Silent Hill: Homecoming tends to be the forgotten game of the Silent Hill series. During recent live streams of Homecoming some of my viewers commented that they had never played it. Luckily there remains a core group of fans of Silent Hill: Homecoming, that have cemented its position alongside the likes of Silent Hill 2 and the original. Admittedly, Silent Hill: Homecoming is not as enthralling as Silent Hill 2 but perhaps that’s because Silent Hill 2 came out first? I guess you never forget those early loves and let’s face it, the creepy roads, apartment blocks, hospitals and schools of Silent Hill and Silent Hill 2 were difficult benchmarks to follow with the proceeding games. That is, until, Silent Hill: Homecoming released in 2008. Of course all of this is my opinion and if you’ve played Homecoming and dislike the game I suggest you stop reading now. If you are looking for an intriguing horror game that is reminiscent of the first two Silent Hill games; please read on. Silent Hill: Homecoming released on the PS3, Xbox 360 and PC.
Silent Hill: Homecoming sees our main guy, Alex return to his home town of Shepherds Glen. His brother and father are missing. Alex’s mother is present in body but seems to lack in maternal lust for Alex. Her catatonic like state and distress over her missing son pretty much sums up her role in Silent Hill: Homecoming. The general look of Shepherds Glen reminds me of Silent Hill and Silent Hill 2. It’s foggy, it’s empty, there’s zero draw distance, broken roads and enemies with legs for arms and arms for legs, patrol the streets. Alex’s main objective is to find out what happened to Josh. At various points in the game Alex witnesses apparitions of Josh running in to various buildings. As you can imagine these buildings are often overrun with enemies and puzzles. I had a lot of help on stream in order to solve the puzzles but if you play alone I would say that the puzzles are a lot simpler that Silent Hill and Silent Hill 2. Ultimately if you are familiar with those games there will not be too many surprises in Homecoming.
Bosses in Silent Hill: Homecoming can be tricky. So much so that I bricked my save file on the final boss making it almost impossible to complete. I found myself in a position with 50% health and down to a knife only! The game would not allow me to venture back to look for supplies. To add insult to injury there were multiple doors in the last few rooms before the boss. Sadly the doors were inoperable! Had I been able to access one of these rooms or perhaps venture back a few corridors I could have better prepared myself. A flaw in the game design perhaps? I was literally caged in the final few rooms with no option but to try and tackle the final boss with knife! I would suggest that you save as much ammunition as possible going in to any of the bosses. Ammo is very scarce before any of the fights.
Towards the last third portion of the game we learn more and more about what happened to Alex’s father and his brother. There are tough choices to make too when it comes to Alex’s mother. The writers add some defining details that show us how complex the relationships are between Alex and his family. Of course this all adds to the tension in Homecoming. At times the story is the most gripping aspect. Homecoming is a great game with a strong story to carry it to the end.
Some reviewers have branded Silent Hill: Homecoming as mediocre. I can completely see why some gamers might feel this way. Silent Hill: Homecoming does nothing new. Why should it though? The mood of Silent Hill was set perfectly in the first two games. Derelict, quiet, brutal, psychologically warped! We were gripped from the moment we entered Silent Hill. Homecoming pays homage to this mood. I love it!
As it stands today Konami own the rights to Silent Hill. Last October Konami announced that they were producing new Silent Hill games in the form of slot machines! This is so far removed from the days of the P.T [Silent Hills] demo which leads me to conclude that we will probably never see another Silent Hill game again. The focus has shifted to Las Vegas which is sad. So I say this; Keep Silent Hill alive and make sure you experience Silent Hill: Homecoming in 2020. You won’t be disappointed.
Blog post by: Gemma @ Juicy Game Reviews / TheGebs24
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