The goose, star of the mega-popular Untitled Goose Game, is now ready to honk and annoy the stars of Resident Evil 2. Thanks to talented modder Alister, the goose is on the loose in Raccoon City. God help us all.
The mod is not yet finished, but the final version will include honks. Also, you might have noticed that the goose is wearing Mr. X’s famous fedora. According to the modder, this won’t be changed when the mod is finished.
“He’s keeping the Fedora because he is just so Fancy like that,” said Alister. I agree. Besides who is going to actually try to take that hat from that giant goose? Not me, that’s for sure.
Highlight Reel is Kotaku’s regular roundup of great plays, stunts, records and other great moments from around the gaming world. If you record an amazing feat while playing a game (here’s how to record a clip), send it to us with a message confirming that the clip is yours at [email protected]Or, if you see a great clip around that isn’t yours, encourage that person to send it in!
Resident Evil is one of the biggest and most important names in video game horror. The first three games in Capcom’s survival horror series defined a genre and influenced generations of developers and players. So it’s strange how hard it is to play the original trilogy on modern hardware. It’s a problem that would largely remain unsolved if it weren’t for independent developers like Mathieu Philippe, who recently helped remaster Resident Evil 3: Nemesis in his spare time.
Philippe was an unlikely candidate for remastering Resident Evil games. His first Resident Evil experience was Code: Veronica, and he only played two other entries: Resident Evil 4 and this year’s remake of Resident Evil 2. But after many attempts to get his own projects off the ground, that remake inspired him to begin his work remastering classic games.
“Game development, like many creative endeavors, is mainly a long series of failures,” Philippe says. He had spent a year developing prototypes for a small independent game, grappling with the difficult realities of the creative process. “I needed to release something to prove to myself that I could finish a project. Even if it is something very small and specific like a tool.”
Striking out alone was a slow process for Philippe. Born in France, he graduated with a degree in game design in 2011 and was hired by Ubisoft, where he worked on the publisher’s Might & Magic games as a line designer: “basically the link between the top managers and the development teams for the creative aspects of the projects assigned to them.”
Staying in France, however, wasn’t an option. His girlfriend, a Chinese citizen, couldn’t remain in the country, and after maintaining a long-distance relationship for three years, Philippe was able to transfer to Ubisoft Chengdu in a new position as a game designer and move in with his partner in 2013.
“Over the years, my girlfriend and me got married, we had kids, my career was moving forward. I worked on many small projects like a Raving Rabbids mobile game and a Wheel of Fortune game,” he says. “Nothing groundbreaking, but I never wanted to work on big productions anyway. And unlike what we justifiably read about the game industry these days, my work conditions and compensations were great.”
Yet Philippe still wanted out, citing high turnover rates and a lack of mentorship opportunities, which capped his pathway to bigger and better projects. Management, Philippe said, was aware of and working to address these issues, but life was pulling him in another direction. At the end of 2017, his wife got the opportunity to start a school in another city, and together they decided that he would try his hand at making his own games for two or three years, supported by his wife’s income while he spent more time watching their children at home.
Then, in the summer of 2018, Capcom showed off the first footage of 2019’s Resident Evil 2 remake. Around the same time, Philippe began to take an interest in the growing popularity of machine-learning applications like ESRGAN and Waifu2x as a means of producing rough upscaled fan remasters of video games. Philippe, in need of a quick, clear goal to get his creative juices flowing, found his project: a machine-learning remaster of the original Resident Evil 2’s backgrounds.
But Resident Evil 2, it turned out, had an obstacle facing anyone who wanted to upscale it: mask textures.
“They are tightly packed sets of small rectangular sprites that are placed by the game engine on top of the background,” Philippe says. “They can be displayed on top of the 3D models (like the characters) to create the illusion of depth. They are key for making the players feel like their character is walking in believable scenery and not on top of a postcard.”
