10-Star Ranking Guide

This section uncovers the ranking system of Silent Hill, while dedicated to doing everything you can to achieve a perfect 10/10 score.

Contents

1. Ranking Overview
2. Requirements
3. Difficulty Mode
4. Game Clear
5. Ending
6. Saves
7. Continues
8. Total Time
9. Items
10. Defeating Enemies
11. Shooting Style
12. Walkthrough
13. Strategies
14. Puzzle Solutions
15. Hyper Blaster Upgrades

1. Ranking Overview

Below is an overview of every stat that will appear in your ranking screen at the end of the game.

Mode The difficulty level chosen at the start
Game clear How many times you've beaten the game
Ending The name of the current ending received
Saves How many times you saved your game
Continues How many times you used a continue
Total Time The total game clock time
Walking distance The total distance you walked
Running distance The total distance you ran
Items How many items (and extra items) collected
Defeated enemy by fighting How many enemies you killed by melee
Defeated enemy by shooting How many enemies you killed by firearms
Shooting style Your breakdown of shot types
     Short range shots % of shots from close range
     Middle range shots % of shots from medium range
     Long range shots % of shots from long rage
     No aiming shots % of shots that missed
---Your rank--- Your assessed ranking out of 10 (or 100) with large and small stars

To understand your ranking, it is displayed with large and small stars. Each large star is worth 1 and each small star 0.1, or you could see them as 10 and 1 on a 0-100 point scale. Therefore if you have 7 large stars and 5 small stars, your rank would be 7.5/10 or 75/100. Our goal here is to pump that up to 10/10 or 100/100.

What is your reward for doing so? Beyond the reward of the highest achievement in the game, you will unlock the most powerful weapon available. Read more in the Hyper Blaster Upgrades sub section below.

See below for the breakdown of where you stars will come from, specifically the max you can achieve for each category. Note that 10 small stars equal one large star.

Category Max Small Stars Awarded
Mode 0 stars
Game clear 10 stars
Ending 10 stars
Saves 5 stars
Continues 5 stars
Total Time 10 stars
Walking distance 0 stars
Running distance 0 stars
Items 20 stars
Defeated enemy by fighting
Defeated enemy by shooting
30 stars
Shooting style 10 stars
---Your rank--- 100 stars

2. Requirements

Below is an overview of every stat that will appear in your ranking screen at the end of the game.

Mode Hard*
Game clear 5 or more
Ending Good+
Saves 0-2
Continues 0-1
Total Time Under 1h 30m
Walking distance Doesn't Matter
Running distance Doesn't Matter
Items 150/204(+5) or more
Defeated enemy by fighting 100* or more
Defeated enemy by shooting 100* or more
Shooting style  
     Short range shots Aim for 0.30-0.45
     Middle range shots Aim for 0.35-0.60 (more = better)
     Long range shots Aim for 0.05-0.10 (more = better)
     No aiming shots Limit to ~0.10 or under (less = better)
---Your rank--- 10 LARGE GOLD STARS

To clarify, there is no firm requirement for fighting and shooting kills individually but instead it boils down to a convoluted formula that assesses them both together. I'll explain the full formula under the Defeating Enemies section below, but you require at least 200 total kills to achieve max stars for this category.

Kills in whichever category you have more of count less and less the more you have them, and so a relatively even distribution is necessary, or you'll instead have to compensate with proportionally more of one to make up for the lack of another. Instead, 100 and 100 is the simplest and easiest way to achieve your 200 kills and should be your target. Note that since shooting and fighting kills are judged together, either both or neither will be highlighted.

Perhaps an even more obtuse category is shooting style, which again comes down to a silly formula that I'll cover in that category below. But essentially short, middle and long shots are all increasingly valuable while no aiming (missed) shots are worth the most but have a negative value, capable of ruining your shooting style on its own.

Ultimately it mostly comes down to limiting no aiming shots to about 0.12 or 0.13 or below as the most important variable. In a random run you may overshoot this, but if you're mindful of your shots it's pretty simple to stay in the safe range of 0.05-0.10.

No points are awarded for your difficulty, although 5 are taken away for using Easy. But it's impossible to achieve 10 stars on Normal since you require 5 game clears and Next Fear accelerates your difficulty to Hard after one or two clears.

Also note that Silent Hill's game timer does not ever stop, even when the game is paused. So make sure the game has your undivided attention the whole way through, cause there's really not much margin for error.

There is also sometimes a glitch that displays your extra item number as +13 or +14 rather than the +5 or +6 you collected, but either way it will not affect your ranking in any way.

Note that there is no requirement for damage like there is in the later games, so all you need to do on that front is to survive and not run out of supplies. To make up for it however, you'll have a very small buffer to beat the game in under 90 minutes while killing 200 enemies, landing about 90% of your shots and making sure you don't miss too many items to hit 150, which is no automatic if you just rush through. But ultimately the most difficult thing I'd say is doing everything in the allotted time.

MY STATS:

Mode Hard
Game clear 7
Ending Good+
Saves 2
Continues 0
Total Time 1h 19m 0s
Walking distance 0.416km
Running distance 8.765km
Items 166/204(+6)
Defeated enemy by fighting 107
Defeated enemy by shooting 110
Shooting style  
     Short range shots 0.45
     Middle range shots 0.45
     Long range shots 0.06
     No aiming shots 0.04
---Your rank--- 10 LARGE GOLD STARS

These are my personal stats for my first 10-star ranking, achieved on my second attempt. My first attempt went smoothly and I felt I was quick but I ended up going over for time by 1m17s, giving me a 9.5 ranking while every other stat was maxed. In hindsight, I spent too much time killing more enemies and collecting 20 more items than needed, which I cleaned up a fair bit on the above attempt although still pushed a bit high in items due to not wanting to take the risk while not actually counting.

I can't stress how important it is to not waste too much time fighting enemies in trickier areas since there's more than enough throughout the game and time is really marginal. Consider skipping through occasional rooms with multiple enemies that may be difficult or time consuming to handle.

Both these runs were preceded by a practice run while getting the final ending (Bad) in that save file (it was well past my 7th clear overall). That ranking ultimately was an 8.4 while already ineligible for 10 stars with the Bad ending, but I also used 3 continues due to sloppy play, went over by 6+ minutes and collected just 142 items to my surprise, while entirely skipping the Kaufmann quest to be fair (to get the needed Bad ending in my file) and also fighting Cybil. But it certainly alerted me that it was a bit more difficult than I'd thought.

I can't recommend enough doing at least one or even multiple practice runs like this before officially going for 10 stars since it is no simple feat and requires total optimization of your route and strategies through the game. Save before the most difficult spots, including boss fights to try to limit your time (and damage taken if it's an issue for you). And do try to aim for 100+ kills in each category, 150 items and focus on limiting your missed shots and total time to get you in the groove for when it comes time to do it for real.

