Silent Hill HD Collection is a port of Silent Hill 2 and Silent Hill 3 to the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 with 720p resolution (1280 x 720) at 30 FPS, originally developed by Team Silent, ported by Hijinx Studios, and published by Konami. It includes the Born from a Wish scenario from Silent Hill 2.
It features an alternate voice dub, as well as PlayStation Network Trophies and Xbox 360 Achievements. Players have the option to switch between the original voice acting and the alternate voice acting for Silent Hill 2, while the re-dub is mandatory for Silent Hill 3 because it lacks the original voice acting.
It is often criticized by long-time Silent Hill fans and cited to be one of the worst HD remasters and ports created in the history of video gaming, not only due to technical problems, but also due to artistic changes from the original presentation (listed below). As such, many fans consider the HD Collection to be inferior to the original releases and recommend playing the original releases instead, and only play the HD Collection as an extreme last resort.
The collection was directed by Tomm Hulett. Silent Hill HD Collection was first announced in Konami's 2011 Pre-E3 show. It was revealed that both games would be given new voice-overs. The collection was originally supposed to be a PlayStation 3 exclusive, but an Xbox 360 release was eventually announced.
Due to the age of both games involved, the only code available to be given to Hijinx Studios by Konami was an unfinished incomplete beta build of the final version. This resulted in both versions of the HD Collection being hampered by severe technical issues.
Mary Elizabeth McGlynn was approached by Konami to direct the re-dub. The reason for the re-dub was due to Guy Cihi requesting residuals for the multiple ports and re-releases of Silent Hill 2 as he claimed that he owned the rights to James's voice and motion capture. McGlynn, Troy Baker and Thessaly Lerner refuted this, stating that Guy did not own James's voice and motion capture and that his performance was always owned by Konami; this was the reason Konami never paid Guy for residuals. No written contract between Guy and Konami was available.
In a letter to Konami, Guy stated that it was not about the money but rather "the thoughtless way that those involved in the production have been treated" such as not notifying him of any re-releases and hiding his contributions in "The Making of Silent Hill 2" video. Guy also called for Konami to allow the original voices and give fans the option to choose between the original dub and the re-dub. Guy's close connection with fans of the series played a strong part in his decisions regarding these issues. Monica Taylor Horgan supported giving fans an option as well.
Guy Cihi (James Sunderland), David Schaufele (Eddie Dombrowski), Monica Taylor Horgan (Maria/Mary) and Donna Burke (Angela Orosco, Claudia Wolf) eventually signed a waiver, allowing Konami to re-use their voices in the HD Collection.
- Characters tend to use new words when starting sentences. This occurs most often with Laura.
- The distances on the sign at the beginning have been altered. In the original version, Paleville is 10 miles, Old Silent Hill is 50 miles and Brahms is 265 miles. In the HD Collection, Paleville is 9 miles, Old Silent Hill is 6 miles and Brahms is 16 miles.
- The textures on the first aid kits and the medical cross posters have been changed.
- The street and sidewalks textures have been changed to look much cleaner.
- During Eddie's rant in the Labyrinth, when he says, "It doesn't matter if you're smart, dumb, ugly, pretty...", the subtitles say "your" instead of "you're".
- The Sunderland's video tape is now bordered by a TV screen rather than showing up full-screen. This may make it more difficult to realize that James smothered Mary with a pillow.
- The FMV cutscenes are stretched horizontally to appear as widescreen, which is more problematic than Silent Hill 3 because Silent Hill 2 is more FMV-heavy. The incorrect aspect ratio results in a slight "stretched" or "fat character" look.
- Saving the game at a Halo of the Sun is fade-to-white instead of fade-to-red.
- All music has been reworked or changed entirely. It is most noted in the Otherworld mall; the ambient music has been changed to a punk rock type of beat. During Claudia's final speech, Innocent Moon is replaced with Maternal Heart. In the Xbox 360 version, Memory of The Waters may be removed entirely when Heather cries after killing God.
- In the intro, a 3-second clip of Valtiel bending over to drag Heather Mason's corpse in Lakeside Amusement Park is changed to a 3-second clip of Heather turning on her flashlight in Lakeside Amusement Park. This was likely done because the original scene wasn't in HD.
- There are some script changes. Jeremy Blaustein approved of these changes. Despite these changes, the subtitles still read from the original script.
- Claudia says, "They've come to witness the Beginning. The rebirth of Paradise, unspoiled by mankind." She previously said "despoiled".
- The sewer fairy says, "I have finally found a truly honest person" in reference to Heather's gender, rather than, "I have finally found a truly honest man."
- After Heather finds her father murdered, she finds Claudia and says, "I'll kill you, you bitch!'" rather than "I'll get you for this!".
- Near the end, Vincent says God has "terrible" taste instead of "lousy" taste.
- The scene in which Heather returns to her apartment to find her father dead has been changed so that Harry Mason's face is seen.
- This is likely unintentional and simply a result of both games lacking proper cutscene letterboxing, as some of the cutscenes of Silent Hill 2 show letterboxing appearing, disappearing and reappearing in some scenes whenever the camera angle changes. Most notable of this is the introduction of the Lying Figure monster. 
