Knowing how to escape the Courtyard maze was one of the toughest parts of the Castle region in the original Resident Evil 4; Capcom's 2023 remake amps up the challenge by requiring you to unfurl three flags to open the exit. Use this guide to find your way through, and escape, the Courtyard maze in Resident Evil 4.
Escaping the Courtyard maze
Technically, there are three exits from Resident Evil 4's Courtyard maze. One is back the way you came, to the house where you reunited with Ashley. You'll eventually open the second that returns you to the outdoor fountain where the merchant peddles his wares nearby. The exit you need is the third, a portcullis at the far east side of the map, accessible via a staircase.
Opening that gate requires you to pull three levers, each of which unfurls a flag near the exit. There's more than one route through the maze, but the most direct route is outlined in our maps of the Courtyard below.
The red line takes you from the entrance to the first flag; the blue line takes you from the first flag to the second; and the green line takes you from the second, through a gate nearby, and along the southern stretch of the maze to, finally, a switch. That switch opens an ornamental gate you passed earlier. Command Ashley to pull the switch to open the gate, then follow the yellow line through the ornamental gate and up the stairs to throw the lever for the third and final flag
Revealing the last flag triggers an event where you'll have to protect Ashley from abduction. Refer to the Freeing Ashley section below for details.
Your main enemies in this area are colmillos (Spanish for "fangs" or "tusk"), the wolves infected with Las Plagas. These enemies love to burst out of hedges and ambush you as you creep through the maze. You'll hear them roaming before they attack, and you'll often be able to spot them at a distance; snipe them when you can so they don't get the jump on you later.
After pulling the third lever to reveal another flag, a group of monks will storm the courtyard and abduct Ashley. You'll be a short distance away, having just pulled a lever to reveal one of the flags. You won't be able to retract your steps, since Ashley will release the lever that opened the gate to your current area. The monks will converge on Ashley and abduct her, giving you approximately 30 to 60 seconds to free her before they escape, resulting in a game over.
This action unfolds in the southern section of the maze--along the green path, if you followed our route. Some of the monks will attempt to stop you as you make your way to the one holding Ashley. Ignore them. Your priority should be getting to the abductor as quickly as possible.
Once Ashley is safe, head north toward the center of the maze and follow the eastern steps to the exit.
With the Courtyard maze behind you, prepare to shift your focus to more encounters and treasures in Capcom's Resident Evil 4 remake. The Shacknews Resident Evil 4 strategy guide contains all the info you could need, including walkthroughs for all Destroy the Blue Medallions requests and the "A Merciless Knight" request.