3. Difficulty Mode

No stars are awarded here (while 5 will be lost for using Easy), but due to the way Next Fear works, it's only possible to achieve a perfect ranking on Hard. This is because you need at least 5 game clears, which can only be done by using the Next Fear function, which ups your difficulty after each completion until the max of Hard.

So even if your first run is Easy, your second will be Normal and third will be Hard, with every run after that Hard. Therefore you must play a Next Fear on Hard to have any shot of 10 stars.

4. Game Clear

The requirement for game clears is 5, meaning you must have at least 4 before attempting a 10-star run. Every additional run after your first must be made with the Next Fear function in your save file to keep adding the clears together.

5. Ending

The Good+ ending provides the full 10 small stars for this category, while other endings do not. Therefore it is the only ending you can achieve a 10-star ranking with.

To achieve the Good+ ending, you must perform both optional side quests in full. That includes:

Quest 1: Finding the Vial (Good ending)

  1. Save Kaufmann by entering Annie's Bar in the Resort Area and get the Kaufmann Key he dropped on the floor.
  2. Enter the motel office from Weaver Street with the code 0886 and get the Magnet on the couch.
  3. Use the Kaufmann Key to enter room 3 in the parking lot, push the shelf and use the Magnet to get the Motorcycle Key.
  4. Use the Motorcycle Key to open the gas tank in the motel office garage and find the vial.

Quest 2: Saving Cybil (+ ending)

  1. Get the Plastic Bottle in the hospital Kitchen.
  2. Fill the Plastic Bottle with the Unknown Liquid at the back of the Director's Office.
  3. Use the Unknown Liquid at the start of the Cybil fight in the amusement park to save her (or on the first Larval Stalker there).

Note that you can skip Indian Runner during the Kaufmann quest since there are no needed items inside, although there are three items there to add to your total, if you have a time buffer and would like them.

Also be sure to pick up all items in the rooms you're forced to explore to add to your tally, including the two Health Drinks in Annie's Bar, Health Drink in motel room 3, plus the Health Drink and Shotgun Shells in the motel office garage. Same thing for the Health Drink in the hospital Kitchen when getting the Plastic Bottle.

6. Saves

You are allowed a maximum of 2 saves during your entire run to get the full points from this category. The most ideal locations to save would be the following:

  1. In the Infirmary just before fighting the Split Head Lizard in Nightmare School.
  2. In Alessa's bedroom right before the final boss in Nowhere.

These are the only two specific locations that pose some level of concentrated difficulty, making them ideal more or less by default.

Right before the Split Head is a perfect first location for a couple reasons. First, if your timing is off or the Split Head bumps you while trying to shoot its mouth, it can insta-kill you and ruin your entire run (although you can use one continue and reset from the start of Nightmare School). Additionally, the school is a tricky segment to get through with a lot of Grey Children that are easy to miss shots with or maybe even eat away lots of your health. So if you've done well in limiting no aim shots while also being quick for time, it's a great spot to lock your stats in.

Alessa's bedroom is a good final spot because the final boss is capable of killing you rather easily if you're not on top of your health, or if you don't have enough to last several lightning strikes which are insanely difficult to avoid on Hard.

That said, the final boss is fairly trivial if you do have enough health to just eat any potential attack and are responsible with your heals, even while just standing there trying to end it as quickly as possible. If that is your plan, which is totally a viable (and quicker) method, then by all means consider saving elsewhere. Just make sure you always heal asap during that battle to avoid death.

No one spot particularly stands out instead, but feel free to choose an area where you're not too confident about your speed, amount of enemies killed or damage taken (if you're marginal), or even a location that allows you to redo a whole section or more. Perhaps just before the Floatstinger boss, the end of the first sewers, in the boat cabin or the beginning of Nowhere are decent candidates.

But otherwise if no one other area stands out, I'd suggest just sticking with this one and playing it safe. You may be surprised how easy it is to be caught off guard and killed in the final boss fight simply by not healing at the right time. Saving right before avoids a stupid mistake like this costing you anything.

7. Continues

Surprisingly you are allowed one continue to still obtain the maximum stars for this category. Obviously you should aim for zero simply to not interrupt your run and it always looks better on the ranking screen, but if you do make a mistake, perhaps on the Split Head which is totally possible, you can just use a Continue and start from the beginning of the most recent area you started instead of resetting if you'd like.

Note that your play time also resets to what it was when you started that area, so it won't be counted twice and push you over. But again, try your best to aim for zero to keep your run as clean as possible, and so you don't lose track of your kill count if on top of it.

Always smartly manage your status and heal when your controller is vibrating. Heal whenever you're in your inventory to use certain items or change weapons to save time, but take action otherwise if you're hurting. It's very easy to get ambushed and die in locations like the school for example. If you ever sense you're just about to die and get grabbed or hit, immediately enter your inventory and heal, even during an attack grapple. It could very well save your life.

8. Total Time

Unlike later games in the series, this one is pretty tight with a limit of 1h30m for the max points. 1h30m on its own isn't too bad, but while killing 200+ enemies, limiting missed shots and collecting 150 items, it's really marginal. Therefore it's super important to optimize your run by deciding in which spots are not worth killing time-consuming enemies or collecting items just a bit too far out of the way.

To make things worse, the timer in this game does not ever stop, including when in your inventory, watching cutscenes, and even when the game is paused with the Start button. There's simply no way to stop it, although it doesn't include loading times and will ultimately be about 30 minutes shorter than a real time clock. That means a successful 1h20m-1h30m run will take you about 1h50m to 2 hours of real time.

Always skip every skippable scene and avoid leaving the game idle for any length or it will add up. Yes, that includes getting a washroom break in before starting if we're to cover all bases. Beyond that you do not want any interruptions whatsoever. This game's 10-star run is a total marathon that requires your undivided attention from start to finish for about 2 hours, so do not leave any box unchecked.

Note that the nonstop timer also makes regular tallying with a notepad impractical since all those mere seconds will add up very quickly. Instead consider using a laptop with a notepad application that you can edit very quickly, either during door transitions or while running straight down empty hallways. Use your free hand as you move Harry with the other, without losing any time.

So how do you limit your time to under 90 minutes while performing the rest of the tasks? First you will need a very good understanding of the game and where to go at all times. Any time spent reading a walkthrough you likely cannot afford, while quick reference maps are probably the best solution if there's a few things you need a reminder for.

Doing some practice runs is pretty well mandatory for maximizing your efficiency, as even if you know exactly where to go you can still go over due to too much time lost fighting and collecting items.

Also I can't really stress enough how important it is to not kill too many enemies or collect too many items. On my first real run I went over by 1m17s, with 170 items and 110 and 116 kills. I wasn't counting items so I didn't know I was so high above, otherwise I could've skipped several items towards the end and reached the time, or killed less enemies even though my personal kill counts were off by about 5 each.

If counting, I suggest to stop going for fighting kills once you reach 101 or 102 as a small margin for error (rather than 105-110+), keeping in mind you're more likely to forget to add a kill than to mistakenly count extra kills.

