Oi. So in the spirit of old games that should be fun, I picked up a copy of Silent Hill 2, supposedly one of the scariest games ever. Now, maybe I’m just not the right kind of guy for survivor horror (Hey – I loved Resident Evil 4!), or maybe it’s an issue with the fact that I’m just an instant gratification kind of person, or maybe that I grew up on what was equivalent to Mario on crack (Sonic), but I have a rule: If a game doesn’t have me interested by half an hour in (Or I feel like I’ve been playing for longer by that time), I’m probably not gonna like it.
Exceptions to this rule are games that don’t have an expansive long ass storyline I actually have to commit to, IE The Unreal Tournament series.
However, when I’m expected to commit to something, it had better fucking draw me in like a cartoonist on hallucinogenic drugs. SH 2 I’ve been playing for about 45 minutes, and I’m not feeling it.
“Oh, but Mr. Cynical, that’s barely in to it, you have to give it a chance, every story starts off slowly!”
God damn it, I’m playing a game here, not reading a suspense novel. It doesn’t help that the first 20 minutes of the game were spent wandering a road from a beach to a shitty little town and then wandering that town running in to the occasional groaning thing that looked vaguely like what could have passed as a menacing sack of meat covered in blood a few years ago only to find a dead end on every god damn street until I finally ran in to a mobile home that I only entered by CHANCE seeing as no other doors worked that finally pointed me forward, from which I spent a minute going to a bar only to have my map updated, an alleyway just to pick up a key, and then back down the street and across the road to an apartment complex I used the key to get in to where I am now again wandering with absolutely no hint of what I’m supposed to be doing and damn if I’m going to explore every sodding room in the place to find what will probably just be another bloody map marker.
All that in about 40 minutes, I feel like I’ve been playing for hours. Now, granted, I can’t rag on the graphics like I almost started to that much considering it’s a seven year old game, but they haven’t aged gracefully.
Maybe I’m really not giving the game enough breathing room to suck me in, but the fact that it took about twenty minutes just for me to get a 2×4 and have my first time whacking aformentioned low poly piece of meat isn’t helping it’s case. If it’s paced like this the entire way through, I might just rape the game disk – I’d get more use out of it that way.
The atmosphere isn’t doing anything for me either, on the ‘sucking me in’ point. The fog is supposed to be creepy or something, all it really does is frustrate me because between shoddy camera angles that change every 2 seconds and are more inconvenient than the early Resident Evil games and thick fog that covers everything but about 3 in-game feet around my character, the game does a bang up job of making sure I can’t tell where the fuck I’m going, forcing me to resort to looking at where I am on my map every minute or so, which would be fine if there was a mini map, but no, I have to press a button, wait literally a second for the map screen to pop up, register where I am and where I need to be, press the cancel button, and wait another second for it to fade. This process repeated several times only serves to lengthen the agonizing pace and further frustrate me.
I’ll keep playing, only because I really really want to see the Pyramid Head scenes and I’m too much of a lazy bastard to look them up on youtube.