This makes algorithmic upscalers much harder to use, as the tightly packed mask textures get churned up as the upscalers blend pixels in the resizing process. “For example, a desk and a wall will be blended together,” Philippe says.
After working to solve this problem, he posted a video of his progress and was encouraged by the feedback. Slowly, a team formed from the modding community. Kayael, a texture-pack maker who had released HD textures for both Resident Evil 2 and 3, proposed they combine their work. Over Discord, Philippe and Kayael were joined by Saeed, who did quality control work from Saudi Arabia, and FrankWesker, who contributed art from Brazil. A programmer named Gemini, who worked on the Classic REbirth patches to get Resident Evil 1 and 2 working on modern PCs, offered advice.
In six months, Philippe and his team completed their Seamless HD remaster of not only Resident Evil 2, but also Resident Evil 3: Nemesis. The reaction has been positive, according to Philippe, and the team is currently working on applying their Seamless HD approach to the first game in the series.
Philippe’s work remastering games happened amid a growing fan effort to update and preserve older games. I asked him how he felt about fans remastering games themselves when publishers don’t.
“I would love old classics to be easily available and playable. I don’t believe the rare console ports of such games to be a good solution for preservation as they will only last as long as their digital distribution services,” Phillippe says. “Official engine reimplementation and remasters are always great news for fans. But we can’t blame publishers for not remastering their back catalog every 15-20 years. It is usually very hard to justify economically (as they can be creatively and mechanically tricky to sell to a modern audience) and it can be a real pain technically (when the source code or the assets are lost).
“Considering this, we can be thankful to fans for great unofficial reimplementation of games such as X-Com (OpenXcom) and Resident Evil (Classic Rebirth) which makes these games more playable but also allow their communities to express their creativity with better mod support.”
When you stop moving in Sonic the Hedgehog games, Sonic taps his toe. When you leave Arthur Morgan on his horse, he will pet them affectionately. These are video game idle animations, and they’re beautiful, because for a brief moment the characters we control get to show off a little something about themselves.
I recently broke down my great appreciation for idle animations when I delivered a microtalk at the Game Developers Conference this March about video game animations titled “Idle Animations as Expressions of Freedom.” The crux? The characters we control in games have hidden depths, the way we control characters doesn’t always serve the best interest of those characters, and it is during idle animations that those characters most successfully get to be themselves.
Talking about animation to a room of animators was tricky, but when you start to crack open the strangeness of video games there’s a lot to think about. In his 2007 Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty essay “Driving Off the Map,” the critic James Howell writes about how video game characters exist as two different things: characters and actors. Characters are the fictional people in a game world. Actors are the individuals we control. In Sons of Liberty’s case that means Solid Snake and Raiden. Simple enough, but because games characters are two things at once, there’s a lot of tension.
Let’s think about Resident Evil 2 for a second. In that game, the characters Leon Kennedy and Claire Redfield share one basic motivation: to survive the zombie hordes and escape Racoon City. That’s their character motivation, but their motivation as actors is chosen by the player. Players can do any number of things that run counter to Claire and Leon’s desire to survive. They can attempt a run that only uses knives, something that grinds against their motivation to survive by any means necessary. Cruel players might attempt to see every death animation in the game. In that case, the character goal of survival is directly in conflict with their behavior as actors. In these moments, players are capricious tyrants and the actors are helpless to assert themselves.
Thankfully, there are moments within games where characters are able to be themselves and act independently of the player. There are places and moments where they are, lacking a better word, “free.” Cutscenes are a good example of this, as players are usually unable to affect character’s behavior or movement in these moments. The other example is idle animations. These small moments are crucial for allowing characters to exhale after extended puppeteering by players. They don’t last long, but they are extraordinary in their implications.