Keep in mind bosses also count as shooting kills (assuming you're using the default strategies) and just as well to stop once you hit 101 or 102. There were a few cases where I didn't count enemies like Night Flutters I shot down but didn't see land and didn't know for sure if they died. You'll probably have a few cases like this to give you a bit of a buffer either way.

And while you may already have both counts achieved before the end, it may be more practical to kill certain enemies to clear out halls and avoid more lost time and damage. This is also why it may help to slow down your kill count so you achieve it during Nowhere rather than before, but only if you know there's enough enemies left to achieve it there. Better to leave it to no more than 10-15 kills needed there to play it safe. Don't worry though, I achieved my counts before Nowhere and I did fine. I just decided to kill only the enemies in my way from then on, particularly the Stalkers and only some of them.

Consider skipping items that are too far out of the way, or avoid entering a room just for one unneeded item unless it's just a matter of a few extra seconds. Do make sure you get all or most of the Rifle ammo you can find since it's absolute gold after acquiring the gun around halfway. x6 bullet adjust should allow you to use it the rest of the way. Refer to the Walkthrough section below for all Rifle shell locations.

Also note that there is a glitch in the amusement park where you can use the Unknown Liquid on the first Larval Stalker that appears after climbing out of the sewers if you do it quickly. That way you can skip about a minute that it takes to reach Cybil.

Otherwise, consider looking at some maps or my walkthrough and seeing which items are worth getting and which ones aren't in terms of time. Feel free to map out a general plan or at least visualize what's best. I personally didn't count my items in my document alongside my kills, but that's always an option too, even if it may complicate things further.

9. Items

Regular Items
Your requirement of items is at least 150 plus 5 extra items, both awarding 10 stars each for max points. 150 includes anything like keys, other required items, plus health and ammo pickups. Because time is limited, you won't want to get too crazy by going too far to pick things up, but you will need to go to some rooms purely for items, since speeding through the game while aiming for only key items will net you well below 150.

Therefore it takes some hard thinking and application to hit the 150 threshold without wasting too much time, in addition to fighting enemies. Rooms that contain both enemies and items are great since you're adding to both counters at the same time. If you have to go too far out of the way and there are no enemies to kill either, perhaps it may not be ideal to go collect these items.

Also be sure to take advantage of locations where 3 or more items are located, even if it's inside a room or area you normally wouldn't access or think of. Some locations include:

  • Convenience Store: 4 health items plus the extra Channeling Stone.
  • Nightmare School 2F Boy's Washroom (warp first): 3 ammo pickups.
  • Nightmare School Basement Storage: 2 Shotgun Shells, 1 Ampoule.
  • Nightmare Hospital 1F Vending Machine: 3 Health Drinks.
  • Sewers (to Resort Area) northwest end: 3 items right side, 1 on left.
  • Sewers (to Amusement Park) southwest: 1 plus 2 items at 2nd intersection.

The Convenience Store is somewhat out of the way and you can skip one extra item so it's not compulsory, but the four other items makes it a solid trip. And don't forget the vending machine by the elevator in Nightmare Hospital -- it gives no visual clue but contains 3 Health Drinks if you check it, while directly on your route anyway.

Extra Items
As for the bracketed number, that means how many extra weapons and items you've collected, of which there are six in the entire game. Note that you can skip one of them since you only require +5, but aiming for all 6 is easy enough anyway. Find them in the following locations and order.

  • Hyper Blaster - In your inventory from the start after having previously acquired the UFO ending.
  • Channeling Stone - On the counter of the Convenience Store at the corner of Bachman and Finney in Old Silent Hill.
  • Katana - In the secret side room of the Levin Street home with the Keys for Eclipse, Old Silent Hill.
  • Chainsaw - In the smashed display window of Cut-Rite Chain Saws on Bloch Street in Old Silent Hill. Will not require the Gasoline Tank to pick it up as long as you got it in a previous run.
  • Gasoline Tank - In the Gas Station garage on Bloch Street in Old Silent Hill. Shouldn't be needed to power anything in a 5th or later run but it still counts as an extra item.
  • Rock Drill - In the dark bottom room of the Bloch Street Bridge Control Room. Will not require the Gasoline Tank to pick it up as long as you got it in a previous run.

Yes, the Hyper Blaster counts even though you do nothing to acquire it in-game. And if you really want to skip one for time, the Channeling Stone may seem ideal since it's a bit out of the way. However the store also contains four health items, upping your item count and giving you health which can go by quickly. So I recommend taking the trip, but it's your call either way.

Also note that using any of these weapons will potentially detract from your score. You technically can use them a bit if you have enough game clears oddly enough, and there's another convoluted formula to calculate this, but I suggest just forgetting about them entirely.

10. Defeating Enemies

If you don't care to know about the exact formula for required kills, all you need to know is you need at least 200 kills -- the most efficient way to do this is to achieve 100 shooting and 100 fighting (melee) kills, but it's important you stick to those numbers or anything higher.

If you're satisfied, you can aim for that and skip the next formula bit without worrying about it, but be sure to give it a read if you plan to make or allow for any modification to this distribution, or if you're just plain curious.

Understanding the Kills Formula
This is where things start to get convoluted and you may need to pull out a calculator if you want to veer off the 100/100 path. For some odd reason, Team Silent didn't go with hard values here but instead the following formulas:

A = Melee Kills / 5
B = Shooting Kills / 5

If Shooting Kills > Melee Kills: Stars = (A + B/2)
If Melee Kills > Shooting Kills: Stars = (A/2 + B)
Max stars = 30
(If Shooting Kills = Melee Kills, use either formula)

Note that it puts both your kill types together to calculate your stars, so either both figures will be highlighted or neither will be.

It took me a bit of time and sampling to actually understand this formula but it's fairly straightforward. Let's go through a couple samples and test it out to see what works and what doesn't.

SAMPLE A:
100 Melee Kills
100 Shooting Kills

A = 100 / 5 = 20
B = 100 / 5 = 20

Stars = (20 + 20/2) = 30
         = (20/2 + 20) = 30

HIGHLIGHTED

SAMPLE B:
90 Melee Kills
110 Shooting Kills

A = 90 / 5 = 18
B = 110 / 5 = 22

Stars = (18 + 22/2) = 29

NOT HIGHLIGHTED

Sample A is the simplest and most efficient way to achieve 10 stars. As you can see, it awards exactly 30 stars, which is the max attainable in this category. I used both formulas to illustrate it doesn't matter which one you use when your figures match, but only one is needed there.

Sample B however has the player with the exact same amount of kills (200) but in different proportions. Note that the final score is 29/30 stars and thus a 10-star ranking is not attainable. This is because kills for the category you have more of are worth less. This is why it's inefficient to go for any other combo other than 100 and 100. But as shown below it can be done just as long as you know how to compensate.

