The Red Square is a recurring symbolic object that appears in several Silent Hill games. While there is speculation, the significance of the red square is unknown.
Silent Hill 2
In Silent Hill 2, red squares appear as save points and may symbolize Mary's letter. It appears as a crumpled sheet of red paper, and shines as if it was dipped in water or blood. The majority of red squares are found attached to walls and other vertical surfaces.
Unlike in the first game, it seems that protagonist James Sunderland doesn't have to physically contact the save points to activate them, as the first one is seen at the bottom of a well, far from James' reach.
Red squares can also be seen attached to the faces of Bubble Head Nurses in Brookhaven Hospital. The squares disappear from the nurses' faces after James fights the Flesh Lips, who remind him of Mary when she was ill and reviled him. The squares are caked in dirt or dried blood.
In the Lakeview Hotel, James finds nine red squares, which are intended to relate back to the Bubble Head Nurse. The guidebook says the final save point has to do with James's memories no longer being repressed. The nine red squares also appear on the Japanese cover of the game and Silent Hill 2: The Novel.
Art director Masahiro Ito has been secretive of the meaning of the nine red squares, preferring to leave it open to the interpretation of the player. In September 2020, he dropped a clue stating "[The red squares] has a few reasons. I don't want to say too much, and will leave it to your imagination basically. But... for example, what number of hallucinations did James see in the journey?". Notably, there nine monsters in Silent Hill 2, which are physical manifestations of the subconscious, including Pyramid Head, the Bubble Head Nurses, the Creepers, the Lying Figures, the Mannequins, the Mandarins, the Abstract Daddy, Flesh Lips, and Maria (who later serves as the final boss Mary).
Silent Hill 3
In Silent Hill 3, red squares appear in the Otherworld. Four red squares appear in Hilltop Center above the hanging body in the room where the shift to the Otherworld occurs and later in the upper part of the cage construction behind the Gallery of Fine Arts. They appear to be made of textile this time.
Square sheets with the images of ears and screaming mouths also appear there. When asked what this means, Masahiro Ito answered:
"'Mouth' means Alessa's shrieking insanity from the bottom of her heart. SH3's 'Another world' where Heather enters is reflected in the Alessa's conscious. Alessa was bullied at school and suffered from her mother's cruelty. (Incidentally, mouth in SH2 means Mary's shrieking insanity.) Bleeding ear's case, I wanted to express Another world's personality like human. (That ear is Alessa's.) But I didn't wanna use the 'eye', because I didn't use it in Silent hill series creature's design. Bleeding means Alessa's conscious is mad. And the nurse red mouth means mad, too."
Square sheets with ears depicted on them are attached to the back side of most wheelchairs that Heather encounters in the Otherworld.
Red squares can also be seen covering the mouths of the nurses.
Silent Hill 4: The Room
Henry uses the red notebook as the save point.
- Square tablets symbolizing characters and representing their sins appear in Toluca Prison in Silent Hill 2. The Tablet of "The Oppressor" could be considered a red square.
- Square cages with red curtains appear in the Otherworld Brookhaven Hospital and Church.
- Four rectangular plates that symbolize murder victims are used to open the hole in the bathroom of Room 302 in Silent Hill 4. The Temptation Placard could be considered a red square.
- Red squares also appear in the psychedelic video Ki-No-Ko. They are seen flying on the streets and sliding on the walls.
- In Silent Hill: Book of Memories, the male Raver class can wear a shirt with the nine red squares on it.
- Masahiro, Ito (adsk4). “When he is under attack, it reminds him of that she used to revile him. So, after that, all creatures have mouth.” Tweet.
- Masahiro Ito, Twitter
- Silent Hill Chronicle
- Masahiro Ito, Nobu bbs