Cedar Hill Church is a location in The Evil Within. Throughout Chapter 6, Sebastian must make his way through dangerous ruins, cliffsides, bridges, cemeteries, markets and eventually catacombs to reach it and track down Leslie, facing off against fearsome opponents such as the Sadist along the way, all leading up to his encounter with the dreaded Keeper within the bowels of the church during the events of Chapter 7.
Cedar Hill Church was a large and wildly intricate structure at the base of a relatively poor village, one that was home to detective Juli Kidman, operating under the guise of being a charitable organization solely used for religious practice, while secretly manipulating the townspeople through the newspaper, one such victim being Ernesto Victoriano.
Founded by the corrupt Pastor Salvador Graciano, whose motives and history remain a mystery, the Cedar Hill Church had a dark and twisted past, which it barely managed to keep hidden from the outside world. While above ground nothing would truly appear out of place, beneath the church's floor were massive catacombs, and a laboratory beneath the courtyard where experiments of some sort were seemingly being conducted, as evidenced by the out of place research equipment, blueprints, and the built-in formaldehyde vats, one of which still containing the massive, featureless remains of some sort of being that served as a test subject, approximately the same size as Neun and Zehn, two twin orphans who were left at the doorstep of the church, and upon being brought beneath the church courtyard, continued to grow at an alarming rate, soon reaching nearly ten feet in height, and becoming so unstable towards those they were unfamiliar with that they had to be sequestered to stone chambers, where they were kept chained.
At some point or another, the church floor collapsed, leading to several investigators searching below the church, surprised to discover countless ritualistic sepulchers, and mummies everywhere. When the parishioners were questioned about the matter, the claimed to have nothing to do with it. During construction, whilst overseeing repairs made to the church floor, the foreman, Chris Taylor was reported to have mysteriously "disappeared". It is possible that one of Graciano's men had him taken care of, or, more likely, that he was fed to the Sentinel, a hideously deformed guard dog that was kept beneath the church, becoming savage and oversized, similarly to the twins, due to it's diet of "sacrificial" human remains, which the churchgoers struggled to sate it's hunger for, leading to it becoming even more ferocious. It would appear that it got to a point where the churchgoers had to begin forcefully taking villagers, such as Donna, whose husband, Daniel, decided that he wouldn't allow it, and went after her, sneaking into a separate entrance to the wolf's den, presumably meeting his demise.
The Evil Within
During the events of The Evil Within, Sebastian first learns of Cedar Hill Church by examining several photographs, one such showcasing an AlterEgo's hand reaching up through the collapse in the church's floor. Shortly after following Tatiana, and seeing a vision of the Keeper, Sebastian awakens inside the basement of a heavily deteriorated coastal building a fair distance away from the beginning of a network of ruins that are all collectively a part of the Cedar Hill church property, where he quickly reunites with Joseph.
As Sebastian makes his way through them, he encounters many perils, such as droves of Haunted, some operating suspended platforms, completely protecting them until they open up the shield doors to fire a barrage of harpoons down upon Sebastian and Joseph. After taking out all of the harpoon gunners, the waves of Haunted stop pursuing them, and Sebastian and Joseph become separated briefly, Sebastian having to defeat the Sadist once more. After this, the two ride an elevator to the top of the large building, which takes them to the foot of a bridge that connects to a cliffside. Joseph, eager to take out two Haunted executing people at a guillotine, triggers a tripwire, setting off a dynamite trap that once again separates them. Sebastian saves Joseph and the two of them make it through a large doorway that has to be cranked open, Sebastian holding off the oncoming Haunted attack while Joseph opens the doorway.
Once they make it through, Seb blocks the Haunted off, and the pair finds themselves in a marketplace. They briefly inquire their surroundings before Joseph begins suffering from the side effects of STEM again. The two rest in a nearby building for a little while, discussing Sebs's past briefly before continuing through the marketplace, the building behind them collapsing. They head through a large doorway and are led into the courtyard. Joseph climbs a ladder and acquires a sniper rifle, taking care of a few Haunted lurking in a nearby flooded cemetery while Sebastian follows a masked Haunted into the courtyard, who in turn releases Zehn, who kills him. Sebastian defeats Zehn, utilizing various lanterns around the courtyard to set him on fire, while Joseph helps out by shooting him. Zehn's brother Neun becomes hysterical and breaks free of his shackles, chasing Sebastian throughout the courtyard. If Neun catched Sebastian, he may tear his arms off and step on his head.