SAMPLE C:
140 Melee Kills
80 Shooting Kills

A = 140 / 5 = 28
B = 80 / 5 = 16

Stars = (28/2 + 16) = 30

HIGHLIGHTED

SAMPLE D:
90 Melee Kills
120 Shooting Killss

A = 90 / 5 = 18
B = 120 / 5 = 24

Stars = (18 + 24/2) = 30

HIGHLIGHTED

Note that these are thresholds. So if 140 and 80 works, something higher like 160 and 85 will also work of course. If you do the math with those you'll end up with more than 30 stars, but it's capped so you can never achieve more than 30.

Feel free to go for whatever you want just as long as you understand how this formula works. But I suggest just sticking with 100 and 100 to avoid any unnecessary complication, especially since killing more than 200 enemies can potentially put you over time, which is already marginal. Furthermore, 100 and 100 is the target we'll be using throughout this guide.

Lastly, if you're really curious, there's a potential extra variable in the above formula that I kept out to keep it as simple as possible. You don't need to worry about it at all if not using extra weapons since it won't factor, but if so, understand that you're only allowed a number of uses depending on how many game clears you have. The Stars formula is still the exact same as above, but there's a new variable when calculating A and B, which is x as shown below.

A = Melee Kills / (5 + x)
B = Shooting Kills / (5 + x)

x = Attacks with Extra Weapons - (15 + Clear count * 5)

(x cannot be less than 0) (if no Extra Weapons used, x = 0)

Extra weapons means weapons only obtainable in a Next Fear run. Rather than fully getting into this one I'll just leave it at that. If you have enough game clears you can mess around a bit with extra weapons, but otherwise just forget about them and there's no more complication to your formulas.

"Shooting" vs "Fighting" Kills
Kills are divided into two categories. If a bullet provides the killing blow, that counts as a shooting kill. If a melee weapon or a kick is what snuffs out a life, that's a fighting kill. It doesn't matter at all if you shot an enemy that died by a kick or beat an enemy with a melee weapon that you then shot to death. Whatever kills the enemy is what matters.

How to Efficiently Count Your Kills
Normally when doing these runs in the Silent Hill games I recommend drawing a chart and dividing it into two categories of fighting and shooting to add tallies after each kill. The problem with this is that even if you pause the game with Start, the game timer never stops, a problem unique to this game. Additionally, it has the lowest required clear time of 1h30m so things are certainly tight to begin with and I just can't recommend wasting all that time tallying things down all the time.

Instead however, I recommend using a laptop with a notepad application in front of you that you can quickly edit during door transitions or simultaneously while running down empty hallways without losing time. Say you start off with 3 kills in the streets, while running a 10-20+ second stretch, turn to your document and type "3" with your free hand. Then you get 2 more fighting kills and 2 shooting kills, delete the "3" and write "5", then write "2" under it like so:

5

2

Keep updating this while running through the streets, empty hallways, or during door transitions. Mentally keep track of kills in your head until you're able to find time to type them. Adding anything else like "fighting" or "shooting" labels I just find unnecessary and can add more complication where it's not needed, since it's much easier to use the arrows to scroll and delete numbers rather than scroll through unnecessary words in these brief moments you'll have. But find whatever works for you.

Do make sure you don't waste time updating this document by standing still or pausing the game. If you need to wait another minute or two to update your document, that's fine. Just keep a mental reminder in your head of how many kills you need to add to your current numbers until then.

Do fighting on top since that one's the priority at first and will be the most of your kills in the early going. Work on getting it to 100 before officially turning to shooting kills, while a handful of shooting kills before then are fine and may inadvertently happen. But say if you have 95 fighting kills and only 5-10 shooting kills at some point, that's totally fine and really the way to go anyway.

If you have the spare moments, consider also jotting down your kills once you hit certain key areas just for later reference (eg: "78-6"). Or say when you save your game in case you screw up and have to reload your save and otherwise would have no idea how many kills you'd need to subtract from each. Just try not to let this document consume you, remembering it's only there to quickly help you rather that distract you too much.

Killing Each Enemy Type
How you approach each enemy type will different. Note that while taking damage even regularly is fine and fairly normal (at least until you've had enough practice), you shouldn't quite be struggling to survive the journey entirely. How you're killing enemies should depend mostly on minimizing time and limiting missed shots to an absolute minimum.

Below you'll find strategies for dealing with each enemy. Note that not one suggests using the Shotgun because its wide blast radius will raise your no aim shots too much, which is a shame cause it's a great weapon that would give you an easier time. But you cannot afford ruining your shooting style with it, outside of boss fights (most specifically the Split Head and Twinfeeler).

Air Screamer/Night Flutter:
These guys can be a pain to kill for time and for missing shots since they fly all over. Therefore I honestly suggest avoiding them almost entirely by not wasting your time nor risking missed shots with them, at least when flying. In cases where you find them standing upright or hovering right ahead of you and easy enough to hit, 5-6 Handgun blasts will suffice. Kill them with a kick once dropped or another couple bullets. Once you acquire the Rifle you can reconsider shooting them while flying due to its superior range and accuracy, but don't get too crazy with it. Try to stick to the ones not flying super fast, unless you can get the drop on them quickly. One or two shots should kill them, sometimes requiring an additional shell while downed.

Groaner/Wormhead:
These guys will drop in 2-4 Handgun shots most of the time. If shot at when jumping at you, they'll often go down in 2 shots. They're fairly aggressive though so aim at them and back up to potentially avoid a lunge while you're shooting. Try to aim before getting too close since they move quickly, but don't shoot too early and miss. Go for the quick kick once down or shoot another couple times. The Rifle can deal with them nicely later on in 1-2 shells.

Grey Child:
Grey Children drop in around 5-6 Handgun shots. Since the school is so dark and Harry's aim is poor, together with their short height, it's easy to miss the occasional shot on them. Therefore try to shoot them from up close and sometimes avoid taking 3-4 shots at full speed, since a small break might prevent a missed shot sometimes. Knock them down first then focus on kicking them when in groups, while another 1-3 bullets will also do the job. When ambushed, try to first run to a safe spot and then attack one by one, although Harry will rather conveniently balance between 2-3 Grey Children if near each other. Sometimes it may be best to avoid fighting a ton of them at the same time since it wastes a lot of time if they keep getting back up. 2-3 together is fine, but 4-5 might be too time-consuming. With the Rifle, Grey Children will drop in 1-2 shots and may require another or a kick to kill.

Creeper:
These things are more annoying than anything, especially since they're regularly found in areas with more deadly Grey Children or Hanged Scratchers. 2 Handgun shots will kill them entirely, but one 1 shot and kick will also do the trick for a fighting kill. They move quickly though so when in groups, take a shot, run around and take another rather than staying in one spot. Try to shoot them quickly in areas with more menacing enemies so they don't make things worse. Later once you have the Rifle, 1 shot will kill them instantly. You should have the ammo to spare and it's not worth the time wasted to switch back to the Handgun.

Romper:
Consider avoiding these guys in some cases where they're found amongst patrolling Air Screamers/Night Flutters or even other Rompers who could interrupt and make things a nightmare. If found secluded, 4 Handgun bullets should down them while a kick or another 1-3 bullets should finish them off. Once you get the Rifle, things get a lot easier with 1-2 shots knocking them down and sometimes another to kill them. This way you can get quick kills from a much safer distance.

