Top 20 Scariest Moments in Resident Evil Games
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Top 20 Scariest Moments in Resident Evil Games

VOICE OVER: Ryan Wild WRITTEN BY: Alex Slade
Whether the atmosphere evoked a feeling of dread, you faced an overwhelming amount of enemies, or something jumped out at you like a Jack-in-the-box, these Resident Evil moments may scare you to death! For this list, we'll be looking at those particular moments from the franchise that had us wiping the sweat from our brow as we played with one eye open. Our countdown includes The First Zombie “Resident Evil” [Original & Remake] (1996/2002), Grave Digger in the Sewer “Resident Evil 3: Nemesis” [Original] (1999), The Bottom Waterway “Resident Evil 2” [Remake] (2019) and more!
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Script written by Alex Slade

Top 20 Scariest Resident Evil Moments


These moments may scare you to death, but the T-virus will bring you back, so we’re all good! Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 20 Scariest Resident Evil Moments.

For this list, we’ll be looking at those particular moments that had us wiping the sweat from our brow as we played with one eye open. Whether the atmosphere evoked a feeling of dread, you faced an overwhelming amount of enemies, or something jumped out at you like a Jack-in-the-box, if it had you breathing a sigh of relief when it was over, then it’s eligible for this list. Keep in mind, spoilers will follow.

#20: The First Zombie

“Resident Evil” [Original & Remake] (1996/2002)

It’s the moment that sets the tone for the event to come, and damn is it horrific. Shortly after making their way into the Spencer Mansion, the remaining members of the Alpha Team of S.T.A.R.S. split up to explore and get a sense of the place. This leads the player’s chosen character – either Chris Redfield or Jill Valentine – to venture into a notably cramped hall, which gives way to the Mansion’s Tea Room. Suddenly, we’re greeted with the sight of a gray being feasting on the corpse of S.T.A.R.S. member Kenneth J. Sullivan… and the creature slowly turns to reveal decayed skin and blood-soaked lips. This, ladies and gentleman, is what it means to enter the survival horror.

#19: Introduction to Crimson Heads

“Resident Evil” [Remake] (2002)

If you think that shambling, rotten corpses trying to eat your brains is scary enough, then we have some bad news for you. The “Resident Evil” remake introduced Crimson Heads, which are far more dangerous and frightening than your traditional zombies. Any corpses you leave in your wake will eventually transform into these ultra-fast monstrosities. The only way to prevent their transformation is to get lucky enough to blow their heads off or burn them, but kerosene refills aren't unlimited. If you know you're going to trek through a particular area in the game multiple times, best bring your fuel canteen.

#18: Grave Digger in the Sewer

“Resident Evil 3: Nemesis” [Original] (1999)

Three games in, we now know zombies are generally the least of our problems. We mean, with Nemesis on our trail the entire time, we're usually prepared for anything else thrown at us… that is until you reach the sewer. Sewers are a naturally scary place. They're dark and full of winding tunnels. Also, when there's a monster called the 'Grave Digger' in there with you, it doesn't bode well. Its ability to vanish and appear in a different part of the sewer means you always have to be on guard.

#17: Old Eveline Appearances

“Resident Evil 7: Biohazard” (2017)

Is it wrong of us to say old ladies who stare at you are generally already creepy? If so, what about old ladies who stare at you in the middle of a creature-infested hell-house? Throughout your journey in “Resident Evil 7,” the main antagonist pops up in random places, keeping an eye on you as you slay the molded. While she won't attack you in-game, the sight of her sitting down, with her back to you at the end of a dimly-lit corridor, is going to do more harm to your psyche.

#16: Rachel Ooze

“Resident Evil: Revelations” (2012)

What is it with Jill and monsters that escape through holes and vents? While the boss fight itself isn’t too scary, the buildup and music, accompanied by the foreboding atmosphere, really add to the effect. The sight of Rachel clawing at the window is enough to send chills down our spine, but then she also happens to giggle and call for our blood, so there’s that, too. She moves much faster than your regular enemy encounter, so when she does drop from a vent, you better be prepared to blast her in the face.