Sebastian and Joseph bring Neun down, and the two head through a passageway that Joseph finds. Along the way they solve a sacrifice puzzle, and encounter numerous hung body bags, some containing living victims. They soon encounter the Sentinel, who is chained up in a cage, resting. They make their way to the surface once more, only to find themselves at a locked gate. However, the Sentinel escapes its cage and burst through a wall, knocking down the gate, and also knocking Joseph unconscious. Sebastian battles the Sentinel before the church, managing to temporarily incapacitate it, allowing time for him and Joseph to escape, Seb having to return back through the gate to retrieve Joseph's glasses, while Joseph buys him time by throwing bottles to distract the Sentinel. The two make it out safely and enter the Cedar Hill Church.
The two stop to rest for a minute, hearing Kidman and Leslie, whom they spotted earlier while approaching the church. Ruvik appears on a chandelier and causes everything to float, sending Sebastian through the floor into the catacombs, where the Keeper awaits, once again separating him from Joseph. Sebastian witnesses all of the strange things that went on beneath the church, dispatching several Haunted, and later encountering the AlterEgos, as he had seen in one of the photographs earlier. He acquires three stone lithographs at the ends of long tunnels, filled with numerous unsavory traps. He pieces them all where they belong and soon meets the Keeper, who evades him by laying out many traps for him.
Sebastian makes it past all of them and finds Leslie locked within a cage. He frees him, but as he is opening a doorway, Leslie panics and runs through, triggering a tripwire which shuts the door, locking it, separating the two. Sebastian, now locked inside the room, is forced to battle the Keeper, who teleports inside. Quickly beating him, the catacombs now fill with gas, which Sebastian must turn off using the valves. Sebastian soon learns of the Keeper's ability to reanimate through any nearby safes, and must evade him as he makes his escape. After replacing the final valve, which had been busted off by the Keeper, Sebastian quickly runs down a set of stairs and locks the keeper out using another vault door. After climbing a ladder, Sebastian runs into another safe, which bursts open and uses tentacles to wrap itself around Sebastian's face. Sebastian rips it off, and pulls a lever, dropping a spike trap onto the Keeper, keeping him at bay until Chapter 13. Sebastian escapes the catacombs and drops through an entrance into a cave passage, even deeper below ground than the catacombs.
Towards the end of The Assignment, Juli is brought back to her hometown, confronting her memories of her family, whom she despised, and the village, which happened to be the one right nearby the market where Sebastian and Joseph passed through. She elaborates as to how much ill will she held towards the Cedar Hill Church, and the goddess statue in the center of town. She explains how she would always sneak into the courtyard when she was younger and hide the statuettes that were placed by the gate to the church, but every morning they would always be right back where they were before.
After Kidman and Leslie make it into the church, Ruvik appears, and Kidman witnesses him take over Leslie's mind. The Administrator then appears, infuriated that Kidman wants to kill him rather than bring him to MOBIUS. Kidman tries running back through the entrance, but the Administrator appears walking towards her through a hallway. Kidman turns around and begins running through an area of the church previously unseen, with numerous winding hallways, each with a long rug on the ground, eventually leading her through the exit. It is likely that this area was conjured up by the administrator.
The interior of the church itself is quite beautiful compared to what lies beneath it in the catacombs. The large, stained-glass windows have lovely intricate designs, and there are several rows of pews for parishioners to sit at, all on a large purple rug. The ceiling is also held up by stone pillars. There is a podium at the front for a speaker, and several candelabra are placed throughout the room. There is a fancy chandelier hanging from the ceiling. The exterior is constructed out of some sort of white stone, the cults signature symbol seen on the very top, as well as on all of the doors.
- Though the exact meaning of the Cedar Hill cult's symbol is unknown, it appears on numerous doorways throughout the church, as well as around necklaces worn by Pastor Graciano and priest Haunted.
- The symbol can also be seen outside of one of the locked cell doors within the Safe Haven.
- It is speculated that the symbol is meant to be a more simplistic version of the Beacon logo.
- A similar symbol is seen in various places in Father Theodore's trailer for The Evil Within 2. While unlikely, it is possible that he was in some way connected to the church's cult, though this is unlikely as Cedar Hill Church had a completely different set of beliefs than Theodore, in addition to it being run by Pastor Graciano instead.