Unfortunately veterans of the series will know that more often than not; nothing much ever does happen next, except maybe the appearance of one of the small number of stock enemies. They'll also be perturbed by the constant recycling of backdrops in this third edition--particularly in yet another visit to the Silent Hill hospital. The game does stop pulling its punches for the especially disturbing last third of the adventure though, and anyone new to Silent Hill is likely to be scared silly for its entire duration.
The game's other faults, such as a clunky control system and storyline are (for no apparent reason) stocks of the survival horror trade so it would take a particularly surly gamer to deny the game's obvious quality. It'll also take someone with concrete underpants to remain unfazed by the whole thing, particularly the church with the bleeding walls... --David Jenkins
Play Silent Hill 3 and you'll never scoff at anyone that admits they got scared by a video game again: this isn't survival horror, it's full on survival terror. Away from the shlock B-movie stylings of the Resident Evil series, the Silent Hill games have carved, with a particularly rusty machete, a rather different niche for themselves with a line in taut psychological horror that really gets under your skin rather than just providing a few cheap shocks. The games' primary means of achieving this is via their superb graphics and sound which immediately create an oppressive atmosphere where you're constantly in fear of exactly what manner of evil will happen next.
The storyline won't disappoint SH fans, as many of the loose ends from SH1 are tied up. You play a teenage girl named Heather, who is suddenly plunged into a dark and twisted world (though I'm sure any Silent Hill veteran would've guessed that last part). As always SH3 has its fair share of oddballs, but the monsters can out-weird any of the so-called "normal" people. Most of the shambling, scuttling and swirly/scything (watch out for them, they're nasty) things you'll meet look like they've jumped straight off a butchers hook, with the exception of the nurses, who look healthier than they did in their previous incarnation. Luckily for Heather, there are plenty of weapons at your disposal. There's the usual pistol, shotgun and big whacking-pipe, but there's now a sub machine gun for you to play with, along with a few nice close combat weapons. And, of course, there are the compulsory bonus weapons which are provided on completion of the game (that is, if you can meet the requirements).
The environments (my favourite thing about the SH games), while not leaps and bounds ahead of SH2, are all wonderfully done, and the shadows are still as fascinating as ever; shifting around with the sway of your flashlight beam. There are a fair few "Let me out of here!!!" set-pieces, the best of which is in the dark version of the hospital, you'll reach a room with a mirrored wall. Just stand and wait in front of it. Trust me... mwahahahaa!Read more ›
Ahh happy days, in a twisted sort of way.
It was this experience which made me buy Silent Hill 3; I WANTED to be SCARED, I WANTED to be DISTURBED, I WANTED to have NIGHTMARES.
I got what I wanted. For me Silent Hill 3 works for two main reasons
1: The terror of what you can see is nothing compared to the horrors that you can't. Because of this your forced to rely on the sound of either monsters moving or bursts of white noise and both are unsettling.
2: Loneliness is everywhere. The game disarms you by placing you in locations that are never seen as deserted (mall, subway, funfair,) this immediately removes the old "Haunted House" cliche (although not entirely...) and plays havoc with your nerves in the process.
Of course a game cannot rely solely on scare value and thankfully SH3 is a joy to play. The controls are fluid and feel vey responsive, the graphics are sublime on both the characters and the locations and once again the soundtrack is just about faultless (although not quite to the standard of its predecessor).
If you do buy this game (and you really should) make sure you play it alone, somewhere isolated and very dark (like I did with SH2) only then you get the full effect that SH3 can have on you.
And remember as you walk slowly down to the hospital basement; its what you can't see that scares you most. Enjoy!