Biohazard 4
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Resident Evil 4 (2005) (VG) More at IMDbPro »Biohazard 4 (original title)

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Resident Evil 4 (Biohazard 4) takes place in autumn 2004 (no specific dates are mentioned), which is six years after the first Resident Evil.

Looking at what point in autumn Resident Evil 4 takes place, probably late October/early November by the way the outside looks.

No. The game itself indicates that the first victim killed by Leon is not a zombie (probably also meant as an in-joke). Prior to the release of RE4, the creators have also stated several times that there would be NO zombies in the game.

That is, no TYPICAL zombies. The word zombie is normally associated with a reanimated corpse that has little intelligence, merely driven by a hunger for flesh of the living, as was the case in the earlier Resident Evil games and many horror movies as well. In the RE chronology, the zombies arose from a virus infection. The victims experienced cellular reorganization, their conciousness was complete erased, and their higher brain functions (intelligence) were severely deteriorated, leaving a creature driven only by instinctual desire for food and killing, without any outside control. In addition, as the zombies manifested themselves after the victims' death, they always moved slow and limping, probably as a side-effect of rigor mortis (except for the Crimson Head zombies).

The humans in Resident Evil 4 are victims of infection by an intelligent parasite, which attaches itself to the central nervous system in order to control the host's actions (similar to the aliens in Robert Heinleins novel The Puppet Masters). In this case, no large-scale cellular reconstruction seems to take place in the 'Ganados', the victims that still appear human (not that we know off, that is). Only in special creatures, like El Gigante (the giant cave troll-like creature) and the Regenerators, there seems to be a thorough change in the host's physiology. In any way, the host's conciousness, individuality and intelligence are repressed, but they gain the intelligence and personality of the parasite that infected them. Their hostility seems to be a deliberate act to disable opponents, not just an instinctive urge for gathering food. Since they have not physically died, they also retain their speed and agility. So they are not zombies in the classical meaning of the word. What they do have in common is that they have no free will and individuality; however, contrary to the zombies, the parasites seem to be part of a hierarchy, accepting orders from superior parasites.

Much information can be derived from gameplay and data files spread throughout the game. Other facts are inferred, and through speculation, some theories can be formed. Here is an overview with references to observations from the game or data files:

It can be safely assumed that 'Las Plagas' are intelligent parasitic life forms that control the actions of the host. They cannot sustain life on their own and parasitize on the bodies of living hosts for nutrition. However, according to Luis' notes, when no hosts are present, they can also go into a state of extreme hibernation. Their cells go into a dormant state and exist in a spore-like form, which can be inhaled by a host to enter the body. The spore has to be reactivated inside the host, and grow into a immature parasite, which takes quite some time (at least several years).

Although their origins are vague, they originate from prehistoric times; several fossilized specimens are found in the game, and fossilization takes thousands of years. The first recent contact with humans occurred about eight generations ago (Ramon Salazar's note). The fossilized Plagas were excavated in a cave deep below the castle, causing the first infestation. The infected humans banded together in a religious group called 'Los Illuminados' (The Enlightened). However, the first Castellan took away the group's power and sealed the Plagas back in the cave. The remnants of the group probably continued underground. Years later, the Illuminados leader Lord Saddler convinced the eight Castellan, Ramon Salazar, who became an Illuminados follower, to re-open the cave and give power back to the Illuminados. The new workers who opened the seal became infected and started the second infestation among the villagers.

Plagas can be inserted into a human body in egg form by injection. After entering the body, the Plaga egg hatches shortly thereafter and the parasite grows. This way, the Plaga reaches maturity much faster than when it has to grow from a spore (judging from Leon's and Ahsley's infection symptoms, it cannot be more than a few days). Symptoms of a growing Plaga are convulsions, coughing up blood and severe chest pains, even to the point of fainting. The Plaga starts to sprout thin tendrils, which form connections to the host's central nervous system, through which the parasite can exert control over the host's actions (more below). In humans, a near-mature parasite seems to be roughly the size of a fist, judging by Leon's X-ray. When the Plaga is in control, the symbionts (which are the host and its parasite) can facilitate infection rate of the population by injecting more Plaga eggs directly into the blood stream of other hosts.

