I've seen it described as a story about parenthood, but I found it to be much more about fatherhood, with mothers being absent or left behind even though there are a couple of strong female characters; Madison is a woman of action, and Lauren is also quite determined to help save Shaun. The plot is bleak, and developments seem only to make the situation bleaker but, given successful navigation through quicktime events and decision-making, the sun can come out at the end of the story. A friend of mine described Heavy Rain as an emotional experience more than a game and I agree. Anyone looking for a run-of-the-mill game with action as the main focus will be disappointed, as will people who don't like too much dialogue/reading in their games. I found it absorbing and immersive, and I enjoyed it as a journey; I'm tempted not to play it again, so that my memory of the story is not muddied by alternative story beats and endings.