Annoying Video-Game Helper: While the A.I. can perform something that normal players would have difficulty to do, like aiming down potshots easier, the A.I. would occasionally do something you really don't want to unless it's needed, like breaking boxes, or wasting healing items (as they're very important in Veteran difficulty and higher), and they would occasionally doing something stupid, like trying to collect a trapped item or trying to melee a downed opponent that's very close to a looming horde. They also had a terrible pathing and couldn't dodge and cheese the enemy, which makes ammo preserving a pain in the ass. Needless to say, the A.I. controlled player didn't age well, adding up another reason to play the game with other player. At least Ashley tried her best to stay out of the way and not wasting resources.
Author's Saving Throw: Capcom responded to the accusations of racism and Unfortunate Implications leveled toward the game in a variety of ways. Along with the addition of Sheva, the game makes it clear very early on that the Majini you're gunning down are as much victims of the outbreak as the heroes, being infected with horrific Puppeteer Parasites and driven to madness against their will. The journal of a young boy you find in the swamplands only drives the point home, as he watches his tribe completely fall apart due to Tricell's mechanations before succumbing to the infection himself, making what would be shallow and crass stereotypes into yet another reason to loathe Wesker.
Capcom finally responding to the vitriol surrounding Action Commands by making them optional in later releases of the game, such as the triple collection for the Nintendo Switch. While they still exist mid-gameplay, like having to dodge Ndesu's attacks or rescue your partner from grapples, the player is no longer obliged to wigglestick their way through cutscenes, lest they meet an untimely, rank-damaging demise.
"Two on Two", which plays during the fight with Wesker and Jill.
Base-Breaking Character: Sheva generally is very polarizing with most Resident Evil fans. To some, she's a typical bland, one-dimensional, and uninteresting character whose main purpose in the game is to be Eye Candy and to push the new "partner" system in the game.note Which, judging by how the AI was negatively received, failed in that regard. A large number of fans also were quite disappointed she got to assist Chris in finishing off Wesker; an honor that many believed she was undeserving of and should have gone to Jill. There's also those who believe she was created simply to respond to the racism allegations surrounding the game before release.note And even in that regard she's controversial. On the other hand, Sheva also has a few supporters who liked her characterization as a loyal soldier who had been pushed into a situation that was way over her head. She is completely locked out of Chris and Wesker's history and provides a fresh perspective against the monsters that Chris is so jaded with fighting.
Broken Base: The inventory system is entirely reworked compared to Resident Evil 4. Some fans find it much more dynamic to be able to switch weapons on-the-fly, while just as many lament the loss of "Inventory Tetris" and bemoan that a rocket launcher now takes up the same space as a grenade, that the inventory is entirely too small and never upgrades, that the player is forced to choose between taking up inventory slots with defensive upgrades or not using them, and that the lack of a mid-scene switch command makes changing up inventory slots on the fly an exercise in frustration.
Contested Sequel: Compared to 4, whether or not the level design and gameplay are just as good as series landmark 4, much weaker, or even represent improvements are all up for debate, as is the game's color palette and aesthetic design compared to its graphical horsepower. The game's co-op functionality (and the fact that this co-op functionality is mandatory) often drags it down in the eyes of fans and critics.
Lickers, as par for the series' course. Their regular claw attacks pack quite a punch, their tongue spear holds its victim in place, perfect for others of its kin to start a Cycle of Hurting, and if you miss the button prompt that repels their leap attack, you are guaranteed to die unless helped by your partner, no matter how much health you have. To put the cherry on the cake's icing, they always show up in packs. Also, their weakness is only vaguely hinted at, being acid rounds for the grenade launcher. Now you can buy and use them before the level, but they're one of the more expensive grenade ammo, and once again you're lucky if you know about them before hand.
Reapers. Giant, vaguely humanoid insectoid creatures that resist most of your gunfire, regenerate what you can damage, including their heads, spew noxious gas, and have a very tricky weak point that you need to hit. The best part is that they have a One-Hit Kill. If you get close to them, they will kill you, full stop, no calling for help. As bad enough as this all is, it gets worse playing on single-player, when Sheva decides the best thing to do is to rush in and close the distance.
Disappointing Last Level: Chapter 5 and onward start throwing more cheap deaths and frustrating enemies (such as the aforementioned Reapers and Lickers) at you, with the enemy base ending up rather generic and flat in comparison to the somewhat lively and creepy villages and jungles the game used previously. Chapter 6-2 onwards, however, is quite fun in its own right, and the final boss(es) are both challenging and fun.
