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YMMV / Silent Hill: Homecoming

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  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Is Alex's mother really in a Convenient Coma or is she Obfuscating Insanity to avoid telling Alex the truth about his past.
  • Angst? What Angst?: Elle. Sure, she's whiny enough over her mother's uncaring attitude and worried about the townspeople... But her little sister is brutally killed and her mother, who tried to kill her, is also dead, murdered by her maybe-boyfriend. You can actually bring her into the room with her mother's corpse and she will have no reaction, though that's probably a glitch. Perhaps she's still completely in the dark about her family's fate at the end of the game. This gives the ending where she and Alex walk off together an interesting spin. An awkward conversation is about to come up.
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  • Awesome Music: Admittedly, the game has an amazing score brought to us by a veteran Silent Hill music producer.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Alex Shepherd. He's either a sympathetic, entertaining protagonist with an interesting story or a generic, clichéd Silent Hill protagonist.
    • Wheeler. He's either a badass Cool Old Guy who's got Alex's back or an offensive, outdated stereotype of African-American cops.
  • Best Boss Ever:
    • Scarlet. Even to those who disliked the game agree that her boss fight is one of the scariest and most awesome boss fights in the whole Silent Hill franchise. The music, atmosphere, and Scarlet's unsettling design makes her battle a fan favorite.
    • Amnion, the Final Boss. The creature has an unsettling design, fast attacks, and is definitely one of the most action-packed bosses in the Silent Hill franchise.
    • Asphyxia has also received praise for her Body Horror design and strong symbolism, with many considering her the most traditionally Silent Hill-esque monster in the game. This generally leaves Sepulcher as the odd man out, although he is by no means a disliked boss either.
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  • Best Level Ever: Hell Descent is commonly cited as a standout experience in the game. Notably, combat is very limited even by Silent Hill standards, enhancing the sense of isolation in the labyrinthine, hellish steel mill that seemingly floats above an abyss. The climax is also the highly regarded Scarlet boss.
  • Complete Monster: Judge Margaret Holloway is one of the respected town leaders of Shepherd's Glen and a cold-hearted, cruel and vicious leader of the Order. Years prior, Holloway murdered her youngest daughter Nora by strangling her with her own hands, as per the pact with the Order's God, while barely concealing her own enjoyment at the process. When the pact was broken due to Joshua Shepherd dying in older sibling Alex's place, Holloway reassembled the Order to take control of Shepherd's Glen as a means of gaining and maintaining her power. Over the years she had residents kidnapped to be brainwashed into the Order, with those resisting ending up tortured to death. Eventually the residents were either dead or soldiers for the Order. Later, she plans on killing her other daughter Elle for her refusal to join her, before attempting to torture Alex to death with a power drill.
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  • Contested Sequel: The game itself is heatedly debated over whether it's good or not by veteran Silent Hill fans. Especially the game's slant towards being an Actionized Sequel, using elements from the film, and whether or not certain monsters from previous installments in the series are just included for gratuitous Fanservice rather than actual symbolism seems to be the main points of contention. On the other hand, some fans do believe that it's the best Silent Hill on the Xbox 360 system compared to Downpour and the HD Collection.
  • Critical Backlash: Though it has received good reviews upon release, Homecoming was, and still is, viewed heavily in a negative light by the majority of the fanbase who decried it for its emphasis on combat and more "traditional scares", citing it as the worst example of American developers not understanding the series. So much so that there have been responses from gamers, both non-fans and newcomers to the series alike, who’ve openly admitted to liking the game, feeling it still works as a horror game on its own merits, and that its story still makes an attempt to link with prior games that focused on the Order while still delivering on some unnerving and creepy moments, believing much of the harsh criticism is unjustified and biased towards American developers for continuing the series.
  • Demonic Spiders:
    • The Needlers can be this, especially when first encountered.
    • The Siams can be really annoying to fight, but thankfully there aren't many of them.
    • Schisms are easy to fight once you learn to bait them into lunging, but the strategy requires room and patience, both of which drop considerably when they attack in teams.
  • Designated Love Interest: Elle. Many fans are unable to interpret if her relationship with Alex is platonic or genuine love.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Scarlet's boss form seems to have developed quite a number of fans.
    • Wheeler is well-liked by a few fans since he's the only supporting character in a Silent Hill game that actually helps the player fight the monsters.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: Most fans generally tend to ignore Homecoming for its heavy emphasis on combat, gratuitous fan service often seen as pandering and a generic rehash of James’ plight. Even within the subset of fans who prefer the Myth Arc of The Order there’s a good bulk who felt its expansion on the titular cultnote felt ripped out of a fan fic.
  • Faux Symbolism: Asphyxia's design incorporates relatively little in the way of referencing Nora's death via suffocation and what noticeable design elements there are to this effect are far overshadowed by how sexualized she, her arena, and the preceding area are, with tunnels leaking blood from dark spots in the ceiling, her chamber having vagina-like holes in the walls, and her body largely consisting of female torsos and crawling hands. The best guesses as to why are that Nora was entering puberty just before she was killed and never got to experience womanhood.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: Some of the flavor text you can read around the Shepherd House is a funny little reminisce from Alex about how he always hated baths as a kid, and how it was always a struggle to get him in the tub. Then you find out about him being marked as a sacrifice and exactly how he was intended to die.
