After returning from war, a soldier returns to his hometown, only to discover the city deserted, and his brother and father missing, and he soon learns that Silent Hill may be behind the mys... Read allAfter returning from war, a soldier returns to his hometown, only to discover the city deserted, and his brother and father missing, and he soon learns that Silent Hill may be behind the mystery.After returning from war, a soldier returns to his hometown, only to discover the city deserted, and his brother and father missing, and he soon learns that Silent Hill may be behind the mystery.
Not necessarily a wrong turn - certainly a new one
Review of the PC version. When Alex comes out of a military hospital and returns to where he grew up(after having been gone for years), he finds his mother catatonic, his younger brother missing(is there going to be a creepy kid in every installment of this series?) and his father(John Locke) seemingly having gone in search of the aforementioned sibling. You can never return home, a theme explored in this. Of course, usually that's done without Hellraiser going on. The characters aren't bad(if everyone looks the age of 30 tops, including the ones who have adult offspring), and the voice acting is above average, and yet this does not have the impact of the others(it is around the same as The Room in that area). Yes, the plot is going to let some people down, if the twist is pretty good. I don't think that's it... no, it's that there are hardly any puzzles in this. Well, they're there... I just wouldn't dignify them by referring to them as that. I'd call them "tasks". Go into a room, find an object, place it in another one, that's it. There are two or three that take in excess of a minute or two and aren't your first guess, the rest, you're almost going through the motions. You don't have trouble finding your way, either. This is as linear(and the levels as nicely done, with an infested hotel and a police station under attack; you go back to some of the same spots as earlier on in this) as the rest, and tense enough for you to not notice. The challenge all comes from the more action-oriented tone of this. It does still build atmosphere, effectively with the excellent sound-side, the grotesque creature designs(there's a four-legged man-sized spider with blades for legs, a tight-clothes-wearing psychotic nurse with bouncy cleavage(...why?) and a knife with your name on it, and the second-hand-smoker's worst nightmare that you'll want to keep away from you; then again, this does have the worst dogs(it's the only bad case, really), they're essentially skinless with a head that's the cross of a newt and a leopard... no, really, I swear, this makes them seem superior to how they actually are), the Hellish Otherworld and the abandoned, fog-covered(and it's done better than any of the earlier ones, and you can "lose yourself" in it and suddenly be running in the direction you came from... you know, like Neo trapped in Limbo early in The Matrix Revolutions; that's not a spoiler), should be quaint yet *isn't*, isolated suburbia. You have environment interaction(in addition to the realistic Havok physics engine, as also seen in Max Payne 2), where you can squeeze yourself through, duck under or hop over if there's a partial entrance to another place(note that some of your foes can follow you, including opening doors! And you'll want to sometimes up and run away from them), as the guy is a soldier... and this does make the tough fights seem greater(how nasty must these things be if a trained army guy has trouble?). When you enter combat, you can do fast attacks(and combo) or powerful ones, and dodge/block(the enemies will do that as well; AI is marvelous, except for when the bugs hit it... there are a bunch in this, that can really frustrate you, though I never had to start this over), and you have to learn their style to get past them. It works fine enough, if the timing can really be bothersome, and it is highly exciting. You get a knife(that can also cut through fabric), a pipe(that can pry open doors), an axe(that can hack through boards), a pistol and a shotgun. Ammo is extremely sparse similar to #4, so make the bullets count. You can do a short-range blow with any firearm in this, if they get too close(and aiming is first-person... thank you, Konami). There is a lot of inspiration drawn from the lousy movie... they do kinda pull it off. This requires fast-clicking(and in general it's fairly immersive) in certain situations, like in F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin. It's quite cinematic. The cut-scenes are all in-engine or pre-rendered. Graphics are nice, with a real dynamic look to some of the things where it makes sense(you see a sort of vein running across the metal-plated floor, and it seems to be flowing, or like something fluid is running through it) and fantastic filters, like "old film", creating a genuinely unsettling mood. It's like the first in ways, but when you reach somewhere where the road is gone, it looks like it slid down. There are fancy features that you don't need, like the ability to turn around items(it's not like you can catch subtle details on them that help you... it's already giving you too many hints). I do love that we get complete control over a 360 degree camera when we want... you gotta stand still, that's all. The light even follows it. That really should have made it into these sooner. Faces and hands look "off", I can't put my finger on why... it's not unlike Robert Zemeckis' CGI flicks, his A Christmas Carol(the one with Jim Carrey), Beowulf and the rest, you know, soulless eyes, they're like really close to human yet *not*... the movements are strange at times, and they seem incapable of displaying three emotions... also, our protagonist always looks confounded, as well as like he doesn't know what that word means. Animation is excellent. If we define Silent Hill as what we got in the original three and what the fourth was a different artist's take on(not the same, yet interesting in its own right), then this, well, ain't it. That's not to say that it isn't a cool and fun game. The psychology holds up, and it makes you think, like the rest of them. There is bloody, gory, brutal violence, sensuality and disturbing content in this. I recommend this to fans of survival horror, and not to purists. 8/10
- Feb 8, 2011
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