The majority of the Plagas victims consists of simple villagers; these basic enemies are referred to as 'Ganados' ('cattle'). According to Luis' memo, the Plagas manipulate the behavioral patterns of their hosts. In normal conditions, the hosts' self-awareness still seem intact, but their consciousness is altered: in a conversation between two Ganados in the Chief's house, they talk about the Chief of the village, and refer to "his Plaga (being) better than ours". Ganados are obviously aware of their parasites, but through mind control, they accept this as normal. Cognitive functions are intact: the hosts keep talking to each other in human language, for which they need their human language memory. In that respect, the Plaga/human interaction resembles the Trill species from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine; they consist of a humanoid host with a symbiont surgically placed inside. The new individual retains a new, mixed personality, with characteristics and memories of both symbionts. The difference is that the Trill symbiosis is initiated with mutual consent, and beneficial for both symbionts; the Plaga symbiosis is usually forced, although some hosts agree to insertion of a Plaga voluntarily, like Salazar did (Butlers memo). According to Saddler's note, a Plaga reflects the conscience of the host, and a poorly chosen host can betray his master. This indicates that the host's mind and cognitive capabilities remain present, and can overrule the Plaga's. Apparently this happened in Luis, who resisted his Plaga's influence and had it removed. The Plaga's mind control seems to grow over time, in increasing intervals: Ashley is temporarily taken over by her parasite, but she appears to be herself again later; likewise, Leon gets temporarily 'possessed' when he tries to strangle Ada, but she is able to subdue his Plaga again.

The forced symbiosis between Plaga and host apparently provides the host with improved strength and durability not previously present: they are much stronger than normal people, lifting and throwing an adult man with remarkable ease. They also seem to have a much higher tolerance to pain than the original host: they can withstand multiple gunshots, even to the head. This is probably because the host's sensory functions (especially pain sensation) are partially suppressed. Consciousness and motor control are influenced by the Plaga, but can be taken over completely if necessary, as some freshly decapitated hosts can even walk a few yards or still swing a weapon. The Plaga can expose its own head from the host's neck if the hosts head is destroyed, which suggests it generally attaches to the upper spinal column. This is confirmed by the Garradors (the blind, armoured brutes with the spikes on their hands), who carry their Plaga outside, on their upper back. After exposing themselves, they can quickly enlarge and elongate into a sharp, vicious and/or biting tentacle. The Plaga is in total control of the host by that time, and this deteriorates general performance, as they seem unable to run or wield weapons any longer. In a full-grown Plaga, the head can form a separate spider-like organism (comparable to the face-huggers from the Alien movie franchise) that can detach from the rest of the body. The appearance of a Plaga outside the body of a Garrador may suggest that a Plaga (or its detached head) can also take over a host by attaching to the nervous system from outside.

Though durable, the symbionts can nevertheless be killed by inflicting enough physical trauma or burn wounds to the host's body or the exposed Plaga part. As with humans, the Plaga's head seems the most vulnerable part of the parasite; destroying it causes instant death. They have another notable weakness, which is that they are extremely sensitive to bright light: they only expose themselves at night (a Ganado killed during daytime will instantly dissolve without sprouting a head), and using a flash grenade instantly kills an exposed parasite. An interesting effect of the symbiosis is seen when the symbiont dies: the host and parasite dissolve in most cases. The host is apparently unable to live without the parasite, but according to the Butler's memo, the parasite cannot survive either when the host dies. When symbiosis is complete, the host and parasite have obviously developed a strong form of biological interdependance. The parasite needs a body for nutrition; perhaps physiological changes occur in the host during symbiosis that cause their dependance on the Plaga. Another possibility is that the Plaga releases acids or enzymes upon dying which dissolve the host body as well. Fact is that not every symbiont dissolves after death; exceptions are some of the stronger specimens, such as the chainsaw wielding foes, the Gatling gun-wielding militaries, the Garradors and many bosses. This may be an indication that there are different types of Plagas with different characteristics. Perhaps only high ranking Plagas are allowed to take over the strongest human hosts, while lower Plagas have to make due with the villagers (also implied by the villagers stating that the Chief has a better Plaga than theirs).

