After you finish Silent Hill 2 in the Letter From Silent Heaven Scenario (Main Scenario) you will be ranked on what you have done.
After you've beaten the game it will show your rank. Save your game, and next time you load your game, it will display your ranking. So load your game and press X. Then go to New Game to start another game with it remembering your rank.
The Ranking System
The following is what you're ranked on:
Action Level: The Action Level that you choose at the beginning of the game
Ten Star Ranking
This section is dedicated to getting a 10 star ranking and it's not that easy to do. First you must understand the basics:
When your rank is displayed there will be big stars along with little stars. Each big star is worth 1, and each little star is worth O.1. So if you have 7 big stars and 5 little stars, your rank is 7.5/10, or 75/100.
Action Level: Hard
You may be wondering about "Normal" and "Greatest Hits" above. "Normal" is for the normal version of Silent Hill 2, and "Greatest Hits" is for the Greatest Hits version.
2. Difficulty Levels
You must play on Hard Action Level and either Hard or Extra Riddle Level. You need to unlock Extra Riddle Level to play it first, but when it's unlocked you can play Extra. To play Extra, select Hard and Hard. Once you beat the game on Extra and select Hard the next time you play, it will be Hard instead of Extra. Once you beat the game again, you can play Extra Riddle Level the next time. When it's unlocked and you didn't play Extra Riddle Level last, select Hard and Hard, and you will be playing Extra Riddle Level. For more information on Extra Riddle Level, read it in the Extras section.
You must receive either the Dog or the Rebirth Ending. I strongly suggest you get the Dog Ending because it saves a lot of time and you won't have to fight the final two bosses. And the last boss will probably inflict a lot of damage. But before you go for the 10 star ranking, you have to have every ending (original version) or six out of seven endings (Greatest Hits). In your save file you can see which endings you have by pressing right or left. Find the screen with letters, which represent the endings you've received. Below is what each letter means:
L - Leave
* - Greatest Hits Version Only
You are limited to only 2 saves in the game so you should use them wisely. I strongly suggest you use the save points at the following locations:
5. Total Time
The time is probably the easiest part in getting a 10 star ranking. You have to beat the game in under 3 hours. But you can't just run through the game as you need to kill at least 150 enemies (half by fighting, half by shooting). You'll also need over 100 items, plus extra items, so you don't have to worry about getting far items, especially if they're really far. I'd recommend you do get the far away items, except for really far items like the Handgun Bullets at the northwest end of Nathan Avenue in West South Vale.
Your total items must be 140(+8) or more in the Greatest Hits version and 140(+7) or more in the Normal version. Along with collecting key items, you must get a lot of health items and ammo. Don't worry about going out of your way for items unless they are really far away. If you're wondering about the 140(+8), 140 represents regular items and (+8) represents the secret items. You must collect all the secret items. Their locations are:
* - Greatest Hits
You have to unlock all of these items first, so make sure you do. Find out how to unlock all of these items in the Extras section. Another important thing is that you can't use the extra weapons. If you do, you won't get ten stars.
You should try to get a lot of items for bragging rights. You only need 140 items but it's easy to get over 200. Get all items that are close and even some that are somewhat far away. To know where a lot of items are, including valuable ammo, you should play through the game in a practice run. Scout areas looking for items. You should also practice the bosses and other areas so you can beat them more easily.
A tip for finding items is to take note of where James is looking. His head will turn towards items. Don't mistake it for an item when he's looking at Maria or an alive enemy though.
7. Defeating Enemies
You must kill a total of at least 150 enemies, but you have to kill at least 75 by shooting and at least 75 by fighting. Killing by fighting is the easiest. Knock the enemy down with your weapon and kick them. To kill by shooting, you must shoot the enemy to death, which will require a lot more ammo. The only weapons you should use for killing normal enemies are the Handgun and Shotgun (with the exception of the first enemy).
