Heavy Rain turned down by Microsoft over fears of a scandal

Before Sony got so chummy with Quantic Dream, it was Microsoft that was pursuing the game. Studio head David Cage explained that Microsoft wanted to work with the studio after the release of Indigo Prophecy, a game "they really loved."

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Perhaps one of the most surprising successes in Sony's first party lineup on PS3 was Heavy Rain. Quantic Dream's adventure game certainly stands out: a choose-your-own-adventure story where you controlled multiple characters in an attempt to rescue a kidnapped child. The game's success has fostered a deep relationship between the French studio and Sony.

But before Sony got so chummy with Quantic Dream, it was Microsoft that was pursuing the game. Studio head David Cage explained that Microsoft wanted to work with the studio after the release of Indigo Prophecy, a game "they really loved."

Unfortunately, Cage says that Microsoft "got scared" over the game's plot. Apparently, "they didn't want the scandal" of a game that revolves around the kidnapping of a child. Given how insensitive the portrayal of games can be in the media, that attitude is a bit unsurprising.

"Microsoft is a great company, I'm not complaining or criticizing," Cage told a BAFTA panel, attended by Polygon. "It was like, you know, we really can't work together."

Quantic Dream is currently wrapping up Beyond for PS3 and has a PS4 game in the works as well.

From The Chatty

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    September 4, 2013 6:30 AM

    Andrew Yoon posted a new article, Heavy Rain turned down by Microsoft over fears of a scandal.

    Before Sony got so chummy with Quantic Dream, it was Microsoft that was pursuing the game. Studio head David Cage explained that Microsoft wanted to work with the studio after the release of Indigo Prophecy, a game "they really loved."

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      September 4, 2013 6:37 AM

      Weird... I mean I guess I understand the risk assessment there, but strange how different things might have been if they'd locked up that developer.

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        September 4, 2013 7:32 AM

        Backed by Microsoft, I doubt it would even be the same game.

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          September 4, 2013 9:42 AM

          Yeah, god forbid MS might have required them to put in some gameplay.

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            September 4, 2013 9:52 AM

            This deserves so much love.

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            September 4, 2013 10:08 AM

            Man, fuck that. Whether or not you like Quantic's questionable interactive fiction experiments, it's a good thing that they've been able to commit to them. The industry's much more interesting when the occasional big-budget title goes off the rails and isn't forced to adhere to some preconceived notion of what a game is supposed to be.

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              September 4, 2013 11:36 AM

              The game was garbage with horrific voice acting. And the story was atrocious.

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                September 4, 2013 12:38 PM

                Even if you think the voice acting and story were objectively bad (they weren't) at least they're doing something different than 90% of the other big budget games out there. We need more variety and experimentation at the AAA level in games.

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                  September 4, 2013 1:27 PM

                  The dude int he picture above had an American accent as an adult, but int he flashback, he and his brother were clearly played by French children. I'd say that's kind of immersion breaking. And the twist was poorly executed. And I never said they weren't doing something different, I'm just saying it wasn't done well.

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                    September 4, 2013 5:43 PM

                    I agree with you dude but I started my post with 'whether or not you like it' for a reason

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                      September 4, 2013 6:09 PM

                      Okay, fair enough. It would be nice if the game was executed well, though. It doesn't matter if you make a unique game if it isn't good.

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            September 4, 2013 11:26 AM

            Actually, perhaps we would have got something more like Alan Wake imo

            AW came out only a few months iirc later and heavily attempted to establish episodic DLC as a thing. Wouldn't it be weird if Heavy Rain was parsed out like that? It's hard for me to believe the whole thing ships in one pack on multiple DVDs so yeah

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        September 4, 2013 8:44 AM

        Its kind of strange that the media won't bat an eye over a movie about the abduction of a teenager in Taken but they will in a game. Gaming really shouldn't be treated to a double standard that none of the other media has to deal with.

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          September 4, 2013 8:50 AM

          there was in fact no scandal when Heavy Rain came out, afaik. Microsoft just chickened out and missed the bus. pretty much their business model these days. they don't come to a party until everyone else is already there.

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            September 4, 2013 9:02 AM

            Point taken, but you can't exactly predict what news/media is going to fuss over. They complain about virtual any topic that is aimed at different or mature audience because gaming is still perceived as a domain of children. They complained about games from Mass Effect, Tomb Raider, mods for GTA and Oblivion, and MW2. All the while ignoring the same topics when they are in movies and books.

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              September 4, 2013 9:41 AM

              if you want to do interesting things artistically, you're gonna take some criticism. it's inevitable.

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              September 4, 2013 10:26 AM

              That is right. You can't predict it. Which is why MS shouldn't try.

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              September 4, 2013 1:19 PM

              So what if they complain. Probably just helps sales if anything.

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      September 4, 2013 8:21 AM

      If it don't shoot and it doesn't wear a helmet and it aint called Master Chief, M$ don't know anything about it.

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      September 4, 2013 8:48 AM

      Less a Microsoft 'thing' and more a typically American overreaction to anything that isn't politically correct.

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        September 4, 2013 12:46 PM

        Yeah, remember when Activision didn't want Infinity Ward to do a modern military game, and wanted them to stick to World War II settings?

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          September 4, 2013 1:24 PM

          Or when Mass Effect was released and "OHEMGOSH SEXING? GAYS?"

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            September 4, 2013 6:29 PM

            That was more press reaction; EA didn't stop BioWare from writing that in Mass Effect. Then again, that was during the risk-taking phase of the John Riccitiello era, which also included Mirror's Edge.

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      September 4, 2013 10:52 AM

      Haha. So when David was on stage at a conference saying "Sony didn't choose us, we chose Sony" he was speaking bullshit

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        September 4, 2013 1:03 PM

        Yeah, I saw him say that in an interview as well. What a load of crap.

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        September 4, 2013 5:59 PM

        explain that? they turned down MS ergo Sony did not choose them, they chose Sony over MS

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          September 4, 2013 6:11 PM

          From the sound of the comments, they were on a trajectory to work with MS until MS got cold feet on the subject matter of the game, which Sony (after the MS thing was done) didn't mind.

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          September 5, 2013 1:46 AM

          He should have said "Sony didn't choose us, we chose Microsoft, Sony was plan B"

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        September 4, 2013 6:18 PM

        MS could pull out, then they could choose Sony

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      September 4, 2013 12:42 PM

      I'd rather take Alan Wake and Quantum Break over anything quantic has.

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        September 4, 2013 1:24 PM

        DX10 ONLY! Buy VISTA NOW, or you'll never play Alan Wake!!! Oh.

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      September 5, 2013 3:54 PM

      So this is really surprising to me that they didn't want to cause of maybe a scandal. And yet they were ok with CoD's airport problem huh if you asked me I think they were just scared and didn't want to try anything new. I mean they took a risk with Indigo Prophecy and that from what I remember had the same theme just darker. It just goes to show where the gaming corporations mindset is in this generation. Yes it's scary to bring out a new IP with a new way of playing the game. Everything doesn't have to be shooters or Action Adventurer games. I understand that they need to be able to make money, but what's not to say that they went with Heavy Rain and it was huge for them ( granted it wasn't a system seller for sony). I think Sony Microsoft and other gaming company's should and maybe look at the games that scare them more cause it could lead to a huge pay day for them.