By gla55jAw 11 Comments
What an interesting little find this game (Episode 1) was. Since the first season of The Walking Dead from Telltale, I have fallen in love and been on the lookout for adventure games. Not quite ready to dig into some of those trial and error click-fests that are the old Lucas Arts and Sierra games that I could never beat as a child (Torin’s Passage, I’m looking at you); I recently fell in love with The Wolf Among Us, the first episode’s of Game of Thrones and Tales From The Borderlands are all so fantastic. So, stumbling upon a new adventure game in the same style got me excited. A little research and a Giant Bomb Quick Look later, I decided I need to play this game.
I sat down to play the game on a day that I stayed home from work (shoveling 2 feet of snow will do that do you). I must say, I was impressed; I played the game in a single sitting.
Life Is Strange centers on a high school senior named Maxine Caulfield. Max was accpeted into her dream private school back in her hometown. She is an artsy, photography student who seems to be crushing hella hard on her Photography teacher. Our young lead eventually finds herself the witness to the murder of a girl in the bathroom. When the gunshot goes off and she raises her hand and yells, something strange happens; time rewinds.
Thus, the player is introduced to Max’s new time travel powers. You can rewind time at any (almost) time and remake conversational and action choices. A notification will pop letting you know that there will be consequences for your actions. The choices seem like they should have a significant impact on future episodes, as no answer seems like the right choice. Sometimes I felt as if I were picking the lesser of two evils. This time rewind mechanic is GREAT. In all these telltale games that have been coming out lately, I can never really tell if I chose the correct choice or not. I find myself quitting out of the game, going back and testing out other choices. I want my roleplay to make sense, not just quickly choose one response over the other because there is a timer counting down. Life Is Strange’s mechanic lets me go through every dialogue option tree until I feel like I have it exactly the way I want it to play out. My one gripe is that in one later chapter (the parking lot, for those of you who have played), you cannot do this. The end of the chapter ends with a cut-scene that loads directly into the next chapter. This is very frustrating since the rest of the game you can check and analyze every scenario until you’re ready to decide on what you want history to be. Alas, this is small negative on an otherwise completely enjoyable experience.
To sum up before I ramble on; this game is special and I can’t wait until the next episode comes out. 5/5.
A few key notes I jotted down while playing;
- Samuel (the strange janitor) is weird. Almost too weird. X-Files weird; which is funny because there was a reference to the X-Files after I wrote this.
- Enjoy – Exploring the school and speaking classmates and teachers. I was reminded of the little bit of Bully I had played for some reason.
- The writing is interesting, especially the journal that updates after significant points in each chapter.
- Great references; X-Files, Dr. Who, Fullmetal Alchemist, Scott Pilgrim, Kickstarter.
- At one point Max said she’s Analog and Not digital. I wonder if this will flower into a larger theme throughout the story. Other than for her obvious love of her Polaroid camera.
- Her buddy Warren signs his name “Warren G.”
- What’s up with Plasma TVs in this universe?
- Interesting that Max doesn’t want to use her power for “trivial bullshit.”
- The music is FANTASTIC and sets the mood perfectly.
- Choices seem like they’re going to matter a lot. Hopefully DONTNOD can follow through on this.
- Collection Mode is great for quickly grabbing any missing pictures you need to take and simply quitting the game once you’ve found it.