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Forums Index -> Fistful of Joystick -> Silent Hill: Homecoming
Mr. Dark
PostPosted: Fri Oct 17, 2008 10:06 pm  Reply with quote
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Joined: 21 Jun 2006
Posts: 482
Location: God's Country

So far, my SH5 experience has been...mixed.

I hate what they've done with the combat. The focus of the game has been switched from puzzle solving and exploration to action and combat. They took my Silent Hill and tried to do a Resident Evil 4 on it and reinvent it as a 3rd-person action title...but without actually altering the mechanics or the engine to support that. So instead of wondering when the next critter will leap out at you after 10 minutes of silent searching for answers, you know where it's coming from: there will be two dogs and a handful of pendulum heads every ten feet, and your fingers will be tired from dodge-attack-dodge-attacking your way across town.

Someone needed to remind Double Helix that this is a SURVIVAL HORROR series. There's virtually nothing to do with true survival here, it's a paranormal war zone where you have to kill everything to survive. There isn't that much horror in big lengthy sections of the game because they're too busy throwing beastie after beastie at you to actually worry about things like plot or scares.

I'm muddling through it. The story is interesting. I like the influence of the movie on the game. That said, it's still frustrating as all hell, and I'm playing Dead Space at the same time...which makes for some -brutal- comparisons. (Pro tip: Dead Space kicks SH5's -ass- at it's own game, and then some.)
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MagusMaleficus
PostPosted: Sat Oct 18, 2008 10:34 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 13 Jan 2008
Posts: 51

I don't much care for the dodge mechanic. Nope, not at all. I mean, call me crazy, but shouldn't a dodge button make your character FUCKING DODGE?
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mdamien13
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 7:39 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 22 Aug 2006
Posts: 76
Location: Arizona

Not sure if anyone else watches the Zero Punctuation reviews online but he just did one for Silent Hill: Homecoming that's pretty funny.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/zero-punctuation/284-Silent-Hill-Homecoming
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frank_dracman
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 7:49 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 31 Dec 2007
Posts: 1463

mdamien13 wrote:
Not sure if anyone else watches the Zero Punctuation reviews online but he just did one for Silent Hill: Homecoming that's pretty funny.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/zero-punctuation/284-Silent-Hill-Homecoming

Yahtzee is one of the funniest things on the internet. I love all those reviews.
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Mr. Dark
PostPosted: Sun Oct 26, 2008 10:56 am  Reply with quote
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Joined: 21 Jun 2006
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Location: God's Country

I've never done this, but I've got to write an alternate review here.

I don't always agree with Plagiarize, but he knows games better than just about anyone I know. I have no idea what game he was playing, must not have been Silent Hill: Homecoming.

I didn't finish it.

I couldn't finish it.

Well, okay, I -could-, but only if I subjected myself to way more stress than I need at my age.

They've stolen my Silent Hill from me, and I want the bastards to pay.

It's this simple: they attempted to do for Silent Hill what others did for Resident Evil with RE4. The problem is that they didn't pay any attention to what they did to RE4. They completely reinvented the engine and control system, altered almost everything the player used to interact with the world. Here, Double Helix attempted to make a similar level of change to Silent Hill but did so while trying to keep as much of the original control system as possible.

This was a terrible, fatal error. What you have is a half-assed attempt at a 3rd-person shooter (where most weapons are melee, go figure) that occasionally touches on Silent Hill.

The story here is solid. They combine the best elements of the movie with the best elements of the original games. They even bring back Pyramid Head for fuck's sake. Yet they STILL drop the ball in a very epic way.

The emphasis is on combat, pure and simple. Remember the tension of walking down the foggy/snowy/ashy streets of Silent Hill hearing that distant crackle of static on the radio...knowing something was lurking and would be coming for you unless you were very quiet and stayed on the right side of the street.

Here? How about WAVES of enemies? Like frickin' Devil May Cry or some shit. At one street encounter, I had four dogs and three of this big walking pendulum guys. Seven critters in one shot in a random street encounter in a Silent Hill game?!? Can I get a 'WTF' from the congregation?

And these random critters each require some bizarre square dance of 'strong' attacks, 'weak' attacks, dodges, and 'combos'. No, this isn't Soul Calibur IV, that actually -has- a combat engine.

You'll burn 95% of your ammo and health items on random enemies. You can't just get away from them as in the past, there are too many 'random' critters for that to work. Survival here means constant, unrelenting combat. There's no exploration, you're too busy scanning the fog for the next dog to come at you so you can dodge at the right time as he jumps and hit him in the proper two-hit combo move with the knife (as the knife is the only weapon fast enough to hit the dogs without getting hit back).

Does that sound fun? It isn't. At all.

And then we have the bosses. Yes, every boss has a weakness, as bosses tend to. But in this case it always comes down to the same as the other critters: a specific weapon/dodge/attack combo that is generally more effective than just shooting the thing. Even if you know exactly the best way to kill the thing, you're going to die 18 times trying to actually achieve it.

Why? Ah, now we've reached the crux of the matter.

The combat controls don't work. Magus hit the nail right on the head: if you're going to work the act of dodging into the method of killing everything in this game, it'd be very helpful if the dodge button -actually dodged-. 99% of the time, it doesn't. It's a matter of sheer luck. Imagine having to rely on this about 30 or 40 times to kill a boss.