  • Game-Breaker: The Laser Gun acquired from the UFO Ending has unlimited ammo, being the most useful and effective weapon in the game. You can down Amnion on Hard Mode in four shots with it.
  • Goddamned Bats: The swarms which exist to attach themselves to Alex and slowly suck his health away.
  • It's Easy, So It Sucks!: The game is not as challenging as previous installments in the series and you can vanquish monsters with Boring, but Practical tactics that won't eat up much of your time.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Asphyxia resembles a much more twisted version of a human centipede.
    • In the "Bogeyman Ending," Alex is turned into a Bogeyman. In Silent Hill: Downpour Murphy Pendleton is transformed into the Bogeyman too while fighting against the final boss in that game.
  • Iron Woobie:
    • Alex has dealt with a lot of emotional pain in his life, but he continues on his search for his brother Josh.
    • The same story applies to Elle.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Mayor Bartlett comes across as hostile because he's now an alcoholic after the death of his son Joey. Same goes for Dr. Fitch, who turns down Alex's attempts to help him and displays deep remorse for murdering his daughter, Scarlet, and has turned to self-mutilation to "bleed out the sin".
  • Mis-blamed: Infamously, Tomm Hulett. Not only did he not wield nearly the responsibility over the series that virulent fans liked to portray him as, but he was commonly held as the ruining factor of Silent Hill in the post-Team Silent era. Not only is this not really fair, but while many might decry Homecoming as an inferior title, a passing glance at the rough drafts of the game imply Hulett had a rather large hand in it being as good as it was.
  • Narm:
    • Alex Shepherd's Skewed Priorities at times: He is in a mostly abandoned town that is riddled with impassible chasms and infested with killer monsters. If he inspects many of the vehicles in the town, he may wonder, "Why hasn't this been towed? It's clearly broken down." Seriously Alex, is that what's on your mind at that moment?
    • The first Jump Scare in the game is a corpse hanging from the ceiling... which proceeds to flop about hilariously due to the physics engine.
    • The Order Soldiers. Their laughable taunts, accentuated by their Radio Voice, consist primarily of out-of-place profanity and threats like, "I'm gonna cut you up, son!"
    • Chiefly, the decision of whether or not to save Wheeler. The "right" choice (meaning, one that gives points towards a less negative ending) is to give him medical treatment, with the other option being to decide that he's too far gone. That said, Wheeler at this point has five knives plunged into his chest and is unresponsive. Saving him is far less realistic to the sensible eye, particularly without access to an ER on hand.
    • When Margaret Holloway tortures Alex in the leg with a power drill (using a considerable boring attachment even), Only a Flesh Wound seems in play beyond even Silent Hill standards.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Any scene with Pyramid Head.
  • Only the Creator Does It Right: A common criticism from the game's detractors is that the game's American development team, Double Helix Games, in several ways has failed to understand the "special" Japanese brand of horror that the original Team Silent lead entries had, instead opting for a more Western and therefore "less subtle" and "more actionized" expression of horror.
  • Paranoia Fuel: Whenever there's no ambient music during play in Shepherd's Glen, the sound of something massive breathing can be heard. Also, once the Ferals are introduced, the occasional patter of paws or growl of a dog will be heard around the streets, even if nothing's there.
  • Player Punch: Alex, and therefore the player, is forced to make a decision between performing a Mercy Kill on his mother or allowing her to be ripped apart by the Order's torture device.
  • Porting Disaster: The PC version is a glitchy mess that Konami has never bothered to fix. In fact, you need a fan-made patch to be able to play the game on the highest graphical settings, since doing so on the base game instantly causes a crash.
  • Recycled Script: One of the more common complaints is how Josh's death is similar to Mary's death in Silent Hill 2, at least in relation to the protagonist. Of course, unlike James, Alex never intended to kill his brother.
  • Stoic Woobie: Alex Shepherd doesn't express much emotion throughout the game, but he has a tragic backstory.
  • Surprisingly Improved Sequel: One thing that Silent Hill fans do agree about this game is that the combat system is heavily improved.
  • That One Level: The attack on the police station. This level comes directly after the first boss, Sepulcher, who will likely have drained a lot of health and ammo. It also introduces a veritable horde of Schisms, very tough and aggressive enemies. You can easily get stuck in a loop of dying even on normal mode.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!:
    • The fan reaction to the new combat scheme and "Alex the Military Dude" subplot. Many fans were unhappy about the increased focus on action and the difficulty in avoiding confrontation.
    • The ease of finding the UFO Ending was met with controversy due to how this easy this Easter Egg is to unlock. It was such a Mood Whiplash with the overall mood of the game that a first-time player might be left baffled at this event not realizing it's a joke ending if it's their first time playing a Silent Hill game.
  • Vindicated by History: Though it had mixed reviews depending on the audience, the game's reception over time has picked up to an extent. Even though the game focuses more upon combat, this doesn't necessarily detract from the unsettling atmosphere and backstory. It helps that the game has some highly acclaimed moments like the Hell Descent sequence which offers a break from combat in favor of an immersive Otherworld sequence. It also helps that this game boasts some memorable boss fights.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: Some fans felt the idea of a soldier returning home from the military and suffering shellshock caused by a war had enough potential to standout as a unique Silent Hill story that wasn’t properly utilized, instead only being a setup to Alex’s real reason for returning home.
  • The Woobie: Alex and Elle, especially by the end of the game. Mayor Bartlett and Doctor Fitch could also qualify.


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