For an example of an idle animation that expresses the tension between players and characters we can look at Sonic the Hedgehog’s iconic and impatient idle animation. If the player doesn’t touch the controller, Sonic will look out at the screen and tap his feet expectantly. He, as a character, wants to move. He wants to go fast and defeat Doctor Robotnik. However, Sonic can’t move until the player moves the controller. He is unable to complete his character motivation as a result, and his response is something sassy and annoyed. This idle animation tells us something about Sonic as an individual—he’s presumptuous, he’s got attitude, he doesn’t like staying still—but it also reminds us of the inherent tension between characters and players.
Idle animations can resolve that tension. Let’s consider a hypothetical situation. A player is enjoying Red Dead Redemption 2 and decides to go to a small town and commit a massacre, blowing away lawmen and civilians alike. This isn’t really in Arthur Morgan’s character. He’s an outlaw but tends to have a moral code against causing too much chaos. But the player can make Arthur act contrary to this code, blasting the brains out of anyone in sight. After the dust settles, they ride off on a horse and walk away from the controller. In the moments where the player is not dictating inputs, Arthur shakes out his hand and pats his horse. That moment, that small gesture, is a moment where Arthur is free to act how he wants. It’s a monumental exhale after all the tension and terror of the player-controlled massacre. For me, as someone who appreciated Red Dead Redemption 2’s smaller moments, that is a very beautiful moment.
Better, that moment helps us understand the things that Arthur values while the player is away. Designers can use that information to craft mechanics and interactions that make sense for Arthur and the player to perform together. Arthur might enjoy petting his horse—he values it enough to do so while players don’t control him—so Red Dead Redemption 2 smartly allows players to pet and groom their horse whenever they want. It’s an interaction that bridges the gap between player and character, aligning character desires and with the player’s whims.
If players are tyrants, intentional or not, controlling character against their whims, then idle animations are moments when developers have a chance to tell players something about a character’s attitude andy offer these digital entities a moment to breathe. The animations might be a sneeze, a stretch of the neck, a tap of the toe, or something else. They might be small, but they’re essential to rounding out characters and adding a little more empathy to games.
CJ from Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas has become quite popular these days, thanks to a recent viral meme and now a new mod from BeastGamingHD and Marcos RC brings the internet’s favorite gangster into the world of Resident Evil 2. But he isn’t alone. Mr.X has been replaced with the one and only, Big Smoke, also from San Andreas.
The mod adds audio clips and character models ripped right out of the original San Andreas into RE2. So when Smoke hits CJ he asks “You okay, man?” in a sad and serious voice, which makes me laugh everytime I hear it.
This Big Smoke and CJ mod is just one more to add to the giant pile that is Resident Evil 2 mods. From broken faces to a nearly naked Mr.X, the modding community has really been pumping out wonderful content for RE2.
Gabe Newell, the president of Valve, has been answering a lot of emails lately and sharing some interesting information about his gaming tastes, the state of Valve, the future of VR and more. The YouTube channel Valve News Network, a popular channel that covers Valve news, has been collecting and sharing Newell’s responses.
Gabe Newell says he answers many emails every day, but there has been a recent uptick in the amount he is getting which is why he has been answering more. Of course, some, including myself, believe that after the recent flop that was Artifact, Valve is trying to possibly get some good PR out into the world.
The questions Newell is receiving vary from joke questions to more serious and interesting questions about gaming, Valve, Steam, and future technologies.
Gabe Newell shared with fans his most played game on Steam, which is DOTA 2, and that he is currently playing a lot of Resident Evil 2 and Cultist Simulator. He also is playing multiple “unannounced Valve games.” What are those games? Well most likely at least one or more of them are VR games that Valve is still working on. A fan asked Newell if the studio was still working on those promised VR titles, to which Newell simply replied “Yes.”
Another fan asked if Valve was focusing more on hardware development now instead of software development. Newell explained that they are working on both hardware and software, saying that this approach gives the studio more choices and options.
“By being able to design hardware at the same we are designing a game, we think we will be able to build better games. Hopefully this more obvious when Knuckles ships,” said Newell.