During the first half of the game (beginning to end of the hospital), use the Handgun. Patient Demons, Mannequins and Nurses will require 4-5 shots to knock them down (rarely they make take 3). You won't have too much ammo in the apartments so you should kill all enemies by fighting. If you want, you can kill a few by fighting in the apartments. After you meet Maria, you should officially start killing by shooting. Be sure to count off your shots as you knock the enemy down and empty the rest of the clip into it while it's on the ground. Just after the tenth shot, let go of R2 and press Start to access the inventory quickly. Reload and go back to the game. Hold R2 and X right after exiting the inventory so you continue shooting at the enemy before it gets up. If you don't do this, it will most likely get up. Count off the shots again and repeat this strategy if necessary. When you think the enemy is going to die, slowly shoot until you hear the noise of the radio fade away. That's how you know the enemy is dead.
Once you reach the hospital, you can tone down and kill more enemies by fighting. The hospital is probably the worst part of the game and it's very likely you'll receive damage here. Nurses are the most threat here - don't get too close to them. A very important thing to do in the hospital is to collect a lot of Shotgun Shells for the upcoming streets, so be sure to do the Trick or Treat Box puzzle.
Exiting the hospital, you should have around 20 shooting kills, and around 40-50 fighting kills. The next segment of the game is where you should get the most kills, especially by shooting. Equip the Shotgun and kill every enemy you see. I got 56 shooting kills here and around 5 fighting kills. Try to get at least 40 or more shooting kills here and go out of your way a bit for items and to kill enemies. To kill by shooting with the Shotgun is much easier than with the Handgun. One good close range shot will knock
So run up to the enemy, shoot it down to the ground, shoot it again. If it gets up, shoot it again and it might die. If not, go up to it on the ground and shoot it. The average Nurse or Mannequin will die in 3-4 close range shots. With Mannequins, run right up to them and blast them to the ground. But with Nurses, go close but not in their range. Once they're on the ground, move up to them and shoot them on the ground. Let it get up and wait for it to be completely standing up, and shoot it again. If it's still alive, continue the above strategy. In certain situations, the enemy may take 2 shots to die - one standing, one on the ground. You can almost tell if this is going to happen. You need to do two perfect shots, which have to be done right in front of the enemy. That is why this is better and more common with Mannequins. If you can, try to approach Nurses from behind.
While killing enemies, keep track of the amount of enemies you've killed by fighting and shooting on a piece of paper or a notepad. Divide the page like so:
Use tally marks (|) for each enemy you kill in each section. Right after you kill it, write it down.
I highly recommend you do not use any melee weapons (with the exception of the first enemy). Therefore, don't kill any enemies on the streets before the apartments. I say this because they'll probably damage you, and using the plank is harder and requires more time.
Another issue is ammo. Be sure you have Bullet Adjust set to x3 in the Extra Options menu when you start. Although you will have triple the ammo, you still shouldn't kill many or any enemies by shooting at the beginning. Kill by fighting in the apartments. In cases where there are multiple enemies in other areas, knock down the closest enemy and kick it. If enemies are too close, try to knock them all down. Kill all of the enemies by fighting except for the last one. Kill the last by shooting. When there are enemies alone, try to kill them by shooting.
Be sure to do the Safe Combination Puzzle in Room 203 of Blue Creek. This will give you 120 Handgun Bullets. Try to get every pack of Handgun Bullets you can find in the game. Except at the west end of Nathan Avenue in West south Vale; it's way too far for one pack of Handgun Bullets. You should kill a lot of enemies by fighting in the hospital, but make sure Maria is out of the way so she doesn't die. You can be careful, or run to room S3 right after entering the hospital. Also be sure to do the Trick or Treat Puzzle in the hospital as it will give you 90 needed Shotgun Shells and 2 Ampoules.
The best firearm for killing by shooting is the Shotgun. When you don't have it you'll have to use the Handgun, which can be annoying. Late in the game, use the Handgun for fighting and the Shotgun for killing; however, the Shotgun is also good for fighting. As for the Hunting Rifle - get it but do not use it. It is awful for normal enemies. I don't recommend you use it at all since you won't play the last two bosses.
