There are moments in video games that inspire abject terror. When your avatar is faced with a threat unlike anything they have dealt with before. The conventional weapons that have served you faithfully over the course of the game have no effect on this new monster. Your only hope is quick thinking and fast reflexes. The music in the game shifts, to match the anxiety you feel when staring down a creature like the Regenerator.
When I first encountered the Regenerator, I was frightened. Instead of the poor souls who were infected with a single Plaga parasite, these monsters were filled with several of the organisms, granting them near-immortality. Every shot of my weapons was immediately healed, while the massive Regenerator staggered towards my character. Then it hit me: I had seen this sort of threat before.
In the video game Killer 7, the Heavens’ Smile terrorists used human hosts filled with radioactive tumors to become living bombs. These Regenerators were no different. I turned on an infrared scope, just like I would in Killer 7, and rapidly picked off the Plaga parasites within the host. The seven-foot tall Regenerator was felled, just like so many Heavens’ Smile monsters before it.
Shinji Mikami, the director of Resident Evil 4, had also served as one of the writers for Killer 7. It was this collaboration that must have inspired the Regenerator monsters in RE4, since they so closely resembled the Heavens’ Smile. Composers Misao Senbongi and Shusaku Uchiyama crafted an appropriately oppressive theme to match the Regenerators to inspire great stress and anxiety in players who encountered these unfortunate souls.