In 2010, developer Quantic Dream and publisher Sony Computer Entertainment released “Heavy Rain” for the PlayStation 3. The dark interactive-drama adventure game puts you in the shoes of multiple characters as you discover the truth to the Origami Killer mystery. Will Heavy Rain kill it in the rating department or will the game be a wash? We scream “Jason” a lot in this Heavy Rain review.
Heavy Rain Plot:
The main character is Ethan Mars. A husband and father of two who is happily married and has a great job. His oldest son just turned ten and he decides to take the family shopping to the mall. The mall is a bit crowded and he loses track of his other son, JASON!
Ethan starts to panic and runs around the mall screaming “JASON!”. For some reason, Jason decided to go outside. Just as Ethan discovers where his son is, Jason is hit by a car and killed.
Fast-forward two years later and Ethan is divorced, depressed, and a shell of his former self. His other son, Shaun comes to visit on the weekends and it is during one of these weekends that Shaun is abducted by the Origami Killer, a serial killer that kidnaps young boys and drowns them in the sewers when they overflow with heavy rain. Hey, that’s the title of the game!
Aside from his son being abducted, Ethan is suffering from severe blackouts, which causes him to think he may be the Origami Killer. Desperate to find his only living son, Ethan embarks on a crazy hunt for his son as he follows the clues left by the Origami Killer. He’ll have to drive his car the wrong way on the highway, run from the police, cut his fingers off, and do other things to prove the love for his son. The case is also being investigated by Detective Jayden, a young detective that uses advanced technology through his sunglasses to solve cases. To use this technology, Jayden needs to ingest some type of chemical that is addictive.
Jayden isn’t the only one investigating the string of crimes as Scott Shelby, a private investigator is going around town and speaking to witnesses about the recent murders. But wait, there’s more! The fourth character in this Heavy Rain review is Madison Paige, an undercover reporter who poses as an ordinary woman. Throughout the game, you’ll be switching from these four characters as they make their way closer to discovering who the true Origami Killer is.
There are 34 different endings with some of them horribly dark like Ethan failing to find his son, being arrested, and hanging himself in his cell. As it turns out, Scott Shelby is the Origami Killer. As a boy, he and his brother were abused by their alcoholic father. One rainy day, they decide to play in a construction site where Scott’s brother accidentally drowns in a sewage pipe. The traumatic event and terrible parenting led Scott to become a serial killer and kill young boys the same way his brother died.
The best ending in the game is for Ethan to pass all of the tests, and get Scott arrested or killed. Madison develops feelings for Ethan and they move in together with a happy Shaun. Meanwhile, Jayden has kicked his addiction to his technology drugs and remains in good rankings at his firm. As I stated earlier, there are 34 different endings so there’s plenty of crazy things that can go wrong with one push of a button!
Heavy Rain Gameplay:
Heavy Rain leans on its story and interactive scenes of gameplay. As you control the characters you’ll be able to walk around the environments and interact with objects. Things like going to the bathroom or brushing your teeth require you to press different buttons or shake the controller like you are using a toothbrush.
All of these interactions are easy to pass but there are a few timed button sequences that will test your reflexes as it did mine during the Heavy Rain review. Multiple times there are action scenes that require you to push the correct button when it flashes on the screen. If you don’t hit the right button or miss the signal, your character will suffer. There are no “game overs” as the game just continues if something bad happens. Most scenes play out like that but there are times when you need to investigate a crime scene and find all the clues to proceed.
The voice-acting is superb and the atmosphere puts you right into a grim detective movie. I felt for Ethan during my Heavy Rain review and what he is going through. The other characters are well-written, each with distinctive personalities. You’ll be given multiple options and outcomes with each character as they play through the game so replayability is extremely high. As far as presentation goes, Heavy Rain nailed it on the head with the quality of the atmosphere, story, and character models.
If you need a game that requires skill and practice, you won’t find it with Heavy Rain. It’s generally an easy game to play through and the button commands are fair. If you fail, it’s probably because of your fat fingers or slow reaction. Heavy Rain ushered in the interactive video game to the mainstream.
I received the game relatively soon after it was released. I remember being intrigued by the trailer of it and purchased it shortly after. Playing through Heavy Rain review was fun but it didn’t offer much of a challenge for gameplay. The game was all about decision-making and I ended up with one of the better endings where Ethan survives, finds his son, and starts a relationship with Madison.
Speaking of Madison, I think her shower scene was the first time I saw boobs in a video game uncensored. Boy, did I have fun with that as well as her sex scene with Ethan. As a teenager, I thought this was awesome and bragged to my friends that this game had tits in it. Incredible!
Anyway, I let my coworker borrow it and he thought it was a great game too but then came the “Jason” memes and gifs which always give me a chuckle. I put Heavy Rain away and didn’t play it for a long time. It wasn’t until I got married that I thought my wife might like playing it. She was hooked and enjoyed solving the mystery. I could tell she was tense throughout her playthrough not wanting to make a mistake or kill someone. She gets mad easy and gives up too quickly so when there was any hint of her failing or having a poor outcome I stepped in to save the day like when the explosion destroys the apartment and you have to jump into the fridge before the apartment goes up in smoke. She likes to think she is a great detective for getting a good ending, and I suppose she deserves a pat on the back for it.
Heavy Rain Review Score:
Heavy Rain presented gamers with a new way of playing video games with its interactive button drama. With polished character models, quality acting, and a replayable story, Heavy Rain showed gamers what an interactive drama could be.
Heavy Rain scores an 8.5 out of 10.
What would you write in your Heavy Rain review? Do you remember when Heavy Rain first came out? Who was your favorite character to play as? When did you discover who the killer was? What type of ending did you get? Were you mesmerized by the boobs? Let me know your memories and thoughts, I’d love to read the comments!