If you ever wanted to play a game that would make your heart race, this is that game. This is probably the only game I can say declares psychological warfare on its players. Prepare to jump a few times, and a change of underwear may also be due.
Imagine taking movies like Saw and Seven, and turning them into a game as great as the movies were. Ultimately, that’s what was created in Heavy Rain. Quite possibly one of the most unique games to come out in the last decade, Heavy Rain will send you on journey unlike any other.
A lot of players don’t like when a game has so much story that it overshadows the amount of actual game play. Similar to Uncharted 2: Amongst Thieves, a lot of dialogue occurs while you are moving around and completing tasks. Additionally, the player has the option to hear what the character is thinking. The best part of it is: none of it is boring filler story.
The story revolves around four playable characters: Ethan Mars (“emotional, but charming”. Not “emotional, but annoying” like Tidus from Final Fantasy X), Madison Paige (a sweetheart with a killer body), Norman Jayden (C.S.I. fans will enjoy him) and the lovable, chubby Scott Shelby (the whore saving, bad guy beating private eye). A child killer, known as the Origami Killer, is picking off children one by one throughout the city. Your four heroes must find out who the killer is before another child falls victim to a watery death.
Having a great story is only part of what makes the game entertaining. Fights, dangerous situations, and shaving all require button and directional prompts (similar to the God of War series). The game is involving (sorry to all you video game players who are lazy. You’re going to burn calories on this baby). It’s not the typical rinse and repeat wandering. During some of the more intense moments of the game, you might actually feel your heart racing. You may be jumping up and down screaming out, “X, O, left, R1!” You’ll even cry out that you did press the right button (and we know you did), as your character fails and gets punched in the face.
And here’s the real kicker. If one of your characters die, it isn’t game over. The game continues without the character. There is no typical Hollywood, “the hero comes back to save the day” garbage. Dead is dead. However, you’d have to be pretty bad to have a character die early in the game. Be like a midget at a urinal if you want the most out of the story line.
If you haven’t been able to put two and two together, there are multiple endings as a result of: character death, getting arrested/detained, and other various choices throughout Heavy Rain. Simply put, the replay value of this game is high. Maybe you kill a character/non-player character (NPC) in one play through, and let him/her live in the next. You can have a very different experience in your second run through the game.
Outside of simple, harmless tasks like tying your shoes while the most dramatic, or sad, music playing, the game is perfect. The music choice during certain parts of the game can be comical. While it is clear the game is a serious, suspense-thriller, they seemed to go a bit overboard with the musical score. Ethan Mars will drink a cup of a coffee and you’ll hear the theme of the movie Jaws building in the background. Not every bowel movement is a catastrophic event…unless you’re Jabba the Hut.
Heavy Rain is as enjoyable an experience as any game you’ll come by (unless you are a graphics junkie who cares more about glitz and glamor than a well thought-out plot). This is a game anybody can pick up and enjoy.
Game Play: 5/5
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