Pupper Nurse:
Nurses usually drop in 6-7 Handgun shots, although on some occasions may fall and immediately die in 3-4. Note that if you just blast them nonstop until they drop, they'll likely die immediately. But if you shoot them more slowly, perhaps just 5 or 6 times and wait for their recovery animation before the last shot, they will often drop but still remain alive for a kick. Unlike Grey Children, you can hit Nurses pretty accurately with the Handgun from a moderate distance, so take advantage of this to build up middle range shots. Note that Nurses get stunned every 3 or so shots, so if they're super close they can grab or slash you even if shooting them, while from a distance they won't make it to you. The Rifle becomes preferable once acquired to build up middle and long range shots more easily. It does tend to kill them by shooting but by that time you should be done with fighting kills.

Puppet Doctor:
Exactly the same as Nurses but just a little stronger, taking about 7-8 Handgun shots or a few Rifle shells. Shoot them more slowly as you reach the drop threshold to make sure you can get a fighting kill with the Handgun, while quick shooting will often be a shooting kill.

Hanged Scratcher:
These guys die from 2 Rifle shots and go down very slowly and weirdly, generally not requiring kicks or more ammo. Get used to their death animation so you know when you can move on, especially when knocking off the roof (2 hits and move on without waiting). Try to always take them on one by one and try to strafe away to get another shot if approached quickly. And use the Rifle's range whenever possible to get in quick shots. Their speed can really surprise you so don't underestimate them and don't get trapped. 5-6 Handgun shots can also down them while backing up to maintain distance, but the Rifle is more efficient.

Mumbler:
Mumblers will often drop from 2 Rifle shells, potentially requiring another or a kick. They move quickly so shoot from a farther range to stay clear. Alternatively you can use the Handgun with about 5-7 shots but the Rifle is more efficient (once you have it for PAL players), especially when they come in pairs or groups. You won't find too many of them, and only in the Sewers in the North American version. If things do get too crazy you can consider running past them. Use the Grey Children strategies for Mumblers in the School in the PAL version.

Stalker:
You'll only encounter a handful of these apparition-form Grey Children in Nowhere. They're hard to see so be careful and use the Rifle from a distance. You'll often have to have faith that you're aiming at them before shooting. Consider turning to the side and then aiming to make sure Harry is shifting to aim at them rather than shooting nothing. 1-2 shots should drop them while another or a kick will snuff them out. You can also use 5-6 Handgun bullets but it's less efficient and riskier due to their appearance and sneakiness. They only appear very late in the game, so if you have enough kills you can just ignore and run by (some of) them if you can manage it.

Bullet Adjust
Since you're required to kill so many enemies, with firearms being most efficient, it's basically compulsory to use bullet adjust. This function tops out at x6 after receiving all five endings and can be adjusted in the Extra Options menu. With x6 you will receive 90 Handgun bullets and 36 Shotgun and Rifle shells per pickup, which should be plenty enough to get you through the game with a lot to spare.

11. Shooting Style

Understanding the Shooting Style Formula
This is perhaps the most perplexing aspect of receiving a 10-star ranking in Silent Hill due to another ridiculous formula that awards points increasingly for close, middle and long range shots while adding a huge penalty for no aiming (missed) shots. This is the formula:

Short range shots = A
Middle range shots = B
Long range shots = C
No aiming Shots = D

Stars = (A * 10 + B * 20 + C * 30 - D * 40)
Max 10 stars / Min 0 stars

Note that all these stats are tied together, so they're either all highlighted or none are. As you can see, there's a huge penalty for missed shots, but how does that quantify? Let's go through some samples and see what works and what doesn't.

SAMPLE A:
Short range shots 0.45
Middle range shots 0.45
Long range shots 0.06
No aiming shots 0.04

HIGHLIGHTED

SAMPLE B:
Short range shots 0.33
Middle range shots 0.48
Long range shots 0.07
No aiming shots 0.12

HIGHLIGHTED

Sample A uses my actual stats from my 10-star ranking posted in the Requirements section. Sample B is a potential distribution that I just made up to illustrate cutting it close with no aiming shots. Let's take a look at these with the formulas.

SAMPLE A: 4.5 + 9 + 1.8 - 1.6 = 13.7 (10 stars)
SAMPLE B: 3.3 + 9.6 + 2.1 - 4.8 = 10.2 (10 stars)

Sample A isn't even close. Easily within the threshold since no aiming shots are kept to such a low amount, even despite having fairly low long range shots and a ton of short range shots, while pumped up middle range shots is great.

But see how close Sample B cuts it? If no aiming shots were 0.13 it would've brought the score down just enough to make 10 stars unattainable. Note that since we're working with the star system, there is never any rounding up -- you either have a full star or you don't have it. Even a score of 9.9 with the formula gets rounded down to 9 stars rather than up to 10.

Let's now take a look at two samples that don't make the cut:

SAMPLE C:
Short range shots 0.25
Middle range shots 0.50
Long range shots 0.10
No aiming shots 0.15

NOT HIGHLIGHTED

SAMPLE D:
Short range shots 0.65
Middle range shots 0.20
Long range shots 0.05
No aiming shots 0.10

NOT HIGHLIGHTED

SAMPLE C: 2.5 + 10 + 3 - 6 = 9.5 (9 stars)
SAMPLE D: 6.5 + 4 + 1.5 - 4 = 8 (8 stars)

Sample C does a great job getting a ton of middle range shots and a high amount of long range shots, but just look how no aiming shots destroys all that good work.

On the other hand, Sample D does a pretty good job at limiting no aiming shots to 0.10 which is fairly respectable, but there's just way too many short range shots and not enough distribution. If more time were spent converting some of those short range shots to middle range, plus maybe another point or two in long range, it surely would've eclipsed 10 stars.

While showing you Sample D might freak you out a bit, all it takes to avoid this is to make some general effort of extending your shots in at least in one major location like the hospital, which is perfect for this. Doing it in the school is the most difficult cause it's so easy to miss Grey Children, so don't panic as you build up short range shots there and just compensate later on.

General Guidance
Basically you want to maximize the amount of middle and long range shots you have while minimizing missed shots so that they're a rare occurrence. And while long shots are great, going for them puts you at risk of missing shots, so it's a tough tradeoff. Therefore your best bet is to aim for middle range shots more than anything.

The school is a tough spot to get too many kills past short range due to the darkness and the short Grey Children which can be easy to miss, but otherwise try your best to get in a good amount of mid-range shots. Do aim for a bit longer before shooting to give Harry increased accuracy, and always have your Flashlight on. In the hospital with Nurses is a great place to start driving up your middle range shots. Aim at them, make sure your first shot hits and then back up a bit to lock in these shots as middle range when possible.

