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File:Silenthillhomecoming 4363.jpg

 "So difficult to remember.

The warm sunlight dancing on the water, the smell of cotton candy in the air, and the sound of wind blowing through the trees."

Silent Hill: Homecoming is the fifth main title in the Silent Hill series, which swung back and forth between Silent Hill V and Silent Hill: Homecoming before settling on the latter. It is the second Silent Hill game to be produced by an American company.

The main character this time around is Alex Shepherd, a Special Forces soldier who has been discharged from the hospital and sent home after being wounded in battle. Arriving in his hometown of Shepherd's Glen, he finds that all is not right with the world: the town is covered in fog, people (including his younger brother Josh) are disappearing, his father has left to look for his brother, and his mother is catatonic. The dark forces of Silent Hill soon infect the town proper, transforming it into a nightmarish otherworld where Alex must struggle to survive against hordes of monsters and waves of increasingly obtuse symbolism...as well as a group of mysterious cultists who seem to bear a grudge against him.

Joining Alex on his quest is Elle (a childhood friend who is trying to survive) and Wheeler (the sheriff's deputy who just wants to get to the bottom of things). Along the way, Alex encounters several more characters -- including an Expy of everyone's favorite monster, Pyramid Head.

This installment is tied in several ways to the series's roots: it does away with inventory limitations (except for a cap on ammunition), it has breakable weapons, and it also features other characteristics of the more recent games. It has a similar atmosphere to Silent Hills 1 and 3 (straight up horror without the lingering melancholy of the second game), and it continues the series tradition of multiple endings (at least one of which is as absurd as you would expect). Alex's military past makes the combat more complex, with melee combos and dodging attacks being a major element of the gameplay. Unlike previous series protagonists, Alex can also actually aim firearms, which comes in handy.

This game has a Shout Out page.


Tropes specific to this game:

  • Abandoned Playground: There's one near the Shepherd's home.
  • Abandoned Hospital:
    • Alchemilla Hospital, which in the time gap since Silent Hill Origins has evidently become more of an asylum than a medical hospital.
      • While the hospital does admit patients with psychiatric illnesses, it is not a psychiatric hospital. Alchemilla only appears as a mental asylum in Alex's nightmare. In the real world, it's still an emergency department.
    • Dr. Fitch's office is just a tiny medical clinic, and when you transition to the Otherworld within it, you find yourself descending a series of rusty staircases that look nothing like a hospital even in general layout. However, you find many signs and instructions on the walls that you'd see in a hospital, including things like "You may be required to provide a urine sample" or visiting hours times.
  • Abusive Parents: It's blatantly obvious that Alex's parents loved Joshua more and constantly treated Alex like dirt. This is because Alex was to be sacrificed and they didn't want to become attached to a doomed child. Many of the other parents could also qualify, although they don't really have a choice about killing their kids. Judge Holloway, however, is perfectly happy to hurt both her children.
    • Also, Alex ends up drowning Josh over a family ring, and after that the peace of the town is ruined. Another reason why Alex's dad hates him.
  • Accidental Murder: Alex's argument/fight with Josh over their family's signet ring indirectly led to the latter's death.
  • Adaptation Distillation: More accurately, a distillation of what worked in a previous adaptation. The "flaking off" effect used in the Silent Hill film adaption to depict the transition to the Otherworld was lifted to be used in this game, as were a few Gas Mask Mooks. The Bogeyman also resembles the film's version of Pyramid Head.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: The Shepherd's Glen police station being invaded by Schisms, and the Order attacking and abducting the townspeople.
  • Apocalyptic Log: Certain areas are littered with creepy notes left behind by doomed patients and inmates. Unlike most other Silent Hill games, you can't actually collect these. You do get to collect mysterious photographs and disturbing children's drawings.
  • Arc Number: 206.
  • Body Horror: All of the monsters, in true Silent Hill fashion. Lurkers, Siams, and Asphyxia (think of The Human Centipede) come to mind.
  • Buried Alive: Mayor Bartlett's son, amateur botanist Joey.
  • Call Back: This game has some references to Silent Hill 2, not counting Pyramid Head. Killing a Siam you get a trophy called "Shade of James". Siam looks like two people having sex, and James had major issues with his is supressed sexuality. Killing a feral, a dog like monster, you get a trophy called "Eddie's Legacy". Likely a reference to Eddie Dombrowski who killed a dog. Also the woman you meet in the hotel may be a reference to Mary, James' wife. If you ask who would leave her there, she says not to blame whoever left her. She continues to say its hard to watch someone die, Mary from Silent Hill 2 was dying and her husband suffered watching her die.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Alex to Adam when they meet in the Church.
  • Cassandra Truth: Thankfully averted. Wheeler believes Alex when he tells him that a monster killed Mayor Bartlett, as Wheeler has run into monsters himself.

