One of the most impressive mods going is the Resident Evil 4 HD Project, a full retexture and visual polish of Capcom's horror shooter, and it's finally nearing fruition. The developers have announced plans to release version 1.0 on the 2nd of February, 2022. The care and attention to detail of this mod is stunning, looking so much nicer than both Capcom's official makeover and the recent Resident Evil 4 VR, and I can hardly wait to play RE4 again with it.
Years in the making (the first version came out in 2014), the HD Project truly is astonishing. The two-person team have gone through and redone every texture in the game, remade many models, tweaked lighting, fixed some texture and model bugs which were present even in the official HD version, and re-added features removed by ports across the years. Many 'HD' mods make similar efforts, but this has an impressive devotion to following the game's original stylisation, still all grungy and oversharp. And rather than just replace textures with high-res versions which broadly convey a similar material, they often recreate a texture precisely, the same details in the same places. It looks like Resident Evil 4, just better. It sure puts the GTA remasters to shame.
The part which most impresses me is how they have often tracked down and re-photographed the buildings, surfaces, furniture, wallpaper, and other objects which Capcom artists used as the basis for phototextures, recreating the process with a high-res outcome:
Here's a dev update video from December 2020, showing the game's final chapter:
"The day is approaching... I know some of you may feel slightly disappointed when you see the release day, but believe me, it will deserve the extra month of waiting," Albert Marin said in announcing the February 2 release date.
He revealed that as well as bringing the expected new look, v1.0 will build on fixes from other RE4 modders to transcend the game's technical limitations. So now it'll be able to have "full HD" versions of the remastered pre-rendered cutscenes, items in the inventory will be their full-detail models, it'll let you adjust the FoV as you like, the HUD will work properly in ultrawide resolutions, it'll let you restore the depth of field blur from the original release, and more.
Resident Evil 4 still has a 75% discount in the Steam Autumn Sale for another few hours, ending at 6pm (10am Pacific), so I'd buy now if you don't already have it. The mod will be free to download from the RE4 HD Project website.
Rumours have circulated that Capcom were remaking Resident Evil 4, following the success of their other REmakes. The RE4HD team were unfased by this, pointing out that the remakes have reworked the games and the original RE4 is still worthy of a glow-up. It is. Great game. And clearly they've beaten Capcom to it.