Thursday, November 4, 2010

Video Game Review - Silent Hill Homecoming

Silent Hill Homecoming is the 6th game in the franchise and was developed by a different team than the previous games. This one manages to keep with the creepy atmosphere but there was a bit more push of action in this one.
The story, summed up to avoid spoilers, is about a man named Alex who returns home from the military to find his hometown deserted and his little brother missing. In fact, the entire town has gone missing. He finds an old friend putting up missing posters as well as his mother at home. Alex feels it is his duty to find his brother to make sure that he is safe. Every so often during his search, the town reverts to 'Silent Hill' mode and becomes a rusty, bloody, scary environment filled with the oddest of creatures. Alex sees his mother get captures by a group of men with gas masks on and he finds himself more and more lost. Eventually he passes out and wakes up in the actual town of Silent Hill, and then things really start to get weird.
The game is decently engaging and there weren't any times when I felt really lost or frustrated, which is good. The puzzles dont get too tough and if you think about it, you can figure them all out.
The combat is fine allowing you to pick up melee weapons like knives and the such but once you get a gun or the shotgun, the enemies become a bit of a cakewalk. The bosses aren't very tough with the shotgun and as long as you have enough health drinks, you never really feel in any danger. I guess this could change on the hard difficulty but still, you should feel threatened.
The scares in this game are there but not as abundant as they were in previous titles, most notably Silent Hills 2 and 3. While yes you are in the town of SH for the second half of the game, it never really stays in the rusty bloody version of itself for very long. There are a few creepy, scary, 'i'm not going in there' moments that actually made me very afraid to go into certain rooms but they were too few and far between.
The graphics are good, nothing that'll blow you away and a good amount of the game is so dark that, even though you have a flashlight, there were many times when I had to go into my menu to make sure it was on because I couldn't tell.
All in all it is a decent entry in the franchise. It will never come close to the masterpiece that is Silent Hill 2 but it I enjoyed it and am looking forward to going through it again to see the other endings.
If you want a good horror game, there are many out there but this is in the higher class. You can probably find this one on the cheap now so if you see it, dont hesitate to pick it up.

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