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Every ‘Silent Hill’ Ranked Worst To Best!

We haven’t been receiving many post cards from our favorite foggy resort town — at least not since Book of Memories released last October — so to keep me from experiencing Silent Hill withdrawal I’ve decided to do the impossible. Okay, I suppose ranking every game in Konami’s longstanding survival horror series is far from an impossible feat, but it sure was difficult ranking games I’ve grown up with over the years. Even if all of you violently disagree with me and come at me, torches and pitchforks in hand, this was still worth it, even if it was only to grant me a brief reprieve from the shakes, sweats and fever that come from not at least talking about Silent Hill.

See how I rank each game in this awesome horror franchise after the jump, and feel free to offer your own list in the comments!

I tend to shy away from lists that actually rank games in a specific order, mainly because the initial wave of reactions to something like that tend to be brimming with comments like “why is [insert game title] at the bottom!” I don’t hate Book of Memories. It certainly isn’t a bad game and for the series’ first stab at introducing both cooperative multiplayer and heavy RPG elements, developer WayForward did a pretty solid job at incorporating both.

Unfortunately, for me, it didn’t feel like a Silent Hill game. It wasn’t scary, it was void of any of the psychological thrills the other games have and the story wasn’t all that engaging.

The Room has a weird place in my heart. On one hand, the monsters, atmosphere and Akira Yamaoka’s score are top notch. The torsos that walk on their giant hands and have twin baby heads that scream as they charge at you? Those terrified me. They’re up there with Resident Evil 4’s Regenerators on my list of monsters that made me want (okay, need) to sleep with the lights on.

On the other hand, the puzzles were nonsensical and often frustrating, the level design was atrocious and it was the final installment developed by Team Silent that wasn’t even originally a Silent Hill game. It probably didn’t help that it released during a time when survival horror games were losing their appeal. Resident Evil 4 would release the following year to breathe new life into the horror genre, and at the same time take it into a more action oriented direction.

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  • weresmurf

    Excellent article Adam, the reason Silent Hill 4 doesn’t feel like a Silent Hill game is a simple one, during development it was originally a different game, then half way through production Konami converted it over to being a Silent Hill game, this was while Silent Hill 3 was in production as well, they wanted to try to take the series ‘in a new direction’, hence the new town etc. The game was already turning out like a Silent Hill game so it wasn’t that much of a stretch. I remember reading all about it when SH4 first came out.

    • weresmurf

      CRAP my page didn’t fully load. You acknowledged this. My apology. I didn’t even get the whole list of games load up! I was wondering where SH2 was! lol

  • Skull-And-Crossbones

    im still near the beginning of downpour. i put i down for a while. the only silent hill game i’ve played other than downpour was Homecoming, which i liked but it wasn’t really scary in my opinion. as for the rest – unfortunately i didn’t jump on the silent hill bandwagon till about 6 years ago because i used to be all about resident evil and i kept waiting for an actual resident evil HORROR title to be release but i gave up waiting. i need to check out the silent hill HD collection

  • romeostruedude

    Silent Hill 4 is worse than Homecoming and Shattered Memories? The storytelling, atmosphere, music and the creatures were amazing and scary! The only reason people didn’t like it was because it was different compared to Silent Hill 2 and 3.

    I’m sorry but I call this list bs. The worst:
    Silent Hill HD Collection (Oh, god. How they treated SH 2+3…that was a crime that should never be forgotten.)
    Silent Hill Book of Memories
    Silent Hill Shattered Memories
    Silent Hill Homecoming
    Silent Hill Downpour
    Silent Hill Origins
    Silent Hill 4
    Silent Hill
    Silent Hill 3
    Silent Hill 2

  • gomezaddams

    Best to worst, my opinion:
    Silent Hill 2
    Silent Hill
    Silent Hill 3
    Silent Hill 4:The Room
    Silent Hill:Downpour
    Silent Hill:Shattered Memories
    Silent Hill:Origins
    Silent Hill:Homecoming

  • Amazonagent

    This list is pretty in line with how I would rank it. I never played Book of Memories but The Room would be the worst on my list if I removed BoM. I would probably switch Shattered Memories with Origins since I liked it more than Shattered memories. I have yet to finish ‘Shattered’ for the same reasons as you, I really hate playing those Ice world sequences on a Wii mote. The regular world sequences are brilliant, but having to only run using a fickle control system the game just falls apart and I don’t even want to bother with it. I will hopefully finish it one day or I just may re-buy it from the PSN.
    Great list, nice work!

