For a game that never released and a Playstation-only demo for said game that now un-exists, there's been a sudden rush of (mostly) good news regarding Silent Hills on PC. No, not for the game itself, because that ship has long since sailed. But if you were enraptured by the spirit of the whole hullabaloo, there's a lot of neat bonus projects suddenly at your disposal.
If you're not familiar, let's travel back to 2014: Konami released a game demo on Playstation called P.T. that was a mysterious journey through a looping location and a slowly disintegrating narrative wherein horror slipped through the cracks of time itself. It turned out to be a teaser for an upcoming Silent Hill sequel called, obviously, Silent Hills. The Hideo Kojima game fell apart when he and Konami had a very bad break-up, and later the demo was itself removed from the Playstation Store, essentially removing it from ever being playable again, which resulted in modders and developers making their own fan versions for posterity. People really love this game that doesn't exist, and I'm one of them.
The first of today's Silent stories is a bit of a bummer, but it has a positive twist at the end, I promise.
A 17-year-old game-maker named Qimsar sunk 180+ hours into a PC fan remake of the P.T. demo, where he rebuilt the entire PS4 demo in Unreal, and was close to finishing this remake/port of the now un-gettable mini-game. That's when a very P.T. event occurred: a spooky call in the night!
"I got a phone call that I was expecting at about 5 am from someone who worked at Konami. He essentially told me that he was very sorry for being the bearer of bad news, but I would have to take down my remake," Qimsar wrote. "I was told that he and many other people at Konami saw and really liked my remake, but legit due to legal issues that were out of his or anybody else’s control really, he had to ask me to take down my remake project."
Via a very cute/honest post on his Game Jolt page, it turns out the shutdown isn't all doom and gloom, all things considered. Qimsar is getting a bunch of merch (sure, why not?) but also an offer for a possible internship opportunity with Konami, that he hopes will turn into a job.
This is not the first time that a P.T. PC remake has ended with the project being taken down. Folks just love making remaking that demo, don't they?
This brings us to the Fallout 4 mod that went live on Thursday. Built as a tribute to Silent Hills, Claustrophobia is exactly what its title implies. You are drawn to a condemned apartment complex to unveil its long forgotten story and explore its tight halls filled with unnerving creaks and squeaks. Mannequins taunt you at every corner, walls turn inward and the layout seems impossible. Created by Supernath97, the mod notes go out of their way to remind you that, yes, it is supposed to be this dark and, no, the monsters are not killable. Load it up at Nexus Mods.
There's a teaser here:
Finally, you might have missed a book release a few months back that I kept meaning to write up here at RPS, and now is as good a time as any to mention it. Joel Couture from IndieGames did an entire ebook about P.T. and he treats the entire production as a ghost investigation, of sorts. Couture looks into why the demo grabbed people so strongly and what happened to make the very real Silent Hills into a very dead project. There are digs at Konami and celebrations of Hideo Kojima and honestly that's about all I'm looking for in literature these days. Hopefully the book can explain why all these games are about Silent Hill(s) but all of these places are infuriatingly loud all of the time, with the sound of flesh and gears grinding against regretful memories. More like Cacophonous Hills, am I right?
You can check out P.T.:A Video Game Ghost Story and Couture's other book (on Undertale) over at Itch.io.