Review :: Silent Hil HD Collection

It should have just stayed silent...

Written by Super User

Published Wednesday, 04 April 2012 20:00

Write your own review !

For the last few years, HD Collections have been a common occurrence in the video game world. With Sony and its compilation of the early God of War titles leading the charge, many publishers have followed with high definition iterations of their own franchises. In the case of Konami, Metal Gear Solid and Silent Hill were definite candidates for this treatment. With the first being a frank success, many fans were wondering how good their favorite horror classics would look with an increased resolution. You have questions, we have answers!

It was 11 years ago that we were treated to the adventures of James Sunderland in the first sequel to Konami’s Silent Hill. Many fans consider that installment to be the best in the series, and attribute that to the poignant story, mature themes, and strong emotional resonance. For these reasons alone, Silent Hill 2 quickly became what many call a classic. Following that success, Team Silent went on to make Silent Hill 3, which attempted to improve on its predecessor in every way. While the third chapter isn’t as highly regarded by enthusiasts, it still is one of the brightest examples of a good survival horror game to this day. Now that we know that the two titles included in this compilation were great, let’s get to the actual quality of the remasters.

"After the excellent Metal Gear Solid HD Collection, Silent Hill fans definitely deserved a much better adaptation of some of their favorite games."

Let me start off by saying that the gameplay clearly isn’t up to snuff with more recent releases, but that’s part of the charm of these episodes. To accommodate new gamers, Konami has decided to include brand new “2D controls”, which allow you to move the characters around by simply pushing the stick in the direction you want them to go. Purists that want to play with the original 3D controls still have the option to do so. Using this mode, players will see their character move forward whenever the stick is pushed up, regardless of the position they are in. Having the choice is nice, but I personally found that using the new 2D controls made the game too easy, and took a lot of tension from the original games away. Sure, 3D controls may be hard to master, but it’s definitely rewarding to play the games the way they were meant to be played. Another unfortunate addition is the horrible framerate issues that weren’t present in the original versions. It’s almost unbelievable that these issues could cripple the enjoyment of such great games, but they are major enough to discourage a lot of players from completing the adventures. I even found myself obligated to skip an important cutscene because the game would systematically lock up at a certain part of it. These problems are present in both SH 2 and 3, though they are a lot more handicapping in the latter. Because of this, it’s hard to be enthusiastic about the gameplay experience offered by this HD collection. While these remasters are supposed to offer an improved experience, the opposite is true in this case.

Another important element of a good HD collection is the visual improvements that can be made to the games. In this department, it’s clear that Silent Hill 2 is the biggest loser. The graphics look very dated, the animations are blocky, and the character models are laughable in 2012. Silent Hill 3, on the other hand, didn’t suffer as much. Detailed character models and crisp visuals are aided by the new 720p resolution to bring this creepy world to life. Despite all this, the title manages to disappoint, and not just a little bit. On top of the horrendous framerate issues, some of the visual effects present in the original games are completely gone from this version. A lot of the textures have been replaced by cleaner looking ones and the overall art design suffers quite a bit from the transfer. The fog effects in Silent Hill 2 are completely broken (sometimes failing to render or revealing strange artifacts) and are almost absent from SH3. To add insult to injury, the audio side of things is just as bad. Both Silent Hill 2 and 3 star a brand new cast of voice actors - the original voices are only available as a choice in Silent Hill 2. While the new performances are of fairly good quality, they also come with various glitches that could potentially be distracting for some. The audio is often out of sync, the music sometimes fails to play, and certain creepy moments from the original games are even ruined by these issues.

One of the most sought-after features of such compilations is added value. For 40 dollars, players are usually able to replay an entire series, and sometimes even get extra content. This time, questionable decisions have been made by Konami. Strangely absent from this collection are the original PSOne classic and the fourth installment - The Room. These omissions are disappointing, considering that they are both very important games from the original Silent Hill developer. Furthermore, the only extra content available (apart from the new voice tracks) is the inclusion of a bonus side story that was already present in the Xbox version of Silent Hill 2.

