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Claire pushing a statue in Resident Evil 2.

Pushing is a gameplay mechanic featured throughout the Resident Evil series used to move objects for the purpose of solving puzzles, creating platforms, or revealing hidden items.

It is introduced in the first Resident Evil as a special action that the player characters can only use if they are next to a moveable object. From the first game onwards, objects that are commonly applicable for the ability are wooden and metal crates, statues, bookcases, and unoccupied vehicles.

Depending on the item in question, objects can be pushed in four different directions. If they become stuck against a wall, leaving the room and reentering it will reset the object's position. This is especially helpful if the player is trying to solve a puzzle.

In early games that used pre-rendered backgrounds, objects that could be pushed were often easily seen because they were sprites like the characters and enemies.

Prior to Resident Evil 4, the player simply had to move against an object to push it. From RE4 onwards, pushing became a context sensitive action that had to be done while holding a button. In addition, many moveable objects in RE4 and RE5 were used to barricade doors and windows to stave off encroaching enemies. These objects were entirely destructible by the players, enemies, and ally NPCs. But even in half-destroyed states, these objects were still capable of being pushed.

Resident Evil 2 introduced heavier objects that required more than one character to move. The police van in the parking garage of the Raccoon City Police Department was the first instance of this. While this is necessary only a couple times in RE4 it becomes commonplace in RE5 and RE6 most likely due to those games co-op system.

The Outbreak games also feature this, but in single player the ally PCs will rarely help you push things aside. Playing online with other players usually reaped better results, because many of the heavier objects in the Outbreak games reveal hidden weapons, ammo, and healing items upon being moved. Mark Wilkins can move many of these objects by himself however, due to his robust strength. There is at least one item he can move per scenario. Similarly, there are heavy objects in RE Zero that only Billy Coen can move.

A similar action is used to bar doors in the Outbreak games. This is especially helpful since many enemies can move to different rooms by breaking through doors.

Special Pushing Actions

  • A notable change to the usual pushing mechanics occurs during the final boss fight of Resident Evil 5. While trying to make it to Sheva Alomar,Chris Redfield encounters a large boulder blocking his path. The player is given the option to Push it, first by the usual button then by rotating the analog stick. Then the player is given multiple "Hook" melee inputs before ending the combo in a double-input "Ram" attack, effectively moving the boulder.
  • The fight with Lisa Trevor in REmake ends immediately once the player pushes four statues into the chasm surrounding the area.


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