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.