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Forbidden Siren


Andy_Tanner
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Having read what was said here I decided that a rental was called for - and thankfully the local Blockbuster provided earlier tonight :unsure:

Upfront I should say that I'm a BIG Project Zero fan but I've not enjoyed any Silent Hill or Resi game - just so you know where I'm coming from.

First impressions are - sadly - of the ATROCIOUS voice acting. It's simply beyond belief that someone could have done this and said "that sounds OK" - it's sub Dick-van-Dyke/Mary Poppins and I suspect they employed 1 man and 1 woman and got them to 'throw voices' - including a dodgy Michael Caine impersonation FFS!!!!

Get into the game tho and the impression is of good atmosphere, good SFX and nice graphics - so on you go (gritting you teeth before each cutscene)...

The first level is simplistic and it does show off the clonky menu (the annoyance of which makes no reappearance in the next hour+ of play - at least not for me) - but otherwise it's also a nice example of what to expect - which is 'hide and shiver then run like hell!'.

A few more levels in - a few more ham-voiced cutscenes to spoil the atmos a bit - and I'm genuinely spooked - I simply don't see how you could not be really.

OK - you could sit there and say to yourself "It's just a game and I can always restart if I die" but I certainly can't think of a horror film which has grabbed me in the same way - it's just more 'affecting' when you're controlling characters than it is just watching them...

5-6 levels/stages in and the downsides which are becoming apparent tho - the 'trial and error' factor is high in places - and, like MGS, some small mistakes are 'game over - no chance' moments which adds to the frustration.

So it's not for everyone - especially not those who dislike games which rely on higher-than-average retry moments - but it's also highly impressive in places and has great atmosphere (when no-one is talking!)

If it had a decent dub/subtitles option - it would be something really special and I suspect I'd rank it alongside PZ as 'scariest game ever' (not above or below - alongside) and in the same league as Ico, Rez etc. in the 'games which do something special' department.

BUT

That dub really does serious damage to the atmos and so PZ remains the 'king of scares' IMO

As for buying it? Sorry Sony but I'm not paying for that dub - you cannot be rewarded for what you've done as it's close to a warcrime.

If you see-fit to produce a version with Asian actors speaking English or (preferrably) a Jap soundtrack with subtitles then let me know and I'll lash-the-cash but I simply CANNOT reward you for what you're wrought and I really can't recommend anyone else do so either.

Who's for a form-letter to sign and send to Sony demanding they sort this MESS out then?

JP

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I played this for an hour or so last night, with the intention of finding just what it is that peeps seem to like about this game...but sadly my first impressions remain, even though I really wanted to like it.

For example, the mission where you are the Prof with the gun with the bird.....know I spent 10 minutes sightjacking to see when I could run past the zombie on the roof with the rifle...and died. Then I thought sod it just run thru with the bird...voila, I took a bullet, but mission accomplished!!

Then the mission with the young guy who meets the bird whos dog has just died....I crept along, sightjacking as I went...then just got really bored, and whacked on PES3.

The thing is it could be a really tense, genuinely scary game, but the narrative keeps being broken, and the menu system takes you out of the game world all the time.."Shout", "Come here" etc.

I really hope they make a sequel though, and address the loads of major issues.

As it stands I am going to return this (even tho I don't want, as I really wanted this game to be special).

I just don't think stealth and horror mix very well.

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{quote}well, stealth and fear go hand in hand, which is what FS is all about. {quote}

Andy

Do you think there is actually anything wrong with this game at all?

Stealth and fear go hand in hand in the real world perhaps, but this is a video game, and it is not fun, enjoyable, or scary really.

SH3, PZ, adn RE are not stealthy at all....but they are fun and scary...no?

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{quote}well, stealth and fear go hand in hand, which is what FS is all about. {quote}

Andy

Do you think there is actually anything wrong with this game at all?

Stealth and fear go hand in hand in the real world perhaps, but this is a video game, and it is not fun, enjoyable, or scary really.

SH3, PZ, adn RE are not stealthy at all....but they are fun and scary...no?

do i think there's anything wrong with it? fundamentally, no. it's a very demanding at times uncompromising game but that's why i enjoy it. i like a challenge. it's a bit rough around the edge's but nothing game breaking.

as for stealth and fear i wasd referring to videogames. MGS, Splinter Cell, Manhunt. the fear and tension is high in all these titles.

i find FS both enjoyable and scary.

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Despite the fact that Professor Tamon Takeuchi looks like a porn star and the girl that hangs round with him sounds like a cockney, its a fucking good game. I am really getting into it now, BUT i do have some gripes with it so far.

1.) I would like to see something different to scare me other than them zombies.

2.) It does seem to be quite trial and error.

3.) The way you can be cruelly shot and killed by someone in one shot and you dont even know who it was.

Now thats all the hating on it im going to do.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I know I'm a little late with my comments, but having only just found the time to get into this game, I felt compelled to chip in my two cents - don't worry, I'll try and keep it brief.

The graphics are excellent. The only problem is that games of this type generally don't allow for a wow factor and as such, apart from the excellent character models, the rest can't help but be merely functional.

ooooo, the sound. The dubbing reminds me of the early 90's anime dubs, when it was all done on this side of the pond. It means I'm slightly more tolerant of it than others might be, but it still doesn't excuse the lack of a Japanese dub. Seeing as nearly everyone ever has made a point of this, don't expect Sony to be making this mistake again....I hope.

