ÆNEMA

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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by ÆNEMA on Thu Aug 01, 2013 3:00 pm

devil hunter wrote:Same with SH2, always a theory that James killed his wife with a pillow. Why is SM such a problem now?
Because SM is unique in that it offers a totally new, completely ambiguous view, which makes the game even more personal to the player, and that is the whole point of SM's design.
I just personally subscribe to the idea that it's all metaphorical for Cheryl's struggle because there's a lot less to assume or explain in terms of how certain events are occurring, but it someone wants to look at it as a supernatural situation, that's fine too because the game is self-contained and there are no "rules" for it to follow.

That being said, I think it'd be a really terrible idea to try and make any kind of sequel or game related to SM. It mostly works because it's a stand-alone.
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by devil hunter on Thu Aug 01, 2013 3:38 pm

But still, how does that make the game limited, with no deeper layers etc. What does that say about other games, which also don't have deeper layers like that?
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by ÆNEMA on Thu Aug 01, 2013 3:50 pm

devil hunter wrote:But still, how does that make the game limited, with no deeper layers etc. What does that say about other games, which also don't have deeper layers like that?
It doesn't say anything about the other games; it's limiting only to SM to insist that there's only one possible explanation.
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by Naroon on Thu Aug 01, 2013 9:02 pm

I'm all for variety, but if people are gonna suggest that it's possible for it to be supernatural-based, I'd at least like to actually see some theories put forth.
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by captain crowbar on Thu Aug 01, 2013 10:15 pm

I did and BillMurray did several pages ago.

But to reiterate, I like to think of the game as though the entire thing is really happening from the point at which Harry has the car crash. He is a Cheryl-generated physical construct. His progress throughout the town is altered by the psychiatry sessions in real-time (which explains their impact on the world around Harry) and all the people he meets, save for Dhalia who is another construct, are real. Cybil is definitely real because she genuinely doesn't get wtf is going on with this Harry Mason guy that should be dead and keeps disappearing.

The changes to the world could be as simple as Harry imagining grand alterations, or as sci-fi as him being taken to another world, or as supernatural as reality being warped around him. There are all the same possibilities present as the other games. The psychiatry sessions and psych profiling just allows us to tamper with things more as a player.

You're perfectly welcome to disagree and think I'm stupid, it won't affect my enjoyment of the game.
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by Naroon on Fri Aug 02, 2013 12:08 am

I don't disagree with people in some vain attempt at trying to get them to enjoy a game less, there wasn't any need for you to say that.

Anyway, so what you're saying is that basically Cheryl has the subconscious power to project Harry and Dahlia back into life, and that she's the one who is also manipulating the town in real-time as she "remembers" details about her dad? Then the psyche profiling is just Cheryl thinking there's something wrong with her when in reality she is just tapping into this power that she didn't know she had (similar to SH3 Heather/Cheryl)? Could be similar to Stanley and various people that Origins mention who think they're insane, but they're just more able than average people to tap into the Otherworld.

I still don't subscribe to this theory, but if that's what you're getting at, it sounds cool to me.
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by captain crowbar on Fri Aug 02, 2013 2:51 am

NarooN wrote:I don't disagree with people in some vain attempt at trying to get them to enjoy a game less, there wasn't any need for you to say that.


My point is that several of the people who frequent these discussions have a nasty habit of talking down to people with alternate points of view. It may not even be intentional, but it's a recurring thing. There are always polite ways to get a point across.

NarooN wrote:Anyway, so what you're saying is that basically Cheryl has the subconscious power to project Harry and Dahlia back into life, and that she's the one who is also manipulating the town in real-time as she "remembers" details about her dad? Then the psyche profiling is just Cheryl thinking there's something wrong with her when in reality she is just tapping into this power that she didn't know she had (similar to SH3 Heather/Cheryl)? Could be similar to Stanley and various people that Origins mention who think they're insane, but they're just more able than average people to tap into the Otherworld.

I still don't subscribe to this theory, but if that's what you're getting at, it sounds cool to me.


