bassline that sounds very similar to the Zealots' guttural chanting, so that even when the coast is clear it still sounds like the bastards are always right behind you.
  • Player Punch: Some of Osmund Saddler's appearances have him doing this, such as him killing Luis or Mike.
  • Polished Port: The Wii Edition has everything the original PC version claimed it was going to have, and on top of being perfectly stable, it even has God-tier controls. The HD Edition version, released on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, has higher native resolution, added shadows and colored lighting in many locations. The PC port of the HD release, dubbed Ultimate HD Edition, is playable at high resolutions, has an added hi-res texture pack, has controls comparable to the Wii version, and can run at 60 frames per second; the HD Remastered version on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One is also comparable to the Ultimate HD Edition in terms of visual fidelity. This is opposed to...
  • Porting Disaster: The original PC port, which claimed it has the graphical quality of the GameCube with all of the PlayStation 2 version's content. It was a buggy pile of crap with visuals that are much uglier and colorless than the PS2 version that needed to be patched (and modded) to hell and back to even be playable. As with many PC ports of Japanese console games, it's designed for gamepads, with no native mouse support and rather clumsy keyboard controls. The in-game button prompts only refer to buttons on a gamepad, not the keyboard controls, which would be forgivable if it wasn't for the game's extensive use of quick-time events. What's also ironic is that the PC port PC of RE4 was handled by SourceNext, the very same company behind an improved (and unfortunately Japan-only) PC port of Resident Evil 2.
  • Replacement Scrappy: The Ganados to the zombies.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: The knife. Code: Veronica pulled it partway out by making it hit hard enough to be useful, if you knew how to use it properly. 4 gave it the extra push by making it less situational, quicker and more simple to use, and not take up inventory space, among other perks.
  • Seinfeld Is Unfunny: A game mechanic example: The over the shoulder gameplay was revolutionary for the time, and later games like the first Dead Space and Gears of War were compared to RE4. Now that this style of play is everywhere, it's easy to forget that this was the game that blazed the trail.
  • Snark Bait: In Spain. Not the game itself, mind you, it was actually a massive critical and commercial success, and it's for the most part fondly remembered. But rather how badly the country is misrepresented, which is still to this day a bit of a sore point for Spaniard gamers (See Internet Backdraft above). If there is any article or video about how Spanish culture is represented in video games, this game is bound to appear to be mocked.
  • That One Boss:
    • The battle against Salazar can be challenging even in Easy. It doesn't help that Salazar can instantly kill Leon with one move, though he can only do so if he's standing too close to him.
    • The Verdugo is a two-legged nightmare to kill unless you have serious firepower, and you first have to confront it in a room full of tight corridors without enough room to avoid its attacks. It's also Nigh Invulnerable unless you freeze it with a nitrogen canister, and there's only a few of those lying around the area. It's sorely tempting to either keep dodging long enough to escape down the elevator or just hang onto that free rocket launcher you found and be done with it in one go.
    • The first fight against Krauser involves several quick time events that if not pressed correctly Leon will die. The game will change the prompt every time the player loses so this is not about memorizing but training reflexes. He's also a pain in the butt during his last fight because the knife that was useful against him is now too slow to use, and he has no hitbox whenever he decides to backflip away from you.
  • That One Level:
    • The very first level, where all you have is the basic pistol, a knife, and maybe a couple of grenades. After facing about six enemies in groups of at most two, you come to the village where you can end up with about a dozen villagers, two with chainsaws, coming after you.
    • The notorious Cabin Fight, where you must survive an onslaught in a cramped cabin, covering six entrances over two stories with and endless stream of Ganado until forty enemies are killed.
    • The "Water Hall" about mid-game. There's little space to maneuver, Elite Mooks are coming at you from every direction, who have the highest Plagas spawning chance in the game and will constantly get reinforcements until you've taken down a substantial amount of them, and you have to protect Ashley during the whole process. Prepare to hear "LEEEEEEEOOOON!! HAAAAAALP!!" a lot. Also, if you leave her in the back room to deal with the enemies, Zealots will drop down a hole in the ceiling to attack her while you're outside.
    • All three encounters with the Novistadors.
    • That horrible wrecking ball room on the island is like a "greatest hits" compilation of the worst things the game can throw at you; fast and hard-hitting Giant Mooks that do high damage, crossbow soldiers that pick you off at a distance, and a freakishly high rate of plaga-spawning Ganados all while you're crammed into a relatively small chamber that gives you no way to defend yourself from sneak attacks.
    • The water level in Mercenaries. It is the only place in the game that has Super Salvador. It also doesn't help that this is one of the few levels in Mercenaries where there is little to nothing in the way of good camping spots.
  • Too Cool to Live:
    • Luis Sera.
    • Mike the helicopter pilot. How many times in this series can you say you have a chain gun and missile launcher-toting helicopter coming to your aid, and doing a damn good job at that? It's nothing short of a travesty that he and Leon weren't able to stop by that bar he mentioned.
  • Tough Act to Follow: Resident Evil 4 received universal acclaim upon its release. Direct sequels like 5 and 6, while overall competently made, are still outshined by RE4. These days, RE4 is often even compared favorably to the REmake and RE2.
  • Uncanny Valley: Ganados seem human at a distance, but as you get closer their red eyes and odd movements push them into the valley.
  • Vindicated by History: While it's generally considered great, there are a number of people who didn't like the greater action focus. A number of the same people see this in a different light after the much more actiony, and much less atmospheric Resident Evil 6.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: The graphical quality of the game is amazing for the time as far as console games go and the graphics on all the ports (save for the original PC port) look amazing to this very day.

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