Silent Hill 2 Born From A Wish Analysis

Silent Hill 2: Born From A Wish Analysis is the prequel to Silent Hill 2 with Maria as the main character. The story occurs just before, during the early stages, of James arrival at Silent Hill 2 and represents the city ‘coming alive’ in response to him. Before reading this guide it is probably best to come to some understanding of Silent Hill 2′s themes. This guide contains spoilers for both Silent Hill 2 and the Born From A Wish sub-game.

Maria’s Creation

Born from a Wish is really about the creation of Maria as she is drawn from James’ mind, from a wish. Her origins are deliberately left vague because she does not have any, she is a manifestation of James’ guilt over having killed Maria. The story is actually the creation story of Maria, which quickly develops her personality and general tendencies. The room in which she first starts is in the Heaven’s Night club, representing that she is a fantasy woman and not real.

born from a wish maria image


Ernest represents the deepest part of James Sunderland’s mind and as such has no appearance. The relationship between Ernest and Maria’s parallels the later relationship between James and Maria in that she disturbs him into confronting the reality of his loss. Furthermore, both Ernest and James are brought to the truth through a letter. In the case of Ernest the letter is a card from his late daughter, in the case off James the letter is from his late wife.

Maria: You want to be alone in this insane asylum?
Ernest: Yes, exactly. But how can you say that it is this town that is insane? Perhaps it is we who are insane.

James Sunderland

While James Sunderland does not make a direct appearance in Born From A Wish, his presence is none the less in nearly every scene. The body out the front of the mansion is in fact James:

born from a wish james sunderland body image

Note that while the body is difficult to identify, the clothing is exactly what James Sunderland wears and the dimensions are near identical. This echos many scenes in the original game in which James’ body is present. It represents James Sunderland’s subconcious desire to be punished for having killed Mary.

Ernest, being part of James’ mind, simultaneously informs Maria of James and warns her of him setting into play Maria’s search for James. In these scene Ernest, a part of James’ mind, is injecting into Maria the memories of Mary.

Ernest: That James, he’s a bad man.
Maria: James…? Y,yes….I know.
Ernest: He’s looking for the you that isn’t you.
Maria: Because he’s kind. Do you know something?
Ernest: Yes… Maria you’re..

This conversation may seem vague, but in actuality it is what is missing that is most important. Maria had never actually met James, yet suddenly realizes she knows he is a bad man. He’s looking for the you that isn’t you is referring to his search for his wife, Mary, of which Maria is a fantasy version. What Ernest was about to say towards the end of the conversation is, “Yes…Maria you’re not real”. However, Maria cuts him off in order to be preserved for James’ fantasy.


Maria briefly contemplates suicide, which is really James’ mind contemplating not generating her as an illusion. Deciding not to, she sets off into Silent Hill to eventually meet up with James at the docks.

born from a wish maria endingimage

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