Gameplay and overall design strikes me as being very good. The sightjacking is inspired stuff, and is absolutely essential to getting through each time frame. Things are made even easier if you use the map in conjunction with the sightjacking, though I'm not saying you won't die occassionally.

Yeah, it might be trial and error to a certain extent, but no more than any other game really. As for the criticism of the level design, it suited me just fine. The almost episodic progession of the game makes it a far more pallatable experience, though it probably does detract from the fear factor.

But so far I'm liking it a lot. Comparing it to Project Zero isn't really fair: the design and objective of Siren is so far removed from established survival horror fare that I honestly do consider it a leap for the genre: Maybe it is as simple as getting from point A to point B in the short term, but the mystery behind the long term objective has me intrigued, and is probably why I'm still working through the game.

Now for the controversial bit, the one I'll probably get shot down for: I like Shenmue a lot. For me, Siren feels like an adaptation, or at least a retooling of the FREE system for survival horror, albeit lacking the marmite-esque menial tasks and abundant freedom provided by Shenmue. It's a story-driven game with a far wider scope for interaction - relative to the goals you need to achieve, of course.

So yeah, I'm quite chuffed with it really, poor dub aside. Did I say I was going to keep this short? <_<

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It's quite amusing how everyone here is getting stressed over the voice acting. Yet, if you head over to Gamespot they have a "hands on" of the game and comment on the "British" voiceover - how it suits the game, and that the localisation team have done a good job. Guess americans really do love a british accent?

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Can I just confirm, the only version of Siren that hasn't got shit dubbing is the original JPN version? Maybe if I shouted "osowagi san mi set hoa isha bet wa" over each line that might get me more into the flavour of things.

DVDs allow multiple languages and subtitles, why not games? Grrr

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I'm no expert, but I would've thought that would require more space on the DVD, or it somehow might compromise the games ability to fit onto a single DVD.

if it were the original Japanese dub and then just the region-specific dub, I think that would work.

think

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in a very broad sense, they can be compared.

Honestly though, if you've played both with any degree of scrutiny, you'd realise that other than attempting to be scary, they're completely different games in almost every other sense.

It isn't as though Siren has to be invalidated by comparing it to something that most people found enjoyable, especially when doing so is tenuous at best.

I'd guess I'm about half way through Siren now and I'm really enjoying it, certainly as much as project zero.

Both fabulous games doing the horror genre a service. I'd recommend both games be in your collection.

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how about if you don't compare it to Project Zero?

well, you can't really. You might be better off comparing to silent hill 3, maybe, but in terms of creepy scares, project zero is king. Forbidden siren is meant to be creepy/scary. So far, it's not. I have to compare it to project zero, like I compare every beatemup to vf4evo, because for me, it's the benchmark by which that genre should be judged.

Maybe idealistically, I'd like to consider each game on it's own merit, but currently I think very few games deserve such treatment and forbidden siren isn't one of them. This is pretty much because the atmosphere (unbroken by the dubbing in my case) simply doesn't match project zero's. The nature of the play makes me more distanced and analytical, thinking of approaches and routes to stay away from the scary stuff. Project zero doesn't let that happen. You can't avoid the frights.

Sure project zero does it's thing by ripping off ring as much as possible, but it works. Forbidden siren doesn't. At least so far. I've heard it gets creepier/scarier later on, but project zero freaked me out right from the beginning and I still fear continuing it. Even though I move around by rapidly tapping run so she kind of floats around with some crazy leg technique, which is hilarious, I can't break the tension at all.

Forbidden siren's tension isn't from the prospect of the game scaring you, it's from you not wanting to HAVE TO DO THE SAME FUCKING THING OVER AND OVER AGAIN.

What's more, creeping around that little village made me think how good a stealth peepingtom/underwear thief game could be. Think of the amorality! Rockstar would love it and so would breaksmith. And harvest. He fucking loved manhunt and it's rubbish.

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What's more, creeping around that little village made me think how good a stealth peepingtom/underwear thief game could be. Think of the amorality! Rockstar would love it and so would breaksmith. And harvest. He fucking loved manhunt and it's rubbish.

Whens it coming out? :P

To be honest though, I think that the instant death / repetition thing is really putting me off this now, the more I think about it. The instant death moments in SH3 really got on my tits, and I consider it a very poor gameplay element :/

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  • 1 year later...

I am PRECISELY two years too late, but fuck it. Do I look like I care? Just got this game today and...

I think it's crap.

It's a lesson in tedium and frustration.

Take the first doctor stage, it took me 4 deaths to FIND the car, another 3 deaths before I had memoised the way there, and a further 10 deaths before I decided to go to Gamefaqs.

Looks like... some guy called "Shunichiro" is going to have to hold my hand the entire way through this game, due to it being utterly crap in the design department. I hate trial and error games like this.

Also, sightjacking, while clever in theory, is rubbish in practice.

It takes MINUTES to sightjack and work out where said enemy is by watching their patterns. But it only takes SECONDS to run around, get killed, and then work out where everyone is.

Seriously, why would anyone bother with sightjacking, when it's simpler to get killed and restart, remembering where the enemies are. I don't feel like watching things for an hour, only to die at the end. Might as well get killed a few times and get a feel for the levels.

Bleugh!

Very dissapointed with this. And people wonder why I like retro? For the love of pies! This is another current gen dud that I've bought! Hell, if it wasn't for Skygunner, my PS2 would be useless.

Thankfully I've only lost £7 on it.

Oh, and the dub is as bad as "Mansion of Hidden Souls", in fact, I think they used the exact same actors. I'm serious, they sound the same.

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