May 2, 2010

First Thoughts on 'Heavy Rain' - No Spoilers

I liked it. I'll have more to say in a mini-podcast about the game, but overall I thought it was an engaging experience. It's less of a game, in my opinion, than an interactive movie - a grown up choose-your-own-adventure - but I still thoroughly enjoyed it. Here are some first thoughts.

What is good:
* The story - I won't go into the particulars of the story here (wait for the spoilers section of the podcast), but there are several plot threads that keep the game fresh throughout. The game starts off slow, but once the story gets rolling along, it's hard to put the controller down.
* Multiple endings - there are well over twenty epilogues for the game, though I believe the basic story itself stays the same. This gives the game definite replay value. I'm probably going to buy the game so I can play through the game a few more times.
* The characters - The great thing about 'Heavy Rain' is that you can control the actions of the characters and mold the game to your personality, or you can make each character as aloof or downright evil as you like. Based on how you react to certain situations, the story changes along the way. It's really intriguing.

What sucks:
* The controls - Learning the control mechanics is quite frustrating early on, and there are points in the game when you will spin around and pivot several times before getting to where you're going. The system is not intuitive whatsoever, and it can be irritating. You use R2 to walk and the left analog stick to change direction. When you enter a room, the control shifts, and you might turn around and back out of a room before gathering your bearings.
* The voice acting - It becomes obvious very on that the developers are European. You'll catch an accent here or there that is out of place, and sometimes the voice acting distracts from the story itself. That being said, the writing is actually pretty good, so it's a shame that the voice acting is so bad.
* The first act - you have to persist through brushing your teeth, taking a shower, playing with the kids, all before getting to the meat of the story. Seriously, the game did not need such an extensive tutorial. It's quite boring until about half an hour to forty-five minutes into the game. However, the prologue sets up the story very well.

Overall, I think the game is at least worth a rental and is perhaps worth buying (I'm definitely going to buy it). And, now that I've decided to buy it, I saw over at Amazon that the game is on sale for $46.99 WITH A $10 off coupon for the next video game purchase. If you're craving a game with a very different, almost revolutionary user interface, then 'Heavy Rain' is a no-brainer.

Check out the podcast later for more in-depth discussion about the game.

Here is a non-spoiler-ific review of 'Heavy Rain'.

1 comment:

  1. I played The Taxidermist yesterday. I don't know if it's worth $5, but it was fun. Speaking of bad accents, the drug dealer has the worst. It's like a pseudo-European Southern drawl.