8. Boat Stage Time
You should practice this a lot until you are very good at it. Play on Hard Action Level and save it on the dock when you beat Eddie. To maneuver the boat, you will need to use both analog sticks. To move forward, rotate the left stick counter-clockwise and the right stick clockwise. To move to the right, rotate both sticks counter-clockwise. To move to the left, rotate both sticks clockwise. Each analog stick controls each oar. Turning one oar more slowly than the other will result in turning slower. This is great for turning slightly in a direction.
Once you know the controls, practice it a bit. You don't have to head for the light to practice, just try moving forward, turning left and right. Then use Soft Reset (Start + Select + L1 + R1) and load your game. This time go for the light. Use a watch or a stopwatch to count your time. If you're over 1m20s, start again. Even if you're really good at it, try it a few more times to master it. If you get down to a minute, that's awesome but you don't have to.
If you're having trouble with the controls, you may want to hold the controller in your lap and use the edge of your palms to rotate the analog sticks. If you use your thumbs, it may become tiring and may result in you screwing up or turning one faster than the other. Try not to worry and correct yourself.
Once you get in the boat, start turning to the right immediately. If you move forward, it may be harder to turn towards the light. Turn for a few seconds and then stop. Then head towards the light. You must practice this a lot to get really good at it.
9. Total Damage
This is the hardest part in getting a 10 star ranking. There is one boss fight that will inflict a lot of damage; Eddie. That is why you should save just before him and practice some strategies. The only other frustrating fight may be the Doorman. If you're not to good with strafing, use 2D control. For strategies on the bosses, check the Strategies section below.
Enough about boss fights, let's talk about normal enemy damage. A single attack by Patient Demons, Mannequins and Nurses won't hurt you too much, but you should always try your best to avoid it. An attack from any of these enemies will inflict around 5-15 damage points. It isn't much to be attacked once or a few times but it all adds up, along with bosses. You should be able to make it to the hospital without receiving damage. Stay away from all enemies on the streets before the apartments and keep your distance when shooting enemies in the apartments.
There are two parts on the street where a Patient Demon will come out from under a vehicle: the white van on Martin Street and the Jeep Cherokee on Katz Street near Neely Street. Stay away from those (for the white van, run close to the far wall).
Of course you want to try to keep health usage as low as possible, but to do that you'll have to be good at the game and not get hit too often. In the hospital, Pyramid Head will knock you off the roof, which is inevitable. This will bring you down to red health. Take advantage of this and don't use any health items until after you fall off. When this happens, use a First-Aid Kit. For other wounds, you'll want to use Health Drinks but not if you don't really need them. For large wounds, use First-Aid Kits. You shouldn't have to use too many of these.
I tried this again in another file and it wouldn't happen again. So if you ever manage to get this to happen, take advantage of it and try to make Pyramid Head get stuck. If you do so, wait in the other corner for the whole battle until he leaves.
Okay, now on to the actual strategy. At the beginning, back into the corner and wait for Pyramid Head to approach you (don't move). He should try to swipe you but it won't be close enough to you. After he does this, run to the other corner. Let him come over to you and dash to the other corner against the wall. He'll probably try to swipe you and should miss. Repeat this and he'll shortly stop trying to swipe you and he'll try to slay you. Stay against the wall and run to the other corner when you see him stop to lift up the knife over his head. Near the end of the battle, you may want to switch to 2D control if not using it. Because if you're in Pyramid Head's range when the siren goes off, he will most likely kill you because you can't move and dodge the attack easily. If using 2D, keep moving around and he probably won't even try to hit you. But if you're in the far corner (opposite of the door) and the siren goes off, you should be okay.
Never shoot the Doorman while it's getting up. It will do nothing and you'll waste valuable time required to get to the other side. Don't worry if the Doorman grabs you once, as it probably will happen.
There is also the Great Knife strategy but you'll most likely receive damage - Eddie will probably hit you and might shoot you. This will require two overhead downward swings or a few swipes so I don't recommend it; use the above strategy instead.
The second room is the hardest and you will receive damage; a lot of it too. At the beginning, Eddie will put up his Revolver so strafe behind the right meat rack. Equip the Shotgun and let Eddie come to you behind the meat rack. Blast him when he does and he should hit you. Let him move away a little bit and blast him again. He should start running towards you now and you should be able to shoot him again. Then he'll hit you. Although he's hitting you, this is a very good strategy. Being shot is terrible but you can still be shot and do well.
Run around the area and repeat this strategy. Each time you should shoot him twice and he should hit you once. Always go behind meat racks so he doesn't shoot you, and try not to move in the open too often.
You want to understand the damage as well. If Eddie shoots you, it will drain 25% of your health. You should be able to get shot eight times (200 pts in damage) and still get the 10 star ranking. Although you shouldn't get shot that many times from Eddie. It's better to let Eddie hit you then shoot you, of course. Staying close to him is good but far away is good as well so he can't really hit you.
Once Eddie starts hiding behind the meat racks, the battle is almost over. You'll need to shoot one or two good Shotgun shots at him to kill him. Sometimes you can shoot Eddie through the meat racks so do that if you can. This doesn't do much though. Move up to him so he comes out, and then blast him when he runs. If he's still alive, do it again and he should die.
The Hunting Rifle can also be good but its firing rate is so slow and it takes to long to ready and unready. You'll probably get shot a few times because of this. Thus I don't recommend it.
To give you an idea of how many hits and shots you should receive, I got hit by Eddie five or six times, and shot twice. That's around 100 points in damage, which is amazing. If you can do that or get close to that, you should be able to make the damage requirement.
Getting the Snake Coin
Pyramid Head in the Hospital basement
One time at the beginning of this part, I pushed Maria or made her move backwards by accident and then I ran around the corner and waited for Pyramid Head to appear behind Maria. But instead, only Pyramid Head was there and he was chasing me! I was totally surprised at this and sort of stunned so he stabbed me. I then started running down the hallway to realize that he was actually RUNNING after me. So I ran to the last straight and he started to walk and I made it to the elevator. That never happened in another file so I assume it was a glitch (it was the same file as the Pyramid Head apartments glitch).
Since that probably won't happen, equip the Handgun and unload a magazine into him when he first appears, then run to around the fenced-window area and shoot him 10 more times. Then run for the elevator. There is always the risk of killing Maria if she's close to you when shooting. Instead you can use the Steel Pipe to hit Pyramid Head, back up a bit, and hit him again. Repeat this until you reach the fenced-window area and run for it. Since this takes a while and you can be careful with the Handgun, I recommend the Handgun strategy.
Apparently you can run through the entire corridor without doing anything to Pyramid Head. But you can't hit any walls. I haven't really tried this though.
11. Puzzle Solutions
Clock Face: Set the hands to 9:10
Safe combination: Move to the first number, turn the dial right until the next number, left until the next number, and right until the last number. Roman numerals represent which numerical number they are and letters represent their number in the alphabet plus 9
Old Coin Desk:
"Louise" Box: Use the "Purple Bull" Key and the "Lapis Eye" Key. Enter the Examining Room 3 code on the button lock and enter the bloody wall code on the turning lock
Trick or Treat Box: Button order from top to bottom - 3, 1, 3
Roach Trap: Use the 6 possible combinations with the two or three illuminated numbers to open the door
Box of Faces: Use one of the following 12 combinations for the stairs to appear:
Briefcase: Use the Thinner on the picture on the bed and enter that code on the briefcase
Music Box: From left to right - Cinderella, Little Mermaid, Snow White
12. Hyper Spray
The Hyper Spray is a secret weapon that can be used to immobilize enemies for a brief amount of time. Fore more information on it, check out the weapons section. After you beat the Main Scenario in Silent Hill 2, you will receive a ranking. Your ranking affects the power and colour of your Hyper Spray. Here are the following colours and what rank you need to get them:
0-1.9 - Purple spray
To unlock the Hyper Spray, you must beat the game on Normal or Hard Action Level. It will then be inside the motorhome near the west end of Saul Street in East South Vale.