Heavy Rain is an interactive drama game in which your decisions affect the outcome. The story is about the Origami Killer, A serial killer who targets young boys and always leaves them with an origami figure in their hand and an orchid on their chest. The story unfolds as you play from the point of view of four different people. Ethan Mars – a troubled dad. Scott Shelby – an asthmatic private detective. Norman Jayden – a drug addicted FBI profiler. And Madison Paige – an insomniac photographer.
The game starts with a normal day in the life of Ethan to allow you to get used to the controls and then things start to heat up from there. It was so engaging, I really grew to care about the characters and was rooting for a happy ending! Some parts were intense, some parts were emotional and some parts were bad ass! I couldn’t wait to see what was going to happen next.
I strongly suggest playing this game through without reading anymore information than that. Don’t look up the best outcome, don’t read any spoilers, I wouldn’t even google the name. I googled a couple of things while I was playing and I’m so pleased I didn’t accidentally spoil it for myself. Use your instincts, make your own decisions and see how it ends for you.
The game is a set story, you are free to do what you want within reason but whatever you do, the story will keep flowing. You can’t choose the character you are playing, you will play the character whos story you are focused on at that time. You can walk around, hear the characters thoughts and interact with the environment if there is a prompt to do so. It is very much like an interactive movie. The camera angles are set, you can’t manually move them but you can alternate between different views to see different areas of the room you are in. This did remind me a tad bit of the original Resident Evil.
There are three difficulty settings. I thought mine was on moderate but when I had a look it was on hard so I have no idea, you can always go into options and change it if it’s too hard/easy for you. You must stay alert throughout the game. It is played with prompts that appear on-screen telling you what to press and how to press it. Sometimes it’s fast, sometimes it’s slow, some times it’s tap it and sometimes it’s hold it. Sometimes you will get options of what to ask or how to reply to someone in a conversation. Read them as fast as possible and choose one because if you aren’t quick enough the game will sometimes choose for you. Speed and accuracy aren’t my best skills when playing games so I spent most of the fights screaming and hitting the wrong buttons but it is all part of the fun. There was one particular part that I really struggled with the controls, crawling through some tunnels and could I get him to go in the direction I wanted? Could I heck. That was the biggest flaw in the game for me.
The music was brilliant, it really set the tone. It got the emotions going at some points and the adrenaline going at others. It was so on point, brilliant. The game wasn’t too long either and kept me hooked the entire time. It took me three good sessions to complete, but once you’ve finished you will probably want to play through again while making different choices than the first time. You can also chapter select to play them out differently and extend the game even further. As far as I know there are 18 endings to find and once you’ve unlocked them all you will win a trophy.
I bought my game second-hand, the box was the normal version but the disk was actually the Move version. I panicked a bit at first as I don’t have a Move controller but once the game had installed (which took a LONG time) I found that it gives you the option between the move and the standard controller.
Overall, it’s different, it’s haunting, it’s unique and I hope they make many more like it, in the same structure but with different, equally great stories to tell. I love it when a game makes you think long after you stop playing and I am still thinking about it so it has definitely stuck a chord with me somehow!
Only read on if you have completed the game.. MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD
For all of you that know the story, I want to share my ending and see how it compares with everyone elses! I think I got quite a good one. Ethan got arrested at his motel but got released at the end and gave Shaun a hug. Norman figured out that the killer was an ex cop and geo-analysed the gas station receipts to find out the location. He saved Shaun and saved Madison. He got famous for being a hero and threw his drugs down the toilet but then started getting attacked by little tanks. Scott chased Madison away from Shaun and Norman, shot her leg and was going to kill her but Norman shot him and he fell off this big crane into some water. Lauren then spat on his grave. Madison wrote her book but got creeped out at the signing.
I thought the reveal of the killer was phenomenal, it was so powerful. I wasn’t totally surprised. He wasn’t my top suspect but I had my eye on him. I was a little bit sad though because I’d played him as such a good character and I was half convinced that it was Blake, although I don’t think it would have made as much of an impact if it was. My other suspects were Ethans wife.. I thought it was her when she dobbed Ethan into the police.. and Madison because she seemed to be there at all the right times.. but then her reveal made it obvious it wasn’t her and they also made it clear it was a man. I was on the fence about whether it was Ethan or not but I hoped that it wasn’t.
So.. That was my ending, please everyone post your endings from your first play through in the comments section, I would love to read them, and also who you thought did it 🙂
Update – I am currently near the end of my second play through and am still thoroughly enjoying the game. You see it from a different perspective when you know who the killer is. I’m working my way through the trophy list and going for the ‘Perfect Crime’ trophy. I’m finding it so hard to go against my instincts, I’m looking forward to unlocking all of the different endings but I feel bad for killing people off! On my second play through I have the settings on Easy which I am really enjoying because I can see what is happening in the action scenes rather than concentrating so much on the prompts.
Update 2 – Platinum trophy achieved!