Rain is the upcoming game for the PlayStation 3 that puts players in the shoes of a lost child in a desolate, European-looking city where the rain never stops. The game's unique premise is that the boy is invisible, save for when he's in the rain and game director Yuki Ikeda explains a little bit of the philosophy behind this design mechanic.

So basically, the game runs on the theme of loneliness and curiosity; trying to capture a viewpoint from a child who is both scared and free. It's interesting when Ikeda asks the viewer what would they do if they imagined themselves as a kid in this giant, empty city. I think a lot of people would cry first and then explore later, as opposed to exploring first and crying later. Then again, maybe it depends on the kid and whether they recognize how bad a situation they're in before or after their curiosity takes over.

I suppose it's one of the many fascinating facets of Rain and dealing with the psychology of exploration. I do wonder if the game will take that aspect into serious consideration and explore more of that psychology as players progress through the game, or if it will solely shift gears into an adventure title of a different grade?

Usually, in most games where the player assumes the role of a character who is lost and location-challenged they spend time wondering while exploring without exercising much fear or concern (e.g., BioShock, Serious Sam and Far Cry). It would be nice to see a lot of reflection from the protagonist about being in a strange world while also being invisible other than a passing note on the rather odd occurrence.

The mechanics of the gameplay however, seem to tie-in very closely to Hudson Entertainment's Wii platformer, Lost in Shadow, which had a very similar premise and setup in the way the game was played and using shadows to manipulate aspects of the gameplay. The biggest difference between the two platformers is that Rain is more 3D focused and seems to have a bit more grounding than Lost in Shadow, but we won't really be able to tell until the game releases.

I'm really curious how much the developers will exploit the fact that without rain the main character can't be seen and how much that will affect the gameplay outside of simply using the makeshift stealth mechanic of running under objects to mask invisibility from the city's nightlife creatures.

Rain is set to release exclusively on the PlayStation 3 and PS Vita. It's another nice little platformer to round out the diversity of Sony's platforms while also tackling some interesting subject matter. You can look for the game to arrive later this year. For more info, feel free to visit the official website.

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