A weapon's reload speed, as once the player has their muscle memory down, they can instantly reload a weapon even in the heat of battle through the inventory popup, making this moot—this means that in cases like the M29 magnum, it will lose the only disadvantage it has against the Lightning Hawk, the weaker gun of the same class.
In the same spirit, certain weapons handle different ways, with their own advantages and disadvantages; this only means that a weapon that may be difficult for a human player to use (like the first two sniper rifles due to aiming problems) become perfect killing tools in the hands of the far less mistake-prone AI partner. You may not feel like handling the S75, but there's no reason to sell it off when Sheva will use it fine with no practice.
Josh Stone is this. Reasons include his accent, his knack to save Chris and Sheva multiple times, especially from Jill, the spectacular wrestling moves he performs in the Mercenaries Reunion Mode, and the fact that he's the only minor character in the whole game that makes it out alive and was there to save Jill after she was released from Wesker's mind control and piloted the helicopter to rescue Sheva and Chris along with her. By the way, did you know that he's A LEGEND!!!
Doug the helicopter pilot from the Desperate Escape DLC actually has a growing fanbase. His Tear Jerker death certainly helped play a large part in this, as he's another sad victim of the curse of dying helicopter pilots in the series.
Ricardo Irving was seen as a spiritual successor to Ramon Salazar and has a large fanbase.
One of the series' long standing darkhorses, Barry Burton, was brought back for the Mercenaries Reunion solely because of this reason. Same applies for Rebecca as well.
Fanon: A lot of fans assume Sheva is meant to be mixed-race, mostly due to one of her outfits being a shout-out to Halle Berry's character in Swordfish, but nothing is said about her parents' ethnicities one way or the other. Her motion actor is Dutch/Indian.
S.T.A.R.S. Wesker in The Mercenaries is just one example. On the other hand, Midnight Wesker is das professional character, meaning he has all that is needed for overinflated combos and scores, but you need to be good. In Verses mode, Midnight Wesker becomes even worse. Normally the Handcannon in his set would be used to quickly dispatch a boss, or just just get a kill to keep up the combo in desperate situations, before going back to handgun and melee attacks. However, since you can shoot other players to damage and kill them in both Slayer (PVE focus) and Survival (PVP focus), it becomes a lot more useful to take a single, deadly potshot at your enemy.
Rebecca. Yep, that◊ Rebecca. With an auto shotgun that can one shot most enemies and a MP5 for long range work, a good player can kill everything before time runs out. In addition two of her melee options, flamethrower and tear gas,note head stun and frontal arm stun melees, respectively are excessively good for combos, both having a very wide range with flamethrower doing good damage and tear gas being useful in emergencies to clear some room if you don't have the shotgun out.
The SIG P226. It costs ₦69,000 to fully upgrade the damage to a whopping 480, which means it's the cheapest of the handgun upgrade cycles to get more damage than most shotguns—if you save up cash from the item drop-rich chapters 3 and 4, you can easily grab an absurdly powerful handgun as soon as it's available. For even more game-breaking fun, give it to your AI partner, for reasons detailed below.
AI Sheva. She is a dirty, cheating A.I. on your side, because she's programmed to always land her shots, up to a ridiculous range, and is a reliable asset if well-stocked right up until Licker Betas and other high-HP enemies start to appear regularly.
The Good Bad Bug allowing you keep any loot you picked up in a section of a stage whenever you voluntarily quit. Since several chapters have very useful goodies laying around near the start, you can easily exploit this to stockpile loads of treasure and rare, powerful equipment like magnum ammo and rocket launchers.
In a Co-Op session, one player can give a human partner stuff (weapons, healing items, rotten eggs, etc.), have the player with the donated goods to quit the game and save what they got in their inventory while the other player does not save what's lost at all. This results in items being duplicated, making it quite easy to rack up money, especially from valuable equipment. Xbox 360 players can easily do this with just two gamer profiles and two controllers; PlayStation 3 player don't have the same game-breaking luxury as they require another player online to duplicate items.
Heavy metal Chris can be added to the list of top tier mercenaries characters. The simplest reason is that the stun rod counts as a melee, so getting kills with it will add to your timer, in addition an infinite ammo Gatling gun which can be used to get a quick kill, pepper boss monsters, and protects Chris's back at all times. Unlike Wesker or Rebecca, his actual melees aren't top tier, so he has to mostly rely on the stun rod for timer inflation, but even that means he's at an advantage against exposed parasites.
