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Silent Hills Reboot Off to a Good Start

Silent Hills

It looks like Konami is doing a major reboot for the Silent Hill franchise with Silent Hills. The new game features involvement by master of horror and film director, Guillermo del Toro, and Metal Gear Solid creator and director, Hideo Kojima. Sony and Konami started things off with a tense early demo, dubbed a “Playable Teaser,” in the PlayStation store. Through the demo, players can unlock a teaser trailer for the game featuring a digital version of actor Norman Reedus, who apparently will play a lead role in the game.

The demo and teaser look like new a reboot attempt at the Silent Hill franchise. Credit to the developers because the playable teaser was tense, nerve-wracking and frightening. Done in first-person perspective, the player is stuck in a perpetual loop of a house. As the player continues through the loop, the house becomes more and more frightening. The wallpaper becomes dingier and dirtier. There are sinister whispers in the background. A bathroom door is jostled and shakes, like something evil is trying to get out. Other doors seem to open and close on their own. At one point, the bathroom door opens and a ghostly-looking girl quickly shuts it. The hallways begin to grow darker.  At one point, a frightening, tall, gangly creature appears. Who or what this creature is, I have no idea.

The most frightening sequence in the demo occurs upon entering the darkened bathroom. In the sequence, it appears that death awaits. A flashlight is on the floor, and the player discovers a hideously deformed creature in the sink. The creature resembles a baby, but it is still alive and is wailing for help. After exiting the bathroom, the ghostly phantom-like girl from earlier sneaks up on the player and attacks. Judging by the offscreen sounds after the attack, it sounds like the ghost lady with only one eye is eating the player. After viewing other videos, there appear to be multiple ways to complete the demo and unlock other items after completing various objectives.

So far I am very intrigued. For a playable “teaser” demo that will probably not even be in the game, the developers put together something that is incredibly frightening. The gameplay is teeming with ridiculous amounts of atmosphere that completely puts you on edge. At first glance, the house seems quaint; but there are hints of something horrible occurring there, with a man murdering his family.

I am concerned about whether the game will even come out. The last time I recall that Guillermo del Toro was attached to a video game project, Insane, it never saw the light of day. Hideo Kojima already seems to have a full plate with Metal Gear Solid, so I hope this does not divide his attention too much. That aside, their involvement in the development process for the game might not be major and possibly could be more for cosmetic purposes. I could be wrong there, since Del Toro is already incredibly busy with various film and TV projects. Still, based on the playable teaser, I cannot wait to see what the developers come up with for the final product.

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Jeffrey Harris, a pop-culture, entertainment, and video game journalist and aficionado, resides in Los Angeles. He is a staff writer for games, movies/TV, MMA and Wrestling and contributor to and He is a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin's Radio, TV, Film program.