Resident Evil 4 has stood the test of time as one of the most iconic survival horror games. While you could credit its accolades to its enigmatic merchant, Ashley’s banshee screeches, or Leon’s devil-may-care attitude, perhaps the quintessential RE4 experience is methodically Tetris-ing your gathered weapons and equipment to fit within your trusty attaché case’s limited, grid-based confines. If you, too, appreciate the RE4 inventory shuffle, someone’s finally made a puzzle game for you.
Save Room – Organization Puzzle, developed by Fractal Projects, is a puzzle game in which you try to fit health items, weaponry, and the occasional egg into 40 space-constricted puzzle grids of varying layouts.
If you’ve fumbled around with items while playing RE4, regardless of its many re-releases, Save Room’s gameplay is pretty much that, but with the added focus of progressively intricate grid designs into which you must rotate and snap your items into place.
Save Room’s minimalistic puzzle romp does get complicated around its 20th level, when it injects more advanced RE4 attaché case mechanics like combining herbs and gunpowder to craft health items and ammo (which take less space) as well as throwing food at you to organize. It’s here where prior knowledge of which gunpowder combo creates which ammo, how much ammo each gun carries (so that you can stuff it inside the gun, saving crucial grid space), as well as the game’s health mechanic come into play.
For example, you can’t use healing items if you’re at full health, so rotten food becomes a required delicacy to lower your health so that you can then consume the right combination of health items, in the ideal order, to both recover your health and clear up items from your queue. Certain ammo can also reload multiple guns, like the Killer7 (renamed the “Killer6,” here) to the Broken Butterfly (renamed the “Fixed Butterfly”). This led to a series of trial-and-error runs, causing me to dredge up half-forgotten RE4 knowledge on ammo capacities to help decide which weapons needed to get reloaded first.
While Save Room – Organization Puzzle could have just coasted on its inspired concept, it goes the extra mile with a soothing music loop that calls to mind RE’s wonderful saferooms and chunky sound effects that make moving items satisfying. This made Marie Kondo-ing RE4-style items a surprisingly relaxing experience, and worth the sub-two-dollar asking price. My only wish is for Fractal Projects to create more levels so I can stretch these particular mind muscles further before someone remasters RE4 yet…
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