August 29, 2001
Silent Hill 2 - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Rating Players Price

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Hmm.. dark silhouettes in the night.
Silent Hill was easily one of the most atmospheric and terrifying games on the PSOne. It's success on the console guaranteed a sequel, and for Playstation 2 owners Konami have moved development to Sony's new console. What we couldn't expect however is the improvements to the game which Konami have made from the original. The lighting and fogging is simply stunning thanks to the power of the PS2 and if the game makes it to America, Europe and Australia uncut I would be very surprise. You see, as well as being one of the most exciting games, this is also one of the most gory ever.

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SH2 has some very gory moments.
While the name would suggest that this is a continuation of the original PSOne game, it's not. Silent Hill 2 returns players back to the eerie town of Silent Hill, however it includes a new story with all new characters. Players assume the role of James Sunderland, who receives a cryptic letter from his wife beckoning him to meet her in Silent Hill, a place that holds great meaning for the couple. What would normally be a comforting, even romantic letter, scares and confuses James - his wife has been dead for three years. The mystery of the letter compels him to return to the surreal horror and all-too-real danger in Silent Hill in the hope of finding his wife, and a miracle.

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The town has a darky and dingy look.
Set amongst the dense fog and haunting darkness of the eerie town, accompanied by dramatic music presented in Dolby Surround, Silent Hill 2 pushes the boundaries of macabre horror further then ever before. Benefiting from the advanced technological power of the PlayStation 2, the visual expressions of the characters, weather, changing shadows and the charnel-house gore of the game are intensely frightening. Players face over 10 new types of enemies and have access to a variety of new weapons, including a pistol and steel pipe. Konami are also promising many forks and branches in the storyline which will result in multiple endings depending on the choices you make throughout the game.

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Who is she?
One of the most impressive aspects to this game is the graphics. The developers have used the Playstation 2's emotion engine to the fullest with volumetric fog providing much more realism then the usual transparent planes. The actual characters are wonderfully animated while the real-time weather conditions provide the mist and eerie conditions associated with a horror theme. In a great move Konami have also kept the sounds down to a minimum with little music and only the occasional growl or scream to keep you on the edge of your seat. After all, we don't all walk around with music playing in the streets.

Silent Hill 2 isn't just a game, it's a fright-fest. The game oozes much more atmosphere then Capcom's Resident Evil games while the graphics keep you wondering what is up ahead. In case you're wondering the fog isn't for speeding up the game but to create atmosphere like that in a horror movie. If they ever get around to releasing the game in Australia, and we can expect an MA rating, this will shock the pants off you, which is exactly what the developers want. This will be an awesome game. Keep your eyes open, it's coming in fast.