 Wheeler: "...So, you've seen the creatures too?"

  • Chekhov's Gun: The ceremonial dagger. Alex uses it to open Adam's hunting room and other places, as well as to cut Amnion open to get Joshua's body.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: Alex doesn't swear all the time, but he's definitely the most foul-mouthed Silent Hill protagonist so far. Who can blame him, really?
  • Conspiracy Theorist: Deputy Wheeler is one of these.
  • Controllable Helplessness: The initial cutscene of the Nightmare Hospital, getting arrested, and the struggle against Judge Holloway.
  • Creepy Basement: Averted with the Shepherds' basement, which is flooded and inhabited by a nasty creature or two but positively well-lit compared to other areas of the game.
  • Creepy Child: Josh, Alex's missing brother who's always running away whenever he sees him and acts rather hostile to him during the few times he speaks. Of course, this being a Silent Hill game, we can't always trust what we see to be real; by most accounts, every time we see Josh in a flashback or some such, he's a pretty nice kid. The Josh we see in game is a manifestation.
  • Creepy Doll:
  • Cruel and Unusual Death:
    • Alex's mother will suffer a particularly nasty death if the player doesn't select the option to shoot her and put her out of her misery.
    • Adam is slowly sliced in half by the Bogeyman.
    • Judge Holloway ends up with her own drill shoved through the bottom of her jaw.
    • All of the deaths of the children are downright nasty, but poor Scarlet was dismembered alive.
  • Darker and Edgier: This is the goriest of all the Silent Hill games, and the boss monsters are significantly more disturbing. Considering that Silent Hill is a champion of nightmare fuel, this is saying something.
  • Dark World: The Otherworld, a recurring element of SH.
  • Death by Falling Over: The entire game is kicked off because this happens to Josh.
    • Though, watching the cutscene closely shows that he seemed to have hit his head on something on the way down.
  • Distressed Damsel: Elle Holloway.
  • Easily Forgiven: This can happen in the Church if Alex chooses to forgive his father for all the things he has done. Silent Hill, on the other hand, isn't as forgiving.
  • Elevator Action Sequence: In the Grand Hotel. There's a reason someone just happened to drop a box of ammunition in there.
  • Escort Mission:
    • Alex escorts Elle through the sewers of Shepherd's Glen and the bunker of the Church of the Holy Way.
    • Inverted for the Shepherd's Glen Police Station and the Otherworld version of the Overlook Penitentiary with Deputy Wheeler, where he blows away any monsters that get near you.
  • Expy: The Bogeyman is an expy of Pyramid Head.
    • The newspaper article of Paul Russell Douglas, child serial killer, is an expy of the newspaper article about Walter Sullivan in Silent Hill 2.
  • Eye Scream: Just lose the second struggle with Judge Holloway and see what happens.
  • Faux Symbolism:
    • Several of the monsters have sexual elements to their design. However, none of the characters are said to have sexual issues. Whether they did it just because they thought it was cool or because they misunderstood the symbolism of previous games is up in the air.
      • There are logs written by Alex about how the hot nurses tending to him are the only things making his stay at the army hospital pleasant, but that none of them give him the time of day.
    • There is a definite theme of "gashes" throughout the game, with several bisected or conspicuously toothy creatures that assault you, in addition to Alex's tendency to rip open posters and tapestries often emblazoned with a man or a woman and always traveling downwards directly through the crotch. There's also the bizarre apparent metaphors of Judge Holloway deciding to murder Alex with a decidedly Freudian drill, with Curtis taking a chainsaw to Elle. If you really wanted to stretch for it, you could infer that they represent Alex's resentment towards his parents.
    • Joshua is derived from Yeshua, which "Jesus" is also from. Joshua's death saved Alex from being condemned to sacrifice, and his last name is Shepherd.
      • Then there's his brother Alex (which means "Defending men.") and their father Adam (an allusion to the first human) and Lillian (derived from Lilith, who was Adam's first wife).
    • Shine a light on the nurses, look at their stomachs. They're pregnant, foreshadowing the final boss, which is pregnant with Josh's corpse.
  • Foreshadowing: Joshua collected spiders. If you remember back to the photo you pick up in the playground, you might recall that it showed... a giant spider fighting a toy soldier.
  • Game Breaking Bug: So, so many glitches and bugs are found in this game, especially the PlayStation 3 version. These range from amusing to making the game Unwinnable, and aren't fixed upon resetting the game, forcing you to either reload an earlier save, or start the whole game over. Here's just a few found in the game:
  • Gas Mask Mooks: The Order Soldiers.