- Because of the lack of letterboxing, there is a quick one-second shot up Heather's skirt, where her vest is seen through.
- In the original game, Cheryl Mason, Harry Mason and Lisa Garland's voices were extracted from the first game. They have been re-dubbed for the HD Collection.
- During the Leonard Wolf boss fight, both Heather and Leonard are able to sprint full speed in the water as if the water doesn't exist. 
- When Heather returns to Douglas Cartland after the final boss, his coat is noticeably much bloodier than in the original for unknown reasons. This makes no sense because it is implied that Claudia injured Douglas' leg using telekinesis.
- 14 of Heather's unlockable costumes that were present in the PS2 version were removed, presumably because they contain copyrighted and licensed gaming magazine logos. 
Many problems of the technical issues reported included:
- The entire game crashing and freezing, sometimes when entering new areas, picking up items, and using items. This seems more common in Silent Hill 3.
- Entire rooms (such as the Lyne house) not loading, leaving the player trapped in an unescapable void. This differs from the above glitch because the player can still move around and hear footsteps. It seems exclusive to Silent Hill 2, and is known to occur in the apartment complexes and Brookhaven Hospital.
- Lag and frame-rate drops.
- Lag upon receiving Trophies/Achievements.
- Graphical glitches, such as lighting errors.
- Sound loops.
- Audio glitches, even to the extent of seconds of audio missing. Sometimes, the background audio may stop entirely and there will be a few seconds of silence.  The submachine gun was also glitched.
- Missing sound effects.
- Reduced transparencies of fog, glass, shadows, etc.
- Fog appearing where there should be no fog.
- Missing shadows, especially on characters.
- The game being too dark, even with the in-game brightness maxed, resulting in a dull "washed out" look.
- Glitchy depth of field.
- Blurry scenes where there should be no blur.
- Non-blurry scenes where there should be blur.
- Extremely pixelated shadows.
- Inaccurate textures. (The elevator has the floor texture - known to occur in the Xbox 360 version)
Some issues specific to the PlayStation 3 version upon launch were:
- Erratic walking speed, at worst rendering the game virtually unplayable.
- Game running before loading screens cleared (potentially allowing players to take unavoidable damage or miss the first bits of many cutscenes).
PlayStation 3 patch
A day one patch (1.01) was released for the PlayStation 3 version. Many players claimed that the patch made no difference.
Another PlayStation 3 patch (1.02) was released. It fixed a number of problems such as the frame rate and lip sync which were greatly improved. Missing sounds and music had also been fixed along with the fog density issues. Other minor visual/audio problems were also improved.
Cancelled Xbox 360 patch
The Xbox 360 patch was canceled due to "technical issues and resources" which made any attempts at resolving the problems ineffective.
Both the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions of the game have received mixed reviews on Metacritic. The Xbox 360 version holds a 69 on Metacritic, and the PlayStation 3 version holds a 70. IGN rated the collection 9/10.
However, both were met with negative reactions by long-term Silent Hill fans, especially regarding the technical problems, some artistic changes from the original presentation, and no original voice acting in Silent Hill 3. The "remaster" was received so negatively by some Silent Hill fans to the point where it has spawned a fandom joke in which they refuse to acknowledge its existence ("HD Collection? What HD Collection? Don't be silly, there is none!")
Some fans disliked some of the Trophies and Achievements obtained for defeating boss battles, feeling they were in poor taste. Trophies and Achievements which weren't available in the original releases. For example, an emotional scene of rescuing saving Angela from a monstrous version of her abusive father results in a Trophy/Achievement jingle and a pop-up, serving to spoil and ruin the atmosphere.
Many fans questioned Konami's handling of the game to Hijinx Studios, whose only console games were Frogger Returns and Vandal Hearts: Flames of Judgment, and felt that the port was rushed in order to meet Konami's deadlines, and should not have been released in the broken unpolished state that it was.
The day one PlayStation 3 patch indicated that Konami and Hijinx Studios knew about the problems before release, thus causing an even larger fan backlash. Many fans felt it was unacceptable for games about a decade old.
Because the Xbox 360 version patch was cancelled, Konami offered compensation for owners of the Xbox 360 version by offering many other games including the same game for the PlayStation 3 if they sent their copy and receipt for proof of purchase to Konami. This offer, however, is only valid for purchases made in North and South America.
The re-dubbed voice acting was received very indecisively by fans and has a mixed reception.
Fans of the original voice acting often cite that the voice acting was supposed to be realistic and that the characters actually sound like real people rather than actors, and the "awkward" and "stilted" manner characters spoke in helped add to the "surreal" and "dream-like" atmosphere, and also helped portray the cast of Silent Hill 2 as "damaged". They also tend to feel that some characters in the re-dub are too "melodramatic" and lack the original inflection and tone, and that Mary's deep voice doesn't suit her as much as it does for Maria. Angela speaks more awkwardly, stutters more, and has a more childish tone in the original due to being an abuse victim; in the re-dub, Angela speaks more naturally. Many lines in the re-dub have poor lip sync, off by seconds.