So it seems clear that Valve is still indeed working on games and working on VR. For those unaware, the knuckles are a new control system Valve is working on that will work with VR games. When will this stuff actually be released? That’s the real question though and one which Gabe Newell hasn’t answered in recent or past emails. This isn’t the first time Valve or Gabe Newell have teased games in development and most likely it won’t be the last.
Fans also asked Gabe Newell about the recent announcement of Halo games coming to Steam, but it sounds like Valve had little involvement in the games coming to the digital store. “The credit for this goes to Phil Spencer and his team at MS. They made it happen, so, yes, it was simple for us,” answered Newell in an email.
Gabe Newell also shared his thoughts on AI, believing that it will help game developers in the future. About brain computers and placing computer chips into people’s heads, Newell believes this is something that could really happen. “I think the science is way further along than people realize.”
For Half-Life and Portal fans, Gabe Newell was asked if he was still in contact with the voice actors who worked on those games, to which he simply responded. “Sure.” I wouldn’t get excited about that answer, but feel free to respond however you want.
The whole video from Valve News Network is worth a watch and this is actually the fourth video the channel has made about Newell’s emails. The recent surge in response from Gabe Newell has been interesting and is giving fans a small glimpse behind one of the most secretive and powerful companies in gaming.
Modder ZOMBIΞALI has done the world a favour/cursed us all by introducing Thomas the Tank Engine to the PC version of Resident Evil 2’s remake, where he replaces Mr. X.
Dropping Thomas into inappropriate video games is nothing new—it’s been done in everything from Skyrim to Fallout 4—but it’s the nature of Mr. X’s cold-blooded, relentless pursuit (and Thomas’ gentle chugging) that makes this so good. And by good I also mean utterly horrifying.
I learned about survival horror from the first Resident Evil, and loved how Resident Evil 2 took that to the next level with a city full of zombies after your neck. When I loaded up the recent Resident Evil 2 remake on my PlayStation 4, it felt like revisiting an old friend, if that old friend happened to be a festering zombie with its guts spilling out of it. At the same time, it’d been so long since I played the original, the experience felt fresh—or maybe rotten is the better way to describe the zombie-infested evening.
I began my RE2 campaign playing as Claire rather than Leon, since that was the order I’d played the original. In the opening, a truck driver is eating a hamburger that kind of looks like a disgusting slice of zombie brains stuck between buns. He accidentally runs over a zombie, but thinks he’s killed a pedestrian. Wracked by guilt, he steps out, unaware that he’s about to become zombified.
The action cuts to a prelude sequence in the gas station that acts as a warmup and tutorial for players. The game begins proper once you reach the Racoon Police Department Station. Ironically, what should be considered the safest place in the city has become one of the most dangerous, as it has been infiltrated by zombies. That inversion amplifies the sense of vulnerability as police officers, traditionally symbols of authority, are getting chomped up as quickly as the civilians.
The atmosphere within the station itself is genuinely creepy and the remake’s graphics are stunningly realistic. The rain showers down like nails, and many of the hallways have busted lights, drowning them in darkness. The zombies are gorier and more voracious than ever.
But here’s the weird thing. Despite how visually repulsive they appeared (like that one corpse whose necks muscles rip apart) and how much deadlier they were than in the original, the zombies didn’t scare me. They were obstacles I had to circumvent or take out, not monsters I genuinely feared.
To be fair, horror games in general don’t affect me the way they used to. Fear is, in many cases, a conditioned response learned through experience, and I’ve played so many horror games that I’ve been conditioned to shrug off most scares. The only time I felt fear in this current console generation has been the VR component of Resident Evil 7, which really got me in a sweat because I felt like I was actually at the Baker Ranch. Outside of VR, though, almost nothing has instilled the same level of fear the original inspired.
But I wanted to feel that knot of fear forming like a fist in my stomach when I first played horror games, arms tauts and controllers wet from sweat and anxiety. And it did happen in the RE2 remake—just not because of the zombies.
