Date: 11-13-2011 01:35
Author: Todd Enloe

PDC profile: Death

Silent Hill Origins is a horror game exclusive to the PSP system, and was developed by Konami Climax. The name "Origins" is given to the game, as it takes place before the other games in the series. Will this game scare the toga off of a half dead Roman? Or do these nurses need new patients?

Enter Silent Hill

Silent Hill Origins follows a truck driver by the name of Travis through his adventure in the foggy resort town of Silent Hill. When the game starts off, Travis is driving down the road in his big truck. He spots a little girl in the middle of the road and stops his truck abruptly, and then exits his truck but the girl takes off. The cutscene ends and I took control of Travis. Having lost sight of the girl, he casually walked into the town. On his walk, he sees a house burning down and a woman, who is found out to be Dahlia Gillespie, was fleeing the scene. Travis passes out, and wakes up on a bench in the town of Silent Hill. 

There are three versions of Silent Hill, a resort paradise, the spooky foggy town, and a run down version of the town called "The Otherworld". The resort paradise is not accessible, while the foggy town Travis goes through is based off the memories of the games protagonist. The only way to travel between the 2 playable worlds, is to use mirrors. Almost every mirror can send Travis into the Otherworld and back. In the Otherworld, monsters constantly roam hallways and such, while in the distorted real world, there aren't as many monsters.

It Came Out of the Mist
Silent Hill Origins features a very interesting distortion system with sound and sights, where even I found myself wandering down dark hallways in the Otherworld in terror. In the Otherworld, sounds like pipes banging, screams, and heavy breathing echo throughout the town. This combined with distant objects, like pipes, made me believe objects some were monsters and vice-versa. Whenever traveling to a different section of a building and complete an objective, new monsters would appear in areas previously explored. Sometimes monsters would appear right behind doors, or in the middle of a hallway. The radio, which emits white noise when a monster is nearby, doesn't go off when a monster is right behind a door, this doesn't give the player time to equip a new weapon which annoyed me.

After completing the Hospital objectives, enemies would start roaming the streets which makes the game harder. When wandering the streets, alot of the roads are now destroyed, which means I'd have to take the long way around or go through enemy infested territory. I found this very annoying whenever I wanted or needed to go somewhere. The enemies that wander the streets outside would change whenever I completed a mission, so if I had trouble fighting an enemy in a building, I might as well run away from it in the streets. 

Scream and Run!
There are weapons placed throughout the town. These weapons include guns, sledge hammers, butter knifes, toasters, and many other types of weapons. There aren't any designated spots to get a weapon, as they're just scattered around and at times, hard to find. I found myself throwing T.V.s and toasters because I had no other weapons. Wasting weapons is not good.  If all weapons have been used, then i could only use my fists to punch out a few demonic little zombie children. The fact that the weapons are scarce really adds a terrifying "I'm-going-die" factor. The combat system really fits in with the control scheme well. Movement is made with the analog stick, sprint by holding , interaction and fight with , use map with , set camera angle with L, as the camera is a third person camera, and hold R to ready the weapon equipped. Travis will also turn his head whenever there's something he can interact with, which makes it easier to find notes and such.

Conclusion
Overall, Silent Hill Ørigins is everything you could ask for in a survival horror game, scarce weapons, deities, freaky little girls, undead butchers with giant knifes, and reasons to punch out a zombie because you don't like his tone. But where the game fails is in telling the controls. There is absolutely no tutorial on how to run or reset the camera. Also, the games scare tactics get rather repetitive. So after the sanatorium, I was rather used to monsters being behind doors. I would recommend this game to anyone who wants to get into the series or a good scare. The music is awesome and really sets the tone, and the graphics are great.

Silent Hill: Ørigins was released on the PlayStation Store on and costs $9.99. I played the game for about two hours prior to writing this review. 


9/10
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