[Top 10] Resident Evil 2 Best Scenes

Only Claire can look this stylish in the middle of a zombie outbreak!

If you’re a massive fan of Resident Evil 2 because of its amazing story first and foremost, join us as we rank Resident Evil 2’s 10 best scenes!  Now, back in the day we were all in awe of just how cutting-edge Resident Evil 2 was for its time, but in retrospect we’ve gotta admit that this was just one of many popular games of old that were held back by the technological limitations of the original Playstation’s hardware.

Suffice to say, new and old Resident Evil fans alike were just as excited to watch how the game’s story would unfold with the benefit of new-age graphics and animation as they were to actually play it… so in this same spirit, let’s celebrate Resident Evil 2’s story by exploring the top ten best scene that the game has to offer us. 

10. Opening Cutscene (Truck Driver)

Scene Introduction:

Simple yet effective, we’re introduced to the horrors of Racoon City through the eyes of an unassuming truck driver who’s just trying to burn away those boring hours on the lonely road with some fast food and a little bit of talk radio.

What’s Happening:

Just as a frantic caller desperately tries to tell him of his own encounter with what could only be described as a zombie woman live on air, the now distracted truck driver collides with a pedestrian and his ordinary nighttime shift suddenly becomes anything but.

When he hesitantly gets out of the car and discovers the fresh corpse on the road, the truck driver turns away and begins to frantically deliberate over what he should do for his apparent victim… but at that very same moment, the tables turn and what we thought to be a corpse springs back to life and attacks the unnamed man … that’s right, she was a zombie all along and now  her victim. 

What We Think About This Scene:

When those of us who’d already played the original version of Resident Evil 2 sat down to begin our modern day adventure in Racoon City, it was made clear to us from the very first cutscene that the developers were prepared to deviate from the original game in order to give us a more complex, story-driven horror experience.

For those of you that never got around to playing the 1998 title, the opening sequence starts us off with a hurried plot dump containing some key information that we would have learnt by playing Resident Evil 1, followed by Leon Kennedy driving into Raccoon city for the very first time.

So, starting us off with the truck driver might seem like a fairly brief and inconsequential deviation at first, but if we take the time to consider what this deviation really means… that the developers don’t feel the need to desperately dump a bunch of lore onto the player right away anymore. Now that they have the luxury of modern day technology to work with and not against how little the player may or may not know, there’s no doubt that we’re in for a more in-depth narrative experience.

Resident Evil 2 remake’s cold open is complete with an ominous storm, a sleep-deprived truck driver and a foreboding radio call; basically, it follows the rules of your classic campy horror movie to the letter. This way, even through their deviation from the source material, old fans can rest easy knowing that the developers are still self-aware when it comes to the game’s overarching tone and atmosphere.


9. Leon and Ada's First Meeting

Scene Introduction:

Since her first appearance back in the 90’s, Ada Wong has been a fan-favourite of the series. As I’m sure you can imagine, fan’s expectations were extremely high as far as the remake was concerned. Thankfully, her undeniably badass entry into Resident Evil 2’s remake managed to meet all of these expectations and then some.

What’s Happening: 

Mere seconds after realising that he can’t pass the car park’s gates without (in true Resident Evil fashion) a key card, our protagonist is mauled by a horrifying zombie dog and just when it’s looking like it might all lights out for Leon, fan favourite Ada Wong steps in and rescues us with a single masterful shot to the head.

A true embodiment of the femme fatale, when the player finally gets their first look at Ada we can only see her silhouette; she’s completely obscured by shadow. Just as she flashes her FBI badge at Leon, a foreboding piano melody mirrors her mysterious aura. Refusing to answer Leon’s very reasonable questions because it’s all ‘classified information’, she vanishes just as quickly as she first appeared to us. 

What We Think About This Scene:

After his first encounter with this mystifying woman, Leon is left with more questions than answers: what is this peculiar FBI agent doing here in the first place, and what’s really happening here in Raccoon City anyway? What is this woman’s true objective in all of this? Why did she even bother to stop and help Leon in the first place? 

This short scene certainly doesn’t fail to leave a strong impression on us players. By reinforcing our nagging curiosity as to how these surreal occurrences are even possible, we begin to better resonate with Leon Kennedy’s general state of confusion without even realising it ourselves.


