|“|| What happened - that was an accident. I didn't mean to hurt nobody. I didn't murder nobody. Murder's a mortal sin; you go to Hell for murder.
At some point of his career as a tour guide, he was responsible for an accident involving one of the attractions which caused the death of eight children. His job consisted of driving the mine's underground train which transported passengers from Devil's Pit to Hillside as well as telling the history of the Devil's Pit, and was a favorite attraction among the children.
Murphy Pendleton can find the details about the accident in an article, which can be found by venturing through the underground mines. This article outlines Sater's tragic past. While driving the mine train one day, he was heavily intoxicated, and due to his negligence, the train derailed, resulting in the deaths of the eight children aboard.
After the tragic accident, Sater attempted to clear his name, but faced heavy judgement from other civilians and lost his job. He felt pressured, and that he was living inside of a lie publicized by the media, and that, "Those newspaper men are god damned fucking liars!" He was so traumatized by the event that it continued to haunt him, which eventually drove him to suicide in Murphy's presence.
Despite having long lost his job as tour guide, JP seems to still hold great enthusiasm for it (despite the feeling of hopelessness in his voice), as he is quite eager to insert trivia about Devil's Pit into his conversation with Murphy when given even the slightest opportunity, such as explaining how deep the cavern is while hanging from the other side of the railing. When Murphy shows no interest in this, JP is quite gruff and blunt, claiming he has better things to do than show him the way out of the mines. He is unhelpful and cryptic towards Murphy, but somehow knows a good deal about him, knowing his name without being told and making scathing comments that imply he knows Murphy's sins.
Murphy's comments in the character gallery suggest that JP may have pitied him at the end, possibly because of the similarities of their crimes and the guilt they both suffered, or because JP recognized Murphy's denial as exactly what he had been doing all along. Both men blamed their fates on circumstances, JP claiming that his crime was an accident while Murphy claimed that his was necessary.
In Anne's Story, it is revealed that Sater not only continues to drink, but also carries a bottle of pills with him. While under the influence, Sater shows heavy signs of paranoia, still holding heavy resentment towards the press, but also accusing Anne of being a liar as well, and even contemplating as to whether his doctor has been decieving him.
Silent Hill: Downpour
Given his demeanor, it can be assumed that Sater was contemplating suicide for some time. He is quite blunt with Murphy and is virtually no help when questioned. Sater, like Bobby Ricks, has been trapped in Silent Hill for a long time.
Before exiting Devil's Pit, Sater is standing in an overlook debating on suicide, since the guilt of the accident was too much for him to bear. He assures himself it was an accident, trying to avoid the truth that he was the only person responsible for the death of the children. The player is then given the choice to either taunt or console him. Regardless of the choice, Sater jumps into the chasm below. The choice made results in either negative or positive points and will later affect the game's ending.
At an unknown point during the events of Downpour, Anne Marie Cunningham briefly encounters Sater. It is unknown if he is a ghost or alive at this point. Sater comes to Anne's rescue from a hoard of Weeping Bats. Anne recalls Sater's involvement in the train accident causing the deaths of eight children and notices their ghosts on the train. Anne attempts to make Sater stop the train, but he tells her that the children will not let him. As the ghost children turn monstrous, they attack Anne and she wakes up in the train with no one else around.
- "Pretty impressive, ain't it? You might not guess by looking at it, but this place used to be filled with all kinds of visitors. Moms and dads and little kids and... Yeah. It was a really nice place."
- "Name's JP and that, sir, is the Devil's Pit. 490 meters straight down to the blackest soul of the earth, the deepest limestone sink hole north of the-"
- "First time visitor, huh?"
- "A way out? What good would that do?!"
- "Boy, I tell ya, all the kids... they just loved that little train!"
- "Sorry, someplace I gotta be."
- "You know, they say that if you were to put the Empire State Building in here, wouldn't even reach half-way to the top of this place."
- "Those newspaper men are god damned fucking liars!"
- "And how 'bout you, Murphy? Someone know all your dirty little secrets?"
- "Listen to us talk, as if anybody out there gives a damn... when we're the ones to decide if we can live with what we've done."
- "Be seeing ya around, Murphy."
- "Nothin' easy about bein' a coward, Murphy. You outta know that. Enjoy your stay."
- "Read it on your nametag. Unless, of course, it ain't really your name. 'Cause, you know, so much of what we read these days ain't true."
- "I know what the paper says, but they weren't there - none of 'em. They just wrote about all the lies they were told. They didn't see what really happened."
- "Come to think of it, neither were you, so who made you the judge and jury of the world, huh?"
- "Actually, that ain't how my doc describes it, but maybe he's a liar, too."
- "No use fightin' 'em, miss. They won't stop."
- "Yep, just like a really bad memory you can't seem to shake..."
- "They just don't quit - just keep clawin' and diggin' at you until you ain't got nothin' left to fight 'em off with. Nothin' left to give."
- "It's enough to drive a person to drink, you know? Not that it helps any. The past keeps eatin' away at you, day after goddamn day. No happy days waitin' for folks like us. Just one more scary ride...into darkness."
- Murphy's comment on JP Sater; "I can't get out of my head what he told me just before he jumped. It sounded like an apology and an accusation at the same time, but just a little bit underneath I wonder... did he even pity me?"
- Considering JP's uncanny width of knowledge about Murphy, there is a possibility that he is but a manifestation by the time Murphy meets him. There could also be a possibility that he is trapped in his own Full Circle until he comes to terms with what he's done (though this is speculation).
- There are several bottles of pills on a table in JP Sater's office, one of them open and spilled. It suggests that JP may be abusing drugs in addition to alcohol, though it is not known whether this started before or after the accident or both due to Sater's chronic depression. In his restroom, there is also a large pool of blood staining the floor around the bathtub.
- Outside of JP Sater's office, a plaque with the words "John Sater Tour Guide" can be seen, though JP's name is crossed out.
- Murphy can find several bottles at the accident scene, reflecting the belief that JP was drunk at the time of the accident.
- In-game dialogue suggests that JP is religious, although his suicide further reflects his embracing of selfish moral negligence over what he believes to be right. Further evidence reflecting on the topic, Sater said before minutes of the jump: "Murder is a mortal sin, you go to hell for murder. Ain't that right Murphy?"
- John P. Sater's name is similar to that of French existential philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre. It's unknown whether or not this was deliberate.
Silent Hill: Downpour
|Anne Marie Cunningham - Murphy Pendleton - George Sewell - Frank Coleridge - Bobby Ricks - Howard Blackwood - John P. Sater - M. Koons - Freddie Gates - Mark Cunningham - Leonard B. Trent|
|Bogeyman - Doll - Leonard B. Trent - Nurse - Prisoner Minion - Screamer - Tormented Soul - Weeping Bat - Wheelman|
|Centennial Building - Devil's Pit - Lakeview Hotel - Overlook Penitentiary - Room 302 (South Ashfield Heights) - Ryall State Prison - Silent Hill - Toluca Lake|
|Fog World - Monster - Otherworld - Real World|
|Tom Waltz - IDW Publishing|