Been playing it for a week now and I think its fantastic. I know some mags gave this a ropey review, and to be fair I understand where they are coming from. But when you actually get into the game and get to grips with the story, Shattered Memories is a welcomed remake to a now stale series.
The game is told in a series of flashbacks that depict events that have transpired up to this point, and starts with Harry explaining to his psychairtrist what has happened to his daughter, Cheryl. It seems that when they were driving back home he lost control of the car and they crashed into a fence. When he woke Cheryl was gone. And so the nightmare starts.
As you explore the deserted town you soon realise that there is something very wrong. The entire place is covered in snow and no one seems to be about. You cannot die whilst exploring the town, however, and puzzles need to be solved by using your mobile phone to ring telephone numbers, access voice mail, take photos, etc. Unlike previous games, exploration seems to be more encouraged, as there now appears to be multiple routes to proceed through - something which Homecoming should have included once you completed the game.
Silent Hills selling point is the sessions with your shrink, which involves completing a series of tasks and questions that determine the layout of the game. For example, if you complete a chart of your favourite lessons, when you enter Midwich Elementry the class rooms corresponde to your favourite lessons. And yeah, all th levels from the orignal seem to be here.
I dont want to give too much a way in terms of story, but for a start there is no combat. When reality freezes over, you are forced to enter a nightmare sequence which has you running through a frozen landscape being chased by demonic creatures, and you have to use tactics such as hiding under beds and in cupboards to evade them, as they cannot be defeated. However, hiding does not ensure success, and the creatures can sniff you out so alot of tactics are involved to shake them. And there is multiple routes to progress through a sequence.
The game is a mix between 3rd and first person, as all puzzles involve you to use the stick to shake, open or rattle objects. -similar to the Wii motion. And there is an awesome moment when you drive off into a frozen river and have to escape from the car in first person. Class.
I found Shattered memories totally enthrilling and a refreshing change. Although the game, sadly, is not scary despite its mature rating, I found it an excellent attempt at something totally different that works. Finally, the series has had a re-vamp.