Silent Hill - HD Collection (Video Game)
Developed by Hijinx Studios / Konami
Distributed by Konami
Rated M for Blood and Gore & Violence
Available for PlayStation 3 (reviewed) & Xbox 360
The Silent Hill video game series was introduced to the world in 1998, and although many people considered Silent Hill to be Konami's answer to Capcom's Resident Evil, it is clear all these years later that Silent Hill deserves to be mentioned right along with Resident Evil as the best games the survival horror genre has to offer. Silent Hill 2 was first introduced in 2001 for the Playstation 2, and Silent Hill 3 was later released in 2003. Both of these classic games are included in the Silent Hill HD Collection, and the new enhancements to them make this HD collection a set that you won't want to pass up.
Silent Hill 2 follows new protagonist James Sunderland when he enters the cursed town of Silent Hill after becoming aware of the place through a mysterious note written by his deceased wife. James never recovered from the loss of his wife, and the grief stricken man enters the town hoping to get one more chance to see her. However, James soon discovers that the town holds many dark secrets, and his new priority will simply become escaping the nightmarish Silent Hill. The sad and frightening tale is hands down the best story featured in the Silent Hill series and reason enough by itself to revisit the classics in this collection.
Silent Hll 3 offers up the actual sequel to the original game instead of Silent Hill 2. Players take control of Heather, a young teenage girl who happens to be the adopted daughter of the original Silent Hill's protagonist Harry Mason. Heather ends up in the town of Silent Hill after a strange series of events and soon teams up with a man named Douglas Carter. The two work together to take out to prevent an evil cult from reviving a powerful demonic deity. The game does a nice job of further explaining some of the mysteries left behind by the original Silent Hill, while providing a fitting and rewarding ending for the third game in the series.
Since both games were released in the early 2000s, you knew some major changes would need to be made for this new collection. Of the enhancements made to the game, the most prominent is the new 720p HD graphics, and while the game does look outdated. The game also features a whole new voiceover for the entire game, and this is a spectacular voice acting cast including Troy Baker, who has worked in many recent games such as Ninja Gaiden 3 and Bioshock: Infinite as James Sunderland. Of course, there is an option to turn on the original voice cast if you're not a fan of the new voiceover.
These are two great games with some stunning new features, and the only real reason not to pick up the new collection is a few problems the classic versions featured that are still annoying in this collection. The control schemes in the games are still awkward, the camera can ratchet up the fear factor and be annoying at the same time, and combat is still the games' weak point. That said, you never played Silent Hills for the fun combat; you wanted to be scared and be told a great story, and that's still what you get with this collection.
The two horror classics presented in the Silent Hill HD Collection feel somewhat outdated, as you could expect, but these are still two of the best survival horror games ever made. If you were disappointed with the new Silent Hill: Downpour, although we weren't - check out our Silent Hill: Downpour review here, then rest assured that the Silent Hill HD Collection will not disappoint in the least bit.
For more information on the Silent Hill series, check out the official Silent Hill website.
4 out of 5