The PlayStation Blog recently conducted an interview with the producer of Silent Hill: Downpour, Devin Shatsky, about the differences between the new game and Silent Hill: Homecoming, which Shatsky feels was more focused on combat.
For one thing, Shatsky says, Downpour will limit you to two weapons: whatever it is that you’re carrying in your hands and a single holstered firearm. Melee weapons are in the form of everyday items such as rakes, bottles, kitchen knives and so on. They’re all breakable and durability depends on whether they’re wooden or metallic.
Downpour draws the most inspiration from Silent Hill 2, which Shatsky says was a fan favourite. Murphy, the protagonist of Downpour, is closer to the protagonist of Silent Hill 2, than to Homecoming’s military man. Since Murphy’s more of an ordinary person, Downpour will require that you run from enemies, rather than confront them head on.
On the subject of enemies, Shatsky says Silent Hill staples such as the Pyramid Head or the nurses won’t return in Downpour. This is because the enemies in Silent Hill are directly tied to the protagonist’s background, so Downpour will have its own enemies that relate to Murphy in some way. Shatsky feels that including classic enemies in Homecoming as a form of fan service was a mistake.
When we spoke with Tomm Hulett, senior associate producer on the Silent Hill series last year, he gave us a few examples of enemies in Downpour. Enemies in Downpour were created with the goal of making the player feel less empowered, but without making the game’s controls an obstacle. Some enemies, for example, can scream, which paralyzes Murphy in place. Others can jump onto the ceiling and drop down behind you.
Sidequests are a focus of Silent Hill: Downpour, too. The town in the game is fully explorable, whereas previous Silent Hill titles tended to discourage players from exploring. The game will contain numerous sidequests that aren’t tied to the main story, but you can unlock little bits of Silent Hill lore by completing some of them.