Fans of the re-dub often cite that the original voice acting felt "unprofessional".
Alternatives to the HD Collection
Because of the poor handling of the HD Collection, many Silent Hill fans recommend to ignore the HD Collection entirely, and instead (in order of best to worst recommendations):
- Play the PC versions and use external programs to mod the game to HD and widescreen. Instructions for this can be found at PCGamingWiki. Silent Hill 2 can also be modded to 60 FPS.
- Emulate the PlayStation 2 versions using PCSX2 on PC with a widescreen hack and change the rendering resolution to HD.
- Emulate the PlayStation 2 versions on a modded PS3 via custom made PS2 Classics.
- Play the original releases of Silent Hill 2 and Silent Hill 3 on a real PlayStation 2 or Xbox - if the PlayStation 2 is modded, it can run the widescreen hack.
Oddly enough, Silent Hill 2, 3 and 4 have PC versions which can easily be modded to run on newer operating systems with HD and widescreen, yet they aren't on Steam for unknown reasons. Homecoming is the only Silent Hill game on Steam.
The problem with video game preservation
In a post-release interview, Tomm Hulett reflected on the issues with the HD Collection, as well as preserving video games. Essentially, no standard set of rules exists for re-mastering a game. Every game is different and coded differently and uniquely, sometimes with a completely unique and propriety engine.
Part of the issue was Hijinx Studios converting 10-year-old PlayStation 2 source code from a completely different set of developers who spoke a different language (Japanese, not English). The original Team Silent is defunct, and many members are behind a language barrier (with exception of Masahiro Ito who occasionally communicates with fans in English via Twitter). In addition, video game developers and coders may forget specifics of how things worked (much like how people who don't do math will begin to forget it).
"Ten years ago, a lot of game companies assumed the games were 'done' once development finished, and that they wouldn't need to use that data ever again. Now it's clear that having all that data in an easy-to-manage format is important. Many consumers don't realize you can't just buy a copy of SH2 and then open up its code in a usable state."
Even reverse engineering a game to work on different software can prove to be a difficult task. Hopefully in the future, more game developers will begin to preserve and archive their code, fully bug test their games, patch their games, and try to make their games as perfect as possible.
|James Sunderland||Guy Cihi||Troy Baker|
|Maria / Mary||Monica Taylor Horgan||Mary Elizabeth McGlynn|
|Angela Orosco||Donna Burke||Laura Bailey|
|Eddie Dombrowski||David Schaufele||Liam O'Brien|
|Ernest Baldwin||Ward E. Sexton||Travis Willingham|
|Amy Baldwin||Florence Minowa||?|
|Doctor||Dennis Falt||Kirk Thornton|
|Game Show Host||Dominic Allen||Kirk Thornton|
|Heather Mason||Heather Morris||Amanda Winn-Lee|
|Douglas Cartland||Richard Grosse||Kirk Thornton|
|Vincent Smith||Clifford Rippel||Yuri Lowenthal|
|Claudia Wolf||Donna Burke||Laura Bailey|
|Leonard Wolf||Matt Lagan||?|
|Confessor||Lenne Herdt||Mary Elizabeth McGlynn|
|Lisa Garland||Thessaly Lerner||?|
|Harry Mason||Michael G||?|
|Cheryl Mason||Sandra Wane||?|
|Borley Mansion Guide||Mike Matheson||?|
- When the original Xbox version is played on an Xbox 360, there are also glitches:
- Many of the re-dubbed voice actors are from the Shin Megami Tensei: Persona series. These include:
- James — Kanji Tatsumi / Eikichi Mishina
- Mary / Maria — Noriko Kashiwagi / Naoto Shirogane (anime)
- Eddie — Akihiko Sanada
- Heather — Yukiko Amagi / Ulala Serizawa
- Douglas — Kinshiro Morooka
- Vincent — Yosuke Hanamura / Protagonist (P3) / Ryoji Mochizuki
- Angela / Claudia — Rise Kujikawa / Female Protagonist (P3P)
- Kirk Thornton, Laura Bailey and Yuri Lowenthal previously voiced Harry Mason, Dahlia Mason and John from Silent Hill: Shattered Memories.
- Despite all original voices being replaced in Silent Hill 3, when Heather is hit by the rollercoaster, her original scream can be heard, probably due to developer oversight.
- GameTrailers video review
- Heather and Douglas voice comparison
- Silent Hill 3 HD Achievement Item Bug
Silent Hill 2
Silent Hill 3
|Silent Hill games|
|Main series||Silent Hill · 2 · 3 · 4 · Origins · Homecoming · Shattered Memories · Downpour|
|Ports / Adaptations||Play Novel · Mobile · HD Collection|
|Spin-offs||The Arcade · Orphan · Orphan 2 · Orphan 3 · The Escape · Book of Memories|
|Cancelled||Silent Hills (P.T.)|
|Production||Konami · Team Silent · Climax Studios · Double Helix · Vatra Games · WayForward|
|Extras||Inspirations · Features|