Silent Hill 2 Timeline

James got a letter. From a dead person. Oh dear.

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The Adversary
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by The Adversary »

Another reason why I’ve said SILENT HILL 2 occurs in 1994 is because of Amy Baldwin.

In her bedroom, there is a calendar for the month of November. The implication being this is the month she tragically died, ten years ago, according to Ernest. Looking further into it when developing my timeline, I discovered that, in the context of SILENT HILL 2 being set in the ‘90s, the closest time that November began on a Thursday was in 1984. So Amy died then, and ten years later Ernest is talking to Maria: 1994. And that’s when SH2 would have happened.

So I did a little more looking into that calendar. The previous two times November started on a Thursday (as the calendar depicts) are in 1979 and 1973.

Maybe you see where I’m going.

Ten years from 1973 is 1983. The same year the first camcorder was introduced, as Ryan just noted. And also the early ‘80s as Ito suggested.

And in that regard, technically Harry and James’ adventures could have taken place in the same year, also simultaneously with each other. Alessa was of course the catalyst for the Otherworld’s spread—maybe it was a perfect storm for James to have even received Mary’s preternatural letter.

It might also explain why the Sunderlands even treated Silent Hill as a tourist spot. It was before all the mysterious deaths and disappearances we learn about in the first entry, before Alessa’s power took over.

However! James filmed Mary in Lakeview Hotel three years prior to the events of the game. Or, in this scenario, 1980. There’s the rub.

It does also contradict the SH2-is-ten-years-before-THE ROOM statement. More like 18. So, next step is look into Frank’s official age. I don’t have my notes with me and can’t find anything official.

If SH2 is in 1983, that means James was born in 1954. Frank would likely be in his ‘70s if THE ROOM was in 2001.

Something else to consider is the television in room 312. It’s an old floor/box TV. Those were long out of use in the ‘90s, especially ones with independent channel/volume dials on the side. Sure, could be part of Lakeview Hotel’s antiquated charm—that’s what I always thought—or it could be top-of-the-line and totally experimental!

Maybe Ito considers 1986 “early-‘80s”? Oh, but then Amy’s calendar is off again. Maybe 1989? That’s the other time Amy’s calendar would coincide. But that’s definitely not early-‘80s.

Anyway. Something to think about it.

Also.

Still got it!
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by Droo »

Was Mary filmed three years before the events of the game? James' internal timeline of when she died was wildly off. Is it possible the videotape was made much closer in time to the events of SH2?

I don't take much significance in what kind of TV is in the hotel when James visits it in SH2. The hotel as we see it isn't how the hotel appears in real life. Just because it has antiquated TVs in it doesn't mean, to me, that it can't be taking place in 94.
"Oh yeah, I've been here before
I can see it with eyes closed
Shadows that look like blood
Dead as far as the mind goes
Fear that comes from my head
Lives in the mirror"
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by The Adversary »

We know James and Mary visited Silent Hill three years ago, so the scenario was always most likely when they visited and got sick was when "Mary died of that damn disease." Figuratively. And then James repressed his three years with his ill wife. Her doctor even says she has "three years at most" when asked how long she might have. His unreliability is still pretty consistent, it's just a lot of 3s.

And sure, the TV could just still be in use as part of Lakeview's antiquated charm. I'm just looking at all possibilities, again.

Goddammit.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by leftshoe18 »

The camcorder thing was brought up in this tweet: https://twitter.com/Mathayus1982/status ... 8130424832

Ito's response:
> I think what you said is right. I can agree with the point. > late 80's/90's design
>
> I said this before, but, at least, it was not the 90's.

So it looks like he immediately backtracked on the late 70's/early 80's thing.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by The Adversary »

Well at least I got 7 posts out of this and a renewed love of all the shit I used to do. I even started carrying my compendium around with me.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by RedPyramidScheme »

"Walter writes in his diary on Sundays, and 21 October, 2001 is a Sunday. The game also began development in 2001. It's always made the most sense."
With all due respect, this sort of sherlock holmsing can be unreliable. Something like that could have easily been an oversight, unless there is something in the game that directly places it in 2001.
in the context of SILENT HILL 2 being set in the ‘90s, the closest time that November began on a Thursday was in 1984
This gets passed around a lot, but I'm not certain the calendar does say "November '84." In both the game itself and every image I have seen, the text is incredibly small and a bit pixelated. It looks like it could say "November '84," but it looks like it could just as easily say "November" or some other date. Has anyone extracted the file?
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by The Adversary »

It doesn’t read November 1984, I’ve never said that. It just reads November. But you can clearly see that the month begins on a Thursday. And, looking at previous real-world calendars, that happens in 1984, 1979, and 1973 most recently, as previously noted, and we know SILENT HILL 2 happens 10 years later.

