Resident Evil 4: Separate Ways DLC Review
Although the Resident Evil 4 remake was near perfection, one issue was the removal of Ada Wong’s story. The classic tale was a fan-favourite and many wanted to see it get the same love and attention that enshrouds Leon’s adventure. Rather than ignore that segment and work on their next venture, Capcom shines a spotlight on the femme fatale. Separate Ways is what fans have been craving but will this fresh take capture the magic of the original?
Ada’s escapade runs parallel to the main campaign. This means that you’ll cross through familiar locations and view story beats from a different perspective. Seeing how the narratives intertwine is a blast and helps to flesh out the lore of the world. Separate Ways focuses on Ada’s quest more than her supporting Leon. She is truly at the heart of the tale and the game is better for it. Her relationship with Wesker is full of intrigue as she wrestles over his ruthlessness. This adds a much-needed extra dimension to her characters and is a huge improvement over the original.
Instead of the patented methodical start, Separate Ways throws you straight into a boss battle. You will fight against a mysterious figure that lurks under a black robe and haunts your every move. The pace is maintained throughout with remixes of memorable set pieces to keep the familiar adventure feeling fresh. While you do encounter segments from the main campaign, these often have a twist or new elements to make them a thrill rather than a chore. You may peruse through environments from a different direction or venture down a previously blocked path which keeps everything feeling new.
An Acrobatic Agent
Ada is much more agile than Leon. She can use her grapple gun to take to the skies which gives more traversal options. Unfortunately, she can’t fly anywhere and must jump to predetermined points. In spite of this, it still gives a new level of freedom to the franchise and makes this exploit unique. A highlight is the way you can use the grapple to deliver a stunning melee attack. After a couple of well-placed shots, your foe will enter a staggered stage. At this point, you can press the shoulder button and drill your boot straight into the enemy’s face. It’s slick, stylish and emphasises how badass the heroine is.
Stealth is more of an option. At key points, you can sneak up on enemies and slit their throats in a visceral manner. However, this is not always going to work. Things will go wrong and you need to tackle an onslaught of zombies. To do so, you have access to a range of weapons that allow you to pepper brain-dead foes with bullets. In these moments, it does feel similar to the main campaign, however, that’s not a bad thing. Guns carry weight and each weapon feels unique. Whether it’s the first time or the hundredth time, a successful headshot always feels great and will keep you hooked until the end.
Well Placed Puzzles
As a special agent, Ada also has access to state-of-the-art tech. Some puzzles allow you to use a detective mode to grant you new information to support with solutions. Capcom doesn’t overuse conundrums, instead, they place them at suitable points to make each encounter an interesting diversion. As the campaign is only short, it’s important to ensure that there is no wasted time and Capcom absolutely nails this. Merchant requests and collectibles are dotted throughout to extend the runtime. These give you more reason to stay in the world and are fun to seek out. Everything feels purposeful and due to this, you’ll love every second of this special slice of DLC.
Resident Evil 4: Separate Ways is exactly what fans wanted from the Ada Wong-focused story. It improves on the original, giving more depth to the protagonist’s character and progressing her narrative. The acrobatics of the special agent opens up new gameplay options which allows the heroine to latch on to ledges and superkick enemies. While you don’t have complete freedom with the grapple gun and the runtime is short, there are no wasted moments which makes Separate Ways a joy from start to finish.
***A PlayStation 5 key was provided by the publisher***
- The Grapple Gun
- Ada Wong is a Badass
- Perfect Pacing
- A Tad Short
- Restricted Grappling
- Not Much Replay Value