phobos's Silent Hill: Shattered Memories (Wii) review

A Game in Three Parts

 Shattered Memories indeed. The game is broken up into three sections. The first spanning multiple therapy sessions, the second exploring an adventure game format, and the third running away from a group of changing enemies.

As the between-level interlude that it is, the therapy section is the best. The narrative moved along by your psychiatrist is well paced and interesting. It's your actions here that are the primary influence on how the game profiles you, the player. Your actions change the people that you meet, the puzzles that you encounter, and, to some extent, the layout of environments in the adventure section of the game.

Exploration is where most of the time is spent, and is also the most broken section as an actual game. The puzzles are neat, and puts the Wiimote to good use. The atmosphere is interesting, but not creepy -- not after you realize that there are no enemies, at least. The weird sounds that come from the Wiimote's speaker don't mean a whole lot when they don't indicate something threatening. You can peak through doors, but to what end? Really, that's the most broken part of the game. The odd Wiimote sounds are used to find ghosts of memories to be photographed and objects of interest to your character. Finding these gives you voice mail to listen to and text messages to read.

At the end of an exploration section the world ices over and you run for your life as enemies representing of your mental issues try you pull you down. Solid throws forward, back, left, and right cast them off. This movements work pretty good as long as you don't spaz -- seriously. Their also, seriously, not perfect.

That's it. Silent Hill: Shattered Memories is made up of those three section wrapped up in a great story. Weird, but not needlessly weird. In the end, Shattered Memories is a pretty dang good game, but it's also a pretty dang unrefined game. It's the best in it's sub-genre right now, but I recommend this game I couldn't, honestly, recommend a sequel without dramatic improvements.

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