A Trip Down Horror Lane: the freakiest town in America

Title A Trip Down Horror Lane: the freakiest town in America
Author Josh Bycer
Posted in Features
When April 23, 2012

Following the resurgence of the survival horror genre with Resident Evil, other developers attempted their own horror games. The first Silent Hill was compared to Resident Evil, as it shared the gameplay and basic combat system..

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As with the RE games, the second game in the Silent Hill series was the first I played and my favorite by a long shot. The folks who made this game could teach Hollywood filmmakers a thing or two about setting and maintaining a mood and the existential dread here is great at, as you said, making you seriously question if you want to continue. I am also a big fan of the separate difficulty sliders - as a fan of old-school adventure games I always cranked the combat down and the puzzles way up. I wonder if the new HD re-releases are any good.

They botched some of the sound (the scene in the elevator is particularly bad) and got rid of a lot of the fog in this one, so there's a lot of geometry that just stops in midair.


I just recently played through this game for the first time (within the last month), with my girlfriend watching on. Of course I always played it at night, in the dark. She refused to ever play it herself. Even with someone by my side my resolve was tested.

What Silent Hill 2 really excelled at was instilling a sense of paranoia. My imagination was the cause of my deepest fears. Why not? Pyramid head often appeared literally out of nowhere, with no warning whatsoever. How could I know what was and was not within the bounds of this horrific world or its gameplay? As the game progressed I was in a constant state of apprehension. There's one room with three nooses in the center, it's rather large, and you hear what sounds to be a horse galloping. I was terrified of that room. I thought I was stuck in there with a horrible pyramid head-esque creature running around the edges, waiting to come out upon some trigger I set off. It turned out to be nothing. So many sounds spooked me, when in reality that's all they were, sounds.

Games can make me jump by having some kind of monster suddenly pop out at me. It's a cheap scare. Silent Hill 2 rarely did that. Pyramid Head didn't pop out at me, he'd just suddenly BE there. My fear was real, it wasn't fear of something popping out, but of the images, the scenarios, the "what manner of horror is in store for me next" feeling. Brilliantly done.

And to make the future of Silent Hill worse, supposedly the next Silent Hill game after Downpour is a top-down co-op game from previews.

The idea of a co-op horror experience sounds great, but it's too hard to pull off terror when you have a buddy to bail you out.

The HD Collection is utterly terrible. There's a 50+ page thread on neogaf about it :/. Even if it's the only way you have available to you, I'd say hold off until you can either play the PC version, emulate the PS2 version or play it on a PS2. It would be a shame to sully the experience, because Silent Hill 2 really is special.

Maybe I should read the entire post before I reply. Anyway, to anyone else who hasn't played it yet.

Just saw Lone Survivor on Steam, it left me feeling really strange. It seems more like Silent Hill than Silent Hill does these days, despite being a sprite based sidescroller. Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

Yeah, I've actually bought Sole Survivor based on enjoying the demo, but I really haven't played much of it yet.