Check out this incredible video of early footage from Resident Evil 4, before they reinvented the series! What is on display here confirms the incredible change the series undertook with the latest version. While the environments are fully 3-dimensional, the puzzle look the same, and the camera is still (mostly) static.
Watching the player run from "shot" to "shot" hoping for a decent angle to shoot from not only re-awoke the frustrations of playing earlier games, but highlighted the elegance of the over-the-shoulder approach. In the screen above, you can see they experimented with this approach early, and rightfully reimagined their entire game around it. Resident Evil 4's button-based minigames are here, as well as the title's gorgeous graphics, but the environment and enemies are all different.
Good job, Capcom! Instead of releasing the same old game with a fresh coat of paint, you trashed most of what you had, thereby reinventing a stale franchise and reinvigorating a stagnant genre, and you were rewarded for it!
Keep reading for the video.