Silent Hill 2 by Mike Drucker
Release Date: January 26, 2021
A troubled man travels to a mysterious town from his past after receiving a letter from his wife... who's been dead for years. And while our "hero" explores dark corridors and battles countless disturbing enemies, his journey offers more psychological horror than survival horror. Welcome to Silent Hill, where the monster is you.
Silent Hill 2 doubles down on what made the first game so compelling: The feeling of being lost in a foggy, upside-down town as unsettling as it is familiar. Nearly two decades after first experiencing Silent Hill 2, writer and comedian Mike Drucker returns to its dark depths to explore how this bold video game delivers an experience that is tense, nightmarish, and anything but fun.
With an in-depth and highly personal study of its tragic cast of characters, and a critical examination of developer Konami’s world design and uneven marketing strategy, Drucker examines how Silent Hill 2 forces its players to grapple with the fact that very real-world terrors of trauma, abuse, shame, and guilt are far more threatening than any pyramid-headed monster could ever be.
Mike Drucker is a writer and comedian living in New York City. His writing has appeared in games published by both Sony and Nintendo, including his localization work on Kid Icarus: Uprising. He is the co-head writer for Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, and he's previously written for The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Adam Ruins Everything, Bill Nye Saves the World, and The President Show.
"The book reads like a breeze. [...] The book is an easy recommendation for any fan of Silent Hill 2, or anyone who is looking to read more about how games are capable of telling smaller, more personal tales by rejecting the traditional structures of the genre." - Bloody Disgusting
“Silent Hill 2 is worth reading even for people who have never played eponymous title. […] [Drucker's] wit, knowledge and insight kept me riveted." - The Denver Post
"Drucker shines a flashlight on things you may have overlooked. [...] if you’ve got fond memories of Silent Hill 2 or you just want to know about the fuss is all about, it’s a must-read." - GameSpew
"Drucker’s exploration of Silent Hill 2 is poignant. More than just cutting through the layers of fog that surround the game design, its characters, and reception, Drucker shares with us his own life experiences, giving Silent Hill 2 a tangible nature I never would have had from a YouTube breakdown or some forum post." - Max Frequency
Interview: Wisconsin Public Radio
More Reviews: Goodreads