Wednesday, October 01, 2008


Within the last month two of my favorite video game franchises have had new releases. Dragon Quest IV hit a few weeks ago and Silent Hill: Homecoming hits retailers today. I figured there's no better way to celebrate than with a painting of everyone's favorite Silent Hill denizen, Pyramid Head! It's also a wonderful way to begin the month of Halloween. Few games can compete with the immersive atmosphere and interactive narrative most Silent Hill games have. I'm always looking forward to going back there.

Silent Hill fans (myself included) are fairly intense when it comes to the foggy town. Many are intelligent and interesting. But among any fanbase can be found the fanboyish whiners lighting up the internet with their self important observations and complaints. Team Silent out of Japan created and developed the first 4 games, the first 3 of which are held in the highest regard. SH4 was a bit of a departure for the series, it was more experimental and openly surreal. It was met with much criticism from the SH fanboys. I enjoyed it but fatigue for the series was becoming evident in Team Silent's work. When speaking of the future of the series the creators wanted to push it even further away from the traditional Silent Hill gameplay and atmosphere. Fans complained. So the next game (SH Origins for the PSP) was handled by another studio and some (myself included) found it to be a competent and worthy addition to the series. Homecoming was also handled by an outside studio and so the fanboys have been outspoken about their disapproval of this from the day it was announced. They all object to the series being handled by someone else, despite the fact that the original studio has all but said they don't want to make any more and if they were to they would be very different from what we've come to expect. Personally I'm happy either way, I like the original games enough that I'm fine with playing variations on the theme or letting the series evolve. I get irritated by those who just want every new SH game to be a remake of SH2 (rightly considered the masterpiece of the series though the first game is my personal favorite). Homecoming could very well be no good, reviews have been all over the map (some rank it as high as 95% and others as low as 60%) but that's beside the point. Making up your mind about a game before you've played it is unfair. Being so exacting in your expectations that you're nearly impossible to please does not make you an intelligent and discerning individual. I know the internet will never be lacking in pretentious people with unfounded opinions, but they still bug me.

Right now I'm playing:
Dragon Quest IV: Chapters of the Chosen - The DS is the perfect home for the DQ games, I'm enjoying every minute of this one.
Half-Life 2: Episode 2 - I've been enjoying this more than the original HL2 or Episode 1 -and I loved those!

I've recently finished:
Killzone - I played this because the sequel looks so cool. Unfortunately it kind of deflated my enthusiasm. It had some cool moments but overall...meh.

Anybody else playing anything good?


Heather said...

As much as I really don't like the Silent Hill games (much to your chagrin), I have to say this picture you did is awesome and a great way to start your October posts. I hope there are many creepy pictures to come!

And as for playing anything good, I'm still loving Rockband (as if you didn't know this) - I think I may be ready to advance to hard on the guitar. We'll see...

pablo pablo said...

Brilliant artwork!

Abby said...

Pyramid Head's looking great as always!

I had no idea that they were making another one past SH4, but now I have this blog to thank for looking up creepy screenshots and videos right before bed. :P

Game-wise, I've recently revisited Parasite Eve, but also trying to beat Devil May Cry 4. I don't have the PS4, so here's to hoping I don't break my keyboard mashing buttons!

Unknown said...

What the? Scary looking guy.I love it. Well done. I recently finished The Force Unleashed. I'm playing RE4 still and creature feature.

Steven Keele said...

Another amazing painting. Great work.

Ken Chandler said...

Incredible work. Love the little details. The question that burns in my mind is: How does he avoid running into walls and falling down elevator shafts?
Of course I'd be terrified seeing him coming at me; when he's swinging that giant cleaver around he's bound to hit something, even if he can't see where he's going.

Joseph Lee said...

Very cool painting!

Heather Dixon said...

My gosh that picture is spooky. But the spookiest is the blood-stained drain floor. Eep!

Adrian Lubbers said...

Amazing. Huge gamer too kevin. I just finished Force Unleashed as well but I really enjoy Rainbow 6 Vegas 2.

El Fro said...

I can handle Resident Evil ... but Silent Hill ... that stuff is beyond freaky.

Kevin Keele said...

Heather - Let's play some Rock Band tonight!

Abby - I've always wanted to pick up and play Parasite Eve but have yet to do so, I hear good things about it. Devil May Cry 4 was fun and no one has a PS4 yet! :)

Josh - So how was Force Unleashed?

Ken - I realized after I painted this that the room he's stepping up into is too short for him to stand up in. I blame that on his lack of seeing where he's going (which, as you pointed out, would be a problem).

Adrian - Force Unleashed is high on my list of games to play and R6 Vegas was too at one time but I never got around to it. I might have to get my hands on it after your recommendation.

El Fro - It's so true. I love Resident Evil too.

Thanks to everyone else for your comments.