Resident Evil 4

From Before I Play
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  • You don't have to have played the others in the series to enjoy RE4. They play nothing alike and it's not as strongly connected plot-wise to the other games.
  • The absolute hardest part of the game is the very first time in the town when you start the game. There is a shotgun in one of the houses to help you out.
  • Always scan your area for breakable boxes and other pickups.
  • With solid positioning you'll never be in a place where the tank controls will be a hindrance. Keep a clean exit behind you and check back there every once in a while.
  • To do a 180 degree turn, press the Cancel button + Down at the same time.
  • Buy the treasure maps to each area, but be mindful that you'll be locked out of older areas as you progress and any left behind treasure will be lost. Also, some treasure can be combined with others to make them more valuable, so you might want to hold on to them until they're fully combined.
  • Ashley's AI is pretty good and she's pretty resilient against enemies, just try not to hit her yourself. There are also a few dumpsters in the game you can stick her into to keep her safe while you clear the area.
  • When you find yourself under siege in a certain house, you can push the cabinets against the windows and doors to buy time. Also, shooting an enemy while they're climbing on a ladder or through a window knocks them outside.
  • If you find and shoot all 15 blue medallions in the farm and cemetery, you get a better version of your prize.
  • You earn a bunch of extra cash by getting a Perfect in the mini-game shooting ranges whenever you find one. Another good way to make money early on once you get the boat is to kill big fish and sell them. Tossing junk into the lake will cause the fish to come to you.
  • After the boat trip, get back on the boat and head towards the blue light for a hidden shop.
  • Near the end of the castle you'll see a giant disgusting cone hanging out of the ceiling. There's a lot of money to be made by shooting it down.
  • Chickens can lay eggs if they are undisturbed for a few minutes.
  • Once you pick up the Blue Medallion notice, the Medallions will be shown on your map.
  • There is no guaranteed 2nd drop of the Blue Eye treasure, don't feel like you missed it.

Combat & Enemies

  • Pistol + melee will be your weapons of choice for most of the game. Get good at popping enemies in the head or legs then running close and hitting/knifing when they're stunned. It does loads of damage and is a great way to push a crowd of enemies back.
  • Regular enemies are defenseless against knife swipes while climbing up a ladder, climbing over a barrier like a window sill or a fence, or during their standing up or jumping down animations. Unarmed enemies can also be knifed freely over a barrier, as they cannot grab you over it.
  • Flash grenades instantly kill any parasite monsters that pop out of enemies' heads, and are also effective against crows.
  • Leon can do a suplex by shooting the shins of monks, closing the gap and then hitting the action button.
  • If an enemy swings at you, simply stepping backwards is usually enough to make them miss, with the exception of pitchfork-wielding and unarmed enemies.
  • Kicking is your friend, abuse it. You get invincibility frames with it as well.
  • Shotguns are much more effective at clearing crowds than the TMP.
  • Try to avoid reloading in front of bosses.
  • Try to save a Rocket Launcher for the part where you fight a boss with liquid nitrogren all over the place.
  • You can shoot (or even knife!) weapons enemies throw at you out of the air. Likewise if you shoot dynamite in the air or in enemies' hands, it'll explode early.

Weapons & Items

  • On normal difficulty, pick the weapon that looks like the most fun to you as the game won't be too hard. Keep a shotgun, pistol, and rifle. Magnums are great for a few bosses ("Prepare for your Death, Leon") but shouldn't be used against regular enemies. If you want the most powerful of each slot, the Red9, the second shotgun and the second rifle are your picks.
  • The bolt-action rifle is slower but much more powerful than the semi-auto rifle, making it useful for far-off enemies. Buying a scope is optional as you can usually do fine without.
  • You can get a free Broken Butterfly magnum with some backtracking in the second main area.
  • Unless you're really having trouble, hold off on upgrading your weapons until chapter 3, as newer, better ones become available for purchase at that point.
  • Generally firepower upgrades get more bang for your buck. Also, upgrading your ammo capacity fills your ammo.
  • Yellow herb + green herb = maximum life increase + a heal.