The first time I felt something akin to fear while playing the RE2 remake was the first time Mr. X appeared next to the helicopter remains. Mr. X is the invincible Tyrant that chases Claire throughout the police station. The encounter was tense the first two times I confronted him. But after that, I realized I was able to outrun him in most situations and never felt threatened by his appearance again. (I haven’t confronted Mr. X in Leon’s playthrough yet, so he may be more deadly there.) A big part of this is also because the more frequently you see something, the less afraid you become of it. This is the case with the Nemesis from Resident Evil 3, the relentless ghosts in what I consider to be one of the most underrated horror games around, Silent Hill 4, and even Scissorman in the original Clock Tower.
The first time I felt palpable fear in the remake was playing as another character, Sherry Birkin. Sherry is a young girl who’s trying to get to her parents and is hiding underneath the police station. After Claire sees her, she tries to help them both escape. Unfortunately, they’re stopped by the chief of police, Brian Irons.
In the original RE2, the first time you meet Chief Irons, he’s inside his office and has the corpse of the mayor’s daughter on his desk. A corrupt officer, he has a sadistic obsession with hunting animals that culminates in him targeting humans. Believing that he’s been infected with the T-virus, he’s doing his best to kill everyone in town, even causing disruptions among the police to ensure their failure.
In the remake, even before his first actual appearance, we get a sense of who he is in the taxidermy notes we find in his office. He writes about hunting a White-Tailed Deer and states, “I’m getting tired of working on these puny things. May be time to move on to more challenging animals.” Each of his targets gets progressively bigger, and there’s an ominous undercurrent to his need for more stimulation, with the final note describing a529-pound Siberian Tiger: “I nearly came when I sliced its yellow belly open and its warm guts spilled out. I still smell of wild beast. This is the life.”
In the first encounter with Chief Irons, he threatens to kill Claire at gunpoint. He then orders Sherry to tie Claire’s hands up and shouts he’ll shoot Claire if Sherry doesn’t comply. He has no compunctions, ruthlessly threatening the young kid to get what he wants. Once Claire is tied up, Irons smashes his pistol into Claire’s face and takes Sherry away.
Shortly afterwards, you actually play as Sherry, locked by the chief inside a room in the orphanage. The fact that you’re weaponless and just a child means you have no means of fighting back. What makes this sequence so terrifying are the circumstances and the uncertainty of what awaits. Whereas Claire in her worst condition can still fend off zombies, Sherry has no chance. She escapes the room she’s locked in after solving a simple block puzzle.
In the hall, the purple walls have children’s art on them, which is an ominous contrast with all the violence that’s surrounding them. There’s even a poster with words written by a child that read “Don’t run!!” This hasdisturbing connotations since all Sherry can do is run.
She makes her way through the nursery, then down the stairs in the main hall. She finds Tom’s diary, an orphan who writes about another one of the children, Oliver. Oliver “came back in the middle of the night, all messed up, screaming ‘help me’ and stuff! I didn’t even recognize him at first; his face was all peeling and melted off.” What’s more messed up is that the adults try to cover it up by calling it “a skin thing” that’ll “get better soon.” Some type of experimentation was going on using the orphanage kids, and Chief Irons was either in charge of it or helped expedite the process.
The door out of the orphanage is locked so she has to sneak her way to the director’s room. There, the corpse of the mayor’s daughter, Katherine Warren, is lying on the table. There’s no explanation given for how she got there. But as she hasn’t turned into a putrefied zombie, chances are good this is Chief Irons’ doing. The chemicals bottles around her indicate he’s going to be doing some dissecting. When Sherry grabs the key, Irons shows up. But he doesn’t appear at all perturbed that Sherry has seen the dead body. Instead, he angrily tries to seize Sherry. Sherry, defending herself, grabs a bottle of acid and flings it in his face, causing half of it burn off.
