It’s amazing how much can change with a remake of something I once called the downfall of the Resident Evil franchise. The remake version of Resident Evil 4 is one of my more replayed games in the modern era due to it being a lot of fun, and since this is the new normal, I’m just giving up and accepting it. Ever since the ending of Resident Evil 4 left us wondering why Wesker was involved and if the games were going to do the same thing as the PlayStation 2 version and give us Separate Ways, the extra story that would focus on Ada Wong and what she was doing “behind the scenes” while Leon was killing a whole village of infected people… Well, CAPCOM suddenly decided to drop this new version of Separate Ways with a 3-days before release notice… So did CAPCOM rush another story, or was there some care given to this side story this time? Only one way to find out.
Name: Resident Evil 4: Separate Ways DLC Platform(s): PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S Developer: Capcom Publisher: Capcom Game Type: Survival horror Mode(s): Single-Player Release Date: September 21, 2023
The Story of Separate Ways is one of “Chase the McGuffin” as we see Ada’s mission to retrieve the Los Plagas Amber from Louise. Separate Ways goes in an almost opposite direction from Resident Evil 4. In the beginning, Ada is in the Castle area helping Louise escape captivity before the two get separated (many times), leaving Ada to swing around pretty much all the key locations from Resident Evil 4, injecting herself into the story where needed till she secures the Amber and we get “that” scene from Resident Evil 4 that was a secret after credits scene.
The big difference between Resident Evil 4 and Separate Ways gameplay-wise is a simple one. Ada has access to a couple of extra gadgets that she puts to a lot of use through Separate Ways. The first one is her grapple hook, which sends Ada up or across pre-programmed ledges as the game requires. The second one is the IRIS system, a special retina implant Ada has that scans for footprints and fingerprints to help with some of the game’s later puzzles.
Outside of all this, you have the same Resident Evil formula. You’ll be shooting infected cult members, solving puzzles, collecting items, and keeping your suitcase management skills in check over the course of about 3-4 hours on your first playthrough (I’m sure speedrunners are already getting that time down to about 1-2 hours already). As I mentioned before, you’ll be visiting a lot of the same locations from Resident Evil 4, but not all areas are going to be the same as you remember them, as some locations are blocked off from what you remember but open up later as the story progresses… and some have some very interesting challenges ahead.
To be honest, I wasn’t expecting much from Separate Ways as a DLC campaign, as the original wasn’t all that great to begin with. However, much like Resident Evil 2, Resident Evil 3, and Resident Evil 4 remakes before it, Separate Ways has been given a lot more love and care than it deserves. Taking a simple side story and giving it enough life to be almost on par with the main game is something that the Resident Evil development team at CAPCOM should be proud of, and they should be prouder that this DLC is only $9.99 ($14.95 for Australians). This is DLC done right… Now can we FINALLY get the Resident Evil: Code Veronica remake?
Review Disclosure Statement: Resident Evil 4: Separate Ways was provided to us by CAPCOM for review purposes. For more information on how we review video games and other media/technology, please go review our Review Guideline/Scoring Policy for more info.
Resident Evil 4: Separate Ways should be shown to all developers as to how to do DLC going forward. Not only do we get a great campaign that almost rivals the main game, but it’s done at a cheap/affordable price point. The story of Ada gives us some more questions as to what is going on with the future of the Resident Evil remake franchise while keeping its own story relevant and interesting.