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Game over! Heavy Rain takes mortal damage in the Laser Orgy 500.
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Heavy Rain


Is Heavy Rain a game or a movie? Heavy Rain achieves the best of both worlds. Emphasizing its characters' inner lives to a degree most games don't attempt, it also gives players enough control over the outcome that even familiar dramatic scenes are imbued with real urgency and danger. The story follows four characters, all of them searching for the Origami Killer, who kidnaps young boys, drowns them in rainwater, and leaves origami figures with their bodies. The trials that you must endure in order to discover clues, though gruesome, not terribly inventive, but Heavy Rain makes them consequential. When you fail a trial, your instinct may be to reload and try again, but the game doesn't give you that option. In its best moments, Heavy Rain evokes powerlessness and panic. Action scenes, like fistfights and car chases, take the form of quicktime events in which you don't have direct control and must react to split-second button prompts. Gut reactions take the place of thought-out decisions. You never know when you'll be able to skate by and when you'll be hammered for a mistake. Even during quiet scenes, the tension always runs high. Heavy Rain is not a game with which to flirt. You have to commit to it. No, it's not quite a game, and it's not quite a movie. It's a dividing line. There was before Heavy Rain, and now there's after. READ MORE: Review: God of War III, by Mitch Krpata
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