As so often happens, a very well-written piece on a game I haven’t played — in this case, Silent Hill — makes me feel bad for never having experienced the work in question. I have an excuse on this one, though. After a year of Nich Maragos insisting I play Silent Hill despite my disinterest in horror games, I finally decided to bite the bullet and dropped by the local used games store to buy a copy. Once I got there, the staff proceeded to completely ignore me in favor of having idiotic personal conversations on the phone. I even brought along a cute girl to help catch their attention (though in hindsight that probably just scared them away because they weren’t sure how to interact with a woman who wasn’t drawn naked in a computer porn game with a heaving bosom and trembling virginal eagerness). After more than five minutes of waiting around but being brushed off despite making eye contact with the desk clerk a few times, I decided that my patronage at that particular shop had come to an end forever. Then a few weeks later I decided to move across the country and never had time for Silent Hill again. True story. Dumb story, but true.
Anyway, this is a good story, so read it.
4 thoughts on “GSQ8: Have you seen a little girl?”
“Short, black hair.”
If you put the question to me, in the end I’d say Silent Hill 2 is the better game, but I still have so much love in my heart for the first one. My favorite parts about Silent Hill are how its story is told mostly in inference. They don’t work particularly hard to spell things out for the player, so it’s fun to piece together what’s really happening over the course of a couple playthroughs (something I had time to do in high school when this came out). The relationship between Cheryl and Alessa, how things were generally going hunky-dory until Cheryl was brought back to town, is a really complicated, high-brow story. That’s something few video games do now let alone in 1998. Plus, Silent Hill is tied directly to Silent Hill 3. Much love for that. If 2 is a little overexposed, then 3 is certainly underrated. Heather is one of the unsung heroes of video games.
Weird you put this piece up seeing as I’m playing through it for my blog now! Such a great game, though admittedly more actiony than you’d think. In fact, there’s lots more enemies and lots more ammo to kill them with than in the original Resident Evil, which I just finished. This surprised me a lot, since it’s pretty much the exact opposite of what everyone’s memory of the two is.
That’s almost as lame a reason to not play this game as mine: I’m just too scared. Hell, I had to play the demo of the first game with the lights on. Granted, I was in elementary school, but I still don’t want to play it for the same reason.
I also have this (maybe unfounded) idea that survival horror games are very difficult. Everything about me not playing this game is lame.
I’m sorry to have to tell you this, Jeremy, but you never really moved away. It’s all been a dream! One day you’ll look out the window and the foggy streets of what you think of as San Francisco will transform themselves back into Silent Hill.
Well, it’s still a happier ending than most Silent Hill endings.
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