Quantic Dream have been making and improving upon the same kind of games for over 10 years now. Heavy Rain put them on the forefront, with a game that looked fantastic, told an interesting story, and generated a fair amount of controversy. Regardless of how you might feel about Heavy Rain, it was an important game in terms of getting people’s attention, and making both Quantic Dream and David Cage a name that Playstation gamers know about. Their next game, Beyond: Two Souls, failed to reach the same levels of acclaim, however their latest game, Detroit: Become Human, is definitely worth paying attention to and spending time with.
It’s 2030s in Detroit and humans have created highly advanced androids to serve out every need. They are construction workers, caretakers, housemaids, and even objects of sexual pleasure. This puts humans in a diabolical position. On one hand, they have tireless servants with high intellect, on the other hand many humans find themselves out of a job. This divides the population, and many of them join together in calling to shut down androids. Androids face a significant amount of abuse from many humans, and while they are not supposed to have feelings, they are processing everything they observer and it seems to be triggering something within them. This leads to many androids turning ‘Deviant’, and here’s where our story begins.
You play as three androids, and watch their stories unfold.
Connor is the most advanced android CyberLife, the company making androids, has ever made. He is programmed to hunt down deviants and figure out what’s causing the deviancy. He works with a human cop. They start off with an antagonistic relationship, which depending on the choices you make throughout the story, can go many ways.
Kara is a household android, made to serve the daily needs of a regular family. She finds herself in the home of an abusive father, who is a drug addict, in significant financial trouble, and beats his daughter regularly. Witnessing one such beating, something in Kara flips, and she rescues the child and they try to flee the city.
Markus is a caretaker for a wealthy artist who is unable to walk. He performs daily chores for the artist, and takes care of him. The artist and Markus have a amicable relationship. However, things eventually go wrong, and Markus finds himself seeking refuge at mythical location only known as Jericho, and eventually ends up leading the android revolution.
The stories all start off largely unaware of each other, but come together fairly cohesively towards the end. It’s well told, apart from a few exceptions, and had my attention throughout. The gameplay is simplistic, but that’s to be expected, given the story focus.
The game looks absolutely gorgeous, with a ton of detail in the environments, excellent facial animations, and beautiful lighting. The game lacks nothing in terms of sheer production, and one can hope that this tech bleeds into other future Playstation exclusives.
Detroit: Become Human is a good game, with an overall setting and story that is worth seeing through. There are some story beats that could have been handled better, especially some that’ll have you rolling your eyes thinking – “Well, that’s video game logic, I guess..” However, for the most part, it’s a fun ride, with a ton of player choice and agency. I enjoyed going back and replaying sections to see how varied the results could be, and I was pleasantly surprised to see how much work had gone into creating the branching paths.
Detroit: Become Human is available now for the PS4 and PS4 Pro.