#15: Keeper’s Diary

“Resident Evil” [Original & Remake] (1996)

When a section of the game that features reading from a diary is more frightening than fending off blood-thirsty zombies, that’s saying something. The pacing of the short story within the diary allows for the suspense to build and build, filling us with unease and discomfort as we observe the Keeper’s inevitable transformation into a zombie. Adding to the scare, the Keeper himself happens to be lurking around, enjoying watching your internal narration as you read his diary. Sorry Keeper, time to die… again.

#14: The Bottom Waterway

“Resident Evil 2” [Remake] (2019)

We got a welcome return to survival horror roots with the “Resident Evil 2” remake, thanks to the claustrophobic hallways and unnerving atmosphere. It peaks, however, in the lower part of the waterway. In order to get to the supply room that has one of the chess pieces you need, you have to traverse a very long corridor known as “The Bottom Waterway” which is infested with G Monsters. It’s incredibly unnerving, as said monsters lurk underneath the polluted sewer water, with very little lighting, and little space to avoid them. Oh yeah, and once you get the items you need, you need to go back the way you came. Great, Just Great!

#13: Mia Goes Insane

“Resident Evil 7: Biohazard” (2017)

While a return to its survival horror roots, this particular entry in the franchise was still unique in its own right. Its “True Detective” meets “Texas Chain Saw Massacre” vibe really allowed for some creative scares. As a precursor to the rest of the game, the intro has you fending off a crazed Mia, with a shiver-inducing moment as she crawls up the stairs from the dark basement below. Oh, and she also chainsaws your arm off. It's okay though; you get it back shortly after, via staples and green liquid... stuff.

#12: Comms Officer

“Resident Evil: Revelations” (2012)

Certain imagery is scary; that’s for sure. Ambiance and atmosphere, most definitely, but it takes a particular something to make a sound effect just as, if not more, frightening than the other elements. The Comms Officer, while a formidable foe on its own, will debilitate you with its freakish cries of anguish as he battles the virus internally. The combination of his human voice and his monster voice creates a terrifying mix that progresses into something so sinister, it will leave you on the pause menu as you regain composure.

#11: Oven Man

“Resident Evil 4” (2005)

In Chapter 5-1 of “Resident Evil 4”, Leon’s journey to stop the machinations of the Los Illuminados cult takes him to a remote island overrun by Ganado combatants. His efforts to survive lead him into a kitchen area, which looks to be unguarded and long-forgotten… at least until … (Show the Ovenman) Setting aside the jumpscare aspect of this scene, there’s also subtle horror to be mined from the implication that this Oven Man was just lying in wait while being burned alive.

#10: Zombies Through the Door

“Resident Evil 2” (1998)

You know you're playing a scary game when you become deathly afraid of doors. Incredibly effective in its execution, the game played on our expectations of safety through the loading screens. Previously, the loading animation provided a brief reprieve from the horrors, as we waited to see what the next area would hold. This moment turned that notion upside down. Although this only happens the one time, any time you went through a door from that point on, you held onto the controller tight, waiting for the scare that never came again.

#9: The Greenhouse

“Resident Evil 7: Biohazard” (2017)

Whatever makes its home in Marguerite's under-carriage is scarier than you think. Why did it have to be a swarm of stinging bugs? Her true form makes an appearance shortly after you enter the greenhouse, and to say she caught us off-guard is an understatement. She can climb walls and scuttle about like a spider, jumping out at you as she sprays bugs into your eyes. It's like Capcom ticked every box in the 'scary but also gross' category. When you see her on the ceiling, in the shadows, dripping… you can either run or kill it with fire. You're going to have to do the latter if you want to progress.

#8: Meeting the Licker

“Resident Evil 2” [Original] (1998)

Well, at least we know it’s creative about its kills. Depending on whose path is initially chosen, either Claire Redfield or Leon Kennedy end up in the Raccoon City Police Department while trying to survive the city’s zombie-related downfall. While passing by a window they catch a glimpse of something crawling into view that disappears too fast to be identified. Nevertheless, the seeds of tension have been planted, setting up players for the subsequent discovery of a headless body… and what exactly caused the headless body. Man that is uuugly.