8. The True Ending

Scene Introduction:

After we’ve survived every terrifying moment, spent god knows how long scrounging for anything and everything that might help us, encountered more ‘game over’ screens than we’d care to admit and have had to run for our lives from countless lickers, zombie dogs, giant crocodiles and the anxiety-inducing Mr. X, players who managed to complete both Leon and Claire’s campaigns can finally relax and celebrate their victory alongside Leon, Claire and even Sherry in this final cutscene, also referred to as the ‘true ending’.

What's Happening:

The true ending juxtaposes the endless horror and hopelessness of Resident Evil 2’s story beautifully. We see Leon, Claire and Sherry walking together in the light of day, finally safe from the clutches of Raccoon city after many hard-fought battles.

With Leon and Claire finally reunited at long last, Sherry says what most of us are probably thinking by asking whether or not our two heroes are dating . Then, echoing the game’s cold-opening masterfully, Leon tries but ultimately fails to hitch a ride from, you guessed it, yet another unassuming truck driver!

What We Think About This Scene:

Symbolic of the outside world and untouched by the horrors contained in Raccoon city, just a brief glimpse into the life of this carefree truck driver who’s whistling along to his tunes in blissful ignorance of all that’s happened tells us everything that we need to know… we really did succeed after all, the world at large is safe from the virus!


7. William Birkin Becomes ‘G’

 Scene Introduction:

After suffering through boss battle after boss battle against various forms of ‘G’, discovering alpha team’s secret video tape finally allows us to even begin to understand why on earth William Birkins would choose to infect himself with his own ungodly virus. For the first time, we can see William Birkin as the man that he was, not just as the hideous monster that we’ve made it our mission to destroy.

What's Happening: 

Watching this top secret footage for the first time, we actually get to see scientist William Birkin in his human form for the first time, despite the fact that we’re well acquainted with the man in his horrific form post-infection by this point. The tape depicts several armed soldiers approaching William with instructions to take his personal invention (the G virus) from him by force.

However, for reasons that we’re not completely privy to, William is too protective of his ‘life’s work’ to part with it willingly… and in turn, the soldiers simply decide to shoot the man to secure the virus, or bio-weapon, that he created. Unbeknownst to them, their failure to kill William right then and there is their very undoing.

In his last dying moments, the scientist does the unthinkable in order to get his revenge on the same men so easily shot him without a second thought… he would survive to take their lives by any means necessary. By injecting himself with the G virus and thus gaining inhuman strength, Birkin becomes the monster that we’ve known him to be all this time. 

What We Think About This Scene:

Look, there’s no revelation on earth that could make me forgive William Birkin for what he did, but I have to admit that the man’s origin story does allow me to see him in a new and more complex light. Does that mean that we have to forgive him under this new light? Of course not… but it does mean that we can at least understand what motivated the scientist to unleash such hell upon Raccoon city.            


6. Leon Officially Joins the Police Force

In the unforgiving world of Resident Evil, endearing moments between our cursed cast of characters are few and far between. It’s completely understandable that, amidst the never-ending onslaught of zombie attacks, sudden betrayals and political intrigue, our characters really don’t have the time to sit around and make small talk.

That’s what makes the few warm, endearing moments that we do have all the more precious. As he officially recruits Leon Kennedy, Lieutenant Marvin offers some wise fatherly advice, putting a smile on all of our faces for a moment or two before some manner of horrifying or otherwise tragic event inevitably comes and ruins the moment.

What's Happening: 

To say that Leon’s first day as a new police recruit isn’t quite going to plan would be an understatement if anything, but even in these awful circumstances and after sustaining a life-threatening injury, Lieutenant Marvin Branagh still takes the time out to officially recruit Leon Kennedy into Raccoon City’s police force… well, as officially as the circumstances allow him to at least. 

Offering his very own combat knife to our young hero as both much needed protection and as a makeshift service weapon of sorts, Leon finally gets to realise his dream (or nightmare) of becoming a fully-fledged police officer. 

What We Think About This Scene:

This brief exchange between Leon and Marvin might seem inconsequential on the face of it, but in truth, his haphazard initiation into the force really does define Leon as a character in more ways than one. Not only does the young police officer heed the dying Lieutenant's advice, he really does live it.

What’s more, players who are familiar with later Resident Evil titles will be even more touched by this scene when they realise that Leon never parts with Marvin’s combat knife. This unspoken gesture shows us just how much Leon respected his superior better than mere words ever could.


