Review by Anubis Jehuty

Reviewed: 08/29/03

SH3, The best SH out right now.

Introduction: Silent Hill 3 starts off unique from the previous two, not starting in Silent Hill but having you work your way into SH which you get to about half-way through. What makes this installment the most unique is being a sequel and having connections to the first. The game's psychological horror is at it's best, truly gruesome and can make pretty much anyone have trouble falling asleep at night.

Gameplay 10/10: The combat has improved from SH2 and really improved from SH1, while running is still the best option in this game, you can actually feel like your doing damage to monsters. More weapons have been added and this time melee weapons are more important than firearms. Even though more weapons have been added it doesn't ruin the game's atmosphere, and by that I mean this game is still creepy as hell. The menus have been redesigned and are much easier to use, dividing items weapons and supplies makes it much easier to get to what you need. Also the puzzle interface is improved, rather than having you select each item individually and putting in the puzzle (for the one's that you have to use items in) you just select one and it opens up a view of the puzzle and all of the items used in it are put in a box in the corner making it quicker to solve the puzzle. And just like in SH2 their are Action and Riddle difficulty levels to play on.

Story 10/10: Completely amazing, there's not much to say though without ruining the storyline, but I'll say this, If you played the original you will be happy with this game. And if you haven't played it you will still love the game. Even people who have only played SH2 will enjoy this game's storyline. While playing SH3 you'll really care for Heather and get into her situation, making the game creepier and the fear level much higher. The characters in this game are voice acted extremely well and the characters are designed very well.

Graphics/Sound 10/10: This is where SH3 really shines, the graphics are the best on the PS2, maybe even on all platforms, the developers really put a lot of effort into this game and the sound I can say is the best for a video game. The creepy noises and ambience is amazing and the music is composed wonderfully. And the game comes with it's soundtrack which is a cool bonus. The detail in SH3 is stunning, and makes the environments seem real (which maybe isn't a good thing in SH) and disgusting with the level of gore and disturbing ''things'' that are in the environment, this game is not for anyone who is easily scared.

Controls 10/10: While SH's controls may not be the best they're definitely better than RE's. Also the option of switching to 2D controls make it easier for people who hate the 3D setup. The controls make combat better and they're more tight making Heather respond better and the game overall more enjoyable. So If you didn't like the controls of the previous two then SH3 should make you happy. A thing to note is that you are able to skip action sequences, such as going down elevators, or when Heather checks something out, which should help people who are trying to get better rankings.

Playtime/Replay Value 8/10: This is the only area where SH3 isn't the best in, the game is short and an average player can beat it in five hours their first time. But the game's replay value makes up for it's short length, with 26 costumes, 5 weapons, 3 endings, up to 9x bullet adjust, extreme mode which has 10 difficulty levels, and for anyone who isn't good a beginner mode. SH3 has the most replay value seen in games. A problem with the replay value though is the lack of endings both SH and SH2 had six endings, hopefully the greatest hits version will include more like in SH2. The ranking system in SH3 isn't much different than before, more has been added to the ranking though, making 10-stars just as hard if not harder than before. Also the ability to save results makes it easier to show off your rank, rather than having your friends watch you kill the last boss to see that you aren't lying about getting 10 stars on Extreme X.

Overall 10/10: A great game that is definitely worth buying, it is short but with all of it's extras you should be playing it for a long time, and fans of the previous two will definitely want to buy this no matter what. So overall SH3 is truly a great game that most people will enjoy playing. I highly recommend playing this game at night, preferably past midnight with the lights off and the volume up, and make sure you're alone...unless you're afraid.

Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

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