January 27, 2010

Heavy Rain: Four Days

Shawn Lebert says January 26 was hit with not only one of the biggest sequels of the year already – oh, Mass Effect 2, calling you the “AVATAR of video games” – but a fun surprise of events with the reveal of Heavy Rain: Four Days. This is an online, interactive mystery that has little to do with the upcoming PlayStation 3 exclusive, but much to do with its storyline. If you’re a fan of the totally detailed alternate reality games – or ARGs for short – you will find yourself sucked in the very first day of joining.

For starters, you’re given an email that’ll prompt you to jump right into the madness. By madness, it means the mind of a psychopath. This isn’t some normal website mini-game where you have to push buttons and dodge death. This is a full-blown alternate reality game that has the potential of starting up some heat with other ARG-related rivals, from shows like LOST on ABC. Okay; it’s not as articulate – yet – but it surely has the potential to be the most intriguing murder mystery on the Net at the moment.

You’ll be hitting the Heavy Rain website and facing your first test. Hopefully, you have your thinking cap on by now because anagrams are the specialty on the first day. For the purpose of getting anyone and everyone into the viral marketing, there won’t be any revelation of information pertaining to the game. However, many will notice right away that they use social networks like Twitter as a very important aspect to the game. As a detective, you must do what you can in order to solve the left-behind clues the Origami Killer has left behind.

By God, it isn’t easy. Eventually, you’ll be coming up with theories and suspicions that reveal little to nothing about the things at hand, or perhaps you’ll go off on your own tangent. Hands down, David Cage gets a pat on the back for his creative insight on the viral workings of this mystery and how it brings everyone from all over, to help break the case. Surely though, no one is meant to solve it on the first day as not enough clues are present.

This is one case that you will need an actual bulletin board to link all the possible connections, if the connections are even correct. The fact that even the game doesn’t tell you if you’re on the right trail or not is what’s brilliant and realistic.

The game will take place for the next three weeks, four days out of each week, from Tuesday to Friday. That’s 12 days. Twelve days to outsmart the killer.

If this is your dream job, to be a detective, here is your unofficial training. Sign up right now.