Silent Hill. Two words that have named a town and have brought terror to gamers for well over a decade. The horror game franchise, created by Keiichiro Toyama and Konami, started in 1999 and has continued through the years. With each passing installment, it brought new, haunting atmospheres and grotesque monsters. Combining the creepy atmosphere and unique monsters with the eerie music of Akira Yamaoka--this is what made Silent Hill truly a memorable place to visit.
The story of Silent Hill follows a large or loose connection to the town of Silent Hill. Sometimes the connection between the games is easily seen and other times the player must search. Regardless, the desolate, fog-filled streets could never be forgotten as well as the blaring sirens that haunt the deepest fears, of the players.
When Silent Hill was first introduced, to the original PlayStation, it helped usher in the birth, and success, of the Survival Horror Genre. In the first Silent Hill, Harry Mason, the protagonist of the story, had crashed his car with his eight year old daughter, Cheryl, in the passenger seat. When he awakes, she is missing and thus begins his search for his daughter in Silent Hill. What he believes to be a desperate search for his only, adoptive daughter turns into a twisted nightmare of hell on earth.
Silent Hill 2, Silent Hill 3, and Silent Hill 4 were released on the PlayStation 2 platform and the franchise received much critical success. However, with the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 platforms, the franchise moved on to another new generation of hardware with Silent Hill: Homecoming and Silent Hill: Downpour. These titles changed the direction of the franchise--making the game more cinematic and less about terror and horror.
What caused the change? The original development studio Konami used was called Team Silent. After they released the third game, in the franchise, they ceased producing further titles. Konami even went as far as to give development to an American company with the release of Homecoming.
I believe much can be done with Silent Hill with the power of the PlayStation 4 and Microsoft's upcoming console. Will the franchise make its return to horrifying graphics and tension-filled gameplay? Will we see the return of previous character in the series? Maybe, just maybe, Silent Hill will come forth with even more hell bound nightmares and we won’t have any other choice, but to turn off the lights, turn up the sound and once again enter into the fog…