Once the Rifle is acquired you can start going for more long range shots, but I suggest not getting carried away with it. Where you're going to win in this category is getting a lot of middle range shots (in addition to lots of easy short range shots), while getting too many missed shots is where you're going to lose it. So focus on middle range the most when you can help it, while the occasional long range Rifle shot is very welcome, but don't get too consumed by it.

As for putting a number on things, use this as a general guide:

Short range shots Aim for 0.30-0.45
Middle range shots  Aim for 0.35-0.50 or more
Long range shots Aim for 0.05-0.10 or more

No aiming shots

Aim for 0.10 or less

Getting even above 0.10 long range shots is great because those shots are worth the most, but it doesn't come easy and isn't really necessary anyway, while it may waste a bunch of time or cost you missed shots while trying. The most important thing is limiting no aiming (missed) shots.

A little trick you can do to pump up your long range shots is by shooting the final boss from one of the far corners of the room. Right at the start, turn around and run to the corner and fire off all your shots from there. I didn't do this in my actual run, but when I loaded my save just before and tried it I was able to improve my long range shots from 0.06 to 0.09 from that alone (almost a full star), so it makes a decent difference and can help you if needed.

You can sometimes still succeed with around 0.12 or 0.13 no aiming shots if you did really well with middle and long range shots, but once you've had enough practice it should be simple enough to be in the 0.05-0.10 range. You may also have way more short range shots than middle range shots and still make it if you've limited your no aiming shots to around 0.05 or less. But to be honest, as long as you limit no aiming shots to under 0.10 you pretty much don't have to worry about the rest of your stats. That's what's most important.

Avoid ever using the Shotgun outside of the Split Head and Twinfeeler fights since it will partially miss on the regular and drive up no aiming shots, making a perfect ranking out of reach. And try to restrict your use in those fights to super close range.

Lastly, using the Hyper Blaster during your run will drive up your no aiming shots. Too much and your no aiming shots will read as 1.00 with all other categories as 0.00, but your scores will be ruined well before that happens. While you may be allowed some extra weapon uses with enough game clears, using the Hyper Blaster at all can immediately disqualify your run with a significant rank reduction, so I'd recommend just forgetting about it entirely.

12. Walkthrough

This serves as a general walkthrough to push you in the right direction, pointing out some key ammo pickups, extra item reminders, and kill counts to aim for by certain areas.

Since there is no damage requirement and you must simply survive the adventure, you will be less stressed when facing enemies than say later games in the series. But that said, since time is tight you should always focusing on killing enemies quickly and efficiently, while picking up all items in a reasonable range.

Fighting kills are harder to come by since they require an additional kick and in many cases carefully avoiding another bullet or two before the enemy goes down, otherwise they may die by your bullets anyway.

Therefore your first priority is to reach 100 fighting kills even before going for a single shooting kill, which will also help you a bit more as you build up your ammo anyway. That said, it's totally fine if you get a bunch of shooting kills inadvertently, but otherwise you should aim to kick every single enemy in the first half or so of the game.

Streets Before School
REMINDER: Take a trip to the Convenience Store for the Channeling Stone, collecting the four other items there to get you off to a good start. Note that the Hyper Blaster will already be in your inventory if unlocked, making your extra item count +2 already if making this trip.

REMINDER: Although it tends to carry over, make sure you're using x6 bullet adjust before starting your run or picking up the first boxes of ammo.

After the first Air Screamer, you'll find another at the entrance of the Convenience Store on the bins by the door. Kill it quickly before it flies, snuffing it out with another bullet or two if you can't reach it for a fighting kill. It may also respawn on your way out. Remember that the Handgun will be your primary weapon until getting the Hunting Rifle, so be sure to pick up all ammo within reason.

From there get the first Eclipse key in the alley and then consider killing a few Groaners on the north side of Finney just above the alley as you make your way to the east bridge. From here, only bother with Air Screamers if they're on the ground or hovering right above and can be killed quickly. Otherwise they're too much of a hassle and not worth the time or the risk of missing.

REMINDER: Grab the Katana in the side room of the Levin Street house before exiting to the backyard. This will put you at +3 extra items.

Kill more Groaners by the Levin Street home and consider killing the Air Screamer quickly in the next alley so you can have an easier time and kill the Groaners there, but this can also be a hassle as well and there's plenty of other enemies in the game.

Kill two more Groaners by the entrance to Midwich, although sometimes an Air Screamer will intrude. Be quick and move on.

School
Inside the school, generally kill every Grey Child you see, but don't go out of your way. You don't need to enter side Classrooms that otherwise aren't necessary. Generally I'd suggest moving close to Grey Children while shooting to ensure your shots land, otherwise you'll miss too often. This will drive up your short range shots a bit but it's better than no aiming shots. You'll get a chance to get middle range shots in the hospital and later.

Killing 2-3 Grey Children at a time is perfectly manageable and efficient, 4 tends to be ok as well for the most part while sometimes tricky. But you may encounter 5 in a Classroom or two. You can kill them but honestly it wastes a lot of time balancing between them all since they'll keep getting up as you deal with others. And it's not like there's a shortage of enemies elsewhere. So consider just skipping through these rooms because time is tight at the end of the day.

REMINDER: Inside the Infirmary right before facing the Split Head boss is the recommended spot for your first save. Unlock the door by the 1F stairs while descending and pass through to the Reception hall to reach it. 25-30 minutes spent by this point is ideal. Any more and you may have a hard time staying under the rest of the way. Remember to record your kill counts at this exact moment in time in case you need to load from this save later on.

REMINDER: Be sure to get the Shotgun from the Boy's Washroom on 1F for the Split Head and use it there from close range (and the Twinfeeler later), but do not use the Shotgun to fight any normal enemies, otherwise it will hurt your chances by inflating no aiming shots.

By the time you're through the school it's ideal to have about 70-80 kills, while any more is totally fine as well. Just don't waste too much time where not needed. If all your kills are fighting that's fine and even preferable, but I usually wound up with 5-10 or so shooting skills by the end of the school, not really by specific choice.

Streets Before Hospital
Continuing avoiding Air Screamers unless they're hovering in front of you and easily killable and get a few more Groaner kills on the way.

REMINDER: Pick up the Chainsaw at Cut-Rite Chain Saws, the Gasoline Tank in the Gas Station garage, and the Rock Drill in the bottom room of the Bridge Control Room, all on Bloch Street. This will put you at +6 extra items, one more than required. It's up to you if you wish to avoid one but I suggest just getting them all anyway.

The police station trip may not be worth the time, especially if you're a little behind on time, plus the Rompers and Air Screamers there can catch you off guard. Therefore making a beeline for the hospital is never a bad idea here.

Hospital
REMINDER: You will need to pick up a Plastic Bottle from the Kitchen and the Unknown Liquid from the Director's Office to use later.

Continue using the Handgun on everything, but focus on getting middle range shots on Nurses in the hospital. Lock on your aim from a medium range and fire away, potentially moving backward as you fire. You can also often land first hits from farther away, but sometimes it's good to ensure the first bullet hits before extending your range.

