I've used strategy guides for many types of games including RPGs, adventure games and almost all of the previous Silent Hill games. This one fails dramatically in its key purpose: to walk you through the game in an orderly manner and help you find the clues needed to solve puzzles. This newest chapter of Silent Hill features, for the first time, many optional side missions which were designed to add longevity to the gameplay. Unfortunately, the guide's author seemed stumped in how to handle these missions and adds them haphazardly throughout the main walkthrough. Since some areas of the town's map are not immediately available, the guide becomes very difficult to follow and I found myself having to flip back and forth through the guide because I was now in an area of the map that was referenced 20 pages before. Since the side missions are optional, they should have been addressed in an entirely different section from the main walkthrough, allowing the player to access them as he/she nears the end of the game and when the town is fully accessible.
Other issues included poorly described puzzles and solutions accompanied by unhelpful photos. There were also multiple lockers that required a combination to open but they were not even mentioned in the guide. I came to find out much later that the combination was only available if the game had been pre-ordered. I wasted a lot of time looking for clues to these lockers which a simple notation in the guide could have alleviated.
In the end, I decided to just ignore the guide entirely and try to complete as many missions as I could without assistance. The guide proved to be more frustrating than the game itself.