David Cage: Heavy Rain isn’t a QTE, damnit

Well, not in those words exactly, but fairly close. Quantic Dream’s David Cage was trying hard to explain to Eurogamer and other journalists in a hotel in Cologne that Heavy Rain is fully interactive, and not associated with the quick-time event stigma of pressing a button to make a scene continue. He was there demoing the game using the character Ethan Mars, who experienced something rather unfortunate.

“So we work on this thing, it’s fully controllable, you do what you want. When there is an action sequence, yes we integrate this QTE sequences. We’ve done it really in a new way, we really started from a blank page again to try to take the best out of this type of interface and find the thrill and excitement and make you feel at the heart of the action,” he said.

In the demo, Cage showed off a scene of Ethan and his son Shaun, and how Ethan interacts with him during the scene. It included several things, from feeding him, helping him with his homework, and putting him to bed. There were several opportunities to decide to be a responsible dad, complete jerk, or just be apathetic to the son. The demo showed off one way the scene played out, and after Cage showed another video of other possible outcomes.

“From what you’ve seen, you’re in control second to second, so please help me with this because some people on the internet just make me crazy,” he said at the end of the demo. I can’t help but sympathize with the guy and his earnestness. Quick-time events are good when they’re integrated well, and they seem to be trying really hard to achieve it here. As Heavy Rain looks to be an evolution of Indigo Prophecy/Fahrenheit, I’m sure there will be quite a few QTEs. But the question (and hope) is, will they pull it off?