There are two video game franchises that see a significant amount of attention for what they’ve done wrong lately. The first is Resident Evil, a series with serious flaws we’ve dissected numerous times here, and the second is Silent Hill. Both series are struggling, and while the problems with the former are easy to identify, the issues that plague our favorite foggy town are a little more difficult to pinpoint.
During a recent Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) to promote his upcoming indie horror game Blackmore, Jeremy Blaustein — translator and voice-over director on multiple games in the Silent Hill series — was asked a question we’ve heard so many times over the last few years. How should Konami approach the next game?
Redditor Arsenic13 (who turns out to be none other than Rely On Horror’s managing editor, CJ Melendez, who I’ll be live-streaming DayZ with this Sunday) asked “If Silent Hill were to continue, how do you feel Konami should approach it? Smaller release with a small team (digital), tackle it head on like any other AAA release?”
It’s a great question, and one I’ve spent a spent a fair amount of time wondering myself.
Blaustein’s response is spot on. “Small, definitely small. First I would find people that wanted to make it and I would be certain that they were not copying from what has been done. A new Silent Hill would require some truly sick, dark people behind it. It is time to throw out the Silent Hill mold and try to ask ourselves again what it means to be scared. It requires a lot of inward looking. It isn’t just about making slimy, squirmy things on screen. Fear is inside us and we have to look at it closely before we can make other people feel it.”
Jeremy brings up a good point. Much like Resident Evil, Silent Hill needs to return to its roots. It needs to be a more intimate affair, more personal. A reboot is necessary, but it shouldn’t be on the same scale as the last few games in the series.