To make sure you get fighting kills with Nurses, slow down your shots as you near bullets 5-6-7, making sure you don't shoot any more bullets than necessary, otherwise they'll die by gunfire.

You should hit around 100 fighting kills at some point near the end of the Nightmare Hospital, but if you're at least close then you're still fine cause there's plenty more enemies. Leaving the hospital with something like 100-10 (fighting-shooting) will do you just fine, while anything like 100-25 is doable as well.

I'd suggest maybe getting a few insurance kills just to make sure, then officially switch over to shooting kills. Just blast away at Nurses and Doctors at full speed until they drop and they'll tend to die immediately upon dropping.

Streets Before Sewers
A few kills in the street can't hurt, but otherwise don't waste your time with Air Screamers. If you can isolate Rompers, go for it and be quick, but it's not totally necessary to kill them.

As soon as the shift happens to the nightmare world, run straight for the Town Center, get the items and ammo in the jewelry shop, fight the Twinfeeler (six close shots with the Shotgun) and grab the Hunting Rifle.

Now is where you should make the official switch over to the Hunting Rifle, and by now you should definitely have 100 fighting kills and be only going for shooting kills. If not, find the balance but it helps a lot to be able to just blast away the rest of the game.

Take note that Rifle shells come in a limited supply and therefore it's imperative to treat them like gold and make sure you pick up at least most of them if not all. All pickup locations for the rest of the game are listed below.

  • x2 (72): Silent Hill Town Center 2F Jewelry Store.
  • x1 (36): Nightmare Police Station.
  • x1 (36): Sewers (to Resort Area) northwest end left path.
  • x1 (36): Resort Area, demolished building after leaving sewers.
  • x1 (36): Indian Runner (if you choose to enter; can be skipped).
  • x1 (36): Resort Area, stairs at south of Sandford Street just before the bridge.
  • x1 (36): Lakeside Pier Boat Cabin.
  • x1 (36): Nowhere Jewelry Shop on second floor.

With these 9 pickups at x6 bullet adjust, that's 324 Rifle Shells, plenty enough to help you get a ton of shooting kills and remain fueled to the end of the game. You can frankly consider skipping the Indian Runner one which is maybe a bit out of the way and perhaps another, but they're all pretty close to your path.

As you traverse the Nightmare streets, use the Rifle to quickly aim and blast at creatures from a distance while boosting your long range shots a bit. You can even handle flying Night Flutters, but don't get carried away with it cause you don't want to miss or waste time.

Night Flutters, Wormheads and Rompers may require another shot or two when downed, so just be quick and move on.

Sewers Before Resort Area
Be quick down here and use your trusty Rifle to kill Scratchers and all Creepers. You could switch to the Handgun for Creepers but it wastes time and you really should have enough ammo if you collect all or most of the ammo mentioned above.

Snipe Scratchers from the roof whenever possible, and note that two shots is always good enough to kill them, so shoot twice and move on, regardless of their super slow falling or dying animations.

Streets Before Pier
Be sure to pick up the bundle of items in the destroyed building before proceeding. Kill all Groaners and Rompers seen in this area quickly with the Rifle, while some Air Screamers can't hurt as well if you can pull it off.

REMINDER: You will need to complete the side quest in this area to achieve the Good+ ending. Get the Kaufmann Key from Annie's Bar, the Magnet from the motel office (code: 0886), push the shelf inside motel room 3 to get the Motorcycle Key, then use it to open the motorcycle gas tank in the garage.

As soon as you shift into the nightmare realm, focus on getting quick Rifle kills and advancing all the way to the boat. Get the jump on the Rompers before they do you before the pier.

Pier to the Lighthouse
Things can get a little crazy here but again, focus on speed and quick kills. Kill the two Rompers on the first platform and the next two after returning to the pier from the side path. Don't worry about Night Flutters unless you're sure you can blast them. Kill the Groaners by the Lighthouse before going in and after coming out, then make your way back.

On your way to the sewers manhole, you can kill the Night Flutter nearby and the Groaners there too, but it can also overwhelm you and you may not need the kills either way, so just running straight to the ladder is always an option.

Sewers and Amusement Park
More Scratchers down here along with Mumblers. Blast them all from a distance and get in your finisher shots quickly if needed. If it gets crazy and you don't need the kills badly, running towards the end may be ideal, but otherwise the Rifle handles everything pretty quickly.

In the Amusement Park you may only see one Grey Child in the first section. You can search a bit for some others by the ferris wheel but I suggest staying focused on time. Run directly to Cybil after the first kill.

REMINDER: You must use the Unknown Liquid to save Cybil on the merry-go-round. Immediately when the fight starts, run right up to her and use it within range. You can also technically use it on the first Larval Stalker in the Amusement Park as a glitch if you desperately need to save some time. Either way, this will ensure you get the required Good+ ending, along with completing the earlier side quest.

Nowhere
By this point, anything like 100+ fighting kills and 85-90+ shooting kills is ideal. You may even be just a few away or have already met the requirements by now if you've been very aggressive so far. And that's fine, but there's enough enemies in Nowhere for 10-15 easy kills so you can pace yourself accordingly so that you get those final 10-15 kills here rather than elsewhere where it may be more time consuming.

If you're good to go already, consider running past Nurses but you'll probably want to kill the Stalkers that appear later on. They will essentially be your final chance for kills so make sure you've got 100+ in both categories before heading to the final boss.

Lastly, if you run out of Rifle ammo by Nowhere, switch to the Handgun and just make sure you get the Rifle ammo in the jewelry shop on the second floor and save at least 24-26 shells for the final boss.

Also be firm and avoid using the Shotgun as you hopefully have until now other than a couple boss fights. It's just too risky to use and drive up your no aiming shots.

REMINDER: Make sure to use your second save in Alessa's bedroom before facing the final boss. I suggest placing the five rites into the door first for convenience, and use a new file instead of overwriting your first save.

Remember if you want to drive up your long range shots by a few percent, just run to a far corner during the final boss and fire all your shots from there. Doing so can upgrade your long range shots by about 0.03, but it may depend on how many shots you've taken over the game.

If you end up overshooting on time, consider just loading from your first save and trying the rest again, especially if that save is 30 minutes or less into the game. Something in the 25-27 minute range is especially a great base to play with, assuming you've also tallied a good amount of kills. Just remember to record your kill counts for up to then so you know where you're at after loading.

Don't panic about the unskippable final cutscenes by the way since the timer stops as soon as the Incubus dies. Enjoy your ending as you'll have to be a bit patient to see your final score.

13. Strategies

Bosses

Split Head
With the Shotgun equipped, immediately run to the left side of the Split Head as it lunges and misses. Blast it from up close six times which will freeze it on the spot while full of rage, advancing to the next stage where it'll open its mouth.

Now stand right in front of its mouth and aim at it. Be ready and wait for it to open its mouth, then immediately start backing up while firing in its mouth. You should get off two shots before it freezes again. Simply repeat by standing right in front of it while aiming, then firing into its mouth as it opens while stepping back. After 5-6 mouth shots the fight will end.

