Heavy Rain

They say when it rains, it pours, and we’ve just had a deluge of new info on Quantic Dream’s mystery PS3 exclusive.

Torrential puns aside, Quantic is best known for Fahrenheit (Indigo Prophecy in the US), and Heavy Rain seems to be following similar lines. Speaking to Dutch magazine Chief, founder David Cage admits as much:

“With the release of Fahrenheit, we gave the adventure genre a new grammar. We brought new ways into the genre, new words if you want to see it like that, a new vocabulaire [sic]. With Heavy Rain, we’re going to expand on that same grammar.”

Presumably this talk of “grammar” would mean that Heavy Rain will also adopt Fahrenheit’s stance of part game, part interactive movie. Of course what was really burning in my mind were the tech demos – and it’s highly doubtful Cage shocked anyone by stating that Sony’s internal feedback on the graphics had been great. But nonetheless he expects people to be surprised with what they’ve come up with.

“This is going to be a truly next-gen game. But still, we want to do something unique with the graphics, going beyond just making the most photorealistic world we can.” There’s no word what that unique element is, so you’ll have to be content with some actual plot details for now.

“Heavy Rain is about normal people that have landed in extraordinary situations,” he explains. “I wanted a much more personal story. The first thing that came to my mind, as a father of two little boys, was that the main theme should simply be a father’s love for his son. This is not a game about saving the princess or the world. It’s purely about a father’s love.

“The main story will revolve around four different characters, and we’re putting the spotlight on their perceptions. The question ‘what is good and what is evil’ is the key here, that will be just a matter of viewpoint – I believe heavily in moral choices, I’m going to use them A LOT. They’re not about being good or bad, but about finding the right balance.”

The only definite thing beyond that, it seems, was Cage’s resolution that Heavy Rain will not take place in an open environment. “The flow of the story will then be hard to control,” he says, by way of explanation. “Nevertheless, I do want to incorporate big sets, with a crowd, heavy populated areas like a mall and a subway are going to be in there. Of course, the gameplay has got to make use of that aspect too.”