  • Giant Spider:
    • The final boss of the game is a horribly twisted version of this trope, most likely symbolising Josh's love of spiders.
    • Scarlet becomes vaguely spider-like in her movements during the second half of the fight against her.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: Near the end of the game, if you don't save Elle in time, you get one of these and a Nonstandard Game Over.
  • Groin Attack: The heads of Needlers are between their legs. A headshot kills one instantly, so...
  • Half the Man He Used To Be:
    • If a Schism manages to grapple and overpower Alex, it will slice him in two with a cruel swing of its bladed head.
    • Right after Alex's gurney ride in the intro, you can see through the windowed door the gurney-pusher being impaled and sliced in half by a gigantic blade. Even though you don't see the one using it, it's clearly the Bogeyman's blade, and later in the level, you see the halved man's body in two different locations. The Bogeyman also graphically cuts a more important character in half later in the game.
  • Heart Container: Serums. They not only fully heal Alex; they also give him a permanent boost to his maximum health, so it's always best once you find one to use it the next time your health is almost empty.
  • Hell Hotel: The Grand Hotel in Silent Hill.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Judge Holloway is killed with her own electric drill.
  • I Cannot Self-Terminate: Alex's mother is strapped to a torture contraption set up by the Order. Before it activates, she begs Alex to kill her so she won't have to feel being ripped apart. The choice is in the player's hands, and affects the ending.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Judge Holloway's death by drill.
  • Infant Immortality: This trope couldn't be averted any harder.
  • Ironic Nursery Tune: The first time you enter the playground behind Alex's house, some unseen Creepy Child can be heard singing in the distance. The actual words are a random phrase from "Ring Around the Rosie".
    • There's also the Bogeyman Nursery Rhyme, an original written by Tomm Hulett.
  • Kill the Ones You Love: In order to have a chance at getting the good ending, you have to kill Alex's mother in order to stop her suffering.
  • Karma Houdini:
    • Narrowly avoided. It soon becomes apparent that the bosses are the vengeful spirits of the children murdered by their parents; each appears in the Otherworld, and each appears moments after the parent in question touches an object that was precious to their child.
    • Judge Holloway is the only one who manages to get away before being killed by the monster summoned by her daughter's locket. However, she gets killed by Alex in an extremely brutal fashion.
  • Magic Feather: The game features a much more robust combat system, such as incorporating rolls and a dodge move, supposedly because the main character is an ex-military veteran rather than a normal Joe. However, late in the game, it's revealed your character was never in the military, but is rather a delusional mental patient who's been locked up in an asylum since he was a teenager. Maybe. So, apparently, he was only a Badass Normal because he believed he was a Badass Normal.
  • Medal of Dishonor:
    • You need three of them to solve a puzzle and each one is a dark spin on normal American military honors: the Heart of Darkness (Purple Heart) is for "permitting others to suffer", the Vile Acts (Good Conduct) award is for "atrocities committed", and the Fallen Star (Silver Star) is for "dereliction in the line of duty". One wonders to what kind of person they would be awarded]]...
    • The "good" versions of these medals are the three that Adam was listed as receiving during his military service. It seems to have been done for the sole purpose of contrasting Adam's excellent military service record with the lousy way he treated his family (particularly Alex). 'Heart of Darkness' for allowing the townspeople of Shepherd's Glen to be kidnapped, killed and brainwashed by the Order). 'Vile Acts' is for treating Alex poorly). And 'Fallen Star' is for failing to sacrifice Alex).
    • The puzzle also relates to Alex and his actions. 'Heart of Darkness' for allowing others to suffer because of his actions). 'Vile Acts' is for killing Joshua). And the Fallen Star is for not fulfilling his role as the sacrifice).
  • Missing Little Brother: Joshua Shepherd.
  • Mythology Gag: Just as you get into the Shepherds' backyard, you see a little abandoned doghouse, and Alex will wonder where the dog is. Guess what the next enemy type is.
    • Alex has to reach into a sinister-looking hole in the wall to get an important key item, just like James in Silent Hill 2.
  • Nightmare Fuel Coloring Book: The "Child's Drawing" items scattered throughout the game are full of Joshua's messy crayon depictions of injury, torture, sickness, and death. On each is scrawled a different verse of a nursery rhyme about the "Bogeyman", who punishes naughty children.