Final Focus

After the excellent Metal Gear Solid HD Collection, Silent Hill fans definitely deserved a much better adaptation of some of their favorite games. With embarrassing glitches, problems that should have never made their way into the games, and a disappointing lack of content, it’s hard for me to recommend this release. While the titles themselves are extremely worthwhile, it would be a better idea to dust off your old PS2 and find copies of the originals rather than overpay for a (very) flawed HD compilation.

 


Pros
+ It’s always fun to revisit Silent Hill
Cons
- Horrible framerate, especially in Silent Hill 3 - Various glitches were added - HD graphics look worse than the original - Lack of content - Unfinished

Final rating
3.0 / 10
Comments
More PlayStation 3 reviews
Game details
Silent Hil HD Collection
Release date : 2012-03-23
Platform :
Publisher : Konami
Developer : Konami
Gameplay : Survival Horror

GameFocus High Fives, June 2015 - Jesse
There is arguably no other aspect of gaming that is more underappreciated than the Non Player Character (NPC). Serving as companions, quest ...

Read more

GameFocus High Fives Canada Day Bonus Edition
Happy Canada Day! Bonne fête du Canada! We here at GameFocus hope you’re celebrating the enactment of the British North American Act (Consti...

Read more

GameFocus High Fives, June - D.J.
There is arguably no other aspect of gaming that is more underappreciated than the Non Player Character (NPC). Serving as companions, quest ...

Read more

GameFocus High Fives, June 2015 - Jesse
GameFocus High Fives Canada Day Bonus Edition
GameFocus High Fives, June - D.J.
DLC Talk

DLC Talk: Bioshock: Burial at Sea Ep. 1

DLC Talk: Bioshock: Burial at Sea Ep. 1

Here we are. The next generation of consoles is among us and it is finally time to start thinking about finally unplugging our beloved current-gen systems. Could there be a better swan song for one of these systems than taking a trip back to Rapture?


Read more
First Impressions

Injustice: Gods Among Us

Injustice: Gods Among Us
Injustice: Gods Among Us, the upcoming DC fighting game by NetherRealm Studios, is set to be released on April 16th. Even though the release date is just around the corner, they continue to announce additional characters that will be playable upon release, as well as alternate costumes for numerous ... Lire la suite...

More previews
GF Blogs

Why I Haven't Committed to Buying Digital Games

Why I Haven't Committed to Buying Digital Games

Let’s face it: buying digital games is significantly more convenient than buying from a retail store. You don’t have to put pants on to go outside, nor do you even have to go outside. You don’t have to drive to the store, nor do you have to wait in line at said store. On top of that, the price is generally the exact same, if not more for the physical version.

Let’s face it: staying in just your underwear, FTW.

Despite the overwhelming advantages of buying digital, I still can’t fully commit to it. While I understand I am more in the minority with each day that goes by, I truly believe I have a legitimate case about buying physical copies of games.


Read more

PlayStation VR is Everything I Hoped For (and More!)

PlayStation VR is Everything I Hoped For (and More!)

In some sort of cosmic twist, I have seen the future. No, I didn’t find out where/when/why I’ll die, nor did I even find out what I’ll have for breakfast tomorrow (I hope it’s pancakes). But I assure you, I have seen the future.

The future of video games that is. I recently got to test out Morpheus - uh, I mean PlayStation VR - Sony’s answer to the ever-growing interest in virtual reality. Although the headset is currently far from completion, it’s also far from shotty.


Read more

Summer Gaming Guide: What to Play

Summer Gaming Guide: What to Play

Whether it’s a rainy day, a sickness, or some other reason not to go outside and enjoy the beautiful summer air, video games are the perfect way to spend your time - that is, if you can find a game to play. In terms of releases, summer generally isn’t the most fruitful of seasons, and this year is no different. So what games could/should you be sinking your teeth into during the dog days?  


Read more
GameFocus 2016 Top 10
1
The Witness (PlayStation 4)
8.6

facebook-follow-us

twitter1

 

GameFocus Podcast: December 2015
The last Podcast of the year looks ahead at what Nintendo is up to next year plus our highlights from this year.  

Read more

GameFocus Podcast: December 2015

Recent comments

Powered by Disqus