View Full Version : Cleril Reviews: Heavy Rain

02-28-2010, 02:11 AM
Choice. That's a powerful word, no? Many games like Mass Effect, Indigo Prophecy (made by the makers of Heavy Rain), and Dragon Age: Origins all give players choice. But none of them come close to the choices and consequences you'll be offered in Heavy Rain. There is no game, I repeat, no game like Heavy Rain. Indigo Prophecy does not scratch the story of Heavy Rain. Mass Effect does not give nearly enough endings or choices as Heavy Rain does. And Heavy Rain knows what it set out to do, be entirely different.


There's not much to say about the plot without spoiling anything. Essentially there is a person called "The Origami Killer" and he has been killing young boys, leaving his origami behind. You are tasked to lead different characters, Ethan Mars, Madison Paige, Norman Jayden, and Scott Shelby into the investigation and figure out who the killer is. Each character has their own motivations to seek the killer and in fact these interests will collide and lead them to meet, some for better or worse.

That's all I can say without spoiling a single story point. Know this though, the story does have a few plot holes (which may be uncovered in the DLC being released eventually) but you won't notice them as they aren't the big picture. The game simply never explains a few things but they will slip over your head until you finish the game and think about what happened. You should take note that there are multiple endings, 23 or so to be exact. The endings are not determined by a single choice but instead a multitude of possibilities. All possible choices will be made by you and sometimes, you'll make a choice you didn't mean to.

Doing so is not the games fault per say. Often you as the player are under constant stress when choosing what to do in any given situation. A simple click of a button is all it takes to let your characters finger slip on the trigger. I made a few "mistakes" (there is no right or wrong choice) in my playthrough, none were purposelly done but even then I had to live with the consequences of my choices. While you can replay any scene you'd like, you should simply continue the story with the mistake or choice you made. That way later on you'll see how everything came together to get to where you got to in the story.

Every detail is monitored by the game. Did you kill this person? Did you perform this action? Did you do nothing at all? Every choice carries weight in this game, some more than others but every choices affects something.


The game has been given the title of a "giant quick-time-event." If anyone tells you this please make sure they do not reproduce because Heavy Rain is not at all a giant quick-time-event. 90% Of the time you are in complete control of your character in terms of movement. The other 10% is when you are in a fight scene in which you cocntrol movements of your character via on-sreen prompts. Succeed in the prompt, dodge a blow, fail a prompt, you may trip. However failing one sequence does not game over you. In fact, there is no game over, ever. If a character dies then the story continues on without them. Characters can die in any dangerous situation but only if you fail too many prompts, miss two or three and you might be fine depending on the context. Miss too many....they die, with you living with that.

The controls specifically are unique. Instead of using just the left-stick to walk you also have to use R2 to actually walk, the left stick just controlling the direction. It's not a crap system but there are a few hiccups with it that will leave your character doing a ballet of sorts. You can interact with most objects in any given area using a variety of quick-time-event methods. To look at something you hold the right stick in that direction, release it to look away. To crawl through a hole you have to hold down a certain amount of buttons and cannot release any of them until they disappear. Then there's the typical rapid pressing of buttons for lifting objects, shaking the controller to shake someone off, or tilting the control to steer a car.

The game never asked too much of me but if you do have problems then there are difficulty settings (the default is hard) for you to choose. I personally recommend hard because it provides the most immersion factor. The hardest task I ever had with these controls were during just one sequence in which I had to hold 7, yes 7 buttons on the controller, using both of my thumbs, both pointer fingers, and both middle fingers. Even if you fail that sequence you can again redeem yourself later as the story just change a bit. Even with the difficulty it is endlessly satisfying and sometimes fun to complete a sequence.

No Spoilers, it's just a trailer.

Speaking of fun you'll find it in only some parts of Heavy Rain. This does not make it bad, no, it's because it's an "Interactive Drama." To give my personal feelings felt while playing the game I was terrified, nervous, happy, sad (nearly cried at several parts), bewildered, stressed, and experienced other emotions as well. Did I say I was stressed? Yes, I was emotionally drained after playing for nearly 3 hours straight....but I continued playing for another 3-4 hours until my dad asked for the TV. Why? I connected with the game, it's characters, the story, the world, etc. This game immersed me entirely....even after playing I would approach a door and in my mind see the cue pop up to open it.

If you didn't notice from the trailer the sound in the game is absolutely amazing. The music is mostly filled with tension fueling strings and the voice acting is solid. There are a few lines that come off as bad and there are some sounds glitches too with music or voices having a hiccup kind of effect. There are also a few animations that look robotic to some extent but considering they spent 170 hours in a motion capture studio making 30,000 unique animations you can't blame for a whole 5 or so bad animations. The graphics are the best I've ever seen in terms of realism and the look of all characters look well, human.

I've finished the game once, Heavy Rain is most likely not something you'll replay immediately because there's a problem with that. The creator himself even stated that he wished people would only play Heavy Rain once. Why would you only want to play it once? Well, the choices you made when you first played it were made without any knowledge of what's to come and were made based on your own personal feelings and intuition (or the characters). Replaying it feels a bit like betraying yourself since you have to now try to do something different instead of necessarily wanting to do it.

Okay, so do I get it?

Heavy Rain's been waiting for over an hour for ****s sake! Go to your local videogame store, buy it, with a PS3 if you must, and play it. There is no reason to not get this unless you are a completely conservative FPS gamer who can't accept something different into the medium. You want to play something you've never tried before? This is the only game like that. If you don't get this though then in my eyes you are either a poor chooser of consoles (I have all three :P ) and/or are incompetent of what games can be. They can be like Heavy Rain because Heavy Rain proves they can.

Also, the infamous questions you may have I will answer in spoilers.

Anywhere from 6-12 hours depending on who dies, your choices etc. My playthrough had two main characters die at the end of the game and lasted exactly 9 hours.

Nope, nothing in Heavy Rain is mythological or improbable save for Norman Jayden's ARI (Another Reality Interface) glasses that help him find evidence. Even this technology is somewhat probably to exist anyway in all honestly.

Also, there are no real plot holes. You have to assume and formulate how things happen and you'll realize that there are no plot holes.

02-28-2010, 02:14 AM
Lovely review. I am soooo excited for this game. I really want it X: This only made me salivate for it more. Drool drool drool.

02-28-2010, 12:54 PM
I just finished this game and will post up a review later tonight. I agree with a good amount of what you have said but there are some key points I don't agree with as well. One thing I do agree on is that if you have a PS3 at the very least download the demo and try that out.

02-28-2010, 10:31 PM
this sounds like my kind of game
but unfortunately I don't have a ps3
wow. that sucks
but I love your reviews there very well detailed!
keep it up