  And while good children live, bad ones cannot escape their fate. For once you hear his screeching wail, it's already too late. So do not cry aloud at night, stay hidden in your bed... or the Bogeyman from Silent Hill will come chop off your head.

  • Nothing Is Scarier: As always with the Silent Hill franchise, some of the most unnerving moments are where you're just exploring the desolate areas rather than fighting monsters. In fact, many of the Otherworld areas in Homecoming are surprisingly monster-free.
  • Ominous Fog: Another Silent Hill staple, as well as the ominously static-filled screen in darker areas and the Otherworld.
  • Only a Flesh Wound: Alex has no problem walking and running as normal after Judge Holloway shoves a drill through his leg. Strangely, he's clearly having trouble supporting his own weight in the good ending, after fighting several elite mooks, a crazy guy with a power saw, and the final boss.
  • Our Monsters Are Different: Homecoming is rife with monstrosities that crawl, drag, run, slither, and scurry for a chance to rip our protagonist limb from limb. A few examples:
  • Peek-a-Boo Corpse: One smashes through the ceiling in the prologue and swings wetly to and fro, suspended by cables wrapped around its legs. While the typical Scare Chord is absent, it's more shocking given that it happens in a hallway you navigated in peace just a minute before.
    • Luckily, this scene becomes hilarious if the graphics glitch.
  • Punctuated for Emphasis: "WHERE?! IS?! MY?! BROTHER?!"
  • Rain of Blood: Either type 2 or 3, depending on your interpretation. Upon entering the Otherworld side of the penitentiary, you'll notice that the ceiling in the solitary confinement wing drips blood. You'll know why.
  • Religion of Evil: Notable in that this is the first and so far only game where the Order actively sends Mooks to fight the protagonist rather than watching from the shadows.
  • Ret Canon: See "Adaptation Distillation".
  • Room Full of Crazy: Several places, most notably in the prison where almost every single cell is covered with graffiti ranging from the cautionary to the unhinged. Sometimes comes in the form of a Madness Mantra:

  she's not here she's not here she's not here she's not here

  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: It's implied that Alex is one. No, he's crazy for a different reason. The soldier delusion was actually a cover for his mental illness.
  • Stepford Suburbia/Subverted Innocence: Turned Up to Eleven and made a lot Bloodier and Gorier; Shepherd's Glen is a town where family comes first... and then, as you begin learning more about the lives of the families of Shepherd's Glen... you make discoveries which can be considered unpleasant.
  • Strapped to An Operating Table: How Alex starts off the game.
  • Stopped Clock: All the clocks in the town are stopped at 2:06.
  • Suspicious Videogame Generosity: Shortly before the final boss fight, the game provides Alex with three health drinks in the same room. Nope, not suspicious at all.
  • Third-Person Flashback: Averted, as all flashbacks is in the first person.
  • This Is a Drill: Judge Holloway's torture implement of choice.
  • Token Minority/Uncle Tomfoolery: Deputy Wheeler.
  • Too Awesome to Use: Averted thanks to the inventory limitations. Because you can only carry a loaded clip and two clips in reserve for each of your guns, you'll end up passing up ammo if you don't actively use your firearms. Ammo is still scarce though, so it make sense to use melee weapons when you can.
  • Too Dumb to Live:
    • Special mention must go to a guy who comes home to an empty house, finds his mother in a BSOD state, goes down to see what she was after in the basement, is soon in knee-high water and getting attacked by a corpse-like monster with teeth for a face, and then decides his most pressing mission at the moment is... figuring out how to pump out the basement. He even keeps his eye on this goal after getting attacked by two more similar monsters outside.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: In the good ending, you don't find out what happened to Wheeler if you chose to save him near the end of the game.
    • And, seriously, what happened to all the townspeople? The Order kidnapped them, and then what? Are they dead? Locked up? Will Alex save them? Whoops, there's the credits.
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