"Heavy Rain", the latest from Quantic Dream, is hard to describe. It's not a game in the usual sense, yet we control the characters' actions. It's not a movie, either, as it requires us to interact with the action on the screen. Maybe "interactive experience" works better, and this is a game that every PS3 owner should experience. That doesn't mean that everyone will love it- to be sure, some will downright hate it, and some, thinking it's just a bunch of QTE, will choose to ignore it. But this is a game that should not be ignored, as it is different from anything else on the PS3 (only Quantic's PS2 outing "Indigo Prophecy" comes close) and is a refreshing break from all the FPSs and hack-and-slash action titles flooding the market. The story follows four characters as their paths intertwine as each pursues the Origami Killer. The story is very much neo-noir with a hint of sci-fi thrown in. I won't spoil any details here, as it's better to uncover it for yourself. This game does pack an emotional wallop at points, and has its fair share of heart pumping action. But its quieter moments are equally important- those moments that flesh out the characters, helping us to connect in a way that's all too rare these days in games, to those moments of discovery that give you that OMG feeling. The graphics are outstanding here, with a majority of animations running smoothly. There is a learning curve to the controls, but once you get the hang of them they work fairly well. Decisions play an important part in how everything unfolds, and there is no "Game Over". There is only an alternate path, giving you the opportunity to return to the story to take the road you bypassed before. The game is not perfect- a glitch pops up here and there, controls can be a bit clumsy and overly complicated in spots, voice acting (mostly great) sometimes falls flat. But these are minor flaws compared to the overall package. Definitely try this one out. It's an experience not to be missed.
The game is so good, I really don't know what to say the developers of this game deserve every dollar coming to them you can tell that they really worked hard to make this game near perfect. The only thing I didn't like was shaking the controller, if you don't get it right the first time you'll have to keep doing it, it's a minor issue. A word of caution if your a 10, 12 year old kid who only likes to shoot things DON'T RENT THIS GAME. Heavy Rain is meant for gamers who will enjoy something other than shooting and fighting bottom line is Heavy Rain is a thinking game so if your not ready for that move along don't ruin it with a bad review. For everyone else who's ready buy the game I won't go into details about the game but it has a high replay value games like this don't come around often.
Grasping a concept of a real life simulation influenced by one individual seems much more intimidating than an interactive movie. The transformation from interactive movie to real life simulation takes place in the first 5 minutes as the plot attacks the player. Influencing the player with the responsibility over 4 lives increases the affect that each decision, whether good or bad, feels fully lived.
Moving to mechanics: creating a cinematic experience with a "modern" style of controls would be clunkier than what they engineered. With camera angles changing in high, rapid frequency, using a joystick to move solely would cause a higher amount of frustration, thus using R2 as the movement with the joystick as a direction keeper. Though the movement can be cumbersome in slightly confined locations, movement times are separate from interactive scenes, showing the amount of polish and experimentation that they would have done while making the game. Through personal experience, the choices of camera and controls make for "human mistakes." One moment told me to go to one place quickly, and I wasn't cognitive of where that location was in the short amount of required time--failure, all because I wasn't calm and collected in what was to be done and where what was.
Issues with mechanics aside, the story potentials make this a personal situation for everyone, inspiring emotion in the consumer and showing what Grand Theft Auto left out: consequence.