Wii

North America

Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition

by Karl Castaneda - July 18, 2007, 12:36 am PDT
Total comments: 6

9.5

It’s Resident Evil 4 – what’s not to love?

Resident Evil 4 made a huge splash when it was originally released on GameCube in 2005. With its breathtaking graphics, break-neck action, and overhauled camera system, it was heads and shoulders above just about every competing title at the time. It’s been two and a half years since then, and now, with the Wii port, we’re seeing the visually superior build augmented with the added content of the watered-down PS2 version. Exclusive to this edition are motion controls, which use the Wii Remote as a reticule, and its sensitivity in place of buttons for quick-time events. So allow me to answer the question on most gamers’ minds: is this the definitive version of RE4?

Yes. Yes, it is.

If you’ve never played the game before, it tells the story of Resident Evil 2’s protagonist, Leon S. Kennedy, now working for the government, on a mission to rescue the President’s daughter from a group of terrorists in an undefined European nation (read: Spain). After his two escorts are captured and savagely murdered, Leon finds himself caught up in much more than a simple kidnapping, as far more is afoot than what meets the eye.

The biggest improvement RE4 brought to the series was its control system. Instead of the fixed camera of previous iterations, it’s now placed behind Leon’s back (and zoomed up to his shoulder while aiming). This makes manipulating the character’s movements infinitely easier, and although Kennedy isn’t the most agile guy out there (when did the government stop teaching its agents to strafe?), he’s still leagues beyond his predecessors.

The Wii version’s motion controls aren’t too obtrusive to the old formula. You still move Leon with the analog stick, and you still fire with the A button. But instead of pressing the L button and moving the analog stick around to aim, you instead press the B trigger, which allows you to aim with 1-1 motion to your hand. In case you’re a bit twitchy, Capcom included a huge reticule in place of the laser pointer of the original version, which makes shooting much easier.

Also tweaked are the quick-time events. Instead of mashing A, B, L, or R, you’ll shake the remote back and forth or press A and B at the same time. While I’m not a huge fan of shaking the remote, it’s a minor concern, and since they only occur in small bursts, it doesn’t make much of a difference.

Should you completely hate the new layout, however, you can still revert to the old scheme with a GameCube or Classic Controller. I gave the latter a shot, but found myself wanting to go back to motion controls almost instantly. This should only further prove that the Wii can indeed handle hardcore action games, sometimes better than its traditional cousins.

Also improved are the visuals, though you might not notice it at first. While the original had fake widescreen via letterboxing, Wii Edition offers true 16x9. And though gaming’s come a long way graphically since 2005, this is still one of the better-looking titles on the system. You’ll see the game showing its age every now and then (particularly in the character animation), but if you play a lot of Wii games, you’ll likely be impressed by the lighting techniques and sheer amount of action on-screen.

So is this worth a pick-up if you’ve already played through it on the GameCube? That all depends on whether you’re interested in playing as Ada Wong. While everyone was able to play through Assignment Ada, only PS2 owners were able to access Separate Ways, which expands her storyline and sheds light on certain questions posed in the main campaign. It lasts several hours, and though I prefer Leon to Ada, I still had a lot of fun trying it out. So, if the aforementioned plus a superior control scheme appeal to you, the budget price of $29.99 will certainly seem appetizing.

If you’re an avid listener of Radio Free Nintendo, then you know I wasn’t a big supporter of this game when it was announced, saying that $30 was too much for what it offered if you’ve already played through the game. Well, as a former hater, let me tell you: I was wrong, and the game is totally worth it. I had a ton of fun playing through RE4 again, and I’d never go back to the GameCube version now that I’ve used the Wii remote and nunchuk. RE4 was already an exemplary game it was first released, and now it’s even better. Pick it up as soon as you can.

Score

Graphics Sound Control Gameplay Lastability Final
9 8.5 9.5 9.5 8.5 9.5
Graphics
9

The only facet of the visuals that stick out as outdated is the character animation. They move a bit rigidly, and it can be a little distracting at times. It’s a small complaint, however, as the rest of the visual package is aces.

