"It's a drama broken into several dozen chapters that advance the interwoven narratives of four playable characters: Distraught dad, FBI investigator, crusty private eye, insomniac lady," lists Kotaku's Stephen Totilo. "It's a mix of traditional ideas of character movement and dialogue options integrated with a control scheme style that might best be described as emotional. It's a serial killer whodunit. It's also a smartly-masked game that isn't about what it initially appears to be about. Its an exploration of fatherhood and of a notion that can be tough to explore in the potentially-desensitized medium of video games: The violent lengths a player will virtually go to accomplish a goal."
"Like everything else in Heavy Rain, the scene was brief enough that by the time the novelty had faded, it was over and something else was happening," describes Chris Kohler in Wired. "It’s the Dan Brown school of storytelling, a fast-paced, Da Vinci Code-style narrative in which each chapter takes just a few minutes, leaving you on a mini-cliffhanger and switching perspective for the next segment. Once the intrigue picks up and the chase is on, you don’t want to stop playing. If it were a film, Heavy Rain’s story wouldn’t exactly win an Oscar. But having control of events, and a personal connection to the characters, makes it seem that much more interesting. I was hooked."