The lighter used in the Resident Evil series is based on a vintage gold-plated Zippo 205. It is carried by most 'Default Scenario' characters in the Resident Evil games, and must be found by the 'Other' character. e.G
. Chris Redfield
and Leon Kennedy both start with the lighter, whereas Jill Valentine
and Claire Redfield
need to find the lighter in their playthroughs.
In Resident Evil Remake, the lighter has text on it which says "Lighter of Lighter", and then a banner which isn't readable, and then below this "Since 1985". In Resident Evil 2
and 3, it is simply a design which appears to be of the Raccoon City Police Department (RPD) logo. In Resident Evil 0, the lighter has a design of a crest. In Resident Evil Code Veronica, the lighter has no design. It was given to Claire by her brother Chris, and can actually be used to light the way in the game, serving as a portable light source. It also prevents bats from attacking while it is in use. Notably, using the lighter is the first action Claire usually takes at the beginning of the game. In Resident Evil 7, a much more basic lighter makes an appearance. It is a well-worn, steel lighter and is used to solve one puzzle. In most appearances, once every puzzle involving the lighter are complete, it can be discarded.
In some cases only an Empty Lighter can be found, in which it needs to be filled with lighter fluid (incorrectly referred to as Lighter Oil in Resident Evil 3). Once filled, it does not run out again.
In general, the lighter is used a handful of times to progress through the game, by burning things or lighting fires. In the Resident Evil Remake, it is used in conjunction with the Fuel Canteen to burn Zombie
corpses in order to prevent them mutating into Crimson Heads via the V-ACT process.
The lighter is a trademark item in the franchise, and as such Zippo themselves have licence to create Resident Evil / Biohazard inspired designs and have done so in an extremely limited number. In the past they have bundled them with statuettes, and can be worth a lot of money.