From Quantic Dream the developers that brought us the hit title for PS3, Heavy Rain comes Detroit: Become Human. A title that treads familiar ground with its overarching narrative, and copious amounts of quick time events.
Androids have slowly become commonplace amongst humans; carrying out mundane everyday jobs that we simply don’t want to do. Their integration into society is causing record unemployment levels and fear that humans are set to become the inferior race on an intellectual level.
Set in the year 2038, some years after Androids have majorly integrated into everyday human life, Androids are also starting to become self-aware. In Detroit, you control the outcomes of three Androids. Kara, a female android who cares for a man and his daughter, Markus, who looks after an old man who challenges him to think for himself, and Connor, a new type of Android whose sole purpose is to help the police understand what is making Androids commit crimes against humans. These crimes are a new development causing widespread concern for Cyberlife, the company who are solely responsible for the production and sale of all androids in the US. The Androids that commit such heinous acts are labeled as “deviants”. You’re tasked with jumping between each of the three characters throughout the game in order to solve not just your Androids personal issues, but also why Androids are starting to disobey their human masters.
Detroit: Become Human does an excellent job of blurring the lines between what is good and what is evil. You will have to make a variety of decisions with each character throughout the course of the story, which has ramifications on future events in the story. These decisions assist in unlocking and locking options for you to choose later on. Missing an item or saying the wrong thing to a character will either help or hinder you as you progress through the narrative.
At the end of each chapter, you’ll see how your choices have affected your playthrough with a flowchart that plots your route. While the destinations of each chapter are fairly limited for most of it, how you’ll get there is fairly robust. In fact, viewing the flowchart after each chapter can at times can be eye opening as to how much you missed and leaving you wondering “what if”. This adds an absolutely fantastic amount of replayability to Detroit: Become Human.
One problem I had with the game from a personal point-of-view is how Detroit: Become Human handles child abuse, which occurs a number of times throughout the game. As a father, it was truly uncomfortable to watch during my play through, and it didn’t really add much substance to the story. It was almost as if it was there for shock and awe alone, which, when you’re dealing with such a sensitive subject, isn’t the way to go. The crux of the game focuses on the Androids’ want and need to be accepted by humans and it’s this that drives the narrative forward at all times, your every action decides their fate.
Detroit: Become Human touches on pertinent, and interesting subjects that affect both our world and the game’s world. By the time the credits started to roll, the game made me think about all the decisions I had made in a way. I wasn’t expecting to have built a relationship with the characters in the way that I did, and at times my emotions took over and bad decisions were made. So in that regard, Quantic Dream has done a fantastic job in achieving what they set out to do by creating a story-driven game with the ability to make the player think about the morality of their choices and with that, I highly recommend this game.