SlothropX

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  1. Well, I personally think that there's no reason to take a black and white view of things. James projects most of the stuff, but I think it is reasonable to say that Eddie, Angela, and (likely) Laura aren't projections. Maria is a projection, but one with a nasty streak when James decides he doesn't need her anymore. I don't know where you get "Maria pretending to be Mary" from all of that. In that ending, James has accepted Maria, and so she has no reason to have a fake-Mary attack him. Fair enough. The only trick with Maria is that she isn't formed from another person as Lisa was, but instead by James's memories/desires/guilt. While Mary and Maria are "similar", they always regard each other as an entirely different person, actually as adversaries in most endings. That wouldn't make sense, if Maria had Mary's soul or somesuch.
  2. Developers do lots of things. It can be difficult to differentiate between hidden truths and playful devs. I mean, the UFO or dog endings are ignored, when it comes to canonical SH2, because they're obviously just silly. A poster in SH3 with the name of a char in SH2, while cute, has a similar lack of significance, in my opinion. And remember, these games are developed by relatively large groups of people, so a little joke by an environmental texture artist doesn't necessarily mean that the game's director had deep implications in mind. If the poster had shown up in SH2, then I'd agree fully. But in the same way Harry in the UFO doesn't change SH1, the poster doesn't really change SH2, in my opinion. But there is obviously no right answer here, and I respect the Maria/stripper theory as a possible explanation.
  3. I think that the distinction between the two options is rather slim. If Maria is acting on her own, but is created with a specific set of memories and desires, then it really isn't much different from being a puppet. It seems like the only reason Maria demonstrates "free will" at all in BFAW is that James is still distant, and her greater reason for being hasn't been called into focus yet. Another concept is that the single bullet in the revolver is for James, and that only her meeting with Ernest causes Maria to toss aside her "fate" of seeking revenge for a crime she only has vague memories of. The suicidal stripper theory works also, but I'm not too fond of it. I mean, if Maria were on some level a normal flesh-and-blood person, how is it she's killed repeatedly and comes back smiling? That she's a pure creation of the town in reaction to James's memories and guilt is a more acceptable proposition, in my opinion.
  4. Well, to clarify, the other half of why Maria was born of James's wish was to punish him for his repressed crime. So, Maria isn't a form of punishment consciously sent down against James, but rather his masochistic picking at the scab of denial. While the Old Gods do slumber in Silent Hill, we have no indication that they spend a lot of attention passing judgment on the who-smothered-whom details of mortal life. Rather, by the nature of the place, people create and battle their own personal demons. A somewhat fine point, maybe, but it ruins the entire point of the series when people personify the forces of Silent Hill, as if these ancient gods had nothing better to do than watch James on their demonic TVs for a few years, and decided that the feller needed to learn his-self a lesson. It destroys all of the psychological themes of the games to misconstrue that all of the events are orchestrated by an external entity. Well, other than the dog in the control room. But all of this should be pretty obvious. Can't we discuss some stickier points, like whether Laura was real or not? I'm in the real camp. She eats pizza with Eddie, while Maria makes lame excuses to avoid entering the bowling alley. Maria gets ill and has to stay behind right before James catches up to Laura, preventing them from meeting. We only have Maria's word that she chased Laura after the bowling alley. In summation, Maria maintains a pattern of avoiding interaction with anyone but James, while Laura is free to interact with anyone. Not iron-clad, but about the best relevant evidence I can find.
  5. You guys are getting weirdly complex. Maria dies in front of James repeatedly because she is a projection of his memories of Mary. She starts off as a fantasy, embodying all of the good things about Mary, but James can't keep her from also embodying Mary's darkness (implied illness, death, and attempts to make him feel guilty for not caring enough about her). Mary didn't create Maria, and doesn't "use" her for anything. From the "Maria" ending: Pretty clearly blaming James for creating Maria. In all of the other endings, Maria tries to convince James to accept her as a replacement for Mary. The only slight bit of evidence for some genuine connection between Mary and Maria is Maria's musing that she feels a strange desire to protect Laura (when James never knew about Laura). But then this could just as easily be chalked up to James's notion of how Mary/Maria would feel about a little girl in a dangerous situation. It could go either way, but all the other evidence points to Maria being created solely from James's fantasies and repressed nightmares.
  6. One thing that I've wondered about a lot is why the Silent Hill games are so scary. People who would yawn through your average survival-horror zombiefest end up having a morbid fascination about Silent Hill. Not many people have the same obsession with Raccoon City, or whatever. I think it has to do with the fact that the games make a very apt point about the human condition. Everyone walks around in their own fog of anxieties and fears. People get so wrapped up in their own issues and misery that it sometimes seems hopeless for anyone to connect, much like the people in SH2 float in and out of each others' nightmarish realities, never really able to relate or communicate. Reality can be just as mutable for us, too, since things can have very different meanings for different people. What might just look like a normal house to everyone else would be a den of torment and self-loathing for an abused wife. A casual friend of mine could've caused horrible emotional trauma to someone in the past, giving her and I very different interpretations of the person. A book, a city, a day next week...everything has different meanings. We all live in different worlds. So the Silent Hill games really just add a bit of flesh to the fundamental disconnection in all of our lives. James, Angela, and Eddie would've been just as wrapped up in their own flawed existences outside of SH. The enshrouding fog and personal demons already existed, the forces of the town simply made them physical. It is a bleak view of humanity, but it obviously resonates well enough to terrify and fascinate most people. We all know the fog, and are afraid to admit that there could be monsters out there.
  7. Injury made us all cry. Meanie. I like everything about this, except the vocals can get buried by the piano at times. I'm using rather good headphones. Balance the two out a little and it would sound quite a bit better. Wonderful job.