The timing is important here and if you're too slow to move back, or if it bumps Harry just before opening its mouth you might get eaten and die in its insta-kill attack. So if you do get bumped or you've been too slow, do whatever you can to strafe to the side and escape asap, then try again. Otherwise, you'll have to rely on your save in the Infirmary, which is the ideal first save location for a 10-star run.

Twinfeeler
This one is extremely trivial. Immediately at the start, stand on the metal grate in the middle and wait for the larva to erupt to the surface. Even if you don't see it, as soon as you hear the sound of it coming up, run ahead or strafe to the side to avoid the acid it shoots, likely right where you were standing. Then when out of the way, because you stood on the grate it will slide over it and remain exposed for multiple seconds, allowing you to empty six Shotgun shells into it and end the fight that quickly.

Stand as close to it as you can to limit the Shotgun's blast radius for both max power and limiting no aim shots. Sometimes you may need him to erupt another time if you didn't get your shots in quickly enough, but just do the same trick on the grate of dodging as soon as it surfaces. Do not forget the Hunting Rifle on the wall in the extra time you have before the larva creates an exit for you, only after defeating it.

Floatstinger
You can choose whether you want to stay down below and be quick at avoiding attacks, or head up to the water tower to gain a little space. I recommend just saying below where you can end things most quickly.

Simply repeat the strategy of firing one Rifle shot and then strafing or running a few steps to another spot and firing again. Fire, run, fire, run, fire, run. Occasionally you may get hit by acid or kicked by its torso, but in general this strategy should help you avoid these attacks. Sometimes you may have time for 2-3 shots so by all means go for it, but be aware it can attack very quickly.

If you prefer the tower method, head up there to get a better view of the creature and create more distance. Run around until you've created a gap, then turn and shoot it 1-2 times and get right on the move to avoid any acid spit. Sometimes you can get in 3-4 shots perhaps, but otherwise limiting standstill time and moving a lot is the best way to avoid damage. With each strategy the Floatstinger should die after around 20 Rifle shots.

Parasitic Cybil
Immediately approach Cybil head on and use the Unknown Liquid from your inventory, negating the entire fight. Since you require the Good+ ending, this is the only method you can use for the fight, which is the fastest anyway. Do not forget the Unknown Liquid in the hospital or you will not get 10 stars.

Alternatively it is possible to bypass this fight and save a minute or so by using the Unknown Liquid on the first Larval Stalker in the amusement park if you're quick enough.

Incubus
Since avoiding lightning attacks in this fight can be downright ridiculous and insanely difficult, how you approach this fight may depend on how many health items you have and how much you care about avoiding damage. When limiting damage, first start the fight with the Rifle equipped before entering, then fire 5-6 shots from where you stand. Then immediately start running in an aggressive circle as the Incubus starts firing red lightning at you.

The more you can perfect your circle the more likely you are to avoid it, but understand it's very difficult and probably the single hardest thing in the game to do. If it does hit you, don't worry and simply enter your inventory immediately and heal to full health. Once you've fully-healed, you cannot take any more damage even if the strikes continue to hit you for a few more seconds (but make sure you have enough to survive the next set of strikes). This is key to the fight, especially if you're low on health. After avoiding the lightning or once it stops if hit, fire 4-6 more Rifle shots at the Incubus and repeat this strategy.

Now, if you have enough health to eat a few rounds of lightning strikes, you can forget about the running nonsense and just stand on the spot firing at the incubus to end the battle as quickly as possible. Do make sure to lower and re-raise your Rifle after the sixth shot each time to perform a magic reload. Whenever struck with lightning, immediately heal to full health and you will not take any more damage during the series of strikes.

Whatever your strategy, the Incubus will die after 24 Rifle shots. If somehow you fight the Incubator girl in bright white instead of the flying demon, you did not find Kaufmann's vial and will not be able to get 10 stars as a result. It is only achievable with the Good+ ending.

Other Strategies

Working Around Harry's Stumbles
For the most part you don't have to worry about bumping into doors too much like you do in later games since you can almost always just mash X to pass through a door in the middle of Harry's stumbles. Otherwise you can also angle Harry so that he's not facing the door head on to bypass the stumble if executed properly. You can also hold Square to initiate a walk a bit before doors with Walk/Run Control reversed (or release it with normal controls).

But what's more likely to be a bigger issue is Harry's stumbles while stopping from full speed movement, upon which he does some transitioning footwork while you lose direct control of him for a moment. This gives enemies, particularly Groaners and Wormheads in the streets, a perfect opportunity to lunge at you before you can do anything about it. Therefore I suggest stopping just a bit earlier in these cases to allow you to get the drop on them rather than the other way around.

Or perhaps even better, hold Square (with reverse Walk/Run control; release Square with normal) to transition directly into walking rather than full on stopping by releasing forward movement as you reach your target. That way you can immediately raise your weapon and start firing.

14. Puzzle Solutions

Here you will find quick reference solutions to all the puzzles in the game to help you on your run.

Piano Puzzle

Press the broken keys in the following order:

Valve Puzzle

  1. Turn the right valve twice left.
  2. Turn the left valve once right.

Plate Puzzle

Astrology Puzzle

  • Left Keypad: 6
  • Center Keypad: 4
  • Right Keypad: 8

The Grim Reaper's List

Enter the code "ALERT" into the keypad.

Light Puzzle

Unlocking only the left door is necessary. Camera is not needed.

15. Hyper Blaster Upgrades

After achieving the UFO ending you will unlock the secret Hyper Blaster, which is initially likely weaker than the Handgun. Increasing your ranking can change its laser colour and increase its power accordingly, with the most deadly version about the power of the Rifle serving as your ultimate reward for a 10-star ranking. This is how it all works:

  • 0.0-7.9/10 ranking: Red Blaster
  • 8.0-9.9/10 ranking: Yellow Blaster
  • 10/10 ranking: Green Blaster

After saving your ranking of 8/10 or higher, you'll see "HYPER BLASTER POWER UP" in the bottom right corner of the save menu, along with the colour you've unlocked, either yellow for 8.0-9.9 or green for 10 stars.

Sadly, these rewards are not permanent, and thus you will lose the Green Blaster after your next run if you don't post another perfect ranking (or even the Yellow if you score below 8). This is why it's always a good idea to save your clear data in separate slots so that you can always start another run with whichever Blaster you choose. Make sure you don't overwrite your Green Hyper Blaster save slot once acquired.

Note that using the Hyper Blaster during your 10-star run can immediately disqualify you with a huge rank reduction right off the top. But even beyond that, every Hyper Blaster shot counts as a no aim shot and so enough usage will keep worsening your stats. Over time, your no aim shots will become 1.00 with all other shooting stats 0.00, although your stats will be ruined well before then anyway. So simply avoid using it entirely on your run. You'll have all the time in the world to mess around with the best one when you're done.