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Silent Hell: the rage-fueled tale of Book of Memories

2012-03-01 14:30:00·  4 minute read   ·  Jim Sterling@JimSterling

Silent Hill: Book of Memories is to be the series' first foray into the PlayStation Vita, and its dramatic departure from traditional survival horror is proving to be quite controversial. You see, Book of Memories is a top-down dungeon crawler, and fans are not very happy about it. 

While trawling Youtube for footage of the game, I began to notice just how much hate there is for it. Check out any uploaded trailer for Book of Memories, and you'll find it buried under an avalanche of "dislikes," with months of furious comments backing them up. People are still raging at these trailers to this very day, despite them being around since August of last year. 

Something tells me Silent Hill: Book of Memories isn't very popular. 

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But..But what about the old silent hill the good one!! We love horror not fucking shit! Please make another game but on something scary, that will make silent hill interesting again! :(

Konami hasn't fostered much love for the Silent Hill series over the years. Opinions are divided over the quality of recent efforts such as Homecoming and Shattered Memories, but the general consensus among fans is that everything went downhill after Team Silent disbanded. This upcoming PS Vita game appears to have been a very grave misstep in the eyes of fans who just want the series to go back to its roots. 

THEY DO NOT LEARN THEY DO NOT LEARN. And the worst part is that I just know this is going to sell somehow. Truly horrifying.

Look, if you're going to desecrate SH's atmosphere then you might as well give me pornographic material with the nurses and "the guy with a gigantic knife" since you love them so much.

Fans aren't just angry at Book of Memories. They're thoroughly confused. 

This actually doesnt make any sense. It looks like a title that would end up on IOS not the vita!

While others simply see this as a slap in the face, and the latest bit of proof that Konami does not give a damn anymore. Even those who aren't very angry still don't understand why the game is so vastly different.

I love silent hill and cant wait for downpour,really think it looks great,but this! this is wrong! its like them announcing the next cod to be a platform with no guns in it,or the next fifa to be an fps where u gun down all the divas that take a fall for being tapped lightly,actualy that sounds quite good,but this looks awful!

Of course, every devil has an advocate, and while many fans are furious, some are holding out hope.

It dosent look like that bad of a game! i think if they made it a diffrent title it would be better. im not a diehard silent hill fan but i love the games. You need to face it its not a consol game so stop bitching. its for the vita which only like 15% of americans bought. i think its going to be a great game and i support it. im gonna prob hatted on but idk i respect there wishes making this game! im going to buy first day and play it through!

While others are simply enjoying the show.

The amount of raging fans here makes me laugh. It looks alright, but It doesn't interest me.

Survival Horror games, more than any other genre, struggle with the pressures of modernization. Many will argue that old fashioned game mechanics and outdated design ideas are what made horror games so scary. They limited the player, made things more awkward and thus more frantic. Of course, we're in an age where games aren't supposed to be inconvenient anymore, so some element of refinement is necessary. Finding the delicate balance between scaring a player and providing a satisfactory user experience is incredibly difficult. 

This, however, seems to be something totally out of left field, and not what anybody could have expected. I love Silent Hill, and while I am prepared to give this game a chance, I really have to wonder who Konami thought it would appeal to. Even in Book of Memories' gameplay video above, the producer introducing the footage is noticeably awkward as he addresses fans. Just watch him when he tries to persuade us not to worry about the game's survival horror elements. That's a man with fear in his eyes. A man who knew he'd be the face of resentment. 

If you know people are going to hate something ... why are you making it?

Silent Hill: Origins on the PSP may not have been the best Silent Hill game, but I still maintain it was one of the creepiest releases in a long time, and surprisingly effective at providing some portable scares. It shocks me that Konami would not want to replicate that on the Vita, instead going for something that looks like it could have easily been on a less advanced system. As the comment above says, it looks like an iOS game. It's like Dungeon Hunter. Why isn't it taking advantage of what the Vita can do?

Konami is a confusing company that makes many bizarre decisions. This latest is one that the fans have most certainly noticed, and the message they've taken away is that Konami does not understand why its customers ever supported it. 

That's not a message I think Konami wants out there.


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On Destructoid: Silent Hill: Book of Memories   (11)   From our game database:

  • Review: Silent Hill: Book of Memories - Jim Sterling
  • Konami explains Silent Hill: Book of Memories delays - Harry Monogenis
  • Konami announces Book of Memories demo from Tuesday - Jim Sterling
  • Silent Hill: Book of Memories demo on PSN next week - Conrad Zimmerman
  • Silent Hill: Book of Memories demo out tomorrow - Jim Sterling
  • TGS: Silent Hill: Book of Memories isn't heavy reading - Allistair Pinsof
  • Silent Hill producer calls out fans over Book of Memories - Jim Sterling
  • Book of Memories gets new screens, fans go apeshit - Jim Sterling
  • gamescom: Silent Hill: Book of Memories screenshots - Jim Sterling
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