Anticipation was high back in October when Konami first announced its Silent Hill remake, a privilege which they revealed would be bestowed upon the Bloober Team, the Polish development team behind such games The Medium, Layers of Fear and Blair Witch by way of a ‘Silent Hill transmission’ livestream.
The Silent Hill 2 remake, which will be released on PC and exclusively on console for the PS5, will work “closely” with the original game’s art director Masahiro Ito and composer Akira Yamaoka and will be powered by the Unreal Engine 5. And although Bloober Team has a framework that’s more than solid to work from, they’re not taking their task with the Silent Hill remake likely, a sentiment reiterated by Bloober’s chief marketing officer Anna Jasińska in a new sit-down with DreadXP games studio.
“Of course, we weren’t the only contenders,” Jasińska said when asked about how Bloober Team was asked to prepare a concept for Konami at the 2019 Tokyo Game Show. “Many other studios were vying for cooperation as well, but in the end, our concept was the one that stole Konami’s heart. They recognized our commitment and passion for horror, and that alone was an enormous distinction for us.”
Jasinksa went on to add that securing the job for the Silent Hill 2 remake was made even more gratifying on account of the studio’s employees being such ardent fans of the property.
“Our company was thunderstruck when we received this ecstatic information because many of Bloober Team’s employees are die-hard fans of the title. As for apprehension, yes, the pressure is high since we’re dealing with one of the best psychological horror games ever made. We want to stick close to the original, and we will put it in the spotlight for years to come.”
Jasinska added that Bloober would be modernizing the game where it was needed, such as rebuilding the combat system and certain set-pieces, but would be taking “a safe approach” to any changes that are instituted in order for the game to remain recognizable to its core.
“We are focusing on bringing the distinct, visceral atmosphere back in the modernized Silent Hill 2,” Jasinksa continued. “Longtime fans shouldn’t worry about us ‘missing the point’ while we’re livening up the title. We faithfully stick to the traditional story canon while remaking the gameplay and updating the graphics from the ground up. These are the reasons why Konami entrusted us with the remake in the first place.”
Jasinska’s points, particularly recapturing the impact the original game had, as well as the high esteem that the original game carries, reinforce those which Mateusz Lenart, creative director of the Silent Hill remake, made during the game’s announcement back in October in a Playstation blog post.
“Silent Hill 2 is a cult classic, and it’s widely recognised as one of the best games ever made,” Lenart said. “We want Silent Hill 2 to make the same strong impression today that the original game did 21 years ago.
“While we want to achieve the same end result, players’ expectations evolve over time, and certain things need to be modernized to have the same or similar effect. For example, that’s why we went with the over- the-shoulder camera so we can immerse the players into the game world as much as possible.”
What do you think of Bloober team’s attitude towards the Silent Hill 2 remake? Do you think making it faithful to the original game but modernizing where necessary is the proper approach? Sound off in the comments.