5. Ben Bertolucci is Killed By Mr. X

Ben Bertolucci death scene - Resident Evil 2 remake. Start at: 0:01                                                                               

Scene Introduction:

The player really feels this ill-fated journalist’s frustration in the face of Leon’s annoying naivety in this extremely gory scene. While Ben does his best to strike a deal with Leon by trading a card key for his freedom between the bars of his cell, we get our first look at the scariest guy in the entire game… well, in my opinion, at least. 

What’s Happening:

Just as investigative journalist Ben desperately tries to explain some of the truth as to what’s really going down in Raccoon city to a clueless Leon Kennedy, he’s rudely interrupted by one of the game’s core villains… Mr. X! The unfathomably strong superhuman grabs him through the cell’s brick wall, crushing his skull in the gory and mega-violent fashion that we’ve come to know and love from Resident Evil. 

It’s almost comical how unfortunate it is that only in Ben’s death do we realise that he wasn’t some lying criminal after all, and as Ada confirms to us shortly after, he was actually telling the truth.

Why it’s Great:

This scene stands out as one of the game’s very best for the simple reason that it echoes just what Resident Evil has done so excellently for so long. In its own campy way, the game constantly subverts our expectations by distracting us from the real horror that’s narrowing in with inconsequential conversations and pointless arguments.

The sudden violence of the situation really hits home when we’re really not expecting it. There’s no better way to introduce us to Mr. X, the one villain who is known for scaring us in an unexpected fashion over and over and over again. 


4. Annette Birkin’s Death

Resident Evil 2 Remake | Annette Death Cutscene | 4K 60FPS. Starts At: 0:09     

Scene Introduction:

Now, if you’re anything like me, by this point in the game’s story you’ve already spent hours upon hours just hating on Annette Birkin… so I have to hand it to the writers. It's downright impressive that her death had such an emotional impact on me in spite of it all.  

What's Happening:

When Claire manages to make it back to the very sick Sherry just in time to save her life, we watch as the little girl that we’ve grown to love realises that she has to leave her dying mother behind.

Throughout Claire’s campaign we’ve grappled with how little this morally questionable woman seems to care for her young daughter’s wellbeing, so when she finally expresses her sincere love for Sherry in her very last moments on earth, we’re able to forget our personal disdain for Annette and find comfort in the fact that our young companion knows that her mom really did love her after all.

What We Think About This Scene:

When you find yourself coming away from a scene with newfound empathy for characters that were nothing but villains to you mere moments beforehand, you know without a shadow of a doubt that you just witnessed a scene that’s so emotionally powerful that you’ll end up carrying it with you even after the credits roll.

As we watch Sherry and Annette’s final farewell, the Umbrella employee that we’ve been at odds with for the better part of the game suddenly transforms into a very human woman before our eyes. Like Claire Redfield herself, I’m sure that I’m far from the only player who shed a tear for her too.


3. Ada and Leon’s Farewell

Resident Evil 2 Remake: Leon & Ada Wong Romance. Starts At: 23:09 

Scene Introduction:

After a gravely injured Annette Birkin tips Leon off about Ada’s true identity, the two characters finally confront each other. Ada threatens Leon with her gun, demanding him to hand over the sample of the virus, but he sees right through this empty threat… she cares about him way too much to actually shoot him, even for the one thing that’d finally allow her to complete her dangerous mission.

What's Happening: 

In the midst of this emotional exchange, in her dying moments Annette manages to shoot Ada, forcing her to fall off of the airborne platform which suddenly starts to crumble around them at this critical moment. Leon manages to catch Ada despite the fact that the very structure that he’s standing on is falling apart rapidly. 

Realising that he can’t possibly pull her up to safety without risking his own life, this apparently selfish, deceitful mercenary who’s only out for herself makes the ultimate sacrifice by forcing herself from Leon’s desperate grip. We watch along with Leon helplessly as she falls to her death, and we come to the unfortunate realisation that these two might as well be the ‘star-crossed lovers’ of the game.

Why It's Great:

In true Resident Evil fashion, the game pulls no punches in using Leon and Ada’s kiss as a way to subvert our expectations, making Ada’s sacrifice and apparent death all the more gut wrenching by comparison.

As upsetting, disturbing and downright violent as the games can be at the best of times, this is exactly why Resident Evil has risen to the ranks of the pop-culture elite throughout the years. We love these games because they don’t coddle us, they don’t just give us what we want and they never hold back on any of the grim and gory details. 


