‘Silent Hill: Downpour’ Producer Says Horror Games Need To Evolve

Published 2 years ago by

Silent Hill Producer Wants Horror Gameplay To Evolve

The survival horror genre has arguably become less prominent in the video game industry. Either the gameplay is too poor to compete with modern games, or developers focus on making once well renowned horror franchises into”action packed” titles. Tomm Hulett, producer of Silent Hill: Downpour, thinks this needs to change.

Hulett spoke to MCV Pacific about his beliefs on the evolution of games; as games began to improve, so to did the combat systems of survival horror titles. The only issue was that this resulted in what Hulett refers to as “action games with creepier monsters.” 

We’ve of course seen this in modern day gaming – Resident Evil 5 was scrutinized by fans for essentially dropping the survival horror element all together, and even Dead Space 2 offered more action than scares, especially when compared to the original. Needless to say, with EA saying Dead Space 3 needs to appeal to a broader audience, horror fans are fearing the worst.

That doesn’t necessarily mean that survival horror is doomed, as Hulett feels there are still ways to creep players out, ways that don’t rely on “shoddy controls.” This can be achieved through “careful game design,” a route that developer Vatra Games took when making Silent Hill: Downpour.

“While many other games have gone the route of more action oriented game design, attempting to appeal to more mainstream audiences, we’ve taken a very careful approach to the pacing of Downpour to make sure it maintains that original ‘slow-burn’ and keeping the player off guard with less predictability.”

For survival horror fans, Hulett’s words are welcomed. We thought Downpour succeeded quite well with its scares, even though it played as more of a modern title, i.e. no fixed camera. On the flip side, AMY, another horror title that released this year, focused too much on outdated mechanics, and as such, it really hampered the game’s quality.

Developers must find a middle ground, which is something the team at Capcom needs to take into account. While they may feel they need to emulate Call of Duty in order for Resident Evil 6 to succeed, they must also realize there is a way to balance it out for horror fans and those who don’t want to deal with dated gameplay and limiting control schemes.

Hopefully, Silent Hill: Downpour performs well it will encourage developers and publishers to realize there’s still a market out there.

Silent Hill: Downpour is available now for the PS3 and Xbox 360.

Follow me @AnthonyMole

Source: MCV Pacific

TAGS: AMY, Resident Evil, Resident Evil 6, Silent Hill, Vatra Games


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  1. Downpour was ok I guess. Definitely felt scary at times, which is a huge plus. They just need to perfect the combat system

  2. Dead Space 2 was actually the perfect balance to me. Survival/ Horror and had a nice amount of action, it wasn’t too much at all. If DS3 stays on that track it’ll be good but yeah EA scares me with the whole “want to reach a wider audience” thing or whatever. Let’s just hope it stays true to the DS series

  3. I loved dead space one and two!
    Lets hope the dead space series does indeed stay the same.. wished i could say the same for the resident evil series..

  4. Silent Hill 2 had it right. Move like a tank, and everything you see is either subtly or overtly related to your untold backstory. And also, make sure you’re as skilled at defending yourself as you are building booster rockets for the space shuttle. Less is more, and more is meh.

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