I’m so glad that I got around playing Detroit: Become Human before Heavy Rain. If I had played Heavy Rain first, I might not have ever experienced Detroit, or I would have started that game off with a bad taste in my mouth.
Heavy Rain is a narrative driven adventure game where you play as four different characters. They all have their own stories but very rarely cross paths. There is the father, the journalist, the FBI agent and the private investigator.
The game takes place in an American city where a serial killer is on the loose. He is kidnapping small boys and have them drowning in rain water. It is your job as a father, journalist, agent, PI to figure out who the murderer is.
First of all, it is not a puzzle game. Even if the story is portrayed as a mystery you’re just following a straight line to the end. Depending on how good your reflexes are in the QTE’s you will get to see that end or your characters get to die a gruesome death prematurely. I think this is very cheap game design, because it is more like an interactive movie than a game. The game with its many death scenes claim to be highly replayable, but in reality the different endings matters little and I don’t understand who would ever want to sit through the main plot a second time.
This game pisses me off from the get go. The father wakes up alone. Seems the wife and the kids already left the house, what a sloth. You have to instruct him to do the basic things, stand up, put on clothes, open door, walk, open bathroom door, take tooth brush, put on tooth paste, brush his teeth.
And here it begins. You brush his teeth by shaking the controller back and forth, up and down. What!? Who ever thought this was fun or interesting game play? You would think this is a gimmick that’s used once or twice but instead it’s used all through the game and I keep failing because I didn’t shake my controller enough. I sit there in the sofa, shaking my controller up and down the hardest I can, my family looking at me like he’s finally lost it, and then it says FAILED on the screen and all I can do is scream out my frustration with this game. It’s at its worst when the shaking is part of a QTE, where the life of the character is at stake, and it had me pull the plug at one point, to avoid the game from saving the death of a character.
This is what kills the game for me and makes me hate it. I think the creator tried to do something innovative and create immersion, but it fails spectacularly.
The story of the game is neither very good. It doesn’t compel me at all. You are supposed to feel with the characters, but they are way to shallow for you to connect. Some of the characters look so alike that I mix them up, where one dies and I get confused when I get to play as the other and it turned out it was not the same person.
There are some really stupid things going on as well. Like showing people naked in the shower, putting a toilet in a wardrobe without a sink and then watching the character pee. Watching the PI changing a diaper like he’s never done it before was a really weird experience.
I’m glad this game is over. I managed to bring all my four main characters to the end. I would never replay any of it even if I’d fail with all of them. I’m happy that it’s over and Heavy Rain will be off my hard drive in seconds.