Furious and in pain, Irons chases Sherry. It is a terrifying pursuit as the spaces are tight and Sherry has no way to fight back. Sherry hides in the nursery, but Irons comes in and locks the door. Sherry is trapped inside with him and I found myself extremely stressed. Half his face burned by acid, he looked more monstrous than the zombies. The police chief swings his flashlight around, searching for Sherry. I sucked at this section and kept on getting caught, leading to the game over screen with a “YOU ARE TRAPPED.” This sequence is the only place I actually died in my playthrough.
Zombies are deadly, but they’re also just flesh-eating automatons. Monsters like Chief Irons are much more insidious, able to stalk his victims and hunt them down. If Irons wasn’t in so much pain from the acid, he could have been getting a kick out of tracking Sherry, which is really unnerving to even consider.
Eventually, because I sucked, my wife, who was playing with me, snuck around Chief Irons. Irons eventually runs to the restroom to wash his face. We retrieved the key and began running towards the front of the orphanage. Sherry was able to unlock the door, but chains held it together from the outside so she couldnt escape that way. She had to run back to the director’s room. Along the way, there’s an eerie Shining tribute, with the chief breaking down a door with an axe.
I wondered to myself, why was I much more scared here than at any other part of the game?
It’ll Get Better Soon
A few days after I finished Claire’s part of Resident Evil 2, I went with my wife and our new baby for a checkup at our local clinic. We checked in and were waiting in the lobby upstairs when I suddenly heard shouting at the front of the clinic. A woman was asking to come inside with her daughter, but security had shut the door and locked it. “I’m sorry, ma’am,” the guard said, and told her that the whole clinic was on lockdown. They could not let anyone in. The woman begged to be given entry with her daughter and the exchange became more and more tense.
I was confused, wondering what was going on. A nurse came out, called us, and told us we needed to get inside ASAP. Above, we could hear a helicopter patrolling the area.
It turned out there was a shooting nearby and security had determined the clinic had to go on lockdown to protect it from something like a hostage situation. We were taken to a patient’s room where we waited to hear news about the shooting. It was tense and I hoped they’d catch the shooter soon.
A zombie apocalypse is terrifying to countenance, but more in the realm of fantasy than reality. But a human murdering others? It’s unfortunately become too much an accepted part of our cultural consciousness, considering almost 40,000 gun deaths were reported in 2017. The idea that there was a shooter nearby our hospital was horrifying. My fear turned into anger as I sat there helplessly with my wife and my daughter, wondering what was going to happen next. I had to start calculating, what do I do if a shooter gets into the hospital? How will I be able to protect my family? Even with a gun of my own, would I really have a chance against someone who might be carrying an automatic machine gun? I have had serious conversations with friends who’ve told me they’ve been doing serious research about bulletproof backpacks for their kids.
We ended up staying for most of the day at the clinic until the police and security gave the all-clear. I don’t know if they caught the shooter, or they just got away. But I felt like part of the undead after that, so burnt out from the stress.
Unlike the zombies, who are relatively dumb, Chief Irons is the human kind of monster preying on Sherry. His threat felt so much more real than anything else in the campaign. When Sherry finally gets caught by the chief, he yells, “The game is over.”
The chief gets his comeuppance thanks to Sherry’s father, William Birkin, who’s become an even deadlier monster. He parasitizes the chief, who dies when the embryo rips its way out of his chest.
I hope my kid never has to deal with human monsters. But the fear that feels all too real is what made this sequence so terrifying for me.
Resident Evil 2’s reimagining of the 1998 original leaned heavily into action, with revamped camerawork and gunplay. Its first batch of DLC, Ghost Survivors, focuses on untold stories and “what if” scenarios, and emphasizes intense zombie gauntlets over raw horror.
Ghost Survivors, which is free, follows three protagonists: gun store owner Robert Kendo, Raccoon City mayor’s daughter Katherine Warren, and an unnamed Umbrella soldier. Each of their scenarios acts as a hypothetical. What would have happened if Katherine escaped from the clutches of evil police chief Brian Irons? What if there was another special forces soldier sent to retrieve virus samples? These scenarios are imagined as high octane time-attacks, pitting each survivor against a slew of enemies. The challenge is simple: get from point A to B. Ghost Survivors’ scenarios aren’t slow and tense survival-horror; they are fast-paced rushes through dense hordes and new foes.
