PSP Previews: Silent Hill: Shattered Memories Preview

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Silent Hill: Shattered Memories Preview

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Scheduled release date:

January 12, 2010

Publisher:

Konami

Developer:

Climax Group

Number Of Players:

1

Genre:

Survival/Horror

Release Date:

While PlayStation 3 owners are still waiting for the next Silent Hill in Blu-Ray form, fans of the ongoing survival/horror franchise have contented themselves with smaller iterations that have come in the form of PSN digital titles and games for Sony’s PSP. One of the most recent, Silent Hill: Shattered Memories, released for the Wii on December 8 and it will be going portable early next year, much to the delight of handheld aficionados. And because the game originates on the less powerful Wii, the transition to the PSP should go off smoothly and we’re expecting a very tingly, creepy, spooky experience. Those of you who have been fans ever since the original Silent Hill showed up on the PS1 all those years ago will be satisfied, too: while Shattered Memories adopts a slightly new gameplay direction, the atmosphere and environment are unmistakably “Silent Hill.”

You will play as Harry Mason, who crashes during a nasty blizzard just outside the mysterious town known as Silent Hill. He is knocked unconscious due to the force of the impact and when he awakes, he discovers with growing terror the one thing a parent fears more than anything else: his daughter, Cheryl, is nowhere to be found. The blizzard has wiped out any sign of her passing and Harry believes she may have gone into the seemingly dead town, and of course, he embarks on his search. If you’re familiar with these games, you know this town is almost always devoid of anything resembling human life, and there’s often a heavy fog and unsettling sounds that toy with one’s sanity. There’s usually some sort of time/alternate dimension component as well and it’s once again evident in Shattered Memories: every now and then, everything will just freeze and the denizens of evil will suddenly invade the streets.

Now, here’s where things get interesting: when you play any Silent Hill, it’s almost always a very linear experience, although you can explore plenty. This new entry changes things up a bit as it introduces the concept of psychological profiling. As you progress, a psychiatrist will ask you certain personal questions and your answers will actually have an impact on Harry. For instance, he’ll ask you if you have a good home life or if you’ve ever been unfaithful in a relationship and depending on the answers, both characters and the environment can change. Basically, if the profile of yourself begins to resemble that of an immoral, almost depraved individual, you may be exploring even more questionable areas and be faced with questionable behavior and appearances of NPCs. It’s an excellent idea and one that fits well within the standard survival/horror parameters; after all, our brains are very susceptible organs and are responsible for generating the fear within. It’s all one big mind game and it’s typically more devious and dark than a Resident Evil adventure.

And of course, you won’t be utilizing the motion sensing that was found in the Wii version. Standard control is mapped to the analog nub and face buttons but remember, Harry won’t have any weapons at all so you’ll have to master movement fast. The lack of weapons may be seen as a definite downside for some, but Silent Hill has always tried to be authentic and even brutally realistic when it comes to human capability. Harry wouldn’t be carrying an uzi around in the first place and he’s no superhero, so of course he’s going to run from the horrific monsters that attack in the depths of night. To assist you in the process, the developers have implemented the now-familiar context sensitive button presses: in other words, a mini-sequence involving an attacking enemy makes you press the X button at the right time, and then maybe the circle button in order to escape. Still, we do wonder why Harry can’t just pick up a board with a few nails in it…sure, it might prove ineffective but at least it’s something. We understand the lack of weapons, though.

Silent Hill: Shattered Memories is scheduled to arrive on January 12, which isn’t far off. The week before, you’ll have to choose between Bayonetta and Darksiders on the PS3, but won’t you need a survival/horror experience to shake things up a bit? Variety is the spice of…you know.

12/22/2009 Ben Dutka

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Comments (26 posts)

556pineapple
Tuesday, December 22, 2009 @ 10:07:09 PM
Reply

I've only played the first one and Origins. Though the first was great, but was slightly disappointed in Origins, as the story seemed to drag on longer than it needed to be. Haven't heard a lot of great things about this one, but I still want to give it a try. I don't have a PSP though, so I'll have to rent it an play it on my roommate's Wii.

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LimitedVertigo
Thursday, December 24, 2009 @ 12:49:28 AM

Check out the 2nd Silent Hill, it's on PS2 and the best in the series IMO and most people I know.

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556pineapple
Wednesday, January 06, 2010 @ 11:16:42 AM

Picked it up from a local used game shop and am thoroughly enjoying it.

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noodles619
Tuesday, December 22, 2009 @ 10:14:18 PM
Reply

I can't help but notice, but in the first line of the first paragraph you mentioned "PlayStation 3 owners are still waiting for the first Silent Hill in Blu-Ray form", are you forgetting Silent Hill: Homecoming?

Will be looking forward to Shattered Memories; always wanted to go back to the first SH but now that it has been 10 years since its release, its graphics and controls were a big turn off. Hopefully this 'reimagined' version of the PS1 classic will rekindle my love for arguably the scariest horror series ever.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Tuesday, December 22, 2009 @ 10:33:47 PM

Yeah what the heck?

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 12:14:12 AM

I meant to say "next." Fixed.

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I_defenestrate
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 5:36:52 AM

I would like to forget Silent Hill: Homecoming..

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___________
Tuesday, December 22, 2009 @ 11:12:25 PM
Reply

??
silent hill homecomming was on the ps3, got banned here so i had to import it and i can tell why.
MAN! is it gory, the opening cut scene sent shivers down my spine.
closest thing to the suffering ive ever played.
anyway, i absolutely love horror games so ill be picking this up on release in hopes that its actually good.
but if its anything like homecoming or origins ill be taking it back very soon.
especially silent hill origins, while creepy it was extremley tedious and because of that it got real boring real fast.