  • RedPyramidHead

    Mind Blowingly Awesome! – Silent Hill 2
    Horribly Underrated Greatness! – Silent Hill 4: The Room
    Amazing! – Silent Hill
    Cowabunga! – Silent Hill 3
    Okay – Silent Hill: Shattered Memories
    Meh – Silent Hill: Origins
    Movie Aping Goofball – Silent Hill: Homecoming
    Monsters In Cars…. Bwahahahaha! – Silent Hill: Downpour
    Used Condom On The Side Of The Road – Silent Hill: Book Of Memories
    Blasphemy – Silent Hill HD Collection

  • Ultrazilla

    This isth the worsth lisp ever! 😉

  • ThunderDragoon

    I’ve played maybe 4 Silent Hill games and I’ve only beaten one. I didn’t really care for any of them. Maybe I’m just not into the whole open world thing. I don’t know. Maybe I just need to force myself to play through one without having to look up a strategy guide. Then again, maybe the SH games aren’t really for me.

  • Laugh Riot

    I’d like to see a remake of the first but not the Shattered Memories approach. Better graphics and a few extra things added to it would be awesome.

  • Backward-Compatibles

    his is a hard decision for me. But I think my list is pretty different from yours. I had to exclude Book of Memories as I have no played it yet. And based upon everyone’s rankings of it, perhaps I shouldn’t bother!

    From worst to best:

    Shattered Memories
    Silent Hill 1
    Silent Hill 2
    Silent Hill 4: The Room (i really do love this game. I will never understand why so many people hate it)
    Silent Hill 3 (They look like monsters to you?)

    Anyways, it’s always fun to see other people’s rankings of the series!


  • Datasushi

    Book of Memories is a spin-off game, so if you put it on tis list, you gotta put in Mobile, Orphan, The Arcade, etc.

  • RosarioV

    I agree with some of your rankings but for me personally your order is wrong. This is my Ranking worst to best:

    Silent Hill: Book Of Memories
    Silent Hill HD Collection
    Silent Hill: Shattered Memories
    Silent Hill: Homecoming
    Silent Hill 2
    Silent Hill 1
    Silent Hill: Downpour
    Silent Hill 3
    Silent Hill: Origins
    Silent Hill 4: The Room

    Yes, I said it. In my opinion Silent Hill 4 is the best Silent Hill Game. I know it seems to be unpopular with the vast majority of people but It was the only one (other than SH3) to genuinely terrify me. The story was so genuine and the references to previous Silent Hills were also really good. The atmosphere and the monsters were so great and scary unnerving I don’t think any silent hill game has reached this level since then. Long story short, It’s hugely underrated and deserves more credit.

    Origins deserves massive props but I cant really put my finger on the reason why. Everything about it was great I think the nostalgia of seeing some of my favorite places and characters again was what made me like it that much. Even with a strange looking Dahlia and Alessa’s nose (she has a little piggy nose in the some of the cut scenes)it was a refreshing game that got back to the roots of the town with Alessa and the god and everything.

    I could go on explaining why I like about the others and what is wrong with the first 3 on the list but that would take forever (WTF were they thinking with Book of Memories!?) However I feel I should explain why SH2 is ranked so low on my list.

    Sure I love P Head and the story was really interesting especially with Mary/Maria and Angela was pretty cool too. I liked how it introduced the whole “tortured souls get trapped in Silent Hill” theme to the series and how peoples psyches are manifested on the town and it’s creatures. I just think it was a little boring, maybe if I played it before I played a majority of the series I would think differently. It was clunky and James sounded like a pack a day smoker whenever he stopped running. the monsters weren’t that scary and I think I just expected too much from it. I don’t hate it, it’s just not one of my favorites in the series

  • DGYT

    Wow. No Silent hill 2?

    • Radioactivechimp

      It’s ranked #1…

      • Reece Bamber

        It’s still a bad horror game though

    • Reece Bamber

      Silent hill 2 is a bad horror game anyway. :3

  • Cameron Fleming

    sh4 2nd to last, more importantly its behind homecoming and downpour.