Pretty much, yes. I also feel that, even though it doesn't bring it up as a central plot point, Silent Hill is still a place where strange things happen. There are residual spirits that have little to nothing to do with the story, with Cheryl, with Harry, etc. all over the game. In many cases you can easily make the connection that they are symbolic somehow, but if you think about some of them a little deeper, you realize how abstract they are. I think the haunted spaces are real. I think that's where they got a lot of the ideas for the hauntings in Downpour...that there are places in the world with residual spirit energy due to some negative event. It could be that, since Harry is a unique aspect in the world around him, that he has more of a connection to the spirits than a normal person. Of particular note is the hunting lodge segment...
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by Floodclaw on Fri Aug 02, 2013 3:18 am

"Just because it's a separate universe does not mean that weird shit still doesn't happen in Silent Hill."
I agree with this completely.
To me, the game is just so much more interesting if Harry is a physical manifestation. It might be harder to support than 'the whole game is Cheryl's delusions', but I really like the idea.
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by devil hunter on Fri Aug 02, 2013 3:31 am

ÆNEMA wrote:It doesn't say anything about the other games; it's limiting only to SM to insist that there's only one possible explanation.


I'm not saying there is one possible explanation, but even if there is, why is that OK with other games, they don't give multiple possibilities. Aren't those limited. Why does it have to be so different with SM? That's what I really don't get.
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by Gauss on Fri Aug 02, 2013 3:37 am

Since there are some people who are into the idea of Harry of being more than just a mental representation, I wrote a post on this a while back; it is tough to defend the "more than just in Cheryl's head interpretation" and make use of supernatural ideas about Silent Hill or Cheryl or whatever, but it's a fun interpretation nonetheless. I haven't edited the post in a while, but I have changed my thoughts since the time of writing. The discussion that followed was fruitful too.

Anyway, here it is - please check it out: viewtopic.php?f=26&t=434106
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by Naroon on Fri Aug 02, 2013 4:11 am

I think that's where they got a lot of the ideas for the hauntings in Downpour...that there are places in the world with residual spirit energy due to some negative event. It could be that, since Harry is a unique aspect in the world around him, that he has more of a connection to the spirits than a normal person.


This reminds me of one of my favorite movies, "Kairo" (aka 'Pulse'). It had similar elements.

I think it's somewhat of a stretch that it's not happening in her head, but I actually really dig this theory now.
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by ÆNEMA on Fri Aug 02, 2013 1:13 pm

devil hunter wrote:
ÆNEMA wrote:It doesn't say anything about the other games; it's limiting only to SM to insist that there's only one possible explanation.


I'm not saying there is one possible explanation, but even if there is, why is that OK with other games, they don't give multiple possibilities. Aren't those limited. Why does it have to be so different with SM? That's what I really don't get.
Because SM is different; I don't know how else to explain this to you. The other games are irrelevant here, there's no need to bring them up.
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by captain crowbar on Fri Aug 02, 2013 2:23 pm

For starters, the other games gave multiple possibilities anyway. At first glance it seems like it was about a girl with psychic powers. Then it seemed to be about a demon. Then it appeared to be about some greater power that could actually create demons. Then, if you got the bad ending, it seemed to be a dream or that the protagonist was dead. Some games make it seem like literal purgatory. Some games make it all seem like a time loop. Some games make it seem like alternate dimensions and others like reality warping and others like a dream and others like something else entirely. Then several also offer that most of it just happens in the protagonist's head. Then there's the fact that it is just as viable as anything to think that aliens are behind it all.

The other games are all ambiguous as to the final verdict of what exactly is going on. That's the goal of design of these games, and one reason the series is so unique.

As Aenema is saying, (how do you do the A-E thing btw?) SHSM is the only game in the series where the majority of people have compressed it to one possible simplified answer.
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by devil hunter on Fri Aug 02, 2013 4:26 pm

captain crowbar wrote:For starters, the other games gave multiple possibilities anyway. At first glance it seems like it was about a girl with psychic powers. Then it seemed to be about a demon. Then it appeared to be about some greater power that could actually create demons


That doesn't really offer multiple possibilities if it turned out that some other thing did all that in the end, what we thought was going on wasn't the cause of all that, it was something else. So. there are no multiple possibilities.
It's like the drug thing in the first game, they were offering us that as a possible reason everything was going on, but they abandoned it and it turned out it didn't happen because of that.


captain crowbar wrote:Then, if you got the bad ending, it seemed to be a dream or that the protagonist was dead.


