By now, you’ve probably had a chance to play through a little of Resident Evil 5, if not the whole thing. And if you have, then you probably already know that it doesn’t bring the scary like its forebears did. Instead, RE5 delivers its own strain of gruesome, Africanized awesomeness, with monstrous set-pieces and ridiculous over-the-top action sequences that make for a satisfying – if not exactly terrifying – action game.
Above: Scary? No. But definitely a lot of fun
Of course, some of those sequences are more awesome than others. What follows is a showcase of our five favorite moments from throughout the game’s six chapters, hand-picked for surprise, challenge and general ridiculous fun.
If you haven’t played the game yet, be aware that the following contains some minor spoilers. We held back on some of the really big ones, which may or may not be cooler than anything else on this list, but those of you who complain about these things should consider yourselves warned.
Like the extra-creepy zombie sharks that lurked in the original Resident Evil’s waist-high waters, RE5’s crocs only appear in one place, and it’s a total surprise when they do. (Or it was a complete surprise, until just now when we ruined it for you.)
Stopping off at one of the villages-on-stilts in the game’s wetlands area, you’re forced to wade through the placid, surprisingly shallow water to reach a ladder. Once you’re a few yards in, a large reptilian head surfaces ahead of you and suddenly that ladder can’t show up soon enough.
Like the zombie sharks before them, though, the crocodiles are less threatening than their enormous size and eerie music imply. As long as you can keep moving, they’ll usually just glide past you in an attempt to attack the place you were standing a second ago. And once you’ve dodged them, you can try and shoot them to death.
Above: Or not
That’s not to say they aren’t dangerous. Get too close or move too slowly, and you’ll rapidly go from badass secret agent to crocodile shit.
In part because they only show up once, the crocodiles are totally unexpected, which makes the encounter with them one of the few times RE5 comes close to being genuinely frightening.
Above: Creepy even without the benefit of Las Plagas infection
This sequence is memorable enough to have made it into the demo, but like the crocodiles, it’s something that only happens once. And that’s a shame, because pushing heavy objects in front of doors and windows to stave off attack from enraged townsfolk was part of what made Resident Evil 4 more than just a balls-to-the-wall action game.
After being spotted by a mob of Majini (the infected townsfolk that make up the bulk of RE5’s enemies), you’ve got a choice to make: run outside to confront them and die, or rapidly fortify the flimsy building in which you’ve taken refuge.
Above: Better work fast, the mob’s closing in
Not that your efforts will hold for long – while you’re busy gunning down a few of the shuffling horde through the windows, they’ll break through. First, they’ll shove through the window…
Then they’ll break down the door…
And even if you somehow manage to defend the two main entry points, the Majini will climb into the room above you and break through a clumsily patched hole in the ceiling.
Despite their numbers and murderous intent, once they’re inside the Majini don’t really pose much of a threat to anything except your rapidly dwindling supplies of ammo. But they’re not even the main attraction, and once the Executioner busts in through the gaping hole in the front of the building (repaired with mud and sticks after a truck drove through it, apparently), your shelter is useless and it’s time to run.
Or else this will happen:
And then this:
It’s probably not intentional, but one of the recurring Majini in RE5’s multi-culti Africa is a dead ringer for former (and dead) Iraqi despot Saddam Hussein. And he pops up a lot.
When we first encountered Saddam, he was standing with a small group of thugs, glaring wide-eyed at anyone who wandered past.
Then, about 20 feet away, we found him again, this time lounging in the shadow of an abandoned building.
During the siege later in the level, he showed up again and tried to grab us.
After shoving him away, we turned around to run back inside, only to find him blocking the doorway in a different shirt.
We ran into him again in the quarry area…
… and then we spotted two of him riding together on the back of a truck during the on-rails Humvee chase.
How many times can you spot Saddam? Keep a notebook and record the times and places you encounter him. Then, when you’ve finished the game, you can look it over and think about what your life has become.