Konami's Survival Horror Franchise Provides More Bad Scares
22 September 2009
Conclusion: Concept: Konami's soul- crushing survival horror title returns with some fresh ideas, but they fail in important ways
Graphics: The game is way too dark, and we're not talking theme. You'll want to turn the brightness adjuster all the way up, but that also washes out the screen
Sound: Homecoming's blend of horror sounds is spooky, but the noise is so continuous that eventually you become desensitized to the racket
Playability: The new combat system is a nice idea, but...
Excerpt: Silent Hill est de retour quelque mois seulement après la grande aventure proposée par Silent Hill Origins, préquelle à tous les épisodes de la série. Et fait son apparition pour la toute première fois sur consoles nouvelle génération, ce qui n'avait pas jusque là été le cas. Origins, l'un des meilleurs épisodes la série n'était à l'époque sorti que sur PSP et PS2.
Excerpt: "The fear of blood tends to create fear for the flesh." That was the rather creepy intro message that greeted players of the original Silent Hill, way back in 1999. While the meaning of this statement is debatable, I always took it to mean that the sight of blood will make a person fear for their own safety. Silent Hill was just a game, but that didn't stop its freaky imagery from making me feel vulnerable and threatened. This idea is as true today as it has ever been.
Summary: With Homecoming, Konami tried to shake things up by hiring Western developer Double Helix to take the series in a different direction. While there are a few welcome changes, too many outdated Silent Hill conventions have remained onboard. I like the timing-based dodge and counter combat system, but the extremely dark environments (even with brightness settings maxed) and wild camera prevent you from seeing visual tells for enemy strikes.
Conclusion: Silent Hill: Homecoming is not a horrible game, and it certainly has moments that capture that Silent Hill magic. But while the artists have done a respectable job, the game designers have mostly missed the point, reducing what should have been a mentally stimulating adventure into a shallow, linear monster masher with a few sliding block puzzles.