Last edited by ___________ on 12/22/2009 11:14:51 PM

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hellish_devil
Tuesday, December 22, 2009 @ 11:16:38 PM

Dude, The Suffering was AWESOME

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___________
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 6:30:55 AM

tis it was.
though i did not have the guts to finish it.

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hellish_devil
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 4:15:15 PM

Well, I had, and I was like 12 years old.

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hellish_devil
Tuesday, December 22, 2009 @ 11:15:58 PM
Reply

I've played almost every silent hill, but since homecoming was a dissapointment, I highly doubt I'll pick this one up. Besides, survival horror is not what it used to be. I remember being an 8-year-old children, and playing Resident Evil 3 was so awesome. i remember I couldn't sleep for nights, all because of that Nemesis. And when I replay my silent hill 4 and my resident 2 and 3, I feel as scared as I felt 8 years ago.

But what game offers us now that kind of quality? I haven't and I'll never play FEAR, nor any those survival-horrors wannabes

Last edited by hellish_devil on 12/22/2009 11:18:14 PM

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I_defenestrate
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 5:41:42 AM

Fear is an excellent game. Don't think of it as a survival horror. It's more of a dark supernatural. The AI is awesome and the firefights are the type that make you reload sections just to play them again.

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Qubex
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 1:09:50 AM
Reply

I watched the Wii video review intently; technically they have done a superb job on the Wii. The tourch light (only) idea is fantastically creepy, and I love the way the light source casts perfect shadows about as you swing your tourch around frantically.

Proves again that if a good developer creates a great game visually on the target platform, and the game has decent game mechanics, a title like Silent Hill can generate alot of interest. The Wii may not be a hardcore gamers choice of hardware, but if good games are made for it it can shine in its own right - I guess its good for the Wii crowd that they are still getting quality titles, even if a bit sparsely spread out with regards to yearly releases etc.

Resolutions being comparable to some degree, the PsP translation should come out very well; looking forward to reading the review here.

Q!

"i am home"

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sunspider13
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 1:25:59 AM
Reply

I might pick this and Homecoming up now. I just heard that the long-time composer of the series, Akira Yamaoka, is leaving Konami after 20 years and his work on the series will be missed. I'll be looking for the soundtracks as well.

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Qubex
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 2:57:11 AM

I will take note of the soundtrack if and when I pick up the PsP version next year sometime... Still torn between an iPhone or a PsP :( No purchase decision yet!

Q!

"i am home"

Last edited by Qubex on 12/23/2009 2:57:29 AM

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Oxvial
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 3:38:50 AM

yeah add that the fact that Silent Team doesn't do more Silent Hill XD.

Silent Hill RIP.

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sunspider13
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 5:33:05 AM

@Qubex
If you're interested in the soundtracks the UMD "The Silent Hill Experience" has some of Akira's favorite tracks from the series, as well as a couple of motion comics and interviews, Akira among them. It was so worth the $15.

@Oxvial
I kinda knew that the SH I fell in terror with would never be the same when Team Silent was taken out of the production duties. Akira leaving is the last nail in the coffin. Unless Konami brings back TS then the series as I knew it is done IMHO.

Last edited by sunspider13 on 12/23/2009 5:34:17 AM

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I_defenestrate
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 5:45:06 AM

It died with The Room (4) as far as I'm concerned. It wasn't even supposed to be a Silent Hill game to begin with. I'll still give Shattered Memories a go when I can borrow it from work.

Last edited by I_defenestrate on 12/23/2009 5:45:26 AM

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Lotusflow3r
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 7:19:13 AM

I_defenestrate

The team disbanded right after 4. They didn't want to continue it after 3 and wanted to do different projects like the one you pointed out, unfortunately, thanks to Konami's stance on money motivation, they were forced to do Silent Hill 4 and then disband.

Sunspider said it.

Last edited by Lotusflow3r on 12/23/2009 7:26:10 AM

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I_defenestrate
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 11:33:40 AM

I should have worded it differently, I suppose. All of the nails in the coffin came in one swoop when 4 was released. In my opinion, as in. Akira alone can't save the series no matter how good the soundtracks are. He's just been playing the funeral dirge.

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Vivi_Gamer
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 4:42:36 AM
Reply

In all honesty i'd rather just play Silent Hill 1 on my PSP, i'm annoyed they took it off the european store after a week.I just dislike the idea of this re-imaging phase the media is going through recently. It just TOO different. I actually saw Silent Hill: Homecoming for really cheap the other day, i think i may attempt to finish it off again....

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LimitedVertigo
Thursday, December 24, 2009 @ 12:49:56 AM

You're such a SH whore and you like flashing it.

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Lotusflow3r
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 7:16:08 AM
Reply

*Please do not support any new "Silent Hill" game. The franchise stopped at the 4th installment and the original Japanese team have disbanded thanks to greedy men in suits. True fans of the franchise, like me, cannot stand to watch the most intelligent, thought provoking artistic game be watered and dumbed down by talentless developers who do not understand art and motivate on money*

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hellish_devil
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 4:20:16 PM

yeah, Silent Hill just died. It won´t come again as it once was. Just as resident evil, or Tony Hawk.

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camaro300zx
Wednesday, December 23, 2009 @ 10:15:18 AM
Reply

I grabbing the PS2 version.

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