There is no doubt that Heavy Rain is a heavily anticipated game among PS3 gamers. Since the release of Indigo Prophecy in 2005, gamers have been eagerly waiting to see what Quantic Dreams will offer next with the interactive cinema genre. In just a few weeks, the rain will fall and wash away all the thoughts we once had for the game, Heavy Rain. If you can’t wait that long, and need something to fill that investigating void, then surely you’ve heard of the viral Marketing campaign “Four Days: The Heavy Rain Online Experience”.
The experience consists of 3 challenges, 4 days a week – Tuesday to Friday. From the email, it says it is
“…a unique series of three live four-day challenges drawing you inexorably into the universe of Heavy Rain. Be warned, we’re stepping into a dark world here. Stay alert at all times. Anything you see or learn or hear – you may need later. You’ll be contacted via this email throughout the experience, directing you towards different leads in the investigation.”
Note: If you missed out on the first week, don’t worry, you can still catch up. Like any ARG, this experience has a great community following it. Visit the Official Heavy Rain Fan Page on Facebook and join in on the discussions located on the tabs at the top. Also, be sure to register on http://www.heavyrainps3.com receive the emails.
The first challenge started last week on January 26th with a mysterious email and the link http://www.heavyrainps3.com/rainisfalling. From there, we were led to a twitter profile – @perfectfolds, who we are to assume is the killer. Over the next couple of days, we’ve learned how the killer thinks and how he reacts to the news and society around him – he doesn’t like it. He feels someone needs to do something; He needs to do something. On the third day, we were given a newspaper article with an ad and a link to http://picxaminer.com/en_GB/. Here, we were able to upload one picture from the killer’s tweets. Within 24 hours, results were sent to us for the picture we chose. Only one, labeled “for love”, returned a positive result. Also, if you received the correct results and visited the picxaminer page, you could click on the picture. That led to a facebook quiz – “What would you do for love?” There are four answers given, but they seem random based on certain choices in the quiz. It’s hard to tell what we can make of it.
Yesterday, February 2nd, was the start of the second challenge. In our email for this week, we received a link to a YouTube video; the video is actually a voice recording of a 911 call from a witness near a crime scene. At certain points, we are prompted to receive more information from the caller. If you choose the right options, you will see a success screen and a link to where evidence from the scene will be uploaded. In 24 hours, we will have access to this evidence, and must work on matching the evidence we see to what we hear from an unreliable witness. Today, we received the evidence from this page. On one of the notes in the evidence file was a new twitter account – @sleeperinthesun. So far, not much information is given to match the evidence, but keep an eye on the new twitter page and facebook discussions because I am sure something interesting is about to happen.
So, if you have been anticipating the release of Heavy Rain, or just want to be a part of this ARG (Alternate Reality Game), then check out the links above to get you started. I also hear that there is some exclusive content that will be available for those that do play, although it is unclear what this content may be. It may just be a shirt or some items for your avatar in PlayStation Home, but it’s still a fun experience to be a part of. Speaking of this content, those that sign up with a UK account do receive a Heavy Rain shirt, which gives access to a space within home. I’m not going to go into detail with this, but it includes a short mini investigation. If completed, you receive some more items for your avatar. Also included in this space are 4 posters at the back of the room. Each week these pictures change, and provide hints as to what we can expect each day. I look forward to what the next couple of days and the last week bring. If this is any indication of how deep Heavy Rain will be, it will be an intense experience.