Which leads to another remarkable feature of the parasites, which is that they are a social and hierarchically organized species, probably with a collective intelligence (Luis' notes). The fact that the higher hosts refer to the lower majority as 'cattle' even suggests a class distinction. The Plagas can infect many types of other organisms (such as dogs), and communicate even between different species of hosts. They can cooperate effectively, and they are strictly obedient to their superiors. Their leader, who has taken the form of Lord Osmund Saddler, has absolute power over the entire cult. There are Los Illuminados members who seem to hold a rank (they often wear elaborate masks or ornaments) and command other members. Saddler can also communicate non-verbally with parasites inside human bodies and direct their actions. This is already possible with immature Plagas, as Saddler can manipulate the creature inside Leon to cause him intense pain. According to one of Ada's reports, a Plaga sample that was thoroughly researched, revealed to have special organs that may be sensitive to sonic waves. Perhaps the ceremonial rods that are carried by high priests of Los Illuminados emit these waves in order to direct the actions of the Plagas inside the hosts.

As mentioned before, there are some creatures associated with the Plagas which have taken a radically different, non-humanoid form. These are (amongst others) the Gigantes (the grey troll-like giants), the Novistadors (the flying insects with the cloaking ability), Verdugo (Salazar's "right hand"), and the "It". The Gigantes still carry a Plaga inside which comes out of the neck when the creature is wounded. According to Luis' notes, some of thecreatures are the result of experimentations on human test subjects. The Gigantes and Novistadors are identified as "by-products" of the Regenerators. As Leon gets in the island's hospital, he witnesses some remains of these experimentations, which suggest that mature parasites (the ones that detach from the head) were surgically inserted into human bodies, or attached themselves to a host from outside. Specifically shooting the Plagas inside Regenerators stops the regenerative capabilities, suggesting the Plagas can stimulate growth of the host's tissue. Perhaps there was a cellular fusion between the cells of the parasite and the host that gave rise to the grotesque creatures that were spawned from this process (which would definitely explain their decreasingly human appearance and ability for rapid regeneration, which human cells don't possess). This is sustained by Salazar's ultimate transformation, which seems to biologically "fuse" him with his aide and the giant monstrosity on the wall.

Special medication can be used to prevent the hatching of the parasite (Letter from Ada). Also, as the parasite gets connected to the host's nervous system, it seems to feel the pain the host endures. A strong pain stimulus can cause a growing Plaga to temporarily retract or be stunned, as is demonstrated when Leon gets stabbed by Ada after the Plaga took control over him. Before it reaches adulthood, the parasite can be removed surgically, combined with a special form of radiation, but at significant risk of death to the host (which seems to be due to the violent movements made by the parasites in the chest during the procedure, making it very painful). When the parasite is fully grown, it is impossible to remove without losing the host (Butlers memo), which is another indication that the host and the parasite get more connected physiologically as the parasite grows.

If you perform a certain stunt properly in the farm after the beginning of the game, you can magically walk through the outer fence and explore the outer perimeter, and spots where the graphics are undeveloped. This bug is only in the original GameCube version.

Beginning, in the cabin:

Qu carajo ests haciendo aqu? Lrgate, cabrn!

Translation: What the #### are you doing here? Get the hell out, you bastard!

Village, after the church bells start ringing:

Ganado 1: La campana.

Ganado 2: Es hora de rezar.

Ganado 3: Tenemos que irnos.

Translation:

Ganado 1: The bell.

Ganado 2: It is time to pray.

Ganado 3: We have to go.

Chief's house, muffled conversation

Ganado 1: Hay un rumor de que hay un extranjero entre nosotros.

Ganado 2: Nuestro jefe se cuidar de la rata.

Ganado 1: Su "la plaga" es mucho mejor que la nuestra.

Ganado 2: Tienes razn, es un hombre.

Translation:

Ganado 1: There is a rumor that there is a stranger among us.

Ganado 2: Our boss will take care of the rat.

Ganado 1: His "La Plaga" is a lot better than ours.

Ganado 2: You're right, he is a man.

The Island, the helicopter raid, after defeating Krauser:

Soldier 1: Verifica la presin de esa vlvula

Soldier 2: Ve t.

Soldier 3: Hey, aqu!

Soldier 1: Viste algo?

Soldier 4: No hay problema.

Soldier 1: Llnalos de plvora.

Translation:

Soldier 1: Verify the pressure of that valve.

Soldier 2: You go!

Soldier 1: Did you see anything?

Soldier 4: There's no problem.

Soldier 1: Get them full of gunpowder.

