Spoiler Warning: I’ve averted huge plot spoilers, however does comprise some minor spoilers for Silent Hill Shattered Memories
Urgh! I’ve been looking at a half completed model of this submit on and off for weeks now. And that was after a good variety of restarts. I wish to write about Silent Hill Shattered Memories. I wish to give it the ol’ “How does this slot in to the Silent Hill Family” remedy following my exploration of Silent Hill 3. I’d like to speak about the way it’s an unorthodox tackle the unique outing and enriches the universe.
But I can’t. The quantity of caveats, circumstances, “buts”, “howevers”, and “Hmmmms” made your entire factor an unreadable mess that I finally obtained misplaced in time and time once more. So I’m going to start out recent and say precisely what I would like.
Shattered Memories will not be a Silent Hill sport. I imply, it IS… however it’s not. Change the names of the city and some of the important thing characters and there isn’t something left to tie it to the collection. The rusty, bleeding, different actuality is absent. There’s no signal of the mysterious darkish faith on the coronary heart of occasions. Gameplay doesn’t centre round gradual exploration and unlocking of signature places, warped by a shifting actuality with overtones of related imagery suggesting a deep private hyperlink to the demons haunting our protagonist. That’s to not say that it isn’t satisfying, it’s simply that my supposed take a look at how this oddball of the collection squeezes into the present choices falls aside as a result of there’s so little to tie the 2 collectively.
I suppose it is perhaps finest to start out with the place there are overlaps. The key protagonist is a personality known as Harry Mason. Harry wakes up in Silent Hill following a automobile crash to search out his daughter, Cheryl, is lacking after which trots merrily across the city kind of aimlessly in search of her. On his travels across the city, Harry does expertise a sort of different actuality model of Silent Hill populated by monsters who’re attempting to … I don’t know… simply seize him?
Outside of that nonetheless, it’s a reasonably completely different sport. Seemingly affected by reminiscence loss brought on by the automobile accident, Harry spend a lot of the sport studying extra about who he’s, in distinction to the unique sport which centered far more on uncovering the secrets and techniques of the city itself. The different actuality takes the type of a frozen world, lined in a sort of neon glowing ice triggered by every vital plot revelation. Otherwise Silent Hill appears extra like an everyday city…. If you ignore the handy snow drifts maintaining you on the best path.
And I suppose that’s an excellent time to leap to the gameplay. Shattered Memories is a largely linear affair in contrast to what you’d count on from a Silent Hill sport. Typically Silent Hills 1 by means of 3 drop the participant in to a signature location and allow them to unfastened, bumbling round corridors and regularly unlocking doorways. Here Harry is far more of a ‘stroll alongside path to the following location’ kind of man. From a purely mechanical perspective, the sport has three completely different varieties. First up are the ‘exploration’ bits of the sport. The participant guides Harry round numerous buildings, discovering clues, fixing the occasional puzzle, and catching a glimpse of some spooky issues right here and there. Reach a big level nonetheless and the world freezes marking the shift to one of many motion sections. Without any weapons to talk of, these contain sprinting by means of usually labyrinthine areas to search out the exit pursued by monsters and compelled to resolve one ultimate puzzle earlier than escape. Finally, the sport is damaged up by first particular person sections the place the participant is ‘speaking’ to a psychiatrist and requested to finish numerous ‘assessments’. These sections kind the well-known psychological analysis that the sport proudly proclaims, however in actuality your solutions apparently affect some sections of dialogue or how the world seems, together with which ending you obtain. Personally, I discovered the bounce between sluggish exploration and operating from monsters just a little jarring, however it did maintain my consideration.
Being a Wii sport, there may be additionally just a little Wiimote-motion management funtimes to maintain gamers lurching across the sofa. Yes, it was additionally launched on PS2 and PSP, however with the Wiimote being essential in three completely different facet of the gameplay, I’m undecided it will have the identical appeal in these ports. First up, you get to make use of the pointer as a flashlight which, to my shock, works rather well. Cautiously shifting in to a room and shining the beam across the partitions feels pure and provides to the immersion. I used to be additionally a fan of utilizing the Wiimote speaker as your cell phone. Yes, it’s a little tacky, however I couldn’t move by one of many many telephone numbers scrawled on partitions or ingame indicators with out dialing it and holding the controller as much as my ear to pay attention to every enjoyable recorded message. Finally, through the motion sequences, thrusting the controllers within the path of any monsters that had grabbed Harry ship them flying off. This wasn’t my favourite use of the controller as I didn’t ever work out thrust the controller backwards with out whipping the nunchuck cable into my face.
Whilst shattered Memories wasn’t acquired so properly at launch, it does are likely to get a good bit of reward now as being one of many extra fascinating additions away from the principle Silent Hill collection and is unquestionably seen as one of many higher Wii video games when it comes to gameplay and utilizing the controller for one thing apart from bowling or shaking wildly to try to pull off some sort of particular transfer. I can’t assist however really feel that it was held again by the Silent Hill title. The tone is so completely different and I discovered it extra of a thriller to be explored quite than the gradual grinding pressure and horror that everybody’s favourite foggy small city normally brings. Rename the principle constitution Bill and have him stroll round Townsville U.S.A. and the creators might have averted all of the pointless baggage of being judged by a longtime fan base.
I suppose in case you take pleasure in it or not might be going to hinge on in case you’re in search of a Silent Hill sport and the way a lot you want, what are likely to get labelled as, strolling simulators. Yes, there are puzzles, however principally it’s about meandering from one place to the following… in fact if that’s all you’re in search of then the motion sequences are in all probability going to grate. There have been some that have been significantly irritating. I loved it, however I’m undecided what the cut up was between truly having fun with it, or discovering it ‘fascinating’ from a retro-gaming perspective. I do know that I used to be prepared for the credit to roll once they did regardless of it not being a protracted sport.