2022 is slowly coming to life, and we gamers can't wait to be able to touch the many new things coming this year. Between great confirmations and some welcome surprises not to be underestimated, we can in fact say that yes: it will most likely be a great year for the gaming industry.
A vintage that we hope will also give us some comebacks in great style, perhaps linked to franchises that have recently been somewhat lost track of. An example? Well, what brand more than Silent Hill deserves a new opportunity to be (re)discovered also by the new generations? What we want to do today is to remember the Konami saga in all its glory, with ten curiosities and anecdotes about the series that you may not know yet… Ready?
Silent Hill, celebrating literature…
The Silent Hill saga is full of references and citations to many, many works of any other genre. Speaking of literature, the examples abound, and even only in the first chapter of the series it is possible to observe quite a few references to the most famous horror and sci-fi authors in history.
Indeed, the streets of the town take their names from some of them, some examples? Richard Bachman (pen name of Stephen King), Robert Bloch, Richard Matheson and Michael Crichton. Names also reported not by chance that it is, not by chance, of some of the greatest sources of inspiration used in bringing the Silent Hill universe to life.
… And some music too!
Also in the first Silent Hill it is then possible to come across a nice quote to one of the most important alternative rock groups in history. Looking at the list of teachers of Midwich Elementary School we can in fact read the names Moore, Ranaldo and Gordon. Who is it about? It's a clear reference to three members of the Sonic Youth: Thurston Moore, Lee Ranaldo e Kim Gordon.
The locations of Silent Hill
Silent Hill is a town full of corners wrapped in a strong aura of mystery, some of which have now become iconic for fans of the saga. Among these we find several inspired by actually existing places, such as the Church that appears in one of the endings of Silent Hill 2: some of you may have noticed the similarity with the church of San Pedro in Avila, in Spain. Another inspiration comes from Derwentwater Lake near Keswick, a well-known English lake that gives shape to the very suggestive landscape that can always be admired at the beginning of the second chapter.
Matter of… Points of view!
What if we told you that you can play Silent Hill 2, perhaps the most loved chapter of the entire saga, from another point of view? By fiddling a little with the game memory - for example through the Cheat Engine - it is possible to enable the developer mode: from here you can access an overhead view, a different way to relive the adventure that we all know from a completely different point of view… Keeping all the sensations and atmospheres of the original work, none excluded!
UFOs, dogs and other oddities
A constant of Silent Hill, as you well know, are the multiple endings… Among which some really particular ones stand out. By making certain choices during the adventure, the player will be able to unlock, for example, sequences involving UFOs or even an adorable Shiba Inu who turns out to be the real architect of everything that happens to James in the second chapter. In Downpour, the last episode of the saga to date, we will then find a "Surprise" ending: a funny curtain, in absolute contrast to the atmospheres to which Silent Hill has accustomed us, where we will see the protagonists and creatures from the previous chapters reunited. From James, Laura and Mary to Pyramid Head and the nurses, all together to celebrate the end of the game!
The inspirations of Silent Hill 2
Let's go back to Silent Hill 2 again: for many the most successful episode of the Konami series, with a whole series of inspirations that have contributed to making it the unforgettable work that we have all appreciated. In its preliminary version the plot is strongly influenced by the novel by Fyodor Dostoyevsky "Crime and Punishment”, with different nuances collected by some great artists of international filmography. They range from directors such as Cronenberg, Fincher, Lynch and even Hitchcock to painters such as Joel-Peter Witkin and Francis Bacon: if you don't know the latter, I strongly suggest you look up some of their works, and you will immediately understand how much they really influenced what Silent Hill is. 2.
An (almost) misunderstood genius
The Silent Hill series would not have been what it was without it Takayoshi Sato, character designer who brought to life some of the most iconic characters in the entire franchise. However, few know that, initially, Sato's genius risked being severely limited: during the creation of the first chapter, Konami ordered the young designer to stick to a basic work, avoiding any experimentation that would perhaps have cost the company too much. In response, he showed his superiors a 3D demo he had made, threatening to hide the technology from his colleagues if he weren't given more creative freedom. No sooner said than done. And the rest, as they say, is history.
“All work and no play…”
We have already mentioned Stephen King as a source of inspiration that strongly influenced Silent Hill, and among the works involved there is obviously an essential book such as The Shining. The latter, as well as the film directed by Stanley Kubrick, appears in many nuances in the Konami-branded title: from atmospheres to small quotations, such as the presence of the word "RED RUM” written in blood on a wall near the iconic church of the first chapter.
The Lost Trilogy
Few people know that Silent Hill: Homecoming, the fifth chapter of the saga released back in 2008, was a product initially conceived in a completely different way from what the final result actually was. Alex's adventure was in fact supposed to be the first part of a trilogy starring him and his brother Joshua, in which the latter would have found himself fighting against Alessa Gillespie to free Shepherd's Glen. And he who knows how it would have been, unfortunately it is likely that we will never know.
The announcement of PT
In August 2014, the world of video games was suddenly shaken by exceptional news: Hideo Kojima, father of Metal Gear Solid, would have set to work on the new chapter of Silent Hill. An announcement that took place, as happened for The Phantom Pain, in a truly singular way: the media were expecting the presentation of the debut title of a new developer called 7780s Studio, and learning about the well-known designer was a truly unprecedented surprise.
After the dissolution of Kojima Productions by Konami, the project began to wobble: the demo of the game - titled PT, Playable Teaser - was removed from the PlayStation Store, but the company stated that development would continue "with or without Kojima". Given the involvement of Guillermo Del Toro and Norman Reedus due precisely to their link with the Japanese author, the project will then be definitively canceled in what is still today one of the biggest regrets in the entire history of video games.
Our journey to discover some interesting facts about Silent Hill ends here: a saga of which there has been no news for too many years now, exactly since the cancellation of Hideo Kojima's project dated 2015. The hope is that this year will arrive some good news in this sense too, with fans who can't wait to welcome back one of the franchises that have made the history of video games. We can't wait, can you?