Again, no multiple possibilities, because we got SH3 which showed that wasn't the real ending, however, when the game came out, that could've been another possibility, so I'll give you that, but when SH 2 and especially 3 came out, that was no longer a possibility.

captain crowbar wrote:Some games make it seem like literal purgatory. Some games make it all seem like a time loop. Some games make it seem like alternate dimensions and others like reality warping and others like a dream and others like something else entirely. Then several also offer that most of it just happens in the protagonist's head. Then there's the fact that it is just as viable as anything to think that aliens are behind it all.


I don't think those are multiple possibilities since it's never really explained why the town is like that and what does it want. The way you mentioned those things, sound more like inconsistencies and don't really look like multiple possibilities.

I'm a little confused. Which ones offer that most of it happens in protagonist's head, which ones make it seem like a time loop, which ones give a dream possibility (SH4?) etc.

Also, since UFO endings are just joke endings, I don't think we should seriously consider them a possibility.

captain crowbar wrote:As Aenema is saying, (how do you do the A-E thing btw?) SHSM is the only game in the series where the majority of people have compressed it to one possible simplified answer.


Majority of people, not devs themselves.

ÆNEMA wrote:Because SM is different; I don't know how else to explain this to you. The other games are irrelevant here, there's no need to bring them up.


Yes, it's different, but just because it's different does it mean it really has to have multiple possibilities like that? Where is that rule written?
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by Gauss on Fri Aug 02, 2013 6:14 pm

The explanation that it is all in Cheryl's head is the simplest. It does not depend on Harry being a physical manifestation, Silent Hill having supernatural qualities, or Cheryl having powers. I think many people resort to this explanation because it does not depend on auxiliary assumptions taken from outside of SHSM, which is a separate universe that need not depend on assumptions from the other games.

With that said, there is still plenty to theorize about with SHSM even though plenty of people think that the it's all in her head explanation tells us all.
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by ÆNEMA on Fri Aug 02, 2013 7:01 pm

captain crowbar wrote:(how do you do the A-E thing btw?)
Alt + 146.

I'm with devil; I don't think the nature of the town is that ambiguous, we just don't know why the town is the way it is or the specific extent of its power, but we know the reason everything happens in the series is because of that power.
But SM does something kind of cool; when it was just the original Silent Hill, no outside materials or sequels, it was really ambiguous in regard to why Silent Hill was so fucked up & really didn't offer much of an explanation. 2 is what really made everything about the town itself. SM pretty much does the same thing.

devil hunter wrote:Yes, it's different, but just because it's different does it mean it really has to have multiple possibilities like that? Where is that rule written?
Again, the entire point of the game is for the player to have their own unique experience with the game. Everyone is getting something a little different out of it, I think, and that's brilliant. Trying to force one theory as a solid fact and the only possible explanation kind of goes against that with this game in particular.
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by clips7 on Sat Aug 03, 2013 1:53 am

fromelmstreet wrote:The explanation that it is all in Cheryl's head is the simplest. It does not depend on Harry being a physical manifestation, Silent Hill having supernatural qualities, or Cheryl having powers. I think many people resort to this explanation because it does not depend on auxiliary assumptions taken from outside of SHSM, which is a separate universe that need not depend on assumptions from the other games.

With that said, there is still plenty to theorize about with SHSM even though plenty of people think that the it's all in her head explanation tells us all.



This...alot of folks have come to the conclusion that it's happening all in her head simply because of how the game ends, and kauffman's remarks regarding Cheryl's memories after Harry comes in from the background.

I think crowbar's theory is still kinda interesting tho, because i think it still has weight for the majority of the game, but for me when i saw Harry come in from behind the door, i automatically thought "oh snap...it's been happening in Cheryl's head the entire time..nice twist"...then everything else regarding the raw shocks and why they behave the way they did towards Harry made even more sense.



