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As Silent Hill turns 20, we remember why it was great

My memory is foggy.

Resident Evil 2 is all the rage right now, but spare a thought for another survival horror classic: Silent Hill.

Silent Hill is 20-years-old today. It launched first on 31st January 1999 on the PSX in North America (it hit Japan in February and then Europe in March), and quickly found a sizeable audience of survival horror fans.

Konami's Silent Hill is famous for its creepy environments, fog-filled streets and nightmarish set-pieces. You play Harry Mason, who's on the hunt for his missing daughter in the fictional American town of Silent Hill. Obviously, things take a turn for the worse.

In 2014, Kristan Reed penned a Silent Hill retrospective for Eurogamer. Here's a snippet:

"Silent Hill has always felt like picking through the broken glass of a particularly paranoid dream. You know the framework, and possibly some of the specifics, but peering into the bleakness may not be such a smart idea. You probably won't enjoy what you find lurking, but you embrace the hurt regardless."

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Silent Hill, alongside Resident Evil, is considered one of the defining titles in the survival horror video game genre. It spawned a number of sequels, and even a film. The series has lost its way in recent years, however, with the Hideo Kojima-fronted game Silent Hills canned by Konami amid the celebrated designer's exit from the company. Oh well. You've still got P.T. on your PlayStation 4 hard drive, right?

So here's to you, Silent Hill. Perhaps one day you'll return to us, flashlight in hand, ready to creep us out with multiple endings for a new generation.

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