10 years ago, I never imagined that I'd revisit a certain "spooky town" for the third straight time in a video game series, let alone find myself controlling a teenaged girl with a feisty attitude, "life preserver" jacket, and some horrible and mysterious nightmares that could make any sane man crack at the seams.
Of course, I'm talking about none other than Konami's 2nd Playstation 2 Survival Horror epic "Silent Hill 3", which was released in North America on August 6th, 2003, and serves as the first direct sequel to a previous installment in the series, namely the very first Silent Hill.
Players take control of a young girl named Heather, who is the adopted daughter of first game's hero Harry Mason. Set seventeen years after Silent Hill, Heather is unaware that the same cult group responsible for unleashing the horrors in the town have found her, and are slowly manipulating those demonic forces to use the teenager for their own sinister whims. Of course, Heather won't go down without a fight... But will she survive the experience and make it out in one piece?
Naturally, this game isn't for the faint of heart, but revisiting this has its merits. Anyone familiar with Capcom's Resident Evil/ Bio Hazard series of games should know that Silent Hill plays in a very similar way - 3rd person perspective and controls typical of action adventure titles of the time. The game was known for its crafty use of riddles and puzzles alongside a psychological horror atmosphere worthy and influenced by Japanese Horror movies, and the scares do deliver despite the B-Movie type premise and voice acting. The game later saw a rerelease on March 2012, as part of the "Silent Hill HD Collection" that bundle it together with the preceding title, Silent Hill 2.
Nostalgia wise, Silent Hill 3 helped set standards and usher in interest in the Survival Horror genre for its time during the sixth generation of video game consoles and gaming. Multiple endings and difficulties gave the game replay value, and the soundtrack by Japanese legendary game composer Akira Yamaoka made this another solid and smooth title to remember (especially with songs like "You're Not Here"). Hollywood also loosely adapted the plot last year as "Silent Hill: Revelations 3D", a direct sequel to the 2006 Silent Hill film and which more or less followed the same plot and had Heather in the lead and played by Adelaide Clemens.
If you fancy a trip into the unknown, celebrate 10 years of Silent Hill 3 by revisiting that town with Heather in tow.