A father and daughter are driving at night on a secluded road somewhere in the US. All of a sudden, something appears in front of them. A ghostly figure! Which causes the car to swivel and end up at the side of the road. The man wakes up and realizes to his horror that his daughter is missing. He stumbles into the nearby town of Silent Hill to find her.
And so the nightmare begins…
If you are a true fan of survival horror video games you are more than likely familiar with the original intro to the first Silent Hill game.
It is a pioneer in the horror gaming genre which has sparked and inspired many others that came before it.
But what makes this game so intriguing and scary?
Silent Hill vs Resident Evil
We cannot but compare the two best and most popular franchises from the genre. Silent Hill and Resident Evil are synonymous with it and their original games are considered as all-time classics.
However, what Silent Hill does differently opposed to Resident Evil is to set up an atmosphere of complete despair and helplessness. Resident Evil pits you in a death-defying situation against a swarm of zombies that you need to shoot your way out of. But Silent Hill strips you of ways of defending yourself properly. Even when you find a gun the aiming mechanics are dodgy at best. Leaving you feeling as a mere mortal.
Silent Hill is unique as it was influenced by some of the greats in the horror genre. The creators gathered their source material from people like George Romero and Lucio Fulci to devise the story and the world of Silent Hill.
You can thank David Lynch Dario Argento for the visuals as it clearly shows that everything in the game has been inspired through their style.
Most would compare the Silent Hill franchise, especially the first game, to Twin Peaks. It certainly has its resemblance in the way the story is told but has much more unique visuals.
The visuals are what set this game apart from others. The murky and blurry town around you is hard to see without a flashlight. But what really sets a person off is when the town starts to change once that damned horn starts blaring.
It is when all your fears start coming to life after being fueled while you were in the ghostly darkness of the real city.
But the experience would not be complete without its sounds. The creators of the original game and every other game in the franchise focused on enhancing the visuals through sound.
These are no specific sounds as they are all recorded from our real world. This makes them even scarier as our brain recognizes them as something real, giving a body to the horror that just might really happen.
The two most important parts are the already mentioned horn which tells us that it is time to be scared and the radio which gives off static once we get close to a monster or an enemy lurking in the dark.
Silent Hill will forever be a game that will have a special place in our hearts. We still like being scared of it even though not all of the games in the franchise are necessarily good.
But with its mysterious visuals of horror and angst to death-defying situations, like facing the Pyramid Head, Silent Hill has inspired many other contemporary games and every one of them is chasing the goal of being like Silent Hill was.