This must be left to the Rain Code development staff. They are very skilled at completely subverting your expectations from the start. Given that they are the brains behind the beloved Danganronpa series, I certainly expected to be shocked and surprised – they seem to come out of nowhere giving players a narrative curveball. I know some things about throwing – but even I didn’t expect what would happen after about 30 minutes of introduction. I wanted to put down the Switch and say, “Well done!” Clap. However, it was a little disappointing, so after that, or, despite some great moments, none of the other cases reach the same high. In a nutshell, Rain Code is: It just doesn’t quite live up to its predecessor.
Rain Code begins with a young man waking up in a warehouse of sorts. All he remembers is that his name is Yuma Kokohead and he has to catch a train to Kanai Ward. Kanai Ward is cut off from most of the outside world, covered in eternal neon glowing darkness and rain, and is a business city run by Kanai Ward. Amaterasu is a mega-corporation controlled by militarized peacekeepers. As soon as he gets on the train, he knows why he’s going there. He is a member of the World Detective Organization, and has sent several agents to investigate Kanai Ward’s ugly secrets. He also quickly finds out why he’s amnesiac. It turns out that he made a deal with the Shinigami to gain special powers, and gave up his memories in exchange.
Its shinigami, Shinigami, mostly hover in the form of small ghosts only visible to Yuma. It’s the Grim Reaper who stops time and transforms into a voluptuous demon maiden and takes him away to the mind palace Mystery Labyrinth, where things get really wild. Here he must battle logic monsters, avoid the traps of sneaky false solutions, and open door locks with evidence keys that Reaper barf in rainbow showers. And maybe you can ride a shinigami and become a giant monster to break through the barriers of thought. And play pop-up pirates with her in a barrel on the beach.yeah it’s all just a bit strange.
The fact that Rain Code’s development team helmed the popular Danganronpa series of adventure games is known by many. This is evident in the character designs, music, and fun and quirky character concepts. However, the similarities are more than superficial. Rain Code’s gameplay structure is clearly modeled after these games. Each of his six long chapters in the game has a plot-heavy setting, a murder, an investigation, and a collection of mini-games to catch the culprit. But instead of a grand trial conducted by some malevolent bear, you venture into an extradimensional detective dungeon. Logic his deathmatch battle fighting in dungeons is also essentially a remake of Danganronpa’s contradiction hunting non-stop his debates, but swords are used instead of guns to cut through the falsehoods.
Criminal trainee and amnesiac Yuma has some big hurdles to overcome. Luckily, her other WDO members are a motley team of eccentric weirdos with love-hate personality traits, capable of sensing life energy, revisiting crime scenes where they were first witnessed, and more. It has its own supernatural abilities. In the past, the soul was separated from the body or passed through solid walls. Yuma soon discovers that these special skills can be shared with the user, making them invaluable for gathering clues and evidence during the course of an investigation. For example, Yuma is able to use the disguise abilities of obnoxious Casanova wannabe Desuhiko to infiltrate an elite private school where a suspicious murder has taken place in the drama club. Using these abilities requires some ingenuity, but the amount of time you can actually use them is very limited.
The Kanai Ward itself, the host of all dark happenings, is a key element of the game. It’s a damp, dimly lit, spooky place lined with neon lights and winding corridors. Great care has been taken in the art design of the city and its various neighborhoods, and most chapters offer time to freely explore and appreciate different parts of the city, as well as converse with NPCs. . Unfortunately, this is all you can do. There are no shops or activities here. You can also take on a few side quests to boost your detective rank (and learn helpful Mystery Labyrinth skills via skill trees), but these quests are universally bland. With stuff, bog-standard fetch quest objectives and totally unmemorable NPC dialogue, it ultimately feels like: unnecessary pads.
In contrast, the Mystery Labyrinth that Shinigami creates to close each chapter is very well designed, with charming banter (and downright bizarre physical interactions) between Yuma, Shinigami, and the rest of the characters. There are many interesting developments. You will be sucked into the ride. Depicting logic puzzles as physical dungeons is a fun twist that allows artists and puzzle designers to create highly memorable traps, solutions, and boundary spaces to traverse. The Switch can suffer from muddy textures and slowdowns at times, but the overall art of his design is high points, as are the various obstacles and flashy enemies Yuma has to overcome. There are many types of obstacles and puzzles. One moment you’ll be in a literal verbal battle with a screaming and attacking Mystery Phantom, the next you’ll need to recreate a crime scene and answer questions quickly and correctly. You’ll end up playing an event of a certain QTE type. In order to escape danger, you will have to confront the Grim Reaper inside a spinning barrel. Throw swords and make phrases. Then, in the finale, a giant reaper must shatter all mental barriers that stand between you and the truth… stuff. Each of these subsections works differently, but they’re very easy to understand and get the hang of, so you’ll always be on the lookout for ever-changing gameplay.
A lot of Rain Code’s character designs are cool and wild, but none of the character interactions make you feel a strong connection or animosity towards someone. Enemies and allies alike tend to be given designated chapters to show off their abilities and personality quirks, only to be relegated to supporting roles after that. Instead, most of the in-game interactions are solely between Yuma and Shinigami, who develop a very interesting relationship with each other. You can see a little side story with the other main characters by finding collectibles, but this takes extra effort and still doesn’t solve the problem.
This lack of character development and attachment is one of the main reasons Rain Code never hits the sweet spot that Danganronpa games do. Danganronpa games are very character-driven, which contributed to the perpetual tension and emotional atmosphere. At any moment, a character you really liked could be miserably killed, or perhaps – even worse – turned out to be a cold-blooded human being. murderer. The fear and inevitability of loss was pervasive and powerful, and every moment felt heavy.
Rain Code doesn’t have the same tension and urgency. Murder victims are mostly unknowns, the threat of unethical experimentation by tyrannical giant corporations is mostly indirect, and some of the big reveals are less shocking. Also, while the Mystery Labyrinth is fun, it felt like it tended to stretch the conclusion. Usually by about halfway through each game, we knew who was going to play and how. So all I had to do was figure out how the game had to put everything together. The result is a narrative-driven game with a “wait, that’s it?” story that lacks impact where it needed it most. (An ending that wraps things up a little too well doesn’t help either, given the final chapter’s awkward reveal.)
But while it doesn’t quite match the dizzying roller coaster euphoria of Danganronpa, Rain Code is a solid detective adventure that keeps you entertained and engrossed for most of its runtime. Interesting concepts, fun dialogue, and plenty of intriguing, daring, and outlandish weirdness to keep players engaged. For my part, I hope this isn’t the last time I see Shinigami’s sublime sarcasm.
https://www.gamespot.com/reviews/master-detective-archives-rain-code-review-blame-it-on-the-rain/1900-6418087/?ftag=CAD-01-10abi2f Master Detective Archives: Rain Code Review – Blame it on the Rain