Reviews

Heavy Rain Review – Emotional & Thrilling Story

  • 9.5/10/10
    Graphics - 9.5/10/10
  • 10/10/10
    Story - 10/10/10
  • 9.5/10/10
    Playability - 9.5/10/10
  • 9/10/10
    Replayability - 9/10/10
  • 10/10/10
    Originality - 10/10/10
9.5/10

I have never in my entire life of gaming played a game that hit me as hard as Heavy Rain. It made me laugh, it made me cry, made my stomach uneasy and my hands tremble. Watching the ups and downs of these four characters made me realize how precious life truly is. I had to take a few breaks and tell my wife that I love her. It played with my emotions so badly that even hours after completing the game, I still can’t seem to settle down. Heavy Rain is easily the most rounded, most well-done, completely awe-inspiring videogame to date. Now enough with my opinion, let’s put it to the test.

Heavy Rain places you in the minds of four main characters. Without giving too much away, they are a father, a woman, a Private Investigator, and an FBI agent. Each of these characters’ storylines weaves in and out of one another, twisting and turning so fluidly as each chapter unfolds. The object: to find the Origami Killer. A serial killer who is murdering young children and leaving Origami animals at the crime scene. What’s easily the most remarkable aspect of this game is the fact that each one of these character’s lives is in your hands. Yes, they are not invincible. You make a wrong move, and they will most likely die. Unlike every other game out there right now, however, once that character is gone, they are truly gone. The story will change depending on each and every choice you make also. Whether it’s the decision to leave or stay, drink orange juice or eat some pizza, or whether to kill or save someone, every single decision you make will change this game. I’m not saying that the ending will change necessarily-though there are a few alternate endings-but the story itself will be noticeable different. This game flows so well, that your 8-hour adventure will seem like 2-hours. I HATE to say this, but it plays so much like watching a movie, that I have to say it: this story stands amongst some of the greatest stories ever written, including movies. Absolutely phenomenal.

The way the controls work are quite a bit different than anything out there also (unless you’ve played Indigo Prophecy). You move your player using R2 as a forward button, and the analog sticks to change directions. There isn’t a free-roaming camera although you can press L1 to change the camera angle. As you stumble upon certain events, you are required to use the right analog stick in very specific motions. For instance, to complete a mundane task such as brush your teeth, you will be required to swing the analog stick in a half-circle to place the toothpaste, push the stick up to bring the brush to your mouth, shake the controller up and down to brush up and down, and then move the controller left and right to brush from left to right. The controls make you play out all the minute details of life that videogames make you forget about. The more interactive scenes, such as fights, are mapped out as Quick-Time Events. If you’ve games like God of War, you’ll know what I’m talking about. You’ll be asked to press O, X, Triangle, Square, shake the controller, move it up and down, press L1 rapidly, hold R2, L2, X, and O at the same time, plus many other scenarios. While this may seem like a very overly-done feature in recent games, it’s never quite been done like Heavy Rain. It’s just so seamless and well placed. Add in the fact that one wrong button press could lead to the death of your favorite character, and you’ll be paying more attention than ever before.

At the end of the day, Heavy Rain is an absolutely phenomenal videogame. It is set up in a way that makes you feel like you are interacting with a movie rather than a game. The cinematography and landscapes are so perfectly done that you will swear it’s being filmed by real cameras. The story will take your emotions and twist them more severely than any game has done before. This is a very intense game that requires a lot of emotion and a strong will to play. The “Mature” rating on this game is there for a reason, and rather than claim that rating due to its massive amount of blood and gore, Heavy Rain simply placed you in situations that will make you cringe and be uncomfortable. Having to make your character striptease at gunpoint, or watch your partner beat up an innocent suspect with no remorse or only a couple of these intense scenes. If you are a true fan of amazing storylines and interactive gameplay, Heavy Rain is simply the best you’re going to find. While it may only be roughly an 8-hour adventure, there are several different endings, and at least 2 playthroughs are going to be required for you to feel satisfied. It’s such a feat amongst this media that even if you only play it once, it’s a game that deserves to be in your collection. Game of the Year awards just got a little tighter. This is a must-buy for sure.

Graphics: The scenery and landscapes placed in front of you are breathtaking. The rain effects are as close to real as you’ll find, and there are moments where you are able to take a seat and just watch. The only major problems were the occasional screen tear, a few collision detection issues, and at times it seemed like the game was trying to do more than the Playstation3 can handle. Don’t get me wrong, however, Heavy Rain is an absolutely beautiful game.

9.5/10

Story: Hands-down the greatest, most interactive, most heart wrenching stories I have ever been a part of. The way the story twists and turns, bringing each individual character together will keep you playing straight through. I haven’t felt this torn up emotionally since The Titanic.

10/10

Playability: It takes a while to get used to, but it will soon become second nature. The Quick-Time Events are a great addition as well. The way the game plays makes it so that awkward situations such as faulty cover systems, awkward boundary jumps, and invisible walls never truly happen. It creates an almost flawless experience that will be very hard to beat.

9.5/10

Replayability: With the chance that certain characters may die, several different endings, and an entire list of Trophy titles like this “???”, there are more than enough reasons to play this more than once. In fact, I’d be hardpressed to believe that after your first playthrough you would be satisfied enough to not play it again. I give this game a minimum of 3 times through before the average player is truly done.

9/10

Originality: It’s been done by the same company in Indigo Prophecy, but not quite like this and definitely not as well done. There simply isn’t another game out there that looks, feels, and plays like Heavy Rain. This is what videogames are truly supposed to be. Amazing.

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