Life is Strange is a story-oriented adventure game that progresses by the player choosing actions that would affect the “past, present and future” of the story. Yes! I personally love these games. It’s similar to The Wolf Among Us.
- Difficulty: Easy
- Gameplay Score: 4/5
- Graphics Score: 4/5
- Music: 4/5
So far after playing the first episode, I have to say that the first 10 minutes consisted of me thinking “Will this class ever end. This needs to end.” However, despite the game doing a fantastic job of reminding you of the endless drawls of High School, I can see it being a necessary evil in order to set up the story. One filled with mystery, difficult choices and a lot of “wtf” moments.
I would recommend this game to players who like a good story. Action is sparse in this game and sometimes does require you to power through the choices or listen to the same conversation over and over and over and over… That being said, there’s a good reason for that and is well worth it for the story.
The game plays on the idea of the butterfly effect where one small action can influence a huge part of the future.
You control the movement and action of Max Caulfield. A girl who wakes up in the middle of a giant (HUGE) tornado storm. She walks up the cliff towards the lighthouse and looks down to the water to see a really, really big tornado head towards shore. Dun dun dun, something huge is about to go down. Cue the anticipation.
…and then she wakes up in photography class where the teacher, Mr. Jefferson is talking about the origin of ‘selfies’. For the next 10 minutes you’ll be wondering why you care and why this seems never-ending. But just as you’re about to close the game in fury the school bell rings and you’re free to explore the halls. From here you begin to make choices, a teacher asks if you would sign her petition for no surveillance. I personally didn’t sign it. Max says she needs to wash her face from the tornado dream earlier so she needs to go to the washroom. Walking down the hallway really reminded me of my high school days.
Finally made it to the washroom while listening to the music the game provides. I like what I hear so far. She washes her face, a butterfly flies in, she snaps a photo and is in the corner of the washroom when crazy jock kid comes in, in the midst of what seems like a mental breakdown.
Another punk looking girl follows him in and they proceed to scream obscenities at each other. Threats were made and WTF HE SHOOTS HER WITH HIS HIDDEN GUN.
Max reaches out to help and time stops and begins to rewind. She wakes up again in class, confused and I just sat there thinking, “I have to sit through this lecture again, don’t I…”
Turns out Max somehow gained the ability to rewind time. If you don’t like the decision you chose you can rewind time and choose another one until you are satisfied. This ability not only comes in handy during decision making but is also needed in order to progress in the story by achieving certain objectives (e.g. open this door by breaking it and entering room then rewind time so that the door is no longer broken).
The jock is named Nathan Prescott and the punk girl is Chloe Price. After a series of events where Nathan threatens Max for what happened in bathroom, Max realizes that Chloe is her best friend from childhood.
Together they go back to Chloe’s house to escape Nathan who was beating up Max’s white knight friend, Warren. Of all the things a guy should do to impress a girl, getting beaten up is not one of them.
As Chloe starts smoking weed, Max tries to fix her camera by looking for tools in her basement and found out that Chloe’s stepfather has been installing cameras around the house to spy on his family. Talk about issues.
The stepfather comes home and Max needs to hide. Now there are a series of choices here that you’ll have to make but I chose to intervene and to take the blame.
After this, the two decides to go to the lighthouse to discuss the events. Chloe reveals that she owes people money and Max realizes that this was the exact same lighthouse as her vision earlier. She faints and when she comes to, she decides to tell Chloe the truth about what happened.
END OF EPISODE ONE.
The story progression of EP 1 was slow. However, I believe this was necessary in order to set up the story. It kept me entertained and the music is fantastic.
I will do reviews on episodes 2-4 and 5 when it comes out in October. Each episode usually takes an hour to two hours to play depending on how long it takes for you to make and stick with your decision.
Let me know what you think!