That doesn't really offer multiple possibilities if it turned out that some other thing did all that in the end, what we thought was going on wasn't the cause of all that, it was something else. So. there are no multiple possibilities.
It's like the drug thing in the first game, they were offering us that as a possible reason everything was going on, but they abandoned it and it turned out it didn't happen because of that.


Then, if you got the bad ending, it seemed to be a dream or that the protagonist was dead.

Again, no multiple possibilities, because we got SH3 which showed that wasn't the real ending, however, when the game came out, that could've been another possibility, so I'll give you that, but when SH 2 and especially 3 came out, that was no longer a possibility.


The point is that within the original universe, you know there could be a number of scenarios as to why the madness is happening...mysterious powers of the town, possible cults manipulating said powers by use of black magic, or the character himself projecting these images by way of the town itself.

In SM you pretty much know what is going on by the end of the game...in SH3 you know what is going on by the time Heather and Douglas take that ride, but even then folks was still wondering what was Valtiel doing turning those cranks?...was he controlling the madness? was Claudia?...it's easy to say after knowing but those games had alot of symbolic creatures and imagery that had you wondering why the madness was happening.

SM?..not so much, but you was involved in trying to help Harry find Cheryl...but i don't fault SM for it because it was trying to be different from the orginal universe as it should've been, or else why make an alternative game in the first place...

SM really doesn't point to any other reason as to why the madness is happening because there are no background history on the town etc...it was focusing on Cheryl's memories...so yes you was gripped as to why everything kept on freezing, but by the end, you knew this was just happening all in Cheryl's head...
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by devil hunter on Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:57 am

ÆNEMA wrote:Again, the entire point of the game is for the player to have their own unique experience with the game. Everyone is getting something a little different out of it, I think, and that's brilliant. Trying to force one theory as a solid fact and the only possible explanation kind of goes against that with this game in particular.


I see, I agree with you :)

I personally prefer the possibility that there's no supernatural in SM because that's another kind of brilliance. It really is an "what if" situation when it comes to the town itself and how it works. What if SH was actually some psychiatrist? etc.

They managed to make a SH game by completely turning some concepts on its head. That's what I really like, it's the most unique SH game. I personally think that "there actually is supernatural" just cheapens the whole thing.
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by Parvatii on Sat Aug 03, 2013 6:22 am

Thought forms are supernatural. That's what Cheryl had in the game. I guess you could call them maginary friends.

While shattered Memories focused on the mind, the other games also focused on the heart. What was unique to Silent Hill wasn't the other world, but the fact that it also showed what was in people's hearts. This is lacking and shattered Memories.

In the original series its a supernatural kind of heart. The metaphor a kind. The Japanese have a specific word for this type of hearts, but I don't know if it's used in the translation because I can't see the original Japanese. The fact that this exist as a concept in Silent Hill, says to me, but the games focus on supernatural.

But there isn't a lot of places but the Silent Hill games can go with this type of story. It ends up being like the twilight zone. We must keep this in mind.
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Why do people bag on SM?

Post by mikefile on Sat Aug 03, 2013 1:53 pm

SM is a reimagining of the first title, and therefore a reimagining of the 'old' universe. The main characteristic of the old universe is the power of the town, possibly the only true fact we are most certain about. We don't know if it's induced simply by a girl with psychic powers, if it's a demon or just a dream, purgatory, hell, if it's a time loop or the curse of God. But we know it's a town with a power that manifests all of that.

Making a supposedly reimagined game with the same main characteristic (the town's power) with its same specific ambiguities (see above ˄) just wouldn't make any sense.

However, that doesn't matter, because SM is a game outside the limits of the previous universe that omits the town's power (the main characteristic of the old universe) and uses its own main characteristic (Cheryl's delusion) with its own ambiguities (the derivation of characters, the symbolism of the messages and echoes, the symbolism of the mementos, the meaning of the episodes, the descent of the ice, the reason of its triggering, ...) that are as numerous as the previous ones.

SM already took an element from the previous game/universe: the thematical collision, the characters and their names, the nature of the conflicts and the parallelism of episodes. By adopting the one thing that is supremely characteristic for the first universe just makes it logically contradictory.

With Silent Hill Shattered Memories, the developers proved that a single human mind is already unimaginably complex and ambiguous, even without any supernatural causes.
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