The Silent Hill franchise may as well be lost within the actual town’s fog at this point. It feels like the series disappeared just as abruptly as its initial appearance. It’s been years since anything has come out of the series.
Silent Hill’s very existence is art. Konami effectively shut disaffected employees into a closet and told them to make a game that would be successful in the West.
The team was instructed to create something inspired by Hollywood. The team did no such thing and horror was forever changed.
ICONS — Silent Hill
Team Silent had everything necessary to create something meaningful and beautiful. The staff members had either performed poorly on previous projects or were on the brink of leaving for various reasons.
Nearly all of them felt like they couldn’t create freely and express the ideas they wanted to. Konami paid very little attention to the team, which worked to the team’s benefit. Team Silent was free to piece together a story that would change the genre forever.
Capcom’s Resident Evil series had told horrific tales of what could go wrong when humans irresponsibly wielded science in a capitalist-driven world. Silent Hill dared to ask something far more sinister and altogether troubling.
The Silent Hill series dared to explore what would happen if something otherworldly were to wield our world. It was different. It was scary. And it was a different kind of terror.
Team Silent continued to dish out psychological horror and explore what it means to exist in a few sequels but Konami eventually shut everything down. In the mid 2000s Konami started focusing less on game development.
Silent Hill 4: The Room was the last entry developed by Team Silent before development was effectively outsourced to a few different western studios. Origins, Homecoming, Shattered Memories, and Downpour came from three other developers.
The games are worth experiencing on their own merits and aren’t bad games. But it’s absolutely clear that Team Silent was a part of Silent Hill’s ominous fog.
Silent Hill remains popular years after its last release, which didn’t even end up coming out. P.T. (short for Playable Teaser) was a demo (still kind of available on PC) that teased Silent Hills, which at the time was a freshly announced title from Hideo Kojima and Guillermo del Toro.
The playable demo was available for a short time on PlayStation 3 and 4 but the game ended up being canceled. The demo was eventually taken down. Silent Hill was effectively buried, with only its legacy remaining.
Rumors have come and gone more than once about new Silent Hill titles but it’s anyone’s guess at this point. After spending so much time within the foggy town and talking with other fans, it’s pretty clear that many of us are okay with Silent Hill remaining a memory.
A memory that can always be revisited fondly. Visitors are always welcome within Silent Hill. New titles will never take away what made Team Silent’s game’s so special, but the continued legacy of these iconic titles are also more than enough.