I gave up. I just gave up. About three or four bosses in, I don't remember. I just knew I had a lot left, and was generally sick of it.

This is an absolute abortion. It's a fundamentally broken game. As an action game, I've yet to see it's equal in badness. As survival horror, you will -long- for the precise combat controls of Silent Hill 1. (Yes, that's facetious.)

In keeping with the DC tradition, I'd give it 1.5 out of 5 knives...1 knife for Pyramidhead (poor, wasted bastard) and .5 for the amazing score, by the only remaining member of the original Silent Hill team.
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Spaceshark
PostPosted: Sun Oct 26, 2008 12:01 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 21 Apr 2008
Posts: 1390

I'm with Dark, 90% ( don't seem to have any trouble dodging). I'm only a few hours in, so hey, maybe my opinion could change, but so far, it just doesn't feel like Silent Hill. Well, unless it was conceived as Silent Hill by Brett Ratner, with an opening cinematic directed by Eli Roth.

I know it sounds asinine to complain about an effort to refine the combat mechanics of a game, but to me, it just felt wrong. Part of what made Silent Hill so effective was that you don't just pick-up a gun and become a commando ALA everyone from Resident Evil. You don't charge an enemy head-on, at least, not if you can help it. But now, thanks to our hero being a war vet, we now have a friggin' combo system. Heck, the first moment I saw him do a spinning slash I prayed to God that they remove that, but alas, my prayers were in vain.

Beyond that though, I feel that it's gravest offense is that it just doesn't enthrall me. Subjective, yeah, but every Silent Hill had a sales pitch (foggy town, dead wife, helpless girl, room won't let me out), and they were all very effective (save maybe 3's). But here?

Okay, wake -up in a nightmare, classic set-up, sure. But after that? Town dies at the same time some patient - - probably you - - goes whack. Oh and you have to find your annoying little brother in the process. It's workable yeah, but when I go back to my hometown and find the legions of hell running around stirring shit up, I'd expect my conversations with old friends to less be like "heeeeey, whatcha' doin?" and more like "OH MY GOD A SKINLESS DOGS JUST TRIED TO EAT ME!!!!!"

Or maybe Alex is so calm because straight men don't like talking 'bout their feelings, WHAT. EVER.

Uhhhh, I'm so sad right now, not even watching Zac Efron sweat it out in a jersey could lift my spirits Neutral
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frank_dracman
PostPosted: Sun Oct 26, 2008 2:04 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 31 Dec 2007
Posts: 1463

OK, I got a question about the dodge button. Is it like the RE3 dodge? As in you have to time it? If Spaceshark can do it and others are having trouble, either the boy's just lucky, or he's got rhythm and timing.
I really got to rent this one soon. Keep hearing everything from "best SH game ever" to "biggest POS ever". Can't put Fable 2 down, though. I killed my wife and got a STD from a gypsy. Just like in real life!
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Spaceshark
PostPosted: Sun Oct 26, 2008 2:08 pm  Reply with quote



Joined: 21 Apr 2008
Posts: 1390

Think of the Perfect Slash from Onimusha.

Sometimes I breeze through, sometimes I don't. You have to time it to like, half a second before the impact hits. It's either that or you memorize how they move and act accordingly. Nurses take a long time to swing, so dodging them is easy. Same for dogs. Smog creatures, I slash twice then press dodge, always jsut in time to evade the multi-direction bitch-slap.

But I haven't seen anything past the needler though, so I may jsut be riding beginner's luck.
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Mr. Dark
PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 2:04 am  Reply with quote
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Joined: 21 Jun 2006
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frank_dracman wrote:
OK, I got a question about the dodge button. Is it like the RE3 dodge? As in you have to time it? If Spaceshark can do it and others are having trouble, either the boy's just lucky, or he's got rhythm and timing.
I really got to rent this one soon. Keep hearing everything from "best SH game ever" to "biggest POS ever". Can't put Fable 2 down, though. I killed my wife and got a STD from a gypsy. Just like in real life!


The dodge was, to get a little punny, dodgy. Sometimes it'd work. Sometimes it wouldn't. My biggest frustration was that it told you again and again to press the stick in a direction, then dodge, and you'd move in that direction. That just didn't seem to work at all. I'd jump every way BUT the way I pushed, and against bosses you do NOT have the option of jumping the wrong direction.

The whole combat system is just half-assed.

Forget SH5, get Dead Space. That one is WELL worth your gaming dollar.
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frank_dracman
PostPosted: Thu Oct 30, 2008 12:26 am  Reply with quote



Joined: 31 Dec 2007
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Well I finally rented it. Am I the world's biggest idiot or can't you invert your look? I'm not talking about the aiming, but the RS look with the flashlight. You mean to tell me they overlooked one of the most basic of options? Seriously? I can play it, but damn is it irritating. Every time I want to look up, I look down. I don't deal well with change.
Speaking of change, what's with all the fighting? I don't know if it's because spaceshark mentioned Onimusha, but that's kinda the vibe I got. Everything else feels and looks like a SH game, it just seems they tried too hard to to go the action route. Can't pass judgment on it yet, but so far it's pretty much what I expected.
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