I can't wait to turn Resident Evil 4 into Assassin's Creed in the upcoming Separate Ways DLC

RE4 Separate Ways DLC (2023)
(Image credit: Capcom)

I've been excited to get my hands on Resident Evil 4 Remake's Separate Ways DLC since before the base game even launched. The missing chapter of Leon's adventures through this accursed European village sees fairweather "ally" Ada Wong tracking down a plagas sample for one of the best Resident Evil villains ever. After checking out some hands-off Separate Ways preview footage following the DLC's surprise announcement at last week's State of Play, I'm relieved to say my anticipation has paid off.

As if she wasn't badass enough already, remake Ada's DLC story sees her using her grappling gun – the hookshot – as more than just a way to get around the village. She'll also be able to stealthily take down enemies with a knife to the neck, closely watching Leon's story play out from the sidelines as we uncover what she was up to before the duo's fateful reunion in Salazar Castle. It's this kind of stealthy and snappy gameplay that I'm most looking forward to checking out, putting a new spin on one of my favorite games of 2023 so far.

Grappling hook, line, and sinker

RE4 Separate Ways DLC (2023)

(Image credit: Capcom)

Resident Evil 4 remake

(Image credit: Capcom)

Resident Evil 4 Remake review: "A spectacularly pretty game loaded with atmosphere"

Separate Ways is out in just a few days on September 21, and it looks set to continue treading the remake's footsteps as a faithful new-gen reimagining of the 2005 original. The sneak peek preview clips I managed to get my hands on show how Ada makes her way to the bell tower to ring it out, effectively "calming down" the hostile villagers with its soothing clanging, much in the same way as the 2005 version. 

This of course is not quite how things play out if you manage to snipe the bell yourself during Leon's opening sequence against the onslaught of villagers. However, it's a nice touch that immediately roots us in the time and place of the base game's story, putting Ada always one step ahead of her on again, off again scene partner.

The return of the hookshot is perhaps the thing I'm most excited about. The original Separate Ways featured its use in a more limited capacity, allowing Ada to make her way across the map in stylish in-game animations. These acted like functional shortcuts opposite Leon's labyrinthine on-foot journey, but in the remake, the hookshot looks more like Peter Parker's web traversal in the likes of Marvel's Spider-Man 2

By pressing R1 on your PS5 controller, Ada can fluidly jump from pillar to post and land with a double-kick to any enemies in her path. You can also use it in battle, as shown in the combat clip of Ada versus the giant, as she uses the hookshot to jump between rooftops fluidly. The improved UI lets you know that you're looking at a potential grappling hook spot, meaning we'll be able to work the hookshot into our combat repertoire as well as using it to simply get across the map faster than Leon.

RE4 Separate Ways DLC (2023)

(Image credit: Capcom)

Watching Ada swing between castle turrets and shanty huts with her trusty hookshot is an absolute delight, but even better is seeing her land some truly killer finisher moves with it. Roundhouse kicks have never looked more satisfying as Ada follows up a stagger shot with a grappling hook to drag the enemy closer before delivering a high-heeled boot to the face. It might even unseat Leon's rare suplex move as my favorite RE4 finisher, and that's truly saying something.

The hookshot is an even more formidable tool when paired with stealth tactics. From the preview footage, Ada seems even better placed than Leon to sneak up on enemies and plunge knives into their throats for a silent kill. You can't corpses them into bushes to cover your tracks, but I'm wondering if it's possible to hookshot yourself out of there immediately. It certainly looks like a possibility, and that makes the Separate Ways gameplay look more like something out of the best Assassin's Creed games – Evie Frye, anyone? It'll be great to experiment with this new playstyle when the DLC lands later this week, giving newer and older fans alike something to sink their hooks into as we await the likes of Assassin's Creed Mirage in October.

Resident Evil 2 and 4 remakes are incredible games in their own rights - but which is better?

Jasmine Gould-Wilson
Staff Writer, GamesRadar+

Jasmine is a staff writer at GamesRadar+. Raised in Hong Kong and having graduated with an English Literature degree from Queen Mary, University of London in 2017, her passion for entertainment writing has taken her from reviewing underground concerts to blogging about the intersection between horror movies and browser games. Having made the career jump from TV broadcast operations to video games journalism during the pandemic, she cut her teeth as a freelance writer with TheGamer, Gamezo, and Tech Radar Gaming before accepting a full-time role here at GamesRadar. Whether Jasmine is researching the latest in gaming litigation for a news piece, writing how-to guides for The Sims 4, or extolling the necessity of a Resident Evil: CODE Veronica remake, you'll probably find her listening to metalcore at the same time.