Top 10 Rainiest Games
April is arguably one of the worst months of the year, at least in the U.S. Why? Because it's such a tease. Spring finally starts to come into effect, and hibernation turns to exploration as the world once again returns to the great outdoors, only to find: it's raining. Curse you, April showers!
Yes, it's important for the 'circle of life,' but what about those longing for the beach, camping, or a leisurely stroll outdoors? We're not among them, of course; how would we play World of Warcraft outdoors? We prefer to do our strolling inside virtual worlds, if it's all the same.
But that doesn't spare us the tyranny of rain, as precipitation has found its way into many of our most beloved games. As a precaution, we've prepared a list of such games so you can avoid them if you've had enough of the gloom. Here, in no particular order is our list of the Top 10 Rainiest Video Games.
Final Fantasy VI
It's worse than Seattle!
In Final Fantasy VI, after Terra goes all pink-haired monster crazy-pants and flies away, the party tracks her to the town of Zozo. I'm not saying the place is a dump, but this dump is filled to the brim with criminals, low-lifes and the absolute worst kinds of people -- also some of the laziest. Zozo's citizens simply lay around napping (possibly dead), and the party can be attacked at any time. That's all a pain, but the worse part? It's always raining. It rains so much, many of the town's doors are rusted shut. Seriously, admittance to the city should come with a tetanus shot.
Granted, some great things come out of Zozo as well, such as your first Esper and Edgar's Chainsaw -- it also has one of the most memorable tracks in the game -- but all in all, it's a terrible place to live...or visit...or to generally be around.
Mega Man IV
My eyes! The goggles do nothing!
Besides being one of the most poorly designed Robot Masters in Mega Man history, 'Toad Man' is also one of the easiest bosses in the entire series; his level is actually harder than he is. The stage is water-themed (no surprise), pummeling players with constant rain. Every time Mega Man leaps into the air, the rain pushes back, making jumps even more difficult.
After easily dispatching Toad Man, the player acquires his weapon, 'Rain Flush'; the worst weapon name ever (that might explain why Toad Man's level so strongly resembles a sewer). Despite it's crappy name, the weapon isn't all that bad, unleashing a devastating rainstorm wrecking everything on screen. The damage comes from the fact that it isn't just rain, but acid rain! Dealing massive damage to 'Bright Man,' it can also extinguish fire in 'Napalm Man's stage, and solidify the quicksand in 'Pharaoh Man's stage, which...makes sense...
A little rain never hurt anybody
A game that goes the 'film noir' route is sure to have a bleak, solemn atmosphere, and nothing projects that mood as acutely as a rainstorm. Setting the tone and driving home feelings of hopelessness and sadness, the rain can also turn out to be an integral part of the story. And here you thought Heavy Rain was some kind of metaphor.
The multi-perspective game hinges on unraveling the mystery of the 'Origami Killer,' who kills their victims through drowning. Not in the most obvious fashion, though; they wait for just the right conditions so they can be done in via rainwater -- making the Origami Killer the most patient serial killer in history. Without spoilers, we'll just tell you that the killer's actions can all be traced back to a childhood tragedy that occurred during a rainstorm. See? Full-circle. Rain literally sets all the wheels in motion. Mind. Blown.
Silent Hill: Downpour
Do you like piÃ±a coladas?
The eighth game in the Silent Hill series delivers a pretty straightforward message with its name. The message being, naturally, that it features music from America's best AC/DC tribute band. No, it actually means it's going to rain -- a lot. Like other games on this list, the rain is more than just ambiance, it's woven directly into the gameplay.
As many know, Silent Hill is one of the scariest horror games in history. It's so intense, the developers seem to have taken pity on players, giving warnings when badness is about to go down (static on a radio, etc.). In Downpour a real time weather system was designed to alert players to danger -- a very unsubtle alarm system. When it rains, it's time to move indoors or suffer the consequences. Enemies will begin to spawn and mercilessly hunt down the player. As we always say, "If you feel a drizzle, get inside the hizzle." (Editor's note: We at Game Rant have never said that)
Final Fantasy IX
Why does it smell like wet rat?
The Kingdom of Burmecia is a city-state on the Mist Continent in Final Fantasy IX. It's one of two settlements for the race of anthropomorphic rat people in the world of Gaia, and hometown to supporting character Freya. How did it make our list? Because it is enveloped by a constant rainstorm and is cleverly called the "Realm of Eternal Rain."
