- + Still a tense, heartfelt story
- + Graphics remain impressive 6 years on
- + An adult experience
- - In-game graphics engine showing its age through erratic animations
- - Overuse of quick time events
Want to look beyond the score? Check out the full review below…
Start Replay: “Aged”
When Heavy Rain arrived on PlayStation 3 back in 2010, it raised the bar for interactive storytelling. Its gameplay design allowed players to operate between 4 different storylines, as they crossed paths and culminated in one final showdown. The choices you made also altered events drastically, changing the fate of each character, whilst also paving the way for multiple endings. It was a tense and exhilarating adventure that catered exclusively to an adult audience, which not a lot of games had done before. Shoot forward to today and it still is all of these things, but it’s certainly showing its age.
Revisiting Heavy Rain hasn’t been as exciting as I first thought it would be. I had fond memories engaging in its heavily cinematic story, however returning to its world after 6 years has meant it’s no longer a factory fresh experience. Instead I’ve arrived to erratic character animations and controls that infuriate more than excite. Then again, its focus on character interaction and the affect your dialogue choices have on the story, is rewarding either way. In the heat of the moment, will you react in the best possible way?
Despite my negativity, if you’ve missed out on playing Heavy Rain I suggest you do so straight away. The graphical upgrades mean you’re going to get the best experience. Plus, even though the controls feel stale to a returning player, such as myself, the introduction of the PlayStation 4’s controller has made intense gameplay segments a lot easier to handle. This is particularly noteworthy when it comes to the improved analogue sticks, which give tighter control when it matters.
PS3 vs PS4 Comparison
It might be a bit clunky, but Heavy Rain still deserves a space in your gaming library. If you’re a newbie with no prior knowledge of this title, and you like engaging stories, then pick this up immediately. Those returning after a 6 year absence might wish to consider how much a graphical overhaul will enhance their revisit.
*Heavy Rain was provided to Start Replay by Sony PlayStation UK
Check out a handful of in-game screenshots below: