Sony doesn’t shy away from quirky, imaginative games. This is the publisher that brought us LittleBigPlanet, The Unfinished Swan and Tokyo Jungle. Now the company’s Japan Studio has another PlayStation Network exclusive fans won’t want to miss. In Rain, you take control of a young boy who turned invisible for reasons unknown. All that appears is a silhouette, made possible by the continuous downpour of rain. Also caught up in the story is a little girl suffering from similar effects. Players help both characters find each other by solving puzzles and avoiding dangerous ghosts.
The game has a bit in common with Ico, the PlayStation 2 classic where a brave young boy keeps a girl out of harm’s way. You’ll occasionally run into her, only to become separated and figure things out to reconnect. Since the two main characters are children, they don’t have any particular skills to fend off the ghosts, meaning you’ll have to outrun these creatures or in some cases avoid them by sneaking or figuring out an alternate path. There are situations where either character gets covered in mud, either by walking in it or falling over, making them easy for the ghosts to notice. You’ll have to wash it off quickly by stepping into one of the larger rain puddles.
You’ll rarely lose sight of your character due to the fact that the rain barely lets up, and there are numerous areas you can explore, whether it’s walking along rooftops, visiting an abandoned circus tent for clues and working your way through a factory, where high industrial walkways and metal structures look old and rusted. The trailer shows quite a bit of the world, as well as how to escape pursuit from ghosts. As for the game’s design, it’s cool to see how the weather impacts your character.
Considering Sony’s track record for innovative PlayStation Network games, Rain should fit in nicely. It may not have action, but it makes up for that with intriguing puzzle design and a story that will leave you wondering. That said, Rain will debut this fall for PlayStation 3.