DGC Ep 084: Silent Hill 2 (part one)

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where we are just beginning a new and shorter series on Silent Hill 2. We set the game in its time period, and dive in quickly to the madness that brings us to that quaint little town, Silent Hill. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Up through the end of the apartments

Podcast breakdown:
0:37   Silent Hill 2
51:15 Break
51:45 Feedback

Issues covered: revisiting our interview with Julian Gollop, Julian's mum, PlayStation 2 year one, dividing the critical audience with The Room, Konami firing Kojima and turning to other industry, Tim not knowing what the game was, campiness of Resident Evil, walking through the apartments in the dark, the fog and short draw distance, how the game starts, elegant narrative, putting you in the mind of the protagonist, grief, "early walking simulator," immediate tension and danger, psychological thriller and horror elements, the camera -- fixed vs semi-fixed, build-up of tension, no cognitive dissonance between player and character, id/ego/superego, economy of design, bold choices in controls, intention through controls, audio terror and musical stingers, PlayStation technology, fog particles and fill rate, interior darkness, Tim's television environment, complicity, bloody footprints, jump scares in RE vs knowing something's coming (via the radio), learning through failure with a jump scare, Riddle Difficulty, lock and key puzzles, Harry Mildred Scott, case of canned juice, examining objects, save game representation, red handkerchiefs, Pyramid Head's blood and gore, psychosexuality, the enemies with the legs top and bottom, Pyramid Head as Id, Ego in James hiding from the Id, fear of confronting the primal, contra Nemesis or other RE enemies, the other characters, hallway reuse, description of PT, difficulty and usability, building a game for yourselves, wider demographics, more conservative finances, maintaining the young perspective, finding the right difficulty for your goals, size of the space in Souls games, Silent Hill remaster, some technical concerns, horror is about what you can't see, emulating the original experience, streaming stuff over the web, playing on a CRT, having a lot to respond to, layering in unexpected variables in X-COM, picking classics, the stuff that sticks with you, the complexity of the Oblivion leveling system, Skyrim as aspirational leveling system.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Julian Gollop and the Gollop family, Fallout, Konami, Ico, GTA III, Metal Gear Solid 2, Jak & Daxter, Twisted Metal Black, Max Payne, Black & White, Halo, Silent Hill series, Team Silent, Silent Hill: Shattered Memories, Sam Barlow, Her Story, Silent Hills, Hideo Kojima, Guillermo del Toro, PT, Resident Evil, Pink Gorilla, Twin Peaks, Stephen King, Alan Wake, Jacob's Ladder, Freud, God of War, Amnesia, Sega, Nintendo, Microsoft, Star Wars: Starfighter, Koei, Square, Capcom, Alone in the Dark, Gollum, Ingmar Bergman, Halloween, Michael Keane, Ashley Riot, Vagrant Story, Super Mario World, Oblivion, Skyrim, Dark Souls, Demons's Souls, X-COM, Wayne Cline, Dmitry Pirag, Organ Quarter, Tomb Raider, Crystal Dynamics, PlayStation Now, Cameron Hass, Final Fantasy IX, Planescape: Torment, Shadow of the Colossus, TIE Fighter, Phantasmagoria, Civilization, Final Fantasy VII, Icewind Dale, Baldur's Gate.

BrettYK: 4 1/2
TimYK: 46

Brett on difficulty 

Next time:
Up to the Labyrinth

@brett_douville, @timlongojr, and @devgameclub