(Courtesy of Jack White, Daniel Valles and DECAF on gamefaqs.com)

Resident Evil 0: - Rebecca Chambers (alive), Billy Coen (alive), Albert Wesker (alive), William Birkin (alive), Edward Dewey (deceased), James Marcus (deceased), Enrico Marini (alive), Kevin Dooly (unknown, but he probably died during the game).

Resident Evil 1 - Stars Alpha team - Chris Redfield (alive), Jill Valentine (alive), Barry Burton (alive), Josef Frost (deceased), Albert Wesker (deceased, later brought back to life), Brad Vickers (alive).

Stars Bravo team - Rebecca Chambers (alive), Richard Aiken (deceased), Kenneth Sullivan (deceased) Forest Speyer (deceased), Enrico Marini (deceased), Kevin Dooly (deceased).

Resident Evil 2 - Leon S Kennedy (alive), Claire Redfield (alive), Ada Wong (alive), Sherry Birkin (alive), Annette Birkin (deceased), Ben Bertolucci (deceased), Chief Brian Irons (deceased), Robert Kendo (deceased), William Birkin (deceased), Marvin Branagh (deceased).

Resident Evil 3 - Jill Valentine (alive), Carlos Olivera (alive), Mikhail Victor (deceased), Nicholai Ginovaef (unknown), Brad Vickers (deceased), Dario Rosso (deceased), Tyrell Patrick (deceased), Murphy Seeker (deceased), Barry Burton (alive, cameo appearence).

Resident Evil : Code Veronica - Claire Redfield (alive), Steve Burnside (deceased), Alfred Ashford (deceased), Alexia Ashford (deceased), Chris Redfield (alive), Albert Wesker (alive), Rodrigo Juan Raval (deceased).

By the time of Resident Evil 4, the fates of Rebecca Chambers, Billy Coen, Carlos Oliveira and Sherry Birkin after their respective appearances have not been revealed, but they are presumed to be still alive. Chris Redfield, Jill Valentine and Barry Burton have all been confirmed to be alive and safe in extended stories. Claire Redfield turned up in the movie Resident Evil: Degeneration, so she was also alive during RE4.

Disc 1 [Darkness Side] (1:02:20)

1. "End of Umbrella", 2. "The Drive ~ First Contact", 3. "Ganado I", 4. "A Strange Pasture", 5. "A Ruined Village", 6. "Ganado II", 7. "Serenity", 8. "Ganado III", 9. "Del Lago", 10. "Noche", 11. "El Gigante", 12. "Echo in the Night", 13. "Bitores Mendez", 14. "Hard Road to the Castle", 15. "Game Over", 16. "Catapult", 17. "Garrador", 18. "Ganado IV", 19. "Cold Sweat", 20. "Target Practice", 21. "Novistadors", 22. "Central Hall", 23. "Agony", 24. "Evil Malaise", 25. "Death From Above", 26. "Crazy Cultist Drivers", 27. "Bad Vibes", 28. "Verdugo", 29. "Robo-Salazar", 30. "Tower of Death", 31. "Salazar", 32. "Save Theme",

Disc 2 [Aggressive Side] (1:16:25)

1. "Infiltration", 2. "Ganado V", 3. "Regenerador", 4. "U-3", 5. "Path to Closure", 6. "Krauser" , 7. "Back-Up", 8. "Final Battle", 9. "The Escape", 10. "Horizon", 11. "Sorrow (Ending Credits)", 12. "Result", 13. "The Mercenaries", 14. "The Mercenaries~Leon", 15. "The Mercenaries~Ada", 16. "The Mercenaries~Krauser", 17. "The Mercenaries~Hunk", 18. "The Mercenaries~Wesker", 19. "Assignment Ada", 20. "Assignment Ada End Roll ~tarde", 21. "Assignment Ada End Roll ~noche", 22. "the another order", 23. "Ganado VI", 24. "Interlude", 25. "Intention", 26. "Shipyard", 27. "End and Aim", 28. "The Enemy", 29. "Time Limit", 30. "The Another End",

To not anger the new Japanese bureau of youth protection CERO, Capcom censored Biohazard 4 in terms of violence as well as the physics of Ashleys breast. The Wii version, released in 2007, which earned a rating of 17+ instead of 18+, was censored even worse. A detailed comparison between both versions with pictures can be found here.

r73731


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