As it’s been mentioned before exploring is probably my top favourite thing to do in a video game. Therefore design or style direction is crucial. It’s something I could talk about for days. It’s what I notice first and pay the most attention to in my titles. And that involves both the outdoor backgrounds, landscapes, the interior as well as menus, equipment, etc.
The reason I am always so drawn to it is probably because it requires a lot of creativity, skill in craft and imagination. It adds volumes to the atmosphere and makes my favourite activity- exploration- a dream. Games like Demon’s or Dark Souls both share the same about of care and attention to detail making the architecture and setting exeptional. Others like NieR, Ni no Kuni, Ico, Legend of Dragoon or Final Fantasy titles offer an entirely different but equally immersive approach.
Silent Hill 2 in my eyes has a solid number of beautifully designed enviroments, the indoor areas in particular. The levels go amazingly well together with the story and the mood of the entire game. Here’s a few stand-outs.