  • AngieSquirrely

    I forgot about SH Book of Memories and I would figure SH4 would be last because I really dislike that one, it strays from the original plot and it shouldn’t even be SH. Shattered Memories I kind of like because its like a subseries and it’s non-combat. 3 was my all time favorite I’m going through my 5 run through of the game, trying to unlock the ufo scene >_<


    Ive finished SH 1 like 12 times SH 2 and 3 like 5 times each and SH 4 1 time. I can say that the best and scariest was SH 1 i think the bad graphics and vague dialogues with the weird storyline made it the best without even wanting to. SH 2 and 3 are tied up, they are both amazing each in its own way. Then SH 4… its ok not amazing not bad.

  • Reece Bamber

    Wasn’t…Silent hill 2 a terrible terrible horror game?

    • Shannon Wang

      Nope. Silent Hill 2 was supposed to be one of the best horror games ever made. Silent Hill 2 was one of the top Silent Hill games they made. >.< Why do you think it's bad? Like I said, it's supposed to be amazing. And it is.

      • Reece Bamber

        It is a great game
        But a bad horror game
        A horror game is meant to scare you, meant to make you think of what you should do next and make you scared of the next turn. It’s meant to be…SCARY
        Silent Hill 2 was never scary, a good game yes, but it wasn’t scary.
        The plot was bad
        but had good pacing
        the symbolision was amazing
        But it was still a bad horror game

        • Your Mum

          The amazing story was what made Silent Hill 2 so good, don’t know what your talking about. And the game is still scary, because it relies on actual horror instead of jumpscares and gore.

        • Ryuichi Naruhodo

          Dude, you obviously have no idea what you’re talking about. Silent Hill 2 is not a good horror game? Seriously? Do you know what horror is? I mean, judging by your comment you obviously have no idea since your description of what a horror game is supposed to be is just laughable, so i’ll just tell you, okay?

          ”Horror is a Genre of fiction that exploits the Primal Fears of viewers with things ranging from the Uncanny Valley, Body Horror, and Dramatic Irony AKA Suspense(thoses are types of horror, BTW) to cause the viewer anxiety, fear, and ultimately thrills.”

          There are various forms of horror, and Silent Hill 2 is a psychological horror, which is the type of horror that uses in-depth explorations of human mental anguish to horrify.

          Silent Hill 2 not only has an amazing plot(you know, one of the many reasons people praise it so much), it also does what you say it doesn’t(seriously, doesn’t even sound like you’ve played the game). It has an fantastic atmosphere, and it throws a lot of things during the gameplay to fuck with you. That along with the symbolism, the characters and everything else is what makes Silent Hill 2 one of the best horror games ever made.

          • Malik

            Any Silent Hill games someone wants to recommend to me? I only played homecoming and im just now starting to play the first one. Homecoming wasn’t bad in my opinion but that’s probably because its the first one I played and actually scared me! I haven’t been scared of a game since dead space.

    • Racbir Singh Bhurji

      Silent hill 2 was the scariest

  • FreeRPGer

    Love the 1st three by Team Silent, then the series went down. Silent Hill 1 & 3 are my favorites, due to connections of story & atmosphere, though it takes a wee bit of time to get used to the tank controls of SH1. But when I got it down, it was 2nd nature again. SH2 is right behind them, IMO, but it still has a great story and the eerie psychological atmosphere. As far as I’m concerned, all three are equal on the eerie art style, music, and atmosphere fronts. But after the 1st three games, the series took a downward plunge. I didn’t care for the room, and then the western devs took away the entire “feel” of the series with Homecoming & Downpour.

    The only one I even remotely liked after SH3 is Silent Hill Origins, even though it was done by Western then European devs, and not Team Silent. Being a prequel to the first SH, the story is okay, but it feels a bit different. It kind of sticks to the original formula, except a couple little things. Like one flaw not in the original games is enemies re-spawn in Origins, which they didn’t in the first 3 games (enemies would permanently lay dead where you killed them before). 2nd flaw in Origins is most melee weapons can break (almost too easily). Other than that, this is the closest thing I’ve seen to the original trilogy. It seems Konami and Capcom ruined two much-loved series by trying to “westernize” them.

