Have you ever thought to yourself: how are the trophies? No, not those large, metal encumbrances that litter school display cases and your grandmother’s mantelpiece. I’m talking about something much more enticing: lines of code that have been spliced together to make a digital reward for all of those hundreds of hours of blood, sweat and tears on Sony’s line-up of consoles. If you have pondered this in the past, then ponder no more, as I will truly tell you how they are; I will tell you what they’re about; I will give you the inside scoop on any trophy you want. So sit back, throw down that Dualshock, pop on the Journey soundtrack and travel into a world of thrills, sadness and shiny virtual offerings.
SPOILERS ALERT for a game that’s four years old…
You have been warned…
Starting a game is usually fraught with excitement. You arrive in a fantastical setting, enter a war-zone filled with debris and destruction, or sometimes you just wake up in your nicely made home wearing only a pair of boxers to hide your modesty. Along with this opening of blockbuster-like proportions, you can gain the Happy Birthday trophy. Now most trophies only pop after completing one objective, but obviously Heavy Rain is going to throw you in at the deep end and, now hold onto your socks, three tasks are necessary to succeed (gasp!).
You will have to draw a building (Ethan Mars’ job, so that will be extremely difficult I’m sure), play with your children in an obvious bout of child abuse, and of course the hardest of them all: setting a table. Your wife tells you to get the plates from the cupboard, but where is this cupboard? Is it marked accordingly? It definitely isn’t, but Mrs Mars doesn’t want to help you get a trophy; she would rather watch her husband scramble around aimlessly as he searches for “the living room cupboard” in a place that seems to be the dining room. I don’t think this trophy hunt is going to be as easy as Ethan’s boxer shorts led me to believe it would be.
This is certainly apparent when all the fun of the first level is thrown out the window – or in front of a car – as a slew of depressing trophies lead us on our not-so-merry way. Don’t let the titles of Good Father and Good Friend fool you, as the tasks required to obtain these trophies are anything but cheery. Making your incredibly sad son sit in a dank house while you rush between rooms checking the clock every so often and cooking rubbish microwave pizza doesn’t exactly scream “good” anything. And did I mention that Ethan takes him to the most melancholy park on earth, in the rain, to play on a seesaw, and then loses him while he rides the carousel? Yep, he does that too. That poor boy, but at least you got some trophies.
After Ethan has sent his son into the hands of a serial killer, things don’t get much better for our extremely unlucky protagonist. To get the trophy Kamikaze, you need to carefully drive on the wrong side of the road for five miles, which isn’t really the easiest thing to do using quick time events, especially in the rain. This is usually the result: Ethan crashes multiple times and flies off the highway in a flaming ball of metal. Job done.
But that isn’t all! Have you ever wanted to mutilate yourself without any of that blood or pain? If so, then Butcher is definitely the trophy for you. Just please remember to use a saw or a pair scissors, because those seem like the most practical utensils for decapitation. For those that have a streak of the humanitarian in them, perhaps getting Gold Finger would suit your tastes better. You may think that using an axe, a knife or the worst: some rusty pliers to cut off a man’s finger would be a terrible thing to do, but perhaps not if you cauterise the wound after with a metal rod and an old oven. Safety first after all, and Ethan’s health should be your top priority.
Though there is a man whose good health is not on my radar at all. That would be Norman Jayden, an FBI agent brought in to work on the Origami Killer case. He does his job pretty well, apart from when he’s taking an addictive drug to counteract the effects of his virtual reality glasses. It is his withdrawal from Triptocaine that makes obtaining Goodbye Mad Jack a near-impossible feat. You had him at gun point, Jayden! You totally had him! And then you went and messed it up completely by making us press every button on the controller to calm your nerves. More difficult QTEs are to come as you brawl with Michael Clarke Duncan’s son, usually leading to failure, which sees Jayden virtually losing his reality in a lovely little car crusher. “Goodbye, Norman Jayden”.
It isn’t all sadness though in Heavy Rain. Sometimes Ethan gets his son back. Sometimes Ethan gets a girlfriend. Sometimes Ethan gets a rest. But for a majority of the time Ethan dies, loses his son, loses his girlfriend, gets sent to prison or kills himself. The beauty of All Endings is that it has the most creative name out of all 57 trophies, but it also means that you get to see every depressing detail of Ethan’s story over and over again. Witnessing these events doesn’t exactly make for happy platinum hunting, but there is an upside for our unfortunate father of one, as nearly every other character can suffer just as much as he does. If crying and getting through ten packets of tissues in one night (oh, behave) isn’t your cup of tea, you can always play well the first time, get Ethan his son back and ultimately finish with a few happy endings (oh, behave, again).
From making scrambled eggs, to wiping fingerprints off an obvious murder weapon, Heavy Rain provides a list of trophies that go from the mundane to the downright strange. I thoroughly enjoyed my time collecting them, and if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that you shouldn’t leave children unattended (who knew?).