As annoying as the placements of the buttons are, the PC version has a built in crosshair that helps you aiming better at longer range as the laser sight loses it's clarity after aiming at certain distance. This is very useful when wielding weapons like the Magnums or the Longbow, as the crosshair doesn't follow the weapon recoil like the laser sight does and it offsets the lack of laser sight for Sheva players when using the Longbow.
Goddamned Bats: Adjules. They don't inflict or sustain that much damage, but their speed and low stature mean that you will likely waste a lot of ammunition trying to hit them.
Goddamned Boss: The final boss is fought in three stages. The fights are not that hard if you know what to do, but the boss's persistent failure to just die already can become tiresome, and all three have either cheap QTE instant-death cutscenes, cheap instant-kill attacks with weird range that don't play well with the gameplay or the partner AI, and weird gameplay changes that don't play well with the reworked inventory.
He's Just Hiding!: Countless fans don't buy the apparent Word of God that Albert Wesker is dead and insist that for now the character is retired, but believe he will one day return. Considering the creation of Jake Muller in the sequel and the mysterious Alex Wesker, it's clear for now Capcom now sees the gravity of their mistake killing him off early and tried to compensate for one character with two.
Chris says "Do you take all of your ideas from Comic Book Villains?" to Wesker. It turns out that Wesker and Dr. Doom are teaming up in Marvel vs. Capcom 3. The same line also becomes hilarious with the release of Captain America: The First Avenger and its climax, where its main villain, Red Skull (himself a Comic Book Villain), enacted a very similar plot to Wesker in this game, complete with a large bomber jet and delusions of godhood.
D.C. Douglas, Wesker's voice actor, facetiously mentions in a Resident Evil 5interview that he would have liked to see Wesker gotten laid. Then Resident Evil 6 came out, and players are treated to Jake Muller, Wesker's son.
Mixed a little with Harsher in Hindsight, considering the circumstances, but in this game, D.C. Douglas voices a villain who mind-controls a leading female into being his Dragon and sics on the hero, who has to snap her out of it. Douglas also played Alexei in Tales of Vesperia, which not only had the same plot point, but came out that same year.
Just Here for Godzilla: Resident Evil 5 is considered one of the weaker entries in the main series, but the final section of the game from chapter 5-3 onward (namely, starting with the boss fight against Jill) is packed with awesome boss fights and hilariously cheesy dialogue to give a satisfying conclusion to Chris and Wesker's longstanding rivalry.
Fans ate up the rather ridiculous QTE where Chris 'punches a goddamn boulder with his bare-friggin'-hands' to the point of a Running Gag where one meme in the wake of Resident Evil 2 remake has Chris give Leon very specific instructions to go on a date with Claire while destroying Ada's car with a boulder. Even Capcom got on the joke in the eight mainline game, where an irate Heisenberg refers to Chris as a "boulder-punching asshole".
Older Than They Think: Some of the more "crazy" action-style stunts that show up in this game have appeared in other Resident Evil media before. Case in point, the comic book adaptation of Code: Veronica turned the protagonists into full-fledged shonen anime heroes, with stunts like Claire somersaulting all over the Tyrant or Chris killing both a Hunter and a Bandersnatch with his bare hands.
Polished Port: Aside from some weird KB+M issues as detailed down in Scrappy Mechanic, the port released on PC is excellent, featuring well optimized and beautiful graphics that hold up well today. It can even be patched to remove the GFWL necessity, and said patch adds back in laser sight aiming with a KB+M setup.
In Mercenaries, have fun being randomly grabbed by Majinis while you are desperately trying to keep your combo up. Bonus points if the Executioner is around.
While the PC controls are in general somewhat wonky (for example, by default the quick turn is relegated to the C key, but the locate partner button is bound to Q, next to the WASD keys, when the other way around would be much more useful), for some godforsaken reason Capcom decided to map one of the QTE dodge buttons to E+V. This is extremely wonky, as the other two options (A+D and both Left and Right mouse buttons) are far more natural and closer together on the keyboard. This is because, on console, E is the inventory button and V is the voice button, both of which are mapped to the face buttons. This means that QTEs are much harder on keyboard due to the distance between the E and V keys, a factor that doesnt exist on console.
Scrappy Weapon: Proximity Mines. Though they have some use in Story mode (usually by leading bosses and strong enemies on them or setting up for groups you know will be there in reruns), in Mercenaries they are next to useless, with melees giving you more time on kill, and taking a while to set up for little payoff, as far as comboing goes. In mercenaries you might be able to use one or two while on the run from a horde, but in verses they are next to useless as it's obvious when one has been set where you might step on it as well as the possibility of it being shot while you set it.
