I wrote this back in September so some minor details may have changes since then....*sigh* I was really hoping to play the game this year.
Silent Hill: Downpour is set to arrive very shortly and for any fan of Silent Hill this is a nervous and trying time. It is no secret that the once great and infallible staple of horror is now met with both skepticism and worry from both its fans and the creators who are tasked to return the series back to its former glory. The challenges facing Silent Hill currently are forces that are both numerous and difficult to overcome but I have a feeling that Silent Hill: Downpour has the potential to exceed expectations.
The series as of late have fallen into a trap in which there is a feeling of obligation to keep successful aspects of the series and begin crafting around these various and sparse story and gameplay elements. One worrying concept is that the game has taken direct aspects of previous games such as the blending other world from Homecoming and the escape portions from Shattered Memories. Hopefully these elements help redeem these creative aspects of previous games rather than simply rehash used ideas.
In fact, the Silent Hill series could take a page from Nntendo's actions with a flagship title of their own, The Legend of Zelda. Liberated from any sense of wanting to keep the fans happy by building a game around concepts established in previous titles and therefore limiting their own creative process, the current Zelda team seems to have a greater freedom in their design choices by finally moving past fan favorites to create new features and build around new ideas. There is a legacy to both the Zelda series and the Silent Hill series and the fear of attempting something, not just new, but vastly different is what's holding back these titles from evolving. But Zelda is currently working on it so why not Silent Hill?
As I said, the last few Silent Hill games arenít bad by any means. At best they are underappreciated and at worse lazy, uninspired clone stitched from successful elements of the series in a sad attempt to be a Silent Hill game. If thereís one thing to be sure of is that the series is an integral part of Konamiís library and they donít seem to want to ditch it any time soon so if Downpour doesnít put life back into the series Iím sure there will always be a next time. Hopefully by then there will be a company that can confidently take the series under its wings and fly with it to unimagined territory. Just as the protagonists in the game learn to move on without being chained to the past, so must the developers relinquish the heavy bonds with its predecessors.
LOOK WHO CAME: