10-Star Ranking Guide

Here we will cover everything related to your ranking shown at the end of the game, including how to receive a perfect score of 10 stars.


01. Ranking Overview
02. Requirements
03. Difficulty Levels
04. Ending Type
05. Saves & Continues
06. Clear Time
07. Item & Extra Weapon Number
08. Defeating Enemies
09. Boss Kill Times
10. Total Damage
11. Rank Reduction
12. Walkthrough
13. Strategies
14. Puzzle Solutions
15. Extra Weapon Upgrades

01. Ranking Overview

Silent Hill 2 game result screen

After finishing the game you will see a screen full of stats which can be scrolled through. It includes the following stats.

Ending type Which ending you received this time
Action Level The Action Level you chose at the beginning of the game
Riddle Level The Riddle Level you chose at the beginning of the game
Clear Time The total game clock time
Split worm kill time How long it took you to kill the Split Worm
Missionary kill time How long it took you to kill the Missionary
Leonard kill time How long it took you to kill Leonard
Memory of Alessa kill time How long it took you to kill Alessa
The god kill time How long it took you to kill the God
Clear number The number of times you've finished the game
Save & continue number The amount of saves and continues you used
Item number How many items you collected
Extra weapon number* How many extra weapons you collected*
Defeated enemy by shooting How many enemies you killed by firearms
Defeated enemy by fighting How many enemies you killed by melee
Total Damage The total damage you received
Rank Reduction If you used an extra weapon* or beginner mode
RANK Your assessed ranking out of 10 (or 100) with large and small stars

* - Only in an Extra New Game

Note that your rank will be displayed with large and small stars. Each large star is worth 1 and each small star is worth 0.1. Or if using a 0-100 point scale they would be 10 and 1, respectively. So if you have 7 large stars and 5 small stars, your rank is 7.5/10 or 75/100. Our goal here will be to pump that up to a perfect 10/10 or 100/100.

Beyond the immense achievement itself, Your reward for a perfect ranking will be upgrades to two extra weapons. Read more in the final section of this 10-star guide.

Below is a breakdown of the entire ranking and what amount of stars you will receive for every possible result. Note that 10 small stars are equal to one large star.

Category Result - Small Stars Awarded
Ending Doesn't matter – NA
Action Level Easy – 1
Normal – 3
Hard/Extreme – 5
Riddle Level Easy – 1
Normal – 3
Hard – 5
Clear time Under 3 hours – 10
Under 4 hours – 5
Under 6 hours – 3
Under 8 hours – 2
Under 16 hours – 1
Over 16 hours – 0
Split worm kill time Under 2 minutes – 2
Under 4 minutes – 1
Over 4 minutes – 0
Missionary kill time Under 2 minutes – 2
Under 4 minutes – 1
Over 4 minutes – 0
Leonard kill time Under 3 minutes – 2
Under 5 minutes – 1
Over 5 minutes – 0
Memory of Alessa kill time Under 3 minutes – 2
Under 5 minutes – 1
Over 5 minutes – 0
The god kill time Under 8 minutes – 2
Under 10 minutes – 1
Over 10 minutes – 0
Clear number 1 – 1
2 – 3
3 or more – 5
Save & continue number 0–2 – 5
3–5 – 4
6–10 – 3
11–20 – 2
21–30 – 1
31 or more – 0
Item Number One star per 5 items – 1–20
Extra Weapon Number Beam Saber – 1
Flamethrower – 1
Gold Pipe – 1
Silver Pipe – 1
Unlimited Submachine Gun – 1
Defeated enemy by shooting One star per 5 enemies – 1–15
Defeated enemy by fighting One star per 5 enemies – 1–15
Total damage Under 500 points – 5
Under 1000 points – 4
Under 1500 points – 3
Under 2000 points – 2
Under 2500 points – 1
Over 2500 points – 0
Rank reduction Extra Weapon Used – -1
Beginner Mode Used – -15
RANK Total stars awarded – 0–100

02. Requirements

Ending type Normal/Possessed
Action Level Hard/Extreme 1-X
Riddle Level Hard
Clear time Under 3 hours
Split worm kill time Under 2 minutes
Missionary kill time Under 2 minutes
Leonard kill time Under 3 minutes
Memory of Alessa kill time Under 3 minutes
The god kill time Under 8 minutes
Clear number 3 or more
Save & continue number 0–2
Item number 100 or more
Defeated enemy by shooting 75 or more
Defeated enemy by fighting 75 or more
Total damage Under 500 pts
Rank reduction None

To clarify ending type, there is no amount of stars allotted for which ending you receive so it technically doesn't matter between Normal and Possessed. But Normal is the most reasonable one to achieve since Possessed would require at least 251 kills to reach 4000 points without going over 500 damage points.

While that is still possible, it leaves you open to more danger and more likely to take too much damage. Additionally, the Revenge ending requires an extra weapon to be used, doesn't have enough enemies and skips several mandatory bosses, eliminating it as an option entirely.

You may read elsewhere that you require 130 or some other amount of items, which is untrue since that category hands out 1 star per 5 items up to a max of 20. You can also see that I had 121 items in my 10-star run below, while I've tested the threshold and can confirm it awards max stars for 100. I can also verify 3h00m being the full time limit as well, not 2h30m, 2h40m or any other value that you may find elsewhere.

Note that since you must acquire all extra weapons (at least two clears) and to have at least three game clears, you can only achieve 10 stars in an Extra New Game and no earlier than your third time through the game. I'd recommend waiting at least until your fifth where you'll have x5 bullet adjust, but beyond that it requires a lot of skill that is frankly only obtained from many playthroughs.


Ending type Normal
Action Level Hard
Riddle Level Hard
Clear time 1h 59m 28s
Split worm kill time 1m 22s
Missionary kill time 55s
Leonard kill time 1m 07s
Memory of Alessa kill time 2m 11s
The god kill time 1m 21s
Clear number 14
Save & continue number 2
Item number 121
Extra weapon number 5
Defeated enemy by shooting 88
Defeated enemy by fighting 77
Total damage 295 pts

These are my personal stats for my first 10-star ranking, which I achieved on my second attempt. My first attempt was a 9.8 with me going about 300 points over in damage, and apparently I was 1 second over the Split Worm time, which wasn't true cause I timed it safely in the 1m50s range, but later learned the timer keeps going until the fade to white after the fight, making the Handgun strategy not worth it compared to the quicker Steel Pipe method.

Either way, my second run was much better and I'd learned from most of my mistakes. For the record, Memory of Alessa could've been much shorter but I was low on Shotgun ammo and wanted to save some for the Church so I used the Handgun when she walked away at times. In hindsight it wasn't really necessary and I would've been fine, but it was just some insurance. Also, this was done with the PC version so I was able to kill the God very quickly with the Katana, while it would've taken me another 4-5 minutes on PS2 with my strategy for that version.

Both these runs were also preceded by a practice run that I used to try multiple strategies for certain areas and each boss, intentionally saving before each of them and therefore not a real 10-star attempt. But this ranking ended up as a 9.5.

I wouldn't just lightly suggest doing a practice run with extra saves like this but rather say it's essentially mandatory and will help you a lot. Frankly the chance of you getting a perfect ranking on your first go without a practice run are close to zero. You could just keep doing 10-star runs until you achieve it but accepting the first one to be a throwaway where you try multiple strategies is a good idea in the long run and will likely streamline you to a pretty good first real attempt.

Practice on Hard/Hard and create a separate save before every boss fight or crucial area so you can practice as much as you wish, aiming to limit your damage received while also clearing each with enough time to spare (time yourself with a stopwatch).

Also be sure to go for the 75 shooting and fighting kills while trying your best to limit your damage to under 500 points to see how much work it all entails. Don't worry if you don't meet these requirements, but understand what you'll have to improve in your actual run.

03. Difficulty Levels

To achieve a perfect ranking you are required to play on Hard (or any Extreme) Action Level and Hard Riddle Level. You may consider going for 10 stars while playing the Extreme Action Levels, and while that's great if you can accomplish it, it'll certainly be more difficult than Hard. So for the most reasonable way to achieve it, stick to Hard unless you're genuinely able to rise up to the Extreme challenge.

To learn more about the Extreme Action Levels including how to unlock them, visit the Unlockables and Secrets section. But again, I recommend achieving 10 stars on Hard before upping the ante on any Extreme.

04. Ending Type

As mentioned in the requirements section, there is no allotment of stars awarded for your ending, so it technically doesn't matter which ending you receive. However Revenge is ruled out for skipping multiple bosses and not nearly having enough enemies to kill and even Possessed while possible requires you to kill a lot more enemies than otherwise necessary.

Therefore the only realistic ending for achieving a perfect ranking is the Normal ending. Either way, just play the game normally without even thinking about your ending and you'll be fine.

05. Saves & Continues

In order to meet the rank requirements, you must use two or fewer saves and continues. Since you shouldn't be dying and using a continue at all, that gives you two opportunities to save. Therefore I suggest you think wisely and plan out exactly where you want to save before you even start your run. Personally I would recommend the following spots:

  1. Daisy Villa Apartment hallway before fighting the Missionary.
  2. Nightmare Hospital room C4, just before Leonard. Ideal on PC.
    Alessa's bedroom just before the final boss in the Church, after unlocking the tarot door. Ideal on PS2.

The first save before the Missionary is always a perfect spot, halfway through the game with the craziness of the Hilltop Center behind you while right before a boss that can sometimes surprise you, and fairly close to the hospital which may be the toughest portion of the game for limiting damage. Therefore this spot is a one-size-fits-all, recommended for everyone. If you're really confident with the Missionary you could even save in the Reception of Brookhaven, but even when you've got that boss strategy down it can still throw you a curveball here and there so I'd advise just saving before it.

The second save depends more on which version you're playing and perhaps player confidence. In the PC version, the God becomes a trivial boss fight due to a safe zone to the right of her head that allows you to stay in position, dodge attacks and end the battle fairly quickly and easily with the Katana (read about it under Strategies). Meanwhile on PS2 there is no safe zone (perhaps it may be a frame rate thing) and she will have to be fought more traditionally, taking longer and with more risk for damage.

Therefore in the PC version it's really not necessary to save before the God, which should instead be more of a formality and give you some insurance by saving as soon as you clear the madness that is the hospital and right before Leonard, who isn't very difficult at all but can sometimes deliver a surprise hit or two. But more importantly, with the recommended overall strategy you'll be getting most of your kills in room M5 and the 2F patient wing of Brookhaven, so saving before Leonard locks in all that hard work and offers you a fairly safe path to the final boss.

Alternatively you can also save in room S3 on the third floor immediately at the start of Nightmare Hospital if you're unsure about getting through its craziest areas and want a shot at multiple attempts.

On PS2, it depends on how confident you are with the God, but I'd strongly suggest saving before her since it's got to be the single most challenging fight in the game and quite easy to be caught out by the fire or even an occasional arm swing. If you are super confident about it and can beat it safely within the 5-6 minute range, go ahead and save somewhere else if you wish, but it's still a big risk to take and I'd suggest playing it safe, especially since there's only a few semi-risky spots on the way through the Amusement Park and Church. Further, if you get your extra kills with the 2F hospital strategy you won't be spending much time in both areas afterward.

Either way, decide which spots make most sense for you and stick to them. And remember to avoid using the Continue option to load your game between deaths or retries as it will add a continue and push you over if using 2 saves.

06. Clear Time

Your total play time must be under 3 hours to achieve 10 stars, which is one of the simpler things in the whole process. Despite having to spend enough time killing at least 150 enemies, you should know the game well enough by now to beat it in 2-2.5 hours, allowing for a large safety buffer of 30-60 minutes or more.

While you shouldn't be stressing to beat the 3 hour limitation, keep focused on always directly running straight to the next objective, only detouring slightly for important items like ammo or to kill nearby enemies.

Note that the game timer in Silent Hill 3 stops when paused (Start button) while it does not when in your inventory. If you ever need to step away or think something over, always pause.

However, boss fight timers do not count time spent in the inventory so you won't need to stress while reloading or healing. Note that while inventory time is not reflected in boss clear times, it is reflected in your total clear time. So again, always pause if you need to take a break.

That said, be prepared with puzzle solutions beforehand, either written down or refer to the Puzzle Solutions section of this 10-star guide below as a quick and easy reference. That is unless you've already memorized them.

07. Item & Extra Weapon Number

With 1 star handed out per 5 items up to 20 stars total, your total item count must be at least 100, which shouldn't be any problem whatsoever and instead fairly automatic as long as you're not skipping items in or near your reach.

Key items and weapons make up around 60 items already, plus you'll be finding a ton of supplies between ammo, health and jerky. Pick up everything you see along with important pickups in side rooms like ammo and you'll easily reach even 120 items.

From there you can decide what you don't need in certain side rooms and ignore them for efficiency. For example, while you'll certainly want at least three Ampoules to max your stamina for three specific bosses, you can only take less than 500 points in damage so every single health item you find won't be necessary. That's because Ampoules, First-Aid Kits and Health Drinks recover 100, 50 and 25 points respectively.

That said, you don't really need to overthink it either and you don't have as massive of a buffer like you do in Silent Hill 2 with all the items around. Therefore I suggest picking up everything that you see while specifically remembering important ammo pickups for the Handgun, Shotgun and SMG.

You must also collect the five extra weapons to maximize the extra weapon rank. Note that these must be unlocked beforehand (read the Unlockables and Secrets section), then they can be found in the following locations on your 10-star run:

  • Unlimited Submachine Gun - On the boxes at the left end of the alley out the beginning washroom in Central Square
  • Beam Saber - The handle of the northwesternmost door in the north 2F corridor of Central Square.
  • Flamethrower - On the counter of Helen's Bakery while getting the Tongs, Central Square 2F.
  • Gold and Silver Pipes - Drop your Steel Pipe into the water in the monster room of the Underpass' lower level and answer honestly.

Another very important thing is that you must not use any of these extra weapons or you will be docked a point in your ranking. So don't even think of equipping them.

And while you may also have the Heather Beam unlocked, it does not count as an extra weapon number, but it will count as an extra weapon used via rank reduction. So stay away from it and always have a normal weapon equipped.

08. Defeating Enemies

As one of the more involving tasks in achieving a perfect ranking, you must kill at least 75 enemies by fighting and another 75 by shooting, with 1 star handed out per 5 kills in each category up to a max of 15 stars each and 30 total.

This means 75 must be defeated with bullets and another 75 must be defeated with a kick or melee blow. While I do suggest pulling out the Steel Pipe or Katana here and there as a finisher, you can rest assured you won't have to use a melee weapon as your primary weapon, unless you choose to. However melee is the recommended strategy for two boss fights.

Even so, killing enemies mostly with firearms will still put you in danger situations where you will be exposed to frequent enemy attacks, requiring a careful approach to each enemy, especially ones in groups. Read on below for a general guide for handling this aspect of your run, including keeping track of kills, controlling the kill types and enemy strategies, while the later Walkthrough section will serve as a general guide for balancing kills and progressing.

"Shooting" vs "Fighting" Kills

To clarify, a fighting kill is one where a melee hit or a kick delivers the killing blow, while a shooting kill is when the final blow is from a firearm, regardless of how you attacked the enemy beforehand. Note that while you can still kick enemies sometimes after death, it will not turn a shooting kill into a fighting one. But if the enemy is shot down and still scrambling when kicked, or blood pours out immediately following a kick, it will count as a fighting kill.

Note that unlike Silent Hill 1 and 2, you have less control over whether enemies die by shooting or fighting, especially with the Handgun which almost automatically kills enemies once they drop. Therefore it's even more important to stay on top of how many kills you have in each category and try to keep them as balanced as you can throughout.

With limited control though, you will likely have to play catchup with your fighting kills later in the game, but don't fret too much as the later game is more suited for fighting kills anyway.

Bosses also count as kills of whichever method you finish them with, so don't forget about them when keeping track. And for the record, all Stun Gun kills count as melee kills.

Keeping Track of Kills

To stay on top of your kill count in each category, I recommend grabbing a notepad and pen and creating a chart like so:

Upon killing solo enemies or clearing out hallways and rooms, take a brief moment to pause the game with Start (freezes the game timer) and mark down your kills depending on how each enemy died. I recommend using tally marks (|) so you can simply keep adding to them rather than constantly crossing out numbers. It's important to actually pause the game with Start, rather than entering your inventory with Select which does not stop the game timer (it does stop boss timers, however).

Alternatively, you can just use word document on a computer at your fingertips to constantly update your kill counts. Whichever works for you.

Since many enemies will die simply from gunfire as shooting kills whether you like it or not, consider regularly kicking downed enemies to death to keep the tally relatively even throughout. Or even it up the other way by shooting them to death if you're building up more fighting kills later on. And remember to count bosses however you kill them.

Try your best to keep fighting kills as close to shooting as you can (or even higher is great, but hard to do), but don't get too hung up on it as you can catch up later in the game, particularly the hospital, and it's fairly normal and expected to get a head start in shooting kills due to the Handgun's propensity to kill enemies when dropped.

Killing Each Enemy Type

Each enemy requires a unique approach to kill most efficiently, with some being better candidates for shooting kills and others fighting, also depending on the weapon used. Refer to below for the best way to kill each enemy.

Numb Bodies
5 Handgun bullets for normal size from medium range while backing up (shooting kill). 3rd bullet always stuns them so use it to your advantage if they're getting close. Dealing with them in the same room can be tough so try to run to the safest spot and also utilize the block function whenever they're about to headbutt you. Bigger ones take about 8-10 shots. Use the Shotgun for fighting kills on all sizes -- they'll usually drop after 1 or 2 shots and squirm until kicked to death. The Underpass is a great place to build some fighting kills this way, even with larger ones.

Double Heads
Ready your aim and let them jump at you as you block their attack and immediately counter blast with the Shotgun. Usually kills them in one shot. Without the Shotgun, use the Handgun (7-8 shots) from a distance, but always be sidestepping to avoid any lunges when closer. I suggest avoiding them in groups unless you can isolate them to another area. They'll almost always die upon dropping but if they're squirming, try to kick them 2-3 times for the fighting kill. Usually they'll get up after the second kick though, and likely die when dropped again.

13 Handgun shots while backing up for a shooting kill. Note you will have to reload but Heather can do so while moving. If contained in a smaller area, sidestep while firing and do not let them get too close. Alternatively if you want a fighting kill, shoot them 12 times and switch to the Steel Pipe or Katana for the final hit or two (thrust or downward swing), but first bait them into their lunge attack to make sure you have enough time and they don't get to do their spinning arms attack.

Avoid at all costs. The one exception is the one to the left of the Mountain Coaster stairs in the amusement park since it'll chase you up there. Pump it with the SMG as you pass it, saving at least a half clip or more for it. You may also consider killing others that pose a threat to you, such as one or two in the Church, but they're very difficult to kill without taking damage, so running is often your best bet.

Insane Cancers
Take way too much time and ammo to kill so don't bother under normal circumstances. If you need fighting kills in the Church, use the Stun Gun. Wait for them to get up, shock once to knock down, kick until they rise and repeat. Usually takes 3 shocks and many kicks before you'll hear their death note.

Use the Silenced Handgun from medium range, about 10-13 shots for a shooting kill, while liberally dropping jerky. For a fighting kill, shoot 4-5 times, reload and let them regroup after the head twitch and then shoot another 3-5 times and approach from the side to downward slice to death with the Katana (1-3 times). Avoid approaching from the front and even touching them from super close in case they're playing dead. Read more in the Nightmare Hilltop and Hospital Madness strategy in the Strategies section below for very specific details.

Use the Shotgun from close range for fairly reliable fighting kills, since they don't die after dropping the first time. Usually requires 1 blast (sometimes 2, rarely 3) and 4 kicks. Always kill revolver Nurses before others before they get a chance to shoot. Note Heather's aim may not be perfectly on target and you may have to manually adjust before shooting for best results. They'll almost always die after the second Shotgun drop, and the Handgun will also kill them immediately after dropping. When found in groups, always block first before blasting. Refer to the 2F Patient Wing and Room M5 strategy in the Strategies section below for more details.

1-2 Shotgun blasts for an easy kill. Usually they die from the blast but sometimes can be kicked for a fighting kill. Very simple but there's not too many of them to kill.

Bullet Adjust

With ammo already harder to come by, you'll be flying through it while killing so many enemies in your 10-star run to the point that it's really not practical without bullet adjust. I suggest you beat the game at least four times to unlock the maximum bullet adjust of x5, giving you 50 Handgun bullets, 30 Shotgun shells and 160 Submachine Gun bullets per pack.

This will help a ton to keep your weapons fueled, and particularly extends the mileage of the SMG from being a footnote to an actually helpful and reliable weapon, particularly to fight Leonard and also to potentially keep Slurpers and Nurses in check when desperate in the hospital. So use it wisely.

Always be sure to collect every box of ammo you can find, at least within reason without diverting too far off track, because running out of ammo even with bullet adjust is not beyond reason. You might be more than okay with the Handgun, but you may need every Shotgun shell you can find to hold you over.

Quick Reload

Always equip the ammo for the weapon you're using so you can reload with an R3 press at any time, without wasting time going into the inventory to reload there. However, only manually reload when away from enemies. If surrounded and you need a reload, be safe and use the inventory. But I can't stress how helpful and convenient it is to get in quick and easy reloads without breaking your pace in a menu every few seconds.

Note that once you equip a weapon's ammo while using it, it should automatically switch to the appropriate ammo if you switch weapons. But do remember to switch back to your ammo if you equip and use jerky.

09. Boss Kill Times

First of all, if you're looking for boss strategies, check the Strategies section below. This is just an overview of fighting bosses and understanding their time limits.

Each of the five boss fights has its own time limit to achieve a perfect ranking, listed below:

Split Worm 2 minutes
Missionary 2 minutes
Leonard 3 minutes
Memory of Alessa 3 minutes

The God

8 minutes

You must defeat each boss before the respective time has passed all while limiting damage to preserve your run, therefore it can pose quite a challenge. I recommend trying a practice run on Hard, saving before each boss and trying all the strategies in the Strategies section below mixed with any of your own.

Use a stopwatch or your phone to measure your time according to the limits above, retrying each boss until you're able to beat it in well under the allotted time while limiting damage taken. Use soft reset (Start + Select) to return to the main menu and redo bosses if you need more practice.

Important notes on timers:

  1. The boss timer stops while in your inventory.
  2. The overall game timer keeps counting while in your inventory.
  3. Both timers stop while paused (Start).
  4. Boss fight timers end not when the boss dies but when the game transitions out of gameplay and into the following cutscene, adding more time than you'd normally think.

Note number 4 as this is extremely important for the Split Worm. After killing this boss, you lose player control during the worm's death animation, but the timer keeps going all the way until it finishes fading up to white. Yes, this is absolutely ridiculous and adds around 10 extra seconds to your time in what can already be a difficult fight against the clock. It's clearly an unfortunate oversight. Always account for it when timing this fight or you may be surprised with a 9.9/10 ranking after all your hard work.

Additionally, the Missionary and Leonard fights add 2-3 seconds after their death notes, Memory of Alessa adds about 5 seconds, and the God ends as soon as you deliver the final blow. These last four fights shouldn't be a concern for time, while the Split Worm fight requires fairly efficient execution with the Steel Pipe method while making the Handgun method very difficult and rather inconsistent, perhaps not even worth relying on.

10. Total Damage

This is perhaps the most difficult task in achieving a 10-star ranking, which is limiting total damage received to under 500 points. Since there are so many annoying and aggressive enemies that you will have to attack and expose yourself to reach the kill requirements, 500 points of damage can go by in a hurry if you haven't mastered combat, an even more specifically blocking, a hugely important aspect to a perfect ranking that was not a part of previous games.

To understand damage, most enemies deliver attacks that inflict anywhere from 5-30 points of damage. Larger enemies like the Closer can inflict even more, from 25-40 points, but these guys are slow enough that they shouldn't be a concern. Small enemies like Numb Bodies and Double Heads generally inflict around 5-10 per hit (while grab attacks can do up to 30 or more in a hurry if you're not quick to shake off), with others dishing out 10-20.

To stay on top of damage received, you can turn on the Life Display from the Extra Options once it's unlocked from completing the game on Hard Action Level. Note that a full health bar on Hard is 100 points, so use that as the basis. Additionally, Health Drinks, First-Aid Kits and Ampoules recover 25, 50 and 100 points respectively, so you can also go off this to keep track of your damage points by what you use to recover your wounds, within just a small margin of error.

While defeating enemies, the Handgun and Shotgun will be used most often. Always back up while firing the Handgun at oncoming enemies to keep your distance and stay out of their range, or sidestep accordingly with L1 and R1. With the Shotgun, you'll want to get close enough to maximize the power from its wide blast radius, but also be mindful not to get too close to receive an attack immediately after your blast. Try to find the sweet spot that leaves you out of range while delivering high power.

Understand that blocking attacks (R2 + Square) and also following up blocks with your own attacks is tremendously important throughout the game. Blocking most attacks prevents more than 99.5% of damage taken, leaving you with the tiniest sliver of damage and a great tradeoff to not only avoiding more but also being able to follow up with a shot, especially with the Shotgun. Equipping the Bulletproof Vest while blocking eliminates all damage entirely, making it ideal for situations where you'll be blocking on repeat. Note that some attacks, particularly heavy boss hits, cannot be blocked.

The Vest will otherwise prevent about 15% of damage when hit normally while wearing (without blocking), although it comes at the cost of mobility. While not always practical cause of it, it can be very handy in certain spots where speed isn't as much of a factor, especially where you plan to be blocking a lot to deal with enemies anyway.

Note that using Ampoules will also max your stamina for several minutes, giving you max running and attack speed. Thus they are very helpful for boss fights, specifically where you may be moving a lot or attacking with a melee weapon on repeat and thus able to attack faster.

Since you will be playing an Extra New Game, certain parts of the Underpass will decrease your health just by being inside them. Forget the enemies in these areas and immediately run to the destination to limit damage received, and do not heal until beyond these rooms to limit further damage (you cannot die and your life will simply remain at zero if depleted). Similarly, avoid the Nightmare Hospital 3F Storeroom entirely, which unlike the Underpass can actually kill you.

11. Rank Reduction

What's important to understand is that you cannot use any extra weapons on your run or you will be docked a point and thus unable to achieve 10 stars. This includes using any of the five extra weapons you can find in the game, plus the Heather Beam or Sexy Beam. Remove them from your mind and also be sure you're equipping the Steel Pipe and not the Gold or Silver ones in the few cases where you want to pull it out as a finisher. And be sure to differentiate between the normal and Unlimited SMG whenever equipping it.

The only other way to reduce your ranking is to play with Beginner Mode on, docking you 15 points but obvious enough to avoid anyway.

12. Walkthrough

This is a general walkthrough for balancing kills and handling some of the tougher moments. For boss strategies and a few other select areas, refer to the Strategies section just below, while Defeating Enemies above covers how to handle each enemy type.

Picking up ammo, health items (you'll want at least 2-3 Ampoules especially) and jerky is fairly straightforward but make sure you don't miss them in key moments to build up your supply. I'll throw in reminders for the required Extra Weapons and saves, but keep an eye out and grab what else you need.

Refer to the Puzzle Solutions section for quick reference, while the walkthrough or speed walkthrough should help you with anything else, although you should know the game well enough in terms of how to proceed with keys and other items. Let's get started.

Shopping Mall

For the entirety of the mall, your primary weapon will be the Handgun before you're finally able to grab the Shotgun in the subway. Unfortunately the Handgun pretty much kills anything once it drops so you'll be getting lots of shooting kills with it until you get the Shotgun, which will let you get some fighting kills, ironically.

Be sure to get the Steel Pipe to use as a finisher here and there, especially on Closers. Generally I'd recommend always kicking any enemy to death if it doesn't die from your gunfire, knowing that fighting kills are harder to come by.

Reminder: Grab the Unlimited Submachine Gun on the boxes in the first alleyway, the Flamethrower in Helen's Bakery and the Beam Saber on the door at the northwest end of the north 2F hall. This will net you 3 of the 5 Extra Weapons that you'll need but cannot use.

Reminder: Make sure your bullet adjust is set to x5 before you pick up any ammo, since it doesn't seem to carry over between runs.

Starting off, don't miss the first box of Handgun Bullets on the bench after Heather kills the first Closer in the clothing store cutscene. Kill all 7 enemies that appear in the regular mall (4 Numb Bodies, 1 Double Head, 2 Closers).

The first dog hallway in the Nightmare Mall can be too crazy so I suggest just running through it. Kill the 3 Closers in the next hall and otherwise try to isolate enemies if you can or ignore them if you can't. Get the Bulletproof Vest in the clothes shop with the Hanger since it'll be very handy for eliminating all damage from blocks.

Kill the Closer and Double Head on 3F, then your first real test will be the 2F shop with four Numb Bodies that also respawn after getting the Moonstone. Either master your block timing to avoid attacks and run to an isolated spot to shoot, or just run through this room and get your kills elsewhere if it's too hard for you (or pass through the Walnut shop both times instead, since they also regenerate). Also kill the Closer in the back hall.

Kill the Numb Bodies in the balcony hall while away from the Pendulums, consider getting a fighting kill with the solo Closer (12 shots and pipe swing) before the crazy vise shop hallway where you should run past everything.


You can go hunting for Double Heads on platforms 3 and 4 in the subway but they can be supremely annoying to fight with the Handgun so I'd advise against it unless you really know what you're doing. Same thing for north platform 1/2 while getting the Nutcracker, which can cause you a headache with how many dogs patrol there. I took some hits there on my practice run so I just ran past them all on my real run.

Use the Nutcracker, head down the stairs then backtrack up to get two Closers to spawn in the previous hall. Consider making them fighting kills. Once you get the Shotgun, use it to kill Double Heads after blocking their lunges.

Block-blast the first 2 Double Heads after trying the door on the tracks, then run to safety (don't worry, you easily have time for these 2 kills). Either be super quick with the Handgun in the subway train, efficiently block and/or use the Shotgun to deal with the closer Numb Bodies.


Run the health-draining hall in the Underpass asap, ignoring all enemies. Do not heal until after it since it won't kill you. Consider using the Shotgun and kicking for some fighting kills against Numb Bodies down here, isolating them whenever you can.

Be aware that more Numb Bodies will spawn after leaving the Wine Bottle hallway. Be super quick to run to the other wall and left hook around the big one to avoid it hitting you with a super aggressive lunge. Consider just leaving them be afterwards, unless you can isolate them.

In the sewers, jump in the water and kill the two large Numb Bodies with the Steel Pipe's downward swing. They cannot hit you from above as you swing from the water. In the next area, lure them one by one, getting Shotgun fighting kills with kicks if possible. Sprint through the next area with Pendulums, same with every other area with them.

Reminder: Examine any part of the water in the sewer monster room and answer honestly (No, No, Yes) to get the Gold Pipe and Silver Pipe. You should now have all 5 Extra Weapons needed.

Office Building

Get the Silencer in the Construction Site to use in Nightmare Hilltop and Brookhaven, as well as the Katana in Hilltop. Treat all Numb Bodies and Double Heads the same as earlier in Hilltop. Liberally use jerky and the Silenced Handgun on Slurpers. Refer to the Nightmare Hilltop and Hospital Madness under Strategies below for Slurpers and also Nurses for later on.

Specifically in the west 4F hallway, drop jerky in the southwest corner because two Double Heads will spawn behind you as you proceed north. This will completely distract them and allow for easy kills once you head back. Also drop jerky near the blue light door to distract the Double Heads and Slurper that appear after using the vending machine in the northwest room.

Reminder: Save your game right before entering your apartment to fight the Missionary boss, if using the recommended saves. Record your kill counts up until now in case you need to load this save later on.

Be sure to kick the Missionary as the killing blow once it stops moving. This way you'll lock it in as a fighting kill.

Silent Hill Streets

You can get 6 Double Head block-blast kills on the Silent Hill streets. 4 are on Nathan Avenue (try to isolate them if possible) and 2 more at the south of Carroll (be wary of Pendulums; try to move far away from them before the second Double Head).


Start getting lots of Shotgun fighting kills with Nurses in the hospital, and always treat revolver Nurses seriously. Keep your Flashlight off to limit their vision from afar.

The first revolver Nurse is the second Nurse in the 2F patient wing. First blast the first Nurse down and then run to the revolver Nurse to down and kill her asap (kicks if possible), then return to finish off the other. Always keep kicking Nurses to try to get fighting kills, otherwise they will often die on the second down with the Shotgun.

In M5 are three Nurses (including one with a revolver but she should alway go for the pistol whip) but you can easily block at the right time whenever any are about to attack and blast back. Refer to the M5 and 2F patient wing strategy under Strategies below for more specific details. You can come back here later for potentially a ton more kills, so give that section a good read if interested.

Back in the 2F employee wing, run towards the Women's Locker Room and blast the revolver Nurse there first, then deal with the other.

In the 1F patient wing, the third Nurse has a revolver. With the Flashlight off, quickly down the first two and kick them to death if you have the time. If the revolver Nurse is coming too quickly, sprint to blast and kill her, then return to finish the others.

C2 contains three pipe Nurses. Just be patient and block first, then blast immediately after to down them potentially one by one.

Be sure to get the two mags of SMG ammo on the hospital roof (and the one in the basement by the SMG), and kill the 3 Closers while up there. Take them seriously with appropriate spacing, considering the SMG or a Shotgun blast to knock them each down. Get in a fighting kill or two (or three if possible) but don't take a beating over it. It's easy to lose control with 3 of them together if you don't take them 100% seriously.

In the 3F patient wing towards the end of the hall, three Nurses will spawn -- two with pipes on either side plus a revolver Nurse behind the one where you came from. Consider leaving the one by room S14 for now and blasting the lead Nurse behind, then rushing to kill the revolver Nurse before returning to finish the others. In the 3F patient wing towards the end of the hall, three Nurses will spawn -- two with pipes on either side plus a revolver Nurse behind the one where you came from. Consider leaving the one by room S14 for now and blasting the lead Nurse behind, then rushing to kill the revolver Nurse before returning to finish the others.

Before leaving normal Brookhaven, consider the 2F patient wing and M5 respawn exploit if you need the kills (read about it in the Strategies section). If there's any previous area that you'd rather not take the risk in killing enemies, you can make up for them with this strategy once mastered.

I suggest finishing normal Brookhaven with at least 65 shooting kills and 70 fighting kills, especially if respawning enemies on 2F anyway. A few more can't hurt though, especially fighting. If not using the 2F respawn exploit then you can instead rely on getting a lot more kills in the Amusement Park and some more in the Church.

In Nightmare Hospital, use the Silenced Handgun and jerky to deal with Slurpers when needed, otherwise just keep your Flashlight off and run around them if you don't need the kills. It can get a little crazy in some halls with Slurpers and revolver Nurses, so the running game is often the best idea.

If you want the kills, try to kill the first Slurper or two in the 3F employee wing asap, and if the revolver Nurse comes at the wrong time, either use the SMG to down her or consider bailing back into the Day Room and perhaps just running by next time if you can, unless you can do better on the reset.

In the 2F employee wing, strategically and liberally place jerky at the sides of the hall before getting the Plastic Bag from the Women's Locker Room, since Slurpers (and a revolver Nurse) will spawn when you come back out. If the jerky is in the right places, you can just run right past the Slurpers and just avoid the Nurse.

If enemies are still in the 3F employee wing when you return to fill the Plastic Bag, try to be quick (Flashlight off) and pass through the patient wing doors after unlocking them, then later run quickly and carefully back to the elevator. Otherwise if the route through the Day Room looks better, go that way.

When on 1F, I suggest staying out of trouble by just passing through the Day Room asap rather than exploring the lobby since a revolver Nurse and Slurper patrol. Get an easy fighting kill with the Nurse in the Day Room and consider just sprinting around the Slurpers and revolver Nurse (on her right side to not get stuck) in the final hall before C4. Otherwise, maybe some SMG spurts could help you, but save enough for Leonard if using the SMG strategy, which I recommend.

Reminder: Right before Leonard is an ideal spot to use your second save in the PC version, if you've mastered the God fight with the arm swing exploit. Or you could just delay your save until then anyway, up to you. On PS2, it's probably best to wait until then. If you save here, record your kill counts in case you need to load from here later, and don't overwrite your first save.

Amusement Park

The two Closers at the beginning of Lakeside Amusement Park are good candidates for fighting kills (12 Handgun shots + Katana). Run past everyone in all the crazy areas. Murder the Pendulum beside the Mountain Coaster stairs (SMG is best) so it doesn't follow you up.

The three Closers after Borley aren't too risky to kill if you're careful, potentially killing one, two or all by fighting if possible. I suggest running past everything else in the park, but you'll otherwise probably need a bunch of kills there if avoiding the hospital respawn strategy.


Ignore the Closers and Insane Cancers in the Church unless you absolutely need kills. You can get a few more shooting and sometimes fighting kills with Scrapers. Shoot them from farther if you want a better chance at fighting kills. Another couple will appear if you enter and exit Harry's bedroom beside the mortuary on the lower level, but be careful they don't surprise you around the corners.

At this point you should have at least 74 fighting kills locked in, or a few more to be safe. The God will be your last, while some other final chances will be the Closers before and after the second crying girl hall and the solo Insane Cancer in that very hall on the way back.

Always sprint through every Pendulum hall with the Flashlight turned off. There's one more Insane Cancer in the classroom hall, while a Scraper will spawn behind you if you run past the first classroom door and then go back around the corner. Lastly, the southeast large room in that hall contains six Scrapers, but only if you absolutely need more kills as it's a risky room.

Reminder: Use your second save in Alessa's bedroom after inserting all five tarot cards, if playing the PS2 version and following the recommended saves. Use a new file rather than overwriting your first. You can also save here on PC if you didn't use your second save elsewhere, such as before Leonard.

Be certain you have at least 74 fighting kills and 75 shooting kills before fighting the God and finish her off with the Katana or the Stun Gun to confirm her as your final fighting kill.

13. Strategies


Split Worm

Time Limit: 2 minutes

The tricky thing about this fight is that since it's so early in the game, it'll likely be before your first save, so if you don't beat the time limit you'll have to start all over again. Therefore it's imperative to have a great understanding of this boss fight before attempting your run, and you should probably even do a few practice attempts of just this boss immediately before your run to give you the confidence.

Now, there are two strategies that can be employed here and they're both completely different. One is the more traditional strategy with the Handgun which is much easier mechanically but very unpredictable for time, either cutting it very close or sometimes going over since it's always a risk. I'd even go as far as saying it's just not worth the risk of putting your 10-20 minutes of gameplay before this point on the line since it might not work out with the Handgun, especially since the timer counts an additional 10 seconds after the worm dies to make it even worse.

The other involves the Steel Pipe, and if executed properly you will end the fight easily in time, but it requires very precise positioning and also timing for both your attacks and blocks. Either way, you will need a ton of practice in this boss fight before attempting your run, so consider trying them both out but ultimate I recommend the Pipe. Read them both below.

Steel Pipe Strategy:
First things first, equip the Steel Pipe and use an Ampoule before descending the ladder. The Ampoule will max your stamina for the full fight, giving you full running speed and faster attacks, very much needed to pull this off. Additionally I recommend the Bulletproof Vest to prevent all damage while blocking since you'll be doing it so many times. But I'd suggest getting in position before equipping the vest since it really slows you down and can totally ruin the fight if you can't get to the first hole in time.

In the arena, hold L2 to find the correct hole and understand that timing is everything here. Immediately run to the hole where the worm will emerge from. Equip the vest as you arrive and stand close enough so that you can smack the worm but not close enough that it'll bowl you over when it emerges (some spots may have some scratches on the floor that are a good marker). As soon as it arrives, deliver back to back thrust attacks with the pipe (R2 + up + X hold). If you're not quick enough, it'll headbutt and knock you over, keeping you down for about 10 seconds. This wastes time and costs you damage, so avoid it at all costs.

Therefore you must act quickly, and consider even anticipating its head arriving by attacking before he's even fully there. Get in your two thrusts and then release the attack button. Wait about a half second and then block (Square) just as the worm lunges forward. Heather will block the attack while the vest will prevent any damage whatsoever (or it'll do just a tiny bit without it; less than a point).

Immediately after your block, perform the two thrusts again and then wait that half-second to block its counter, and from there it's just repetition of the thrust-thrust-block routine until the fight ends. If you take too long to get back to thrusting after the block, again it'll knock you over. Be as quick as possible to perform every attack, while blocking is the only move that requires non-immediate timing. It may take some practice to get right, but trust me that when you do get the hang of it, it becomes rather trivial. And it's always better to block slightly early than too late, since it has a fairly large block window.

Also if you take too long to return to thrusting, the worm may retreat and switch holes (if it doesn't hit you instead), wasting more time but it's not a huge deal since you'll have at least a 30 second buffer to perform the strategy. However if this happens, I recommend unequipping the vest since it slows you down so much and will make it difficult to get to the next hole in time, and if you don't... you will get knocked over and waste more time on top of taking damage. So get in position asap and reequip the vest once you're there. Always be mindful that the worm will knock you down if you take too long to attack, and understand that the Ampoule is also important in keeping your attack speed up.

After all is said and done, it'll take 28 pipe thrusts to kill the worm, but remember that the boss timer keeps going for another 10 or so seconds. So make sure you kill it well clear of 1m50s. With perfect execution it should take you no longer than 1m20. If you're finding this too difficult and considering the Handgun instead, I suggest just giving it more practice, even including stepping away and coming back another time with a fresh mind where it may very well become easier to you. It was that way for me.

Handgun Strategy:
Be warned that this strategy while easy to pull off mechanically is awfully unpredictable and risky for time, often either cutting it very close or even going over. Additionally, the boss timer continues for another 10 or so seconds after the final blow, making it even more ridiculous to rely on. While it is possible to get a little lucky and end this fight with a time of 1m30-40s, it's much more common to be in the range of 1m50s-2m10s and not rare at all to take more than that, even if you've done all you could. Therefore I recommend the pipe strategy, but this one does still remain as possible if it all works out.

Always hold L2 to focus the camera at the worm, even when it's offscreen. It will clue you to the hole the worm will emerge from a few seconds before it does. When you get the signal, position yourself in front of the correct hole and back up to a safe distance to avoid being near the worm or it might bite you.

When it opens its mouth, fire two bullets at it. Do not fire a third or it will go back in the hole and waste more precious time -- this is key to reaching the target time. After firing twice, back up as far as you can and to either side (preferably towards the middle of the arena when on the sides) and reload with R3 (Handgun ammo equipped). Wait for the worm to either just keep sitting there or pound the ground.

If it keeps sitting there for 2-3 seconds without action, fire two more shots and repeat. After that it may either leave, do nothing again (less likely the second time but possible) or get ready to pound the ground this time. Note that you need to wait 2-3 seconds before firing again whenever it stays or else it'll leave down the tunnel. Now it may do so anyway when you shoot but there's always a chance it stays if you wait first.

When it pounds the ground, you'll be briefly stunned but it's fine. It'll then screech and prepare for its insta-kill attack. This is why it's important to already be well-positioned that you're out of reach -- just at the side or offscreen -- but if not just sidestep now to avoid it. But as it does screech, shoot the worm once while its mouth is open, or even try to get two shots, then stop. You can shoot its open head just as it starts to pull back after the attack, but this makes it more likely to leave when it returns to the hole after another shot or two, so I'd suggest not shooting there.

Once returning to the hole after the insta-kill attack, shoot it twice more and repeat the strategy if it remains. That said, the worm is very unpredictable and will sometimes stay and sometimes leave either way and waste a bunch of time resetting to another tunnel. If it does, use L2 to clue you to the next hole and arrive and set station before it does. If it crawls through the arena to another hole, empty a full clip or more into it. It doesn't do much damage this way but it does do something, so take whatever you can get at all times. Always be prepared to strafe out of the way to avoid it, especially if it charges to the tunnel straight ahead of it. Ultimately, the worm should drop dead after around 40-50 Handgun bullets, depending on how much you shot it from where.

With this strategy, time is so incredibly marginal and there's always a chance you'll go over. Therefore timing yourself (stopwatch, phone, etc.) is 100% imperative, whether practicing or on a real run, since you'll otherwise not know if you've made it. Even executing perfectly you can always hit bad luck where the worm leaves quickly too many times and wastes too much time in the tunnels. If things go really well you can net a time in the 1m30s range, but this is very rare and lucky. Good execution can regularly net you results in the 1hm50s-2m00s range, while one extra trip to the tunnels will put you over through no real fault of your own.

And that is always the risk with this strategy unfortunately... It's so marginal and literally never a guarantee. I found on some repeated attempts I could keep it to around 1m50s to the final blow, but this is still dangerous territory cause the timer adds another 10 or so seconds after the final hit. So understand if you do this strategy that it just might not work out and waste your 15-20 minutes invested until this point. Either way, I honestly recommended forgetting this risky strategy and just using the Steel Pipe. It may seem hard at first, but it becomes a formality with enough practice.


Time Limit: 2 minutes

This fight can be a bit unpredictable and have you take a fair amount of damage if things go wrong, making it an ideal spot to save just before. That said, there's a fairly reliable method that handles him efficiently and safely, also ending the battle in well under a minute if executed properly.

First, equip the Shotgun since Heather switches to the Handgun in the cutscene. Also consider using an Ampoule since it'll boost your stamina to max for the full fight, giving you the extra speed to be quick on your feet. You should have at least one, or even two if you didn't use one on the Split Worm, and they are best used in this way when going for 10 stars since the health recovery is not important with a cap already at 500 points in damage.

At the start, approach the Missionary head on, perhaps stuttering for a bit in front of him to more likely bait him into an attack, and continue past as he swings the other way. Immediately stop when you pass him, aim and blast his rear to knock him down. You should always get another free blast while he's down just this one time, so approach him and take it, but first align yourself right behind his butt for the prime position. Don't get any other ideas though...

After taking the free shot while he's down, the Missionary will stand up and almost certainly swing both arms at you. This is when you need to block the attack (R2 + Square), just after he starts standing and not too late when the attack's already on its way. This is the key to this strategy, and if you're put off by blocking, just give it a real shot because it becomes incredibly trivial once you get the timing right and it's frankly crucial to getting this fight right.

Note that you'll lose the tiniest sliver of health (less than 0.5 of a point) for each block, which is extremely negligible and worth the tradeoff. However you can also equip the Bulletproof Vest to eliminate all damage with blocks, but the speed is rather important here, especially if he slips away.

Immediately after blocking, keep R2 held and prepare to shoot, but first you must wait and observe what he does. If he tries to run away with his back to you, blast him asap and it should knock him down. Do the same if he sort of lingers around you with his back facing you. But importantly, if he turns towards you which he will absolutely do some of the time, DO NOT SHOOT. Instead, lower your weapon and either strafe or run a bit out of the way as he prepares to attack in a very telegraphed manner, which is beyond easy to avoid by not standing where he's aiming. Use this time to blast him from the rear or side and knock him down.

This time, quickly position yourself right behind his butt again but do not shoot since you will rarely ever get a free shot again outside of that first instance (sometimes you will though, so if he doesn't stand up after a second or two of squirming, blast him). Once you position yourself, just wait for him to stand without shooting and prepare that same block move. After blocking, do the same strategy of observing him and immediately shooting once you see him try to run away, or move aside if he turns to you. Note that you cannot shoot too early or it will not knock him down while also leaving you totally exposed if he's close.

Now, you can get lucky with just automatically shooting every time he stands (waiting a second first since he can't get knocked down immediately after standing), but this is way too risky since probably a quarter of the time he will turn towards you just as you're wanting to shoot. And if you shoot... easy block from him and you are completely exposed and will one hundred percent take a big hit. The key to this strategy is to quickly observe what he's doing and react accordingly, knowing that if you let him turn towards you and he tries to attack, you have plenty of time to get out of the way and get in an easy blast. And if he goes the other way, perfect; just blast him right away.

If he ever does get a chance to slip away, cause sometimes Heather will just straight up miss and he can be quick, I recommend immediately running towards him to close the distance, but aim slightly at his left to avoid a head on attack. Immediately once he runs by you, aim and try to blast him (or if you miss, try again or see if his back is facing you now). Once he gets knocked down, reset to his butt and wait for him to stand and then block. Repeat the strategy as mentioned above.

Remember that you should always get a free blast the first time he's down, and while you may sometimes get lucky with free blasts on additional downs, it's never guaranteed and you shouldn't ever expect it. So always just get in position and prepare to block in all other cases, only shooting if you see he's not getting up right away. And I suggest being super ready to shoot with an itchy trigger finger as he stands, knowing he runs away very quickly. But I cannot stress enough how important it is to wait to see if he turns towards you, cause if you shoot as he does it will totally ruin your attempt and he will hit you. I learned the hard way so many times until I realized patience is key in that moment, rather than relying on stupid luck.

Repeat this strategy and he should permanently drop after around 7-8 close-range Shotgun blasts, or perhaps a few more from farther range. Now you can decide if you want a fighting or shooting kill to finish him off with the final blow. I recommend fighting as those kills are harder to come by.

The more you're able to keep him grounded with the blocking strategy, the more you can limit the time this battle takes, keeping it safely around 40 seconds to a minute. And do not ever attempt to fire at him from the front since he'll block your shot and almost certainly get in a free smack with how slow the Shotgun is. Yes, it can be incredibly frustrating to deal with this boss until you totally nail the timing and strategy, but then it should be relatively straightforward. Be smart, be patient, and you will succeed.


Time Limit: 3 minutes

This boss can be incredibly frustrating due to the tiny window you have to shoot him while down, and he can waste so much time stupidly swimming around the arena. That said, you have three minutes to beat him so just keep your cool, be patient and you should get many chances to end the battle in that time frame since he doesn't have much health.

You can use the Shotgun here and I have seen effective strategies where he's knocked down at the start and then just kept pinned down with repeated shots until his death (about 20 shots), but in my experience he just seems to get up before you can get the second blast off, at least at the beginning of the fight. Go ahead and give it a go while practicing if you wish to try, but I honestly recommend the SMG strategy over anything else. With the SMG magazine in the hospital basement and the two on the roof you should have 480 bullets with x5 adjust. All you'll need is around 200-230 to pull this off with some margin for error.

Immediately at the start, pump a burst of bullets into Leonard, but only about half the mag since that's all it takes to knock him down and you can finish your mag on him after he's down. Wait for him to drop and even anticipate him hitting the ground, or use the time to move a bit closer. Then continue firing while aiming down at his body with the goal of hitting him with enough bullets while down so that he remains pinned there as you reload and still there to pump another mag into (and more after that). This is honestly extremely hard to do but if you can hit him with 10-15 bullets while down you can pull it off. But still, it's harder than it sounds.

Note that after the first burst while standing, you can immediately stop firing and reload from the inventory to get a full mag, but understand that time is super precious to keep him pinned down and the concern is more about shooting him in time rather than having enough bullets (you do need enough but a half mag is sufficient, while a full mag is useless if you don't fire quickly enough). So immediately start firing after the reload (or don't reload if you have enough) and aim accordingly, knowing that you require some level of precision to effectively hit him enough times.

If you do it right or let's just say you get lucky, Leonard will remain down through your next reload and allow you to pump another full magazine into him, and by this time you should have him locked in until his death, repeatedly emptying magazines into him. Reloading in the game should be totally fine and is probably better than stopping and resetting with inventory reloads, so just keep going.

If executed perfectly, you can end this fight in under 20 seconds, but understand how ridiculously hard it is to pull off. So if Leonard does stand up after your initial burst, just relax knowing you have so much more time and many more attempts to keep trying. Just wait for your next opportunity and try the same thing. While hardest to pull off at the beginning, it will be much easier on subsequent attempts, especially if you can get closer.

When Leonard is swimming underwater, I know it can be frustrating but you have lots of time to handle this, so be patient. Follow him back and forth around the water and generally stay out of harm's way when you feel he may stand up. You never want to be right in front of or around him since he'll smack you as he stands. I'd recommend aiming to be behind him with a small gap for safety.

As soon as he rises, consider getting closer to him and give him an SMG sandwich. Remember, just a half-mag burst, then stop and aim your SMG down where he's falling. Once he hits the ground, continue firing. Keep your aim exactly trained on him as you reload in-game and continue firing the next mag into him. If he stays pinned down for that, you should be able to empty several more mags into him and end the fight, reloading in-game each time while keeping your aim trained on him. If not, follow him around again and try for another attempt when he stands.

Again, you can always stop firing as soon as he drops and rush into the inventory to reload to ensure you have enough ammo in the mag, but I want to stress you need to be lightning quick with your reactions and ready to start shooting while aiming down immediately after exiting the menu. Your goal is always to hit him (in time) with enough SMG bullets after the drop to keep him pinned down through your reload (either in-game or inventory), and if not you'll just have to keep trying.

Understand that this may take practice to get right and can be frustrating, but once you've got the hang if it, it becomes relatively straightforward. Pinning him at the first instance is incredibly hard so don't get hung up on that, but you should be able to do it the second or third time and end the fight there, with tons of time remaining. But still, things can happen so if it takes you a few more tries you should have enough time, so just be smart and avoid taking damage.

Memory of Alessa

Time Limit: 3 minutes

Perhaps the easiest fight of them all since you can just abuse the Shotgun and use up 20-25 shells (less than one pickup with x5 bullet adjust).

Equip the Shotgun at the beginning of the fight, raise it and approach Alessa or wait for her to come to you. As soon as she raises her arm to swing (making a distinct whipping sound), blast away and prepare to repeat every single time she swings. She'll drop after four to five close blasts and return in the next form. If she gets a chance to run away, chase after her and blast her from behind.

Give extra caution when Alessa carries a firearm since she'll try to shoot you from afar. Try to get in close to prevent this. If you do hear the cocking sound, try to duck behind a horse asap, wait her out and then reposition accordingly. But if you do get caught in a bad spot, just blast her as soon as you hear her gun cock.

Otherwise, get up close to her so she defaults to the whip attack instead, to which you can repeat the same strategy as the melee weapons by waiting for the attack to start and then blasting her. I'd avoid attacking her before her whip since she'll block it and in some cases, particularly with the pipe, might be able to swing and hit you even through your next blast. So stay safe and pick your shots well.

Each form should take 4-6 blasts at close range, or a few more at longer range. Sometimes you'll get a free shot at her as she's down so take it, but get ready to reset into the above strategy after. You should generally be able to wait for one form to die before you have to reload, and then you can easily do so in-game, but do count your bullets and reload in the inventory if you have to mid-form.

Overall, time shouldn't be an issue here as the Shotgun makes fairly quick work of her.

The God

Time Limit: 8 minutes

Normally a fairly tough and lengthy boss on PS2, the God becomes a trivial and quick fight in the PC version due to a safe zone on the right side of her head by her arm, along the low ledge. Read more about it below or skip to the more traditional PS2 strategy, which does not offer a safe zone.

PC Strategy:
With the Handgun equipped, fire three shots at the God while backing up and sidestepping to the right side of the black semi-circle line which she cannot physically reach you from (unless too far up). As she makes her way to her lower stance, equip the Katana and also use an Ampoule to max your movement and attack speed for the fight, which is rather crucial for timing and avoiding attacks.

As soon as she swings and misses in the lower stance, run to the right side of her head (her left side) and perform four thrust attacks right in her face. If you're not quick enough you may only be able to get in three safely, so consider if you want to be safe or risky. Immediately after, strafe right along the low wall right by her arm, and she'll swing right through you with no damage taken.

Now go back in for another three or four thrusts and repeat. Note that for the first three setups you can get four thrusts in but it may be a close call, so consider just taking three to be safe. After the first three setups, she'll attack you more quickly so you'll certainly want to limit it to three thrusts each time by then for sure. Even if there's a small gap before her arm swing after, it's probably not enough time to get in another swing and not worth it.

From here, just keep repeating the three thrusts and strafe dodge, and eventually the God will stand back up. Equip the Handgun and fire three shots at her while backing up to the right behind the black line as you did to start things off, or just make sure you get out of her swing range before firing to make sure. When she lowers to her hands and knees again, wait for her arm swing and then go in for your three thrusts, strafe dodge and then keep repeating until the fight ends. She may or may not stand up again, but just repeat the above strategy if so. Properly executed it should take 1m20-30s and serve as a relative formality, which is why your second save is probably better spent elsewhere in the PC version.

PS2 Strategy:
With no safe zone by the God's head on PS2, you will not be able to linger for continuous Katana attacks but otherwise it's similar in principle. To start things off, fire three Handgun shots at the God as you back up to either side behind the black semi-circle line. Equip your Katana, use an Ampoule to max movement and attack speed, and wait for her to swing her arm in her lower position, then go in and perform three thrusts and strafe exit back behind the line, preferably the farthest center point away from her.

Note that you may call it close with three thrusts and so two may be the safer option, but if you're super quick after her initial swipe and minimize the distance travelled, including starting your thrust from farther back, you can regularly escape safely by strafing beyond the black semi-circle before she gets a chance. Note that the Ampoule is crucial to pull this off, otherwise Heather won't attack quickly enough, at least beyond the first couple times.

Back at the line, the God will begin throwing fire at you. Sometimes you may have time for a quick Handgun shot here if you're quick to fire, especially if she swiped and missed you, but if she's already throwing the fire your bullet likely won't land for some reason, so forget about it otherwise.

Strafe to the other side to avoid the fire. You don't have to go too quickly in the earlier part of the fight so feel free to pace yourself for better efficiency. Once the fire stops you can often get in another shot or two before she throws more fire. Quickly strafe to escape and move back all the way to the other side.

By now she should rise to her standing position. Fire three Handgun shots to bring her back down while positioning yourself on the line in a close spot so you can soon run in. First wait for her arm swing while down and run in for your 2-3 Katana thrusts. Remember, if you react as soon as she misses and thrust from a distance while still hitting her, three hits is pretty doable, but stop at two any time you aren't lightning quick. Then strafe back behind the line and get ready to dodge fire.

Now it's just a matter of repeating this strategy as the fire attacks become faster. As they do speed up, you may have to strafe for longer, going all the way to the inner edge of the black semi-circle, where you can then cross over through the danger area very quickly to escape it. It can be tough to dodge the fire while also not throwing yourself right in front of the God where she can swing you, but when mastered it will serve you well. As soon as she rises, quickly get back behind the line, drop her with three more shots and get in your Katana thrusts. Repeat until she dies while dodging the fire, noting that the extra speed of the Ampoule will help you dodge more quickly.

Another option here is to use the Stun Gun and fire two shocks whenever she drops, or even three for the first few occasions. Always be sure to reload in the inventory when equipping it. Either way, both the Katana and Stun Gun strategies should take around 5-6 minutes of in-game time if well-executed, allowing for a bit of a buffer for mistakes. But of course, practice makes perfect and you'll want to limit damage taken here.

Note that if timing it on your own it may take upwards of 9-10 minutes, but rest assured that inventory time does not count towards boss clear times (while it does for your overall clear time). So even above 10 live minutes you're still probably well in the clear under 8 game minutes. Even if you're unsure, you might as well just finish and see what the ranking screen says.

While this is a fairly straightforward fight, it's not uncommon to get caught out by the fire, which is why it's highly recommended you use your second save here in the PS2 version. That said, if you master this boss fight ahead of time you can consider saving elsewhere, such as just before Leonard, but it's still a fairly big risk perhaps not worth taking.

Other Strategies

Bloody Transforming Underpass Hallways

In every Extra New Game playthrough, certain hallways of the Underpass will transform and damage Heather while inside them. To combat this, all you can do is run as fast as you can through them, ignoring any enemies on the way since you can't afford to lose any more health. Save yourself the extra damage by not healing anywhere in the Subway, and don't heal during these halls either as they will only drain your health but not kill you. Heal only when past them.

Nightmare Hilltop and Hospital Madness

Just like in Silent Hill 2, Brookhaven Hospital can be a nightmare to get through in a 10-star run due to its abundance of aggressive Nurses and also Slurpers, especially in its actual nightmare form. The Nightmare Hilltop Center is also a pain due to multiple tight hallways full of Slurpers, requiring careful advancing and strategies for weeding out one enemy at a time.

While fighting Slurpers, utilizing jerky can certainly serve as a helpful distraction to stop them in certain locations or prevent one from advancing while allowing another alongside it to continue towards you so that you can take it on individually. Although you may not even need too much jerky, pick them up when you see them and use them liberally in Nightmare Hilltop and Brookhaven in hallways with Slurpers. If the first part of the hallway is empty and the Slurpers are deeper in, this can work perfectly. Place jerky strategically and spread out in these empty spots, then get the attention of the Slurpers and run back to lead them to your traps.

Additionally you'll want to turn off your Flashlight regularly (and Radio for good) in these hallways and attach the Silencer to your Handgun to prevent Slurpers from finding you more easily. Never let them fool you by playing dead and instead keep firing at them until you hear their death note or see blood pour out from their bodies.

Alternatively there is a fairly reliable way to even get fighting kills off solo Slurpers. First unload 4-5 Handgun bullets into them until they start twitching their heads. You can fire another bullet or two as they do but then stop, use the time to reload and just let them regroup into their normal state. Now fire again with the Handgun until they start to twitch or play dead. Now you can cautiously approach and downward slice with the Katana, preferably from the slide. It'll usually take 1-3 swings, and make sure you don't touch their body or they may wake up to grab you. Even if they do awaken, it's better to be on the side so you can quickly escape.

Always retreat if possible when multiple Slurpers approach you, using jerky to keep them at bay. If you have no other option, use the Shotgun to stop them in their tracks at close range and use the opportunity to escape so that you can later take them on one by one. Also consider just running past them and getting your kills elsewhere if you can slip by in the crazier spots, especially in Nightmare Hospital if you've already gotten enough kills from the second floor respawn point (mentioned below).

In the final 4F hallway of Nightmare Hilltop, drop some jerky in the southwest corner of the west hall before advancing north since two Double Heads will spawn out of nowhere to come after you. The jerky will distract them and allow you to get easy block-Shotgun kills with them. Additionally, drop more jerky in ideal spots far away from the northwest door before entering the vending machine room so the newly-spawned Slurper and Double Heads will be distracted when you return.

Just as well in Nightmare Brookhaven, drop jerky in strategic spots in the 2F employee wing, which is empty when you arrive to grab the Plastic Bag from the Women's Locker Room but will be full of Slurpers when you come back out. Having them distracted will allow you to handle them more easily or even run past them. Also be mindful of the revolver Nurse that spawns with them, which is perhaps better to sprint past than fight.

You'll also find the SMG to be much more helpful with x5 bullet adjust, so be sure to collect all the ammo for it and prepare to use it on Slurpers when you need a quick kill or two in a confined space. Attach the Silencer to it to keep more from finding you easily. Do be sure to save 200-230 bullets for Leonard however.

Nurses on the other hand aren't quite as annoying as Slurpers, but they are still found in high frequency and often groups in the hospital. Always target and kill Nurses with revolvers first, ignoring those with pipes as you rush to them. Sadly the Shotgun is quite nerfed from SH2 with a narrower spread and weaker from a distance, but up close should handle Nurses fairly efficiently. If you ever need a quick kill of a Nurse that's raising her revolver and you're not quite close, consider pulling out the SMG to handle her quickly. And be sure to get the SMG ammo on the roof.

Note that sometimes you may enter a room with Nurses immediately ready to come after and smack you. Always have the Shotgun or SMG ready and always prepare to block and counter these situations when multiple Nurses are rushing you. Get in your block, blast, then switch targets and repeat if necessary. Keep switching targets to the Nurse the closest to you when found in groups, then kick them when they're down or finish them off with more shells or bullets.

2F Patient Wing and Room M5 Respawn

While there are enough enemies in the game to easily reach 150 kills, I'd say there's not enough in safe locations where you can avoid taking risks, especially without many other enemies roaming about. Further, fighting kills are much harder to come by since most enemies shot with the Handgun will die immediately upon falling.

There is however a respawn exploit in Brookhaven Hospital where you can respawn the same five Nurses over and over. I wouldn't even call it a glitch or an unfair advantage since you still have to kill them legitimately, two of them have revolvers, and three of them are in the same room and will charge you all at once.

But wait a minute, isn't this supposed to be helpful and not risky? Well, once mastered it's really trivial and relies on blocking which frankly almost makes this too easy. You'll want to clear out the 2F patient wing and M5 naturally when getting the Instant Camera from the case to lock in those five kills, but you'll have to wait until the "M" door appears after speaking to Leonard. Once it does, the two Nurses in the hall and the three in M5 will respawn every time you enter the hallway maze and then exit back to the 2F patient wing.

As a quick guide, I suggest equipping the Bulletproof Vest for all of this since it'll limit blocked damage taken to zero, and even if you do get hit it'll still save you some damage. To start off after returning from the M door, run down the hall and blast the revolver Nurse from behind with the Shotgun. She faces the other way so she shouldn't be a concern. Kick her to death (four kicks usually) and do the same to the pipe Nurse farther down. Fighting kills are harder to come by so always take them when you can. Now proceed to M5 where the magic happens.

Immediately when inside, run forward towards the Nurses. Yes, you want to position yourself so they can all or at least two of them can hit you. No, I'm not crazy, just listen. As soon as one or two or even all of them start to swipe at you, immediately block (R2 + Square) and counter blast with the Shotgun. One of the Nurses will surely fall down or sometimes two. Now be patient if two still stand and wait for one of them to swipe you, then block and shoot again. When it's just one standing you can do the same or just blast her without the block. Despite the far Nurse having a revolver she'll pretty much always try to run in and smack you, probably because the bed blocks her line of sight to you a bit which is great.

Now quickly rush to kick their corpses to lock them in as fighting kills, although sometimes one or two will get up too quickly and will die from your next Shotgun blast, making them shooting kills. You will probably still need some shooting kills at this point anyway, but generally you want more fighting kills if you can get them. Another option is to use the Katana and downward slice them while down, which may be more wisely done when it's just one Nurse left. Alternatively when one solo Nurse gets up, you can block her attack and counter swing with the Katana and then another time to kill her that way.

When done, exit M5, pass through the M door and return to the patient wing to respawn all 5 enemies and repeat the whole thing. Do this as many times as you need to. I recommend doing it until you have at least 65 shooting kills and 70 fighting kills, or perhaps even 71-72 to be safe, but there's still the God and some other enemies that can be fighting kills before the end anyway, while there should be multiple shooting kill chances before the end. Although I'd generally recommend running through the Nightmare Hospital hallways and ignoring kills when there's several enemies around.

If you start running out of Shotgun ammo, consider killing the second Nurse in the hallway with the Handgun (shooting kill), or try killing some Nurses with the Katana. Always be careful and block first while standing, unless you can safely get in a hit without a return attack.

Equipping the Perfume

The Perfume can be found in the open locker of the 2F Women's Locker Room of Brookhaven Hospital. When equipped, more monsters will spawn and be attracted to Heather's presence, particularly Nurses. Therefore if you're wishing to increase your kill count a bit more than normal, this can help you accomplish that. Of course it will put you in more danger at the same time so use it responsibly. And always unequip it once you're in the clear for kills.

Haunted House Spiky Roof

Just running through the spiky roof hallway of the Amusement Park's haunted mansion will spell certain death on Hard Action Level. Therefore you must hold R2 to lower Heather's stance as she walks through the hall when the spikes fall.

Red Glow Hallways

While the speed of the red glow in the haunted mansion is already increased on Hard Action Level, you'll also have to deal with Heather stumbling and falling into walls or doors in the process, making this hallway actually somewhat of a challenge, at least until you get the hang of it. I recommend giving it some practice runs on Hard to fully understand what it takes.

Firstly, consider removing any weapons (and certainly the Bulletproof Vest if wearing it) to speed Heather up just a bit. Make sure you know the hallway well and exactly where you need to turn at every corner before you get there so you're anticipating rather than reacting. When reaching a corner while moving at full speed, either briefly release the analog stick and continue pushing it, or quickly tap Square (with reverse Walk/Run Control; release Square otherwise) to induce a brief walk just as you get there before continuing to run. The latter method seems to work best and barely reduces your speed.

Don't worry about the instances where you don't have enough time to build up speed and instead restrict it to the corners with longer straights before them. Otherwise, refer to the graphic below for a reference of which way both identical hallways twist and turn. And remember the first door at the end of the first hallway has a broken lock and should be ignored.

Limiting Heather's Stumbles

Although Heather isn't quite as clumsy as James or Harry, she will still often stumble and fall into walls and doors while running at full speed on Hard Action Level. To counter this, simply release the analog stick for a very brief moment and continue pushing it as you near tight corners and doors, or even better, briefly press Square to make Heather walk before continuing in stride (if using reverse Walk/Run control; release Square if normal). It's a small thing but will save you some time and annoyance as you go on, but more importantly it might save you from being exposed to attacks after stumbling near enemies in some cases. Full disclosure: I once took a shot from a Nurse after stumbling into a wall. Don't make the same mistake.

14. Puzzle Solutions

Here you'll find quick-reference solutions for all puzzles on Hard Riddle Level.

Shakespeare Anthology: The keypad code is 8352. Don't pick up the books, unless you're relying on them to hit 100 items.

Hospital 2F Patient Wing: The keypad code is 4896.

Dead Man's Briefcase: View the time on the clock and enter it into the briefcase keypad as 24-hour or military time.

Crematorium Oven Door: The turning lock code is 9271.

Tarot Card Door: Insert the cards into the door as follows:

Eye of
  Fool Moon

15. Extra Weapon Upgrades

Upon receiving a 10-star ranking, you'll receive an upgrade for both the Beam Saber and Flamethrower.

Beam Saber
The Beam Saber will extend to almost double its normal length, increasing its range significantly. Its power does not change but it still becomes a dominant melee weapon.

While first somewhat weak, the Flamethrower's power will increase dramatically upon acquiring a perfect ranking, turning it into an effective killing machine. Have fun!