It’s probably no big surprise to many that there’s already the idea floating around of Hideo Kojima wanting to work on the next Silent Hill game. A few days ago though, Dave Cox, the producer of the upcoming Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2, expressed his desire to see the popular psychological horror series enter into reboot stage.
Concerning his thoughts on the matter, Dave Cox had the following to say:
“I guess Silent Hill would be the obvious one. Sometimes a series needs a little break. Sometimes it needs to have fresh eyes, a new team to come in and bring their creative vision to it. Perhaps, Silent Hill will be a project Konami that can bring back. It’s not something that I would be particularly interested in doing myself. I’m more of an old school guy. I grew up with Castlevania and Contra is what made want to work at Konami at the end of the day. They are my passions. I’d like to see Konami do some new stuff, bring something new to the table. I think next generation offers great opportunities to do new things.”
Personally, I could go either way of seeing a reboot or seeing a continuation of what’s already there (however, even some of the continuations are stand-alone). What if the next Silent Hill game were a reboot though? I thought a little bit about things, both small and big, that I wouldn’t mind seeing if a reboot and/or a new series based off the reboot were to happen. Keep in mind though that I don’t necessarily think all of these should be in one game, but they are some considerations and options I’d like to see.
Lose the Radio
Oh, I may catch a bit of flak for this one. After all, the radio has been a long-standing element of the Silent Hill series. Whenever that little device started sputtering static, you always knew something was coming up into your pathway. However, that’s exactly my point: you knew something was coming up into your pathway. Others may not share my opinion on the radio, but I find it a bit less scary when I know that a creature is going to be in my line of sight. The sounds they make anyway as they walk around are just as, if not more, creepy anyway. While I do turn off the radio during most of my playing, I’d just like to see it go period. I feel like the game would have just a little bit more of a scare factor to it if that happened.
Keep the Item Management From Later Titles
One thing I liked that Silent Hill: Homecoming did was limit the amount of ammo you could carry. Then, Silent Hill: Downpour took it a step further by making the player only able to carry two weapons. If you haven’t guessed yet, I like these forms of item management. Considering the fact that the games are classified as survival horror and you’re usually placed in the role of a character who walks into town with nothing more than shirt, pants, and shoes, the system of ‘less items you can carry’ makes a bit more sense and would be something I’d like to see keep going. I’d probably like to see something along the lines of what Silent Hill: Origins did though where you could select via the D-pad. Allow the storage of two melee, a firearm, and a slot that can store a limited amount of healing items and then select by the D-pad.
The Personality Questionnaire/Choice Selection System…That’s Kind of Cool
Some might remember the questionnaire Dr. Kaufman has you do at the start of Silent Hill: Shattered Memories and the choice system in Downpour. I still think that, if really worked on, could be a really cool feature in any Silent Hill game. That way it could be less about the actual character themselves and more about what you would choose and how this town would affect you if you were in in. Of course, depending on choices, the town would have to undergo changes or else it wouldn’t make sense, but could you imagine the town of Silent Hill, Otherworld included, being changed based on specific choices? This may be a bit tasking in hindsight, but replayability would go up substantially.
Increase the Intensity of the Otherworld
Not that the Otherworld isn’t already intense in some of the games (it’s pretty mellow in Silent Hill 2), but the idea that I had was that, during the course of the game and as events occur, the Otherworld may end up changing shape and levels of intensity. This way there would be some level of differentiation to keep the scares a-coming. On another note, I’d like to see Otherworlds and the town of Silent Hill itself be a bit more personal to the character of the game. Silent Hill: Downpour went this route by making it all about water instead of the usual fog/industrial look the town had. I mean, the town is supposed to reflect on the character in the game so let’s take that step further.
Silent Hill Focused As More of a Supernatural Force
To reiterate, I know that the town is pretty much already a supernatural force. If you know about the history behind the town in the game, you’ll know that the area is sacred Native American territory. However, most of the games currently have focused more on the human side and what people themselves have done to screw it all up–namely The Order and their machinations and rituals. I never cared much about that aspect. Instead, I liked the idea that was present in Silent Hill 2…
…namely how the town has this power itself to draw people back to it through some sort of connection. The fact that this sacred power in the town could be an entity itself I find to be far more intriguing than cult activity and I’d like to see more focus on that if a reboot ever came to light. Lose the religious junk and make it more about people who have some past connection with the town and then the town places these people, who have lost their way or done something dark, into a test of one’s psyche. If some thought were put into driving a reboot in that direction, I think it’d be rather interesting.
If there ever comes a time that a Silent Hill reboot were to happen, what changes would you like to see? What would you like to see carried over from previous games? Or maybe you don’t think there needs to be a reboot to the series…?