Most people either loved or hated Heavy Rain based on a number of factors. I find myself firmly in the camp that absolutely loved it for everything it was, even though it wasn’t necessarily a perfect game. It was a unique, touching, heart-pounding good time. I nearly crushed my PS3 controller when I played through it because the game is so intense at many points throughout that I was on the edge of my seat. Fortunately, the first DLC for the game – Heavy rain Chronicles: The Taxidermist – continues the intense action that shows up so many times throughout the main game. Unfortunately, however, that is about the only good thing I can say about it.
The Taxidermist follows our favorite sexy reporter Madison as she investigates a lead she picked up on the Origami Killer. I’m assuming this entire event occurs before the main events of the full game and, of course, before she even meets Ethan. She, in her stupidity, goes alone into the house of a crazy psychopath taxidermist. At first, I was rather excited to play this because I figured it would add something to the story of the whole game or the character specifically. There had to be some deep, dark secret that is revealed about Madison in this content that would give us some insight into her character to help us understand her a bit better, right? Wrong. So very wrong.
You won’t be disappointed if you’re looking for more of the unique control scheme or intense action sequences, but if you want anything more than that, you’re better off watching grass grow. This “addition” to the game adds absolutely nothing to the story or Madison as a character. It seems like a desperate attempt to weasel fans of the game out of five more bucks by letting them play some more with Madison in hopes they get to see her in her birthday suit again.
I kid you not when I say that it took me barely 20 minutes to play through it once, receiving one of five endings for this pitiful excuse for extra content. I did enjoy the action sequence that you’ll likely get involved in near the end, but that is because I enjoyed those aspects of the full game, as well. Like I mentioned, however, there are five endings total to this sequence of events, which may add a tad bit of extra play time. Once you finish the first play-through, the DLC encourages you to play through enough times to receive all the endings, allowing you to start from one of three points throughout the event. I completed two more endings and it only added a scant 10 minutes to the play time. From start to finishing with three endings seen was no more than 30 minutes. Worth the $4.99 price tag? I think not.
Just like in the full game, the voice acting, visual appeal and intensity is definitely there, and that is very welcome, but as an addition to the game experience overall, it falls far short. Standing on its own merits, you’re obviously provided with little to no connection to the main story besides someone name-dropping the Origami Killer. It all just feels very disconnected from everything I was hoping it would be.
If it was provided free of charge, I wouldn’t have too much of an issue with it, but as it is I would not recommend forking over the cash for this unless you are going to slit your wrist if you don’t get more of the interesting control mechanisms that you experienced in the full game. This piece of content has almost no redeeming value besides the aspects of it that are present in Heavy Rain proper, for which I have to give it at least a few props – save your cash for Starbucks instead.