Thursday, February 25, 2010

That Really is Heavy

I finished Heavy Rain in two days, four sittings. That may sound extreme but my friend did it in one single session the day it came out because as he told me, "I could NOT put it down." I felt much the same way. I've never played any game where I was so completely invested in the characters and the outcome of the story. Heavy Rain offers a cinematic experience with a level of interactivity that few games can hold a candle to. There are minor hick-ups with controls, camera issues that are few and far between, and some dialogue isn't delivered with proper emotional emphasis but nothing that disrupts the gameplay to large degrees or dampens the overall experience. There are a few minor plot holes that don't seem to be resolved by the time the finale plays out but they may be disclosed in one of the hundreds of possible sequences that can progress the game based on the player's choices. You will be forced to make decisions you don't want to make: your life or your child's, a man dies or you lose everything, giving up the case or fighting the entire police department to defend the suspect. There are plenty of rewards in the forms of trophies and other payoffs that allow for replayability on a level rarely seen in modern games. With all that said, Heavy Rain receives a highly deserved 4.5 out of 5 stars and a place on my list of greatest games of all time. See you next week for God of War III, more on Dante's Inferno and Final Fantasy XIII.

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