#7: Two-Way Mirror Licker

“Resident Evil 2” [Original & Remake] (1998 & 2019)

While the “Resident Evil” series relies on its foreboding atmosphere and fear of what’s lurking around the next corner to unsettle you, there’s still room for a good-old jumpscare to be thrown into the mix. When stepping into an interrogation room, things seem to go along fine as you get the items you need until. (Show the scare) Nothing like this had happened prior, so we definitely weren’t ready for it. The fact that it’s still just as frightening, if not more frightening in the remake due to the updated graphics, is a testament to its terrifying concept.

#6: The Regenerators

“Resident Evil 4” (2005)

On the hunt for a key card late in “Resident Evil 4”, Leon makes his way into an Autopsy Lab with suspicious-looking corpses present. It’s not until the card is retrieved that Leon comes face-to-face with one such corpse that can now stand upright… and attack by stretching out its limbs to inhuman lengths. This strange, drooping beast is a Regenerador – one of several found in the latter part of the game. Should the Regenerador’s bizarre design not leave you fearful, its ability to regrow limbs, creepy breathing, chilling theme song and vicious bite will almost certainly suffice.

#5: Nemesis Breaks into the RPD

“Resident Evil 3: Nemesis” [Original] (1999)

Talk about never giving up the chase. In “Resident Evil 3”, Jill Valentine’s efforts to escape Raccoon City eventually compel her to enter the Raccoon City Police Department headquarters. Wandering down the RPD’s corridors, while the threat of the mysterious Nemesis creature looms overhead, is a tense situation in itself. Though the tension really elevates when you hear the nearby shattering of glass, what caused that? Better investigate what that was …(Nemesis Jumps through the window) OH CRAP IT’S HIM! RUN!!!

#4: Zombie Hands

“Resident Evil 2” [Original] (1998)

We’re starting to get the feeling Capcom really doesn’t want us to trust windows anymore. While descending further into the depths of the RPD, the player – and their character of choice – bear witness to an increasing number of filthy, dilapidated hallways. The first time you go through this hallway it’s no big deal. Sure the crunching broken glass is unsettling, but it’s on the return trip that things get crazy. Think those boarded windows are going to keep you safe? Think again.

#3: The Village

“Resident Evil 4” (2005)

As cold opens go, this is rather chilling. Shortly after being dropped off on the outskirts of a village, Leon swiftly makes his way to the village center. There it’s made abundantly clear – especially thanks to the sight of a police officer stuck in a bonfire – that the villagers are not to be trifled with lightly. Alas, things take a turn when the village inhabitants abruptly begin attacking Leon, leading into a tense sequence in which he barricades himself inside of a house and wards off attackers. To cap it off, the villagers simply walk away upon hearing a church bell ring out, leaving Leon and the audience equally uncertain of what to make of the situation.

#2: Zombie Dogs Arrive

“Resident Evil” [Original & Remake] (1996/2002)

When it comes to jumpscares, few can top the proper introduction to the horrifying Cerberus creatures. Early in the original “Resident Evil”, the player happens upon a locked door that can only be opened with a lockpick or a special key. Once unlocked the door gives way to a suspiciously innocuous lit hallway that players are all-too-tempted to run down. But if you’ve been paying attention to the rest of the list, you’ll know that not all is as it seems … (Shows the Dogs through the Window, jumping on Jill) OH CRAP GET OFF ME!

#1: T-00 (a.k.a Mr. X) Stalks You

“Resident Evil 2” [Remake] (2019)

The moment he picked up the crashed helicopter was when the RE2 remake went from great fanservice, to one of the best games in the series. You know when you start to hear that ominous continuous thud of footsteps, that a hulking Tyrant is about to punch your face in. He walks as fast as you can run, and he’s almost indestructible. He can also be drawn towards your position if you start running or shooting, as if we didn’t need any more tension to deal with. Can you kill the Licker in time to high-tail it out of there? Or should you start running now? It doesn’t matter, Mr. X will catch you in the end.
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