Sound
8.5

Resident Evil 4 used ambiance brilliantly in its first release, and it’s heard here as well. The voice actors can be a bit hammy at times, but for some fans, that’s actually part of the appeal.

Control
9.5

This is one of the few cases where applying motion controls to a traditional layout makes perfect sense. After playing with motion controls, I couldn’t go back to the old scheme.

Gameplay
9.5

Every facet of the previous games in the series has been overhauled, and the updates in the Wii version only make it sweeter.

Lastability
8.5

The main campaign takes between 12 and 15 hours to complete, but there’s plenty else to enjoy here. Aside from Assignment Ada and the Mercenaries game, there’s also Separate Ways from the PS2 version, which bumps up the playtime considerably.

Final
9.5

If you’ve never played this game, then you owe it to yourself to play what’s arguably one of the finest releases of the last five years. If you’ve already played through the GameCube version, there’s still plenty of new content to enjoy. Considering the budget price, this is a game everyone should own.

Summary

Pros
  • Awesome motion controls
  • Budget price
  • It’s RE4, damnit!
  • Separate Ways included
Cons
  • A couple minor annoyances, like shaking the Wii remote in place of pressing a button.
  • Cons:
Review Page 2: Conclusion

Talkback

DAaaMan64July 18, 2007

Don't get me wrong I am playing the crap out of this game, but here are my annoyances:

- I want to remote aim with the sniper too
- I want to reload with a wip of the nunchuck like most if not all of the shooters so far. It feels very natural. Unlike "B + remote whip"
- I am gonna get killed for this, I also want modern character moves, like being able put my back to a wall and aim around the corner, or maybe ducking. Things of that nature. It annoyed me to play the godfather then play this because of the archaic movement on a game that should blow my mind.

I played through the GC version too. But of course I still love this game.

vuduJuly 18, 2007

Quote

- I want to remote aim with the sniper too
I want this, too. I was shocked and horrified after I bought the sniper rifle.
Quote

- I want to reload with a wip of the nunchuck like most if not all of the shooters so far. It feels very natural. Unlike "B + remote whip"
I have no feelings in particular about this; I'm fine with the controls.
Quote

- I am gonna get killed for this, I also want modern character moves, like being able put my back to a wall and aim around the corner, or maybe ducking. Things of that nature. It annoyed me to play the godfather then play this because of the archaic movement on a game that should blow my mind.
Unfortunately--while cool--that would probably break the game. See: Twin Snakes.

DAaaMan64July 18, 2007

In terms of the whip of the nunchuck I am big standards guy and thats what every one was doing with shooters so far so it came natural to me to whip the nunchuck, plus the fact that nunchuck movements aren't used at all.

I don't really see how being able to put my back against the wall next to a door would have broken it, same with ducking but that is ok. It is just a gripe.

EasyCureJuly 18, 2007

No way would i want the sniper to be controlled with the pointer unless they gave me an option to zoom out of the sniper scope entirely and just have the standard reticule on screen..

but that would only have one slight advantage: instant head explosion with one shot without having to zoom in. But there are other guns that can do that (broken butterfly) so it wouldn't make much sense.

sniper aiming would just be too shaky with pointer control. Especially when zoomed in considerably

WindyManSteven Rodriguez, Staff AlumnusJuly 18, 2007

Quote

Originally posted by: DAaaMan64
- I want to remote aim with the sniper too


This is really the only true negative about the Wii controls. It's weird being able to headshot everything with ease with every other weapon, but once you start sniping it's back to the old ways. Annoying.

RE4 is at its best on the Wii, regardless.

I wish you could swap the A and B buttons ... it feels awkward to take aim with B and fire with A

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Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition Box Art

Genre Shooter
Developer Capcom
Players1
Controllers

Worldwide Releases

na: Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition
Release Jun 19, 2007
PublisherCapcom
RatingMature
jpn: Biohazard 4: Wii Edition
Release May 31, 2007
PublisherCapcom
Rating15+
eu: Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition
Release Jun 29, 2007
PublisherCapcom
Rating18+
aus: Resident Evil 4: Wii Edition
Release Year 2007
PublisherCapcom
RatingMature (15+)
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