Silent Hill 2 is a game that has a fan following not only due to its survival horror nature but also because of its story telling ability that rivals even movies. So much so that people find the game’s storytelling better than the actual movie adaptations of Silent Hill games. What made it even better is the fact that it wasn’t as linear as many story driven games are these days. It had multiple endings which depended on your gameplay choices and certain events. That made it a story about you being in the shoes of the protagonist, James Sunderland.
Before the social media websites and The Internet got an idea of observing your actions (for more ‘personalized’ advertising like personalized horror, of course), it was games like Silent Hill and Metal Gear Solid that observed your actions. Without even knowing, you could be heading towards a certain ending and that’s because the game observes how you play. It tracks and records which inventory items you use, observe and how many monsters you defeat, etc. So, getting a particular ending of choice wasn’t as obvious as many games we see now. Usually games give you an ending based on two or three options at each event, so the decision tree keeps growing and you end up with a certain ending. That’s how it happens with modern games like Detroit Become Human, Heavy Rain or Resident Evil 7.
Silent Hill games were popular due to the atmosphere and psychological profiling of the gamer, which wasn’t much of an issue due to the consoles not having any social media account connectivity or the data being transferred to any servers, where the data of your behavior could be sold off to the advertisers. The game was almost self aware and changed itself depending on your gameplay choices. The artificial Intelligence at that time was surprisingly well coded. Something many game developers fail to execute now, despite all the funds, talents and best technology at their disposal.
The multiple endings of every Silent Hill game formed a pattern and the tradition continued till the last Silent Hill mainstream game, Silent Hill Downpour, which was a good attempt to revive the classic feel by having the game being more focused on exploration, avoidance and not on combat. However, the subtle nature and smooth transition of storytelling of Silent Hill 2 can’t be matched by any other game. Silent Hill 1 had multiple endings, many of which were disturbing but the gameplay observation wasn’t as noticeable. Silent Hill Shattered Memories was like homage to the psychological profiling aspect of the series, and the impact is easily noticeable because characters and monsters changed according to your gameplay choices. Silent Hill 3 was similarly gripping and had many such hidden features but perhaps, due to benchmark of Silent Hill 2, the significance of other Silent Hill games faded out in the time and Silent Hill 2 remained as a strong memory engraved in the gaming culture.
Along with a true survival horror gameplay, unique memorable characters, beautiful music by Akira Yamaoka and yes, the multiple endings that are surprising and unique, Silent Hill 2 is a game that deserves to be in the collection of every gamer and film maker, due to its significance of the material which still is a beautiful example of storytelling, only comparable to the novel-like feel of Remedy’s Alan Wake game.
Even with the fan made HD “enhanced edition” and Konami’s own last gen HD collection, the game like this will be lost in time unless it is ported to the current generation. If any game deserves a page on Game Stores like Steam, GOG.com and an unmodified original port on all of the current gaming platforms, including streaming platforms like Google Stadia, PlayStation Now & xCloud, it is Silent Hill 2.
Multiple endings are a good way of making the gamers play a game for more than once. The player keeps playing till all endings are obtained, either for personal satisfaction or to obtain an achievement. A new upcoming indie horror game, Lamentum even made a promotional campaign surrounding the multiple endings. Rewarding first 5 players with the secret “hope” ending by giving them the digital game copy for free! The Lamentum game feels like a pixelated Silent Hill meets Amnesia and gruesome violence of Dead Space. We had covered the game of Lamentum in the past and regardless of their Kickstarter campaign’s success, we hope that the game becomes a reality soon, as horror gamers desperately needs more games that play with them as much as gamers like to play them.
EDIT: We are glad to inform you that Lamentum game has been fully funded! Here’s the article for more information and demo download link- Lamentum Pixel Survival Horror Game’s Funding News, Demo Gameplay, Free Demo Download link & Information! Hopefully, it can create a Silent Hill-like legacy…..but in pixel art and with more weird monsters!
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Silent Hill (2006) Collector’s Edition Blu-Ray Released on July 9th 2019 with Lots of Bonus Features!
Lamentum Pixel Survival Horror Game’s Funding News, Demo Gameplay, Free Demo Download link & Information!
Lamentum – A Scary Pixel Art Survival Horror Game for PC, PS4, Switch & Xbox One Fully Funded on Kickstarter!! [DEMO NOW AVAILABLE]
Indie Horror Game, The Glass Staircase is a great homage to Silent Hill, Clock Tower & Italian Zombie Movies!
THEM & US a Resident Evil & Silent Hill Inspired Horror Game Released on Steam as an Early Access Game!!
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