Call it “Sherlock Holmsing” all you want. It’s in-game evidence that can be used to determine the dates. If we just call it an error, then nothing in the series is reliable and everything can be called an oversight.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by NanayaShiki »

RedPyramidScheme wrote: With all due respect, this sort of sherlock holmsing can be unreliable. Something like that could have easily been an oversight, unless there is something in the game that directly places it in 2001.

This gets passed around a lot, but I'm not certain the calendar does say "November '84." In both the game itself and every image I have seen, the text is incredibly small and a bit pixelated. It looks like it could say "November '84," but it looks like it could just as easily say "November" or some other date. Has anyone extracted the file?
Personally, I'm of the opinion that things like in-game calendars and figuring out what year a dairy date matches up with is unreliable. Only because in the vast majority of games those types of assets never add up and aren't meant to be analyzed closely. I consider every video game universe to be different from reality anyway, since obviously those things don't happen in real life, so it doesn't bother me when things like calendars don't add up.

But there's also no way to prove that they aren't meant to be considered, especially in a game series like this. So there's really no point in telling someone not to analyze them. Adversary's timeline has always considered them, at the very least, and as I said earlier in this thread regardless of what the original intent of the original developers was, I think there's merit in having a timeline that considers EVERYTHING it possibly can.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by The Adversary »

If Walter's diary didn't coincide with the year the game was first in development, I'd probably consider it nothing. But it does, and it also works with what Henry says about James and Mary's disappearance, as well as supplementary material. When everything fits nicely together in a neat little package like that, it seems less of a coincidence more and more.

That and the DJ's calendar in SILENT HILL: DOWNPOUR also coincides with its year of development/release (2011). At some point it becomes something a little more deliberate.

And, hey, maybe I'm wrong. I don't think so, though. And the last team to develop/write an official entry in the series didn't seem to think so, either.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by RedPyramidScheme »

But there's also no way to prove that they aren't meant to be considered, especially in a game series like this. So there's really no point in telling someone not to analyze them. Adversary's timeline has always considered them, at the very least, and as I said earlier in this thread regardless of what the original intent of the original developers was, I think there's merit in having a timeline that considers EVERYTHING it possibly can.
I didn't say that the calendar wasn't meant to be analyzed closely. I asked if anyone has extracted the file, because it is claimed that it says "November '84" or "November 1984" when the text doesn't clearly say that in the game itself or in any screenshot (due to the small pixilated text). Can anyone prove that that's what it actually says? Because that calendar is the main reason fan timelines place SH2 in 1994.
Call it “Sherlock Holmsing” all you want. It’s in-game evidence that can be used to determine the dates. If we just call it an error, then nothing in the series is reliable and everything can be called an oversight.
I meant that this is a bit of a stretch and not really evidence of it being set in 2001 (or at the very least, it's loose evidence). I doubt that 2001 is the only time those dates aligned with those days in the last several decades. The developers chose not to put "2001" anywhere, so there's the very real probability that they used the days on a 2001 calendar only as a template if anything.

Do you have a source for the game being in active development in 2001? From what I understand, it began development a little bit after SH3, was heavily rushed with a smaller development team, and was announced in late-2003. Here is a source for it being rushed:

https://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/258 ... e_Room.php

It says that early pre-production began in 2001 and full development was in 2002.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by The Adversary »

>it is claimed that it says "November '84" or "November 1984" when the text doesn't clearly say that in the game itself<
Again, I have never claimed it reads "November '84." It reads "November" with 11 beneath that. November is the 11th month of the year.

>I doubt that 2001 is the only time those dates aligned with those days in the last several decades.<
You're right, it's not. However, using multiple other inferences we can establish 2001 because a) it has to occur not long after SILENT HILL 3 (2000) and b) a few years after SILENT HILL 2 (1994). All of which is in line with 2001.