2. Ada and Leon’s First Kiss

Resident Evil 2 Remake - Leon And Ada Wong Kiss Scene. Starts At: 0:09                                                                 

Scene Introduction    

You could cut Leon and Ada’s sexual tension with a knife, so when these two characters finally admit their feelings towards one another through a single kiss, we were all finally able to breathe a sigh of relief as we enjoyed this endearing yet admittedly corny scene.

What's Happening:

After Leon helps a now severely injured Ada into the train car that leads right to Umbrella’s secret lab underneath them known as the ‘NEST’, Ada begrudgingly accepts the reality that she’s too hurt to continue her ultimate mission of securing the G virus.

In a rare moment of vulnerability, Ada urges Leon to complete the mission in her stead and our protagonist assures the mysterious woman that he’ll come back for her after he succeeds. At long last, the characters give into their romantic feelings for one another and share a simple kiss. 

What We Think About This Scene:

Longtime fans of the Resident Evil franchise are no stranger to the frustration of witnessing sexual chemistry between characters that seems to always go unanswered. Interestingly enough, in the original game, Leon and Ada never actually kiss despite their obvious chemistry. 

In my humble opinion, a great remake even surprises those who are familiar with the source material. For the many players out there who have hoped that these two would finally get together for more than two decades now must have jumped for joy as they watched this scene play out for the first time… I know I did!


1. Kendo and Emma in the Gun Shop

Resident Evil 2 Remake: Gun Shop Kendo scene. Starts At: 0:32 

Scene Introduction:

Now, I know that this is hands-down the darkest and most heart wrenching scene in the entire game, but it also happens to be the very best that Resident Evil 2 has to offer us. 

For the first time since the game’s opening sequence, Leon finds himself wandering outside the bounds of Raccoon City’s police station. It’s a rare opportunity for him to explore the town proper… or what’s left of it, at least. In the town’s weapons shop, he and Ada are confronted with shop owner Kendo’s harrowing, unimaginable dilemma; his young daughter Emma is infected, and she’s turning rapidly.

What's Happening:

Leon and Ada stumble into Raccoon city’s weapons shop as an alternative route after realising that taking the road is no longer an option for them. It’s clear that the shop owner Kendo’s daughter is terribly ill, and Ada immediately instructs the distraught father to allow her to ‘stop’ the child from turning before it’s too late.

After Leon urges her to show some humanity to the already grieving father, an exasperated Kendo laments the loss of his wife and daughter to those ‘things’ outside and berate’s Leon for his ignorance, exclaiming that a cop should be able to give him some answers, some way to understand this surreal nightmare.

Leon and Ada hopelessly watch on as Kendo comforts his infected daughter Emma before he carries her away to a private room… then, we hear a single gunshot. We can’t know for sure if he followed Ada’s advice or if he didn’t have the strength to follow through with it in the end, and this ambiguity compliments the emotional hardship rife within this narrative sequence masterfully.

What We Think About This Scene:

Throughout Resident Evil 2’s narrative, we spend the great majority of our time detached from the outside world and to be fair, this is an excellent narrative device when it comes to horror as a genre in general. This way, your audience can experience the mystery of this strange new reality without the wider world restraining them in any way. 

We have to understand this to fully understand and appreciate the masterful writing of this specific scene. Like Leon and Ada, the player hasn’t had to face the truth of what this virus

has wrought on the city at large and, in a very real way, we too enjoyed the quiet comfort of not really having to think about it at all. 

Kendo’s heart wrenching final moments with his daughter Emma are juxtaposed with the cavalier attitudes that our characters displayed when they first walked into the store, criticising the messy state of the shop with no earthly idea as to why this was the case. Suddenly we’re no longer afforded the luxury of asserting cognitive dissonance as to just how traumatic this nightmarish situation really is. 

Rivalling some of the most heart wrenching scenes in film history, we explore the different methods that humans employ as a means of coping with such emotionally taxing experiences in order to keep moving forward… 

While Ada remains emotionally detached by choosing to use surgical language, referring to Emma as ‘it’  and the act of ending her life as a ‘termination’.Leon, however, faces the grim reality of the situation head-on, not allowing it to weaken him in any way… if anything, it only strengthens his resolve to ‘help people like them’ by ‘saving this city’ from the evil grips of Umbrella Corporation.

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After years of immersing herself in countless games, Kate has managed to utilise her hobby to become a better writer while somehow managing to remain only average at actually playing them.
Gamer Since: 2007
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Disco Elysium
Top 3 Favorite Games:BioShock, Dark Souls: Prepare To Die Edition, Resident Evil HD Remaster

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