Sequel Difficulty Drop: While still a tough game on the first playthrough, it gives more breaks to the player compared to Resident Evil 4: You have a partner this time around, who's very useful for bailing you out of trouble (if you utilize them properly), there is a last-chance "dying" state so you can heal one another, and exposed-Plaga Majini are much, much less common here and come in fewer varieties compared to Ganados. At the same time, the game expects you to be a veteran of 4, which means that it will not hesitate in tossing some dangerous enemies and situations your way, and if you don't know how to use your partner effectively, she (or he if you've unlocked the ability to play as Sheva) will be the bane of your existence.
That One Achievement: One of the game's achievements/trophies is to beat professional mode, which is extremely difficult if not downright impossible due to Chris and Sheva being made into One-Hit Point Wonders, even with the Melee and Bulletproof vests on, along with the fact that there are a lot of enemies that either are fast (the dogs), attack from a distance (the Majinis with guns or crossbows), tend to be in groups (the Majinis as a whole), or all three (the lickers).
Ndesu, a.k.a. El Gigante of Africa. You are caught in an immobile truck, and the only ways to not be hit are to either shoot him enough to stop him or hit the action commands that flash for a split-second. You need to concentrate fire on him (unless he tosses a hard-hitting boulder) while keeping an eye out for action commands. Random enemies like to come throughout the fight and shoot you with flaming arrows or molotov cocktails, and you can't even heal yourself if your health is too low! This is just a midgame boss, even!
Fights that aren't exceptionally difficult normally become ridiculous on Professional. Irving's tentacles become one-hit kills, and the window for the dodge command is buggy and sometimes lasts less than a half-second. The Wesker+Jill fight is even more absurd, at least on single player. Normally, the enemies on professional ignore your partner for the most part and focus on you, but Wesker and Jill ignore this entirely. Your partner will die, A LOT. Two of Jill's SMG bullets will kill you, and it's almost impossible to incapacitate her in the first phase, as your partner refuses to help after you restrain her. Once you get to the second phase, your partner will run off to try to knock out Jill, but will usually just get SMG'd or smacked by Wesker.
The chase sequence leading up to the Ndesu battle. Enemies have an extremely annoying habit of nailing you from behind with highly damaging Molotov Cocktails while you're busy fighting off armored trucks, there's no way to heal the damage you take on, and it's far too easy to lose track of your tiny, faintly red aiming reticle against the predominantly orange and brown backdrop.
Any level which requires splitting up for extended periods, making one partner useless, or any level that utilizes Hollywood Darkness.
4-1 and 4-2. Both levels are huge, sprawling mazes, and in 4-2 you're constantly dodging extremely damaging waves of fire (unless you know where to stand to shoot the Majini operating the mirrors, or you have the infinite rocket launcher), followed by an extremely tedious trio of mirror puzzles. At least they look absolutely gorgeous.
They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: Sheva Alomar's history is only lightly touched-on in-game. In the unlockable content, her file is 36 pages long, having a good 10 pages on series protagonist Chris and only being outstripped by the History of Resident Evil file.
Spencer, the Greater-Scope Villain of the entire series who created Umbrella, outlasted his partners and helped create the Ti-Virus itself, is reduced to a dying old man who Wesker murders in a cutscene. The main characters don't even get to meet him, never mind fight him.
Killing off Albert Wesker is seen by many to have been a terrible mistake, as he was easily one of the most popular and dangerous antagonists in the series, and the fact that he was killed by decapitation and a lava dip (meaning he is likely Deader Than Dead even in the world of Resident Evil) only makes it worse. That he has went from a cool and calculated schemer to a genocidal lunatic with a God complex who even Chris mocks as a cartoonish supervillain doesn't help much either.
RE5 actually does a lot to defer that accusation. Your partner is black (a bit), quite a few whiteys are scattered throughout the early hordes, and real effort has been put into a somewhat realistic and sympathetic depiction of modern Africa. And then...! Halfway through the game, we suddenly find ourselves in a succession of mud hut villages fighting crowds of jabbering black people in loincloths and war paint, chucking spears. Oh, dears!Talk about sidestepping a pothole only to fall off a bridge.
Too Cool to Live: Unless Capcom decides to start making prequels or pull a Back from the Dead, this is going to be the last we see of Wesker, who is widely considered the best villain in the series.
Visual Effects of Awesome: Great detail in the environments and texture work, excellent-looking and shot cutscenes, great animations, some really good effects and well-done lighting make Resident Evil 5 look fantastic, especially by modern standards.