It may very well have been a "template." And yet it still works with the timeline I've established as a whole. Funny, that.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by NanayaShiki »

RedPyramidScheme wrote:I didn't say that the calendar wasn't meant to be analyzed closely. I asked if anyone has extracted the file, because it is claimed that it says "November '84" or "November 1984" when the text doesn't clearly say that in the game itself or in any screenshot (due to the small pixilated text). Can anyone prove that that's what it actually says? Because that calendar is the main reason fan timelines place SH2 in 1994.
I was responding to your entire post, not specifically the calendar date thing.

Though I feel it's worth pointing out that I personally don't think "fan timelines" place SH2 in 1994 because the calendar says "November 84" (which is seems to not, as established here), but I think they do so because that's what Adversary's timeline said. From the beginning (or at least from 16 years ago), he's had the most comprehensive timeline that most people riff off of. As has also been said in this thread, it's something that even one of the lead writers of Downpour considered a guideline.

Not that I think there's no merit in challenging his timeline or presenting your own take on things, honest debates about theories is how some of the best threads in this forum's long history have come about. All I'm saying is that if I was shot down when I suggested he not let Masahiro Ito's tweets get to him, I don't think there's much to be gained from telling him not to sherlock holmes it up. The entire premise of his timeline (at least as far as I've always considered it since I joined here in 2009, years after he started it) is to include everything and consider everything important.

That said, I am perfectly content to sit back and watch people debate timeline stuff in here. I have my feelings on it, but I'm not an expert on the assets.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by Ryantology »

There are two calendars in the game, one of which depicts a November which coincides with November 1984, the other which depicts a May which coincides with 1994. Though, it's worth noting that these two calendars could also plausibly depict Nov. 1973 and May, 1983. But, James still wouldn't have had that camcorder in 1980.

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It's really difficult to ignore the fact that ten years -neatly- separates these two calendars, whichever sets of years you wish to believe they depict, especially when you consider that the November calendar was an asset added after the May calendar, rather than them being simultaneously used in the vanilla game, and for that reason alone, they should be treated as compelling evidence and not just meaningless coincidence.

Another detail which neatly dovetails with 1994 being the present day is this poster found in the room where Eddie is blowing chunks:

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This is clearly a poster of the Dallas Cowboys, showing Michael Irvin (88) and Larry Allen (73), who played in the Super Bowl in 1994 (and 1993, for that matter).
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by leftshoe18 »

Yeah the game undeniably takes place in the mid-90's with all of this extra stuff. Maybe Ito was referring to an earlier draft of the events or something when he said it took place in the 1980's? Or maybe that's how he envisioned it and the writers took it another way. Or something.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by Vixx »

My god, I've missed debates like this! Those were the days.

FWIW, it's very possible that someone quickly mocked up a "calendar asset" with no thoughts to the detail and had no idea we'd still be talking about it twenty years later. While I agree that many, many art assets and design choices are significant, I'm absolutely of the belief that sometimes people just make something quickly on a Friday afternoon without any further thoughts or symbolism, and one or both of these calendars might be just that...

Given Midwich was a straight rip from Kindergarten Cop to help the art team conceptualise an all-American elementary school, I think we have a tendency to put too much stock in stuff sometimes. :P

FTR, all signs point to the 1990s for me.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by Ryantology »

There's a (mostly) hidden lot in South Vale which has a few dozen copies of the Midwich school bus parked in it.

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I believe that whoever made and placed the art assets in this game, maybe wasn't thinking so deeply as establishing a timeframe for when the game takes place, but absolutely hid a lot of really cool details that you'd never notice playing on a PS2.
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by The Adversary »

While it may very well be true these calendars are quick throwaways someone tossed together in a few minutes, it doesn’t discount the relevance they hold in the grandish scheme of things. They neatly tie in with each other, and cooperate with the overall timeline suggested in later entries and supplementary material.

No sense in disregarding it. (8)

And, sure, it’s nice they provide further support for my own work, but if I found something that contradicted any of it I’d be the first to go rummaging through decades of notes (as I’ve been doing this past week or two) to make it work.

It’s something I’m pretty good at it. (8)
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Re: Silent Hill 2 Timeline

Post by JPS 79 »

I mainly based my theory of it taking place around 1990 to 1995 on the vehicles which you find around the town. I'm very interested in cars and motorcycles, so I pay close attention to those things. The most recent identifiable car seems to be a 1990 model year, according to the IGCD website.
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