While I'm mostly into niche games, I'm not beyond trying out what the typical folks hail as "the best there is". Of course, after playing them, I often end up totally disagreeing with the pedestal sentiments.
Case in point is Biohazard 4. It drew praise for being a pioneer of several innovative gaming concepts that inevitably spawned countless imitators. While I agree that the atmosphere works, a lot of the gameplay elements were whacked.
Got the game via PSN download about two years ago during a price-down promo to commemorate the launch of Biohazard 6.
Having no experience with the earlier titles (since I'm not too fond of the clunky reverse and camera-dependent control scheme), this was nonetheless my first official foray into the Biohazard world. Note that this is also the first Biohazard game to not feature any zombies, as the enemies here are European villagers possessed by a bio-engineered parasite and are working under a cult. Again, the pioneering effort was strong with this one, and it showed a lot of promise.
Needless to say, things didn't go as well as I'd hoped.
Even while playing on Amateur difficulty, I found myself stuck in several compromising situations with barely any supplies. The Ganados (the aforementioned infected villagers) were total bullet sponges and QTEs abound every so often, happening during FMVs and a couple of exploration points with additional boss harassment. I abandoned my first real run halfway and restarted, clearing Amateur by the barest minimum. Even so, having gained some experience with the whole thing, I wanted to end it with no regrets. However, the last trophy for the PS3 version aptly called "A Heart Of Steel", requires a complete run of Professional difficulty.
I was appalled to find that the only way to gain access to said difficulty is to do a full vanilla run on Normal. and after it unlocks, you also have to go through it again the same way. It seemed like none of the tangible enhancements for clearing prior would carry over at all.
I called it quits at the time since it was a severely tiring (not to mention tiresome) experience.
Fast forward to 2014, roughly 3 days ago. I decided to go at it again, but not before doing my homework:
First off, I found that the the puny handgun is almost never used for the kill; its primary function is to stun the Ganado to follow up with a knockdown blow, then finishing with several frantic knife swipes. Why several? Because the knife is also weak. That's pretty much regular enemy battles in a nutshell until you bump into a certain cloaked gunrunner...