  • Racbir Singh Bhurji

    a very good analysis that i do agree with. Silent hill 2 was the scariest

  • Jgsdarenmi

    Is that Silent Hill HD Collection worth getting? I haven’t ever played the original 2 and 3 and I was wondering if I should get them for ps2 or ps3. I’ve only heard negative things about the HD Collection. But then, they did patch the ps3 version and I haven’t heard anything about the game or the patch since.

    • Rafa Agostini

      I’ll be glad to answer you in some weeks as my HD Collection have just arrived 🙂

  • Zac

    Nah, come on. Silent Hill 4 was not worse than goddamn Homecoming. It had the soul of Silent Hill through and through. I’m kind of mad at you for that, to be honest.

  • AizenSousuke

    Silent Hill 2 is a damn good THRILLER, but not a good horror game. SH1 and SH3 are the best horrors.

  • Rafa Agostini

    Great list!
    I’m kind of sad to admit the last SH game I actually played was The Room – I still remember trying to play something I believe it was Homecoming, but the first few hours were so upsetting I ended up giving it up (of both the game and the series).
    In any case, I just now bought the HD Collection for my PS3 and I’m very excited to replay them!
    As for my particular list, I think in the end, the original game was the scariest shit for me, as I was not really playing a lot of survival horror games (except for Resident Evil 2 back then) and SH felt way different than your regular shit-Ive-shitted-my-pants kind of fear. That fear of actually opening the next door on a fucked up school still has it scars on me – ahaha
    In any case, all of you PS3 players recomend buying Downpour? Does it add anything to the series?

  • Adrian

    I always felt that Silent Hill 2 was the weakest of the “Golden 4”. Not only was it the least scariest entry in the entire franchise, but I finished it in the space of 3 hours in my first playthrough. That is less time than it takes to finish the 1st game… on a console that is 1 generation older.

    The enemies were dull and so worthless that you could just run right past 90% of them without doing anything. Even Pyramid Head is defeated by doing nothing. You just run away until he leaves you alone, or in one case, 2 Pyramid Head manifestations kill each other for you. The only redeeming qualities it had was the cleverly constructed storyline and a handful of enjoyable moments here and there. Overall, I still found it to be an enjoyable game, but in terms of atmosphere, tension and full-on lingering horror it was pretty weak.

    The Room, although tedious in the 2nd half, was pure non-stop tension all the way. I would definitely say that it is the most underrated and undervalued entry in the entire franchise. My top 5 are: SH 3, SH 1, SH 4, SH Downpour and SH 2. Just my 2 cents.

    • Michael Tite

      I’m glad Downpour made it into your list.. I really enjoyed Downpour and did everything there was to do in that game several times.. 9/10 great game!

  • KrO52

    The original Silent Hill was the only truly great game of the series imo. Clever game that throws a freaky atmosphere at the player that feels uncomfortable to play in, yet keeps the player wanting to find out just what the hell happened. The balance there was just spot on for me. My opinion and feelings went from trying to slog through another game in the survival horror genre to more of a mystery tragedy that warranted respect. I also felt myself reflecting upon Silent Hill quite a bit on completion, which I can honestly say doesn’t happen too often with me as far as gaming is concerned. Bravo to the developers for showing a good plot and intelligent ways of interacting with the player.

  • Jake

    Silent Hill 2 is in my top 5 video games of all time. So good!

  • Kreuhn Kohrman

    1. Silent Hill 2
    2. Silent Hill 3
    3. Silent Hill 4 (great story which the most incomprehensibly do not understand) T
    4. Silent Hill 1
    … the rest is not worth to be mentioned.

  • Michael Tite

    Downpour doesn’t deserve the rap it gets. It was a good game. I know it doesn’t come close to Silent Hill 2, but nothing ever will. We can’t keep expecting everything to be like SH2 because then we’d just keep getting the same game and we’d complain that the series has been done to death..
    But Downpour for me was a step in the right direction.. Open World, Lots of side quests (Which outshone the main story line) great movement and controls.. But obviously it lacked in the fear/dread/terror department..

    What we need is a SH2 remake, with SH2’s fear and dread and edgey subject matter.. and Pyramid Head because.. well, obviously!
    …but with the graphics, controls, movement and open world of Downpour.. Then we’d have a new #1

  • Michael Tite

    Oh.. and also, we need ALL of the SH games re-released for every platform (including PC) with all of the bonus content and updated HD graphics.. As a sort of MEGA collection! Then we can all play them again and enjoy them from beginning to end again!

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