Each mission takes around 10 minutes to complete if you don’t die, but around twenty minutes first time with trial and error. You start armed with a few weapons and some ammo, but only enough to get you started. As you progress through each location, you’ll find item dispensers that might contain three different herbs (although you can only take one) as well as backpack-wearing zombies that carry extra supplies. The trick with Ghost Survivors is learning how to preserve what you have and knowing exactly what to take. It plays out with some trial and error. You’ll rush a little further into a scenario, reach a stumbling point, possibly die, and then try again from the start. Each new piece of knowledge gets you further and further until you can complete the level in one miraculous rush.
Resident Evil 2’s changes to combat thrive here, forcing players to shoot specific foes out of a pack or find ways to get around massive throngs. You can’t kill everything. Instead, you’ll juke out attacks and blow off limbs to squeeze through by the skin of your teeth. It worked well as the format for the game’s “Fourth Survivor mode” and continues to work here. Each new success feels well earned.
In order to vary each scenario, Ghost Survivors adds a few new enemies. There are glowing-eyed zombies that explode with poison gas upon defeat, armored zombies that shirk off attacks to critical areas, and strange “Pale Heads” that regenerate from everything but the most lethal of weaponry. They provide just enough complication to cause problems, but I might have liked more enemy variety in this case. The original Resident Evil 2 features giant spiders and a few other nasty tricks that didn’t make it into the remake, and this would have been a good opportunity to bring them back.
Ghost Survivors is a very straightforward experience. There are zombies, you have some guns, now get to the end of the level. Resident Evil 2’s modernizations allow it to turn this simple concept into something bloody and exciting. It’s not as sublime as sneaking around and hiding from Mr. X in the main game, but Ghost Survivors can be a lot of fun. It’s a case of a game knowing what it does well and really playing around. Hardcore enthusiasts will enjoy trying to get the best times, while players eager for more zombie-blasting get to enjoy some of the best in the business.
Mr. X is Resident Evil 2 most dangerous enemy and greatest horror trump card. The near-immortal Tyrant stalks the player from room to room, filling the dark halls with his stomping boot-steps. He’s terrifying, but what if there was two of him? A sneaky glitch can make this terrifying scenario possible, conjuring a second implacable man to haunt your nightmares.
One of Resident Evil 2’s more surprisingly design details is that Mr. X isn’t simply summoned randomly to hound the player from time to time. Once he arrives in the Raccoon City Police Department, he is always patrolling the game’s map. You can see that in this episode of the YouTube show Boundary Break. That means that even while you don’t see him, he’s there. But this design quirk also creates some interesting possibilities, one of which is the ability to have two unstoppable death monsters chasing the player, like in this video by YouTuber Dan the Hitman.
Getting this to happen is tricky. At its most basic level, glitching a second Mr. X into existence means keeping the first one nearby while hitting one of the few moments in the game where he is meant to arrive. In those moments, the game generates a Mr. X to pop in on the player. Those moments trigger when the player reaches certain areas or does a specific action, such as dousing the fire on a burning helicopter or reaching a certain spot near the STARS office in a second playthrough. In those moments, a player who has manipulated the patrolling Mr. X to be nearby or who has managed to go out of bounds can trick that Mr. X and the one tied to one of these trigger scenes to both show up.
That level of manipulation means that you’re more likely to see two Mr. Xes in already glitchy scenarios more than in casual play. Barring some glitching or a very unlucky chase from an already present Mr. X, players should only have to deal with one horrible zombie dude.
The glitch is a neat look at how Resident Evil 2’s dedication to detail—many games would not have Mr. X constantly patrolling the map in real-time— can lead to some silly if terrifying results.