Just in time for Halloween, Konami has revealed its plans for the future of the Silent Hill franchise. During the Silent Hill Transmission showcase on October 19, the publisher revealed several Silent Hill projects that are in the works, including merchandise, movies, a long-running remake, and new games. As a longtime fan of Silent Hill, I was glued to my screen.
One project in particular stood out to me: Silent Hill Townfall. A spin-off game in the works at NoCode Studios, the trailer for Townfall was awful, artistic, but also incredibly confusing. The images and narration shown seemed to be almost cryptic in how they didn’t line up with each other.
What looked like a regular CRTV pocket TV on a desk of some sort quickly became Konami’s psychological horror tool. From static images of hallways to gruesome, gory scenes, the flickering small screen quickly switched from image to static to display gruesome sights. With just one-sided conversation superimposed on top for minimal context.
The Townfall trailer was so abstract that NoCode’s creative director Jon McKellen told fans to go back and rewatch the trailer to see “what you might have missed.” Luckily, you don’t have to, as we’ve compiled all the weird sights and fleeting images you might have missed in the trailer.
A map to nowhere
From what we can see on the table where the CRTV radio is, there appears to be a red concierge map. Whether that means we’re in the cabin of a search and rescue officer, police officer, or ranger is not known. However, the theme of a map was referenced again on the CRTV screen, as it displayed a series of images that appeared to fit into a map that could reveal the location of Townfall.
the flesh is weak
The words “the flesh is weak” flashed across the CRTV’s small screen. While this was quick and difficult to see due to the weak text, I think this will have a big impact on the direction of this Silent Hill story. Silent Hill games tend to play on the weakness and sins of the human psyche, so these few words cement Townfall right in the middle of this franchise.
One of the more gruesome images in this trailer appeared to be a man holding the camera to stare at him and wearing some sort of mask or bloodied bag over his head. In one disturbing scene, the person appears to be filming themselves on purpose, what they did or will do is yet to be shown.
The blood theme in Silent Hill Townfall is unmistakably present. As the recording progresses, the scenes escalate into blood and violence – unsurprisingly for a Silent Hill game. This sequence is particularly disturbing, as what at first appeared to be an arm belonging to a dead person quickly came to life and grabbed or hugged whatever poor soul was being recorded. This hand looked like it went through a crusher, so whoever this hand belongs to must look gnarled.
The bloodiest image on CRTV was of a person wearing a bloodstained full body jumpsuit – they must be fun at sleepovers. This recording was by far the fastest and shortest that appeared on CRTV; it was also the clearest of all the bloody images to be shown. But what this person is doing and who they are is another mystery to add to the growing list.
The final image shown on CRTV radio is much more interesting than it lets on. In what appears to be a hallway leading to a boiler room, the image is a fiery red – you can feel the heat it emits. At first, this appears to be a location that will be in the game. But interestingly, the tone in the picture perfectly matches the room the CRTV is in. This room gradually changed from a default color to match this fiery red throughout the trailer. Is this location important to the story, or is it perhaps the closest location to CRTV radio?
Threats and harbingers
The dialogue was the last element of the Silent Hill Townfall trailer that stood out to me. With all those dark and secret images flashing on the screen, it’s easy to get distracted by the visuals. But the trailer ends with a chilling feeling.
Throughout the trailer, we can hear an interrogator’s one-sided conversation before seeing a brief image of the person being interrogated in their final moments. The dialogue plays with the visuals mentioned above, with the unnamed interrogator discussing why he and his subject were put in this situation, questioning if it’s something they deserve.
However, he ends with this sentiment: “But for you, I think you’re here for some other reason, and I don’t want to be around you…when you find out.” Will we play the character being interrogated, and if so, will we be the real monster in Townfall? Again, I can’t say for sure, but themes of psychological horror and internal trauma are cornerstones of Silent Hill and so playing as a monster wouldn’t be surprising.