Unlike Zozo, it's actually a pleasant place to be -- well, it was. The player will trek through Burmecia after it has been attacked by the Alexandrian army, so the city is basically in ruins, and bodies are sort of littering the streets -- actually, it's not too different from Zozo in that way. Why on Earth (or Gaia) they would build a city here isn't clear. Only the hideous rat people know for sure, and they're not talking.
The Legend of Zelda
Please don't make it rain
Anyone who has played the Legend of Zelda knows that rain is no stranger to the series. We're grouping them together for our purposes, since they all take place in the same universe anyway. Let's start from the beginning with A Link To The Past. In the iconic opening of the game, Link is awoken in the middle of the night by a telepathic message from Princess Zelda, and trudges through a chilling storm to reach the castle where she is held captive. In Ocarina of Time, gamers got their hands on the famous ocarina during another rainy night, as Zelda is escaping from Ganondorf (she seriously has the worst timing). After that players could play the Song of Storms and bring the rain themselves, even in the follow up title Majora's Mask.
In The Wind Waker, the majority of Hyrule is underwater and Link's journey has him traveling by boat; teaching us how treacherous the sea can be with massive storms, heavy rain, lightning and cyclones. Now that a Wind Waker remake is on its way, gamers will get to experience all the rainy fun in glorious HD.
The fighter formerly known as Rain
At this point you may think we're reaching -- "Mortal Kombat you say?!!" But it's true! Rain is actually an important part of the Mortal Kombat universe. We're talking here about the character Rain, who made his debut in Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 and has been in over five games in the series since.
Originally inserted as a joke by the developers in Mortal Kombat 3, Rain was so popular with gamers, they decided to make him a playable character. His name, signature color (purple), and even his background, revealing him to be a Prince, was all part of the gag. Clever gamers familiar with the work of Prince, his royal purple-ness, would realize that the character was a play on the artist's popular song "Purple Rain." For an elaborate joke, Rain wasn't a terrible character either.
Left 4 Dead 2
Hello, is it me you're looking for?
Being one of the few survivors of a zombie apocalypse: hard. Fighting off hordes of undead: really hard. Fighting off hordes of undead when you can barely see or hear anything: REALLY FREAKING HARD. That's exactly what Left 4 Dead 2's campaign "Hard Rain" is all about.
The first part of the campaign is straightforward: get to the safe house, bandage up, load up on ammo and boldly step outside with the confidence that you can handle what's next and BAM -- slammed by a storm. This isn't some light drizzle either, it's a full-on hurricane. Vision is severely limited, forcing players to go in practically blind with the sound of rain drowning out so much noise that it often impairs the ability to hear friends online -- or anything else for that matter. Needless to say, it's absolute chaos, and one of the most intense moments in the entire series; a perfect addition to our list.
Rain, rain, don't go away
We know it's not out yet, but a game that centers entirely around rainfall certainly deserves to be on our list. Part action/adventure, part puzzle game, rain is the PlayStation exclusive title about a boy who has phased out of reality, searching for a mysterious young girl dealing with the same problem. Become visible only when directly in the rain, the bizarre creatures that stalk them can be eluded by stepping into areas untouched by rainfall. Since it's raining constantly, there is a fair amount of strategy involved.
Unfortunately there aren't many other details just yet, but if the trend in recent PSN titles is any indication, this could be one to watch out for.
Gears of War
Dude-bros meet Downpours
Back in 2006 the Xbox 360 -- along with other next-gen consoles -- were fairly new, with the jump in graphical power a major part of the excitement, as richer detail helped immerse players further than ever before. So when Gears of War hit the scene, it not only popularized cover-based shooters, but pushed the hardware capabilities to their limits (at the time). The first chapter of Act 3, titled 'Downpour,' greeted players with waves of heavy rain and the result was beautiful... as well as slightly frustrating since it also took place at night.
Impaired vision helped drive the terror factor, keeping players guessing as to what could be lurking in the darkness. While years of Locusts and other monsters popping out of the ground meant a little rain was less than intimidating, it was a stunning display that gamers still look back on fondly.
There they are: the 10 rainiest games in existence. Looking back, that sure was a lot of rain... maybe too much. It's starting to make us feel pretty melancholy, actually. We think we'll go write some nocturnes.
While we're doing that, we invite you all to share your own gaming experiences brought to mind on the rainiest of days. Sound off in the comments. And do your best to stay dry...and alive.