Life is Strange by Developer Dontnod

Hmmm... I think I'm gonna have some willpower and not watch it. But, December 20th!?! What a surprise! It'll probably make my list this year now since it's going to be complete.

Still waiting on KR0 to be finished. Oof.

Yeah...future apologies to aleima. Might be an adjustment to my list, too :p

pyxistyx wrote:

Yeah...future apologies to aleima. Might be an adjustment to my list, too :p

I'm fairly sure you're not talking about me.
And don't worry, edit away, just tell me when you do.

aha, yeah i was trying to type on my phone whilst walking. never a great idea

I kind of dyslexically thought you were talking about some wasting disease I'd never heard of. Please give generously to the Alemia Foundation.

Hey, with a handle like mine, I don't think I should be casting any stones.
Ah, BadKen, oh you. *lol*

I'd wager dealing with all our shenanigans feels like a wasting disease...

Not from me, though. The game's ranking has been pretty set for a while now.

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

(small Episode 3 spoiler)

Spoiler:

Chole's done a stripe of blue in her hair exactly like my own stripe of blue! I'm officially as cool as Chloe Price now!

Stupid work and social obligations...

Finished! Oof. That is an emotional roller coaster right there. Especially the very, very final shot of the episode. Sadface

Looking forward to the bonus episode whenever that's available...I hope it's not just some short ten minute thing and actually has some meat to it.

Had totally forgotten third episode was out today. How about that "bonus episode" thing, that isn't out yet? Maybe I should wait a little longer.

not yet. Not quite sure when that's due. It's not connected to this three episode story though, so you can safely play through that in the meantime I think.

I'm going to dive into this tomorrow night for sure. You know, just emotionally wreck myself right in time for the holidays.

Seems the ep isn't out for PS4 yet...despite the fact that I was sitting there working when the notification that Life is Strange: Before the Storm had updated!

This "waiting between episode releases" thing sucks.

SpacePPoliceman wrote:

Seems the ep isn't out for PS4 yet...despite the fact that I was sitting there working when the notification that Life is Strange: Before the Storm had updated!

This "waiting between episode releases" thing sucks.

It is! I'm downloading it now. You just have to head into the PS Store and download it, which its under the BtS episode 1 download. It took me a minute to find it.

pyxistyx wrote:

Finished! Oof. That is an emotional roller coaster right there. Especially the very, very final shot of the episode. Sadface

Looking forward to the bonus episode whenever that's available...I hope it's not just some short ten minute thing and actually has some meat to it.

I feel so emotionally raw after this episode. That final shot was just... I've never been so confused at how I felt emotionally before. And I couldn't tell if I wanted to cry, or scream, or laugh hysterically, or lay down and sleep. Maybe I shouldn't have played this on a day when I woke up anxious, but this game was worth it.

I'm looking forward to that bonus episode.

Dominic Knight wrote:
SpacePPoliceman wrote:

Seems the ep isn't out for PS4 yet...despite the fact that I was sitting there working when the notification that Life is Strange: Before the Storm had updated!

This "waiting between episode releases" thing sucks.

It is! I'm downloading it now. You just have to head into the PS Store and download it, which its under the BtS episode 1 download. It took me a minute to find it.

Yeah, I found it--got suspicious that it kept sending me to the "Episode 2 & 3 Bundle" page. Now the issue is getting the chance to actually play it. Stupid holiday social obligations.

No spoilers, but I'm most curious to see how this game handles Chloe and Rachel as they relate to one of the dominant themes of the original: the idea that we never "know" others. It's a major tension that Rachel was up to all sorts of things Chloe seemed mostly or utterly unaware of, and I wondered if the prequel would touch on that in some way.

This isn't going to help with the emotional rollercoaster, but Ashly Burch posted today about how losing her boyfriend to opioids 5 years ago today impacted the way she played Chloe. Pretty heartbreaking: The Boy in the Well

Finished. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! So many feelings! Great stuff. Totally in my top 10 this year. Definitely some things to be critical of, but overall it was just great. I thought episode 2 was easily the best episode of the 3 from a mechanics and from a character development standpoint. It just did some really interesting stuff.

I completely expected the whole thing to have a fanfic feel to it when it was announced, and it did not. I never expected to get to experience something like this related to Life is Strange.

In a Christmas miracle, I finagled some time for myself and this wonderful thing I love. It's also been a banner week for origins. Certain Star Wars characters? Didn't need it, didn't get one. Chloe's blue hair? Totally wanted it, was not denied.

Edit: Completed. Hmm, yeah, that was something of a gut punch. So, reacting to my pre-playing wonderment...

Spoiler:

I kinda feel they...addressed it by not? Not by not at all, but it feels like keeping Rachel's shenanigans shrouded in mystery it reinforces the point. I think the confrontation with Eliot is genius in many ways, but in particular because I feel like he's right about exactly one thing, which is that Rachel is manipulative(?) But also, just because she's manipulative, I don't think her relationship with Chloe was anything less than genuine(?) And additionally how you can see the ways in which either choice in the end might... hmm... too many words coming to mind are too harsh. How no matter what Chloe does, Rachel's view of Chloe might be colored enough that she wouldn't think there was a need to share with her about Frank, for whatever the reason. Rachel remains something of an enigma, and that feels right.

Also lots of great, small moments that call back to the original and inform those events and choices, especially the D&D game that highlights Chloe's motivations at the end of the original...while also highlighting why the choice I made was the right one.

Not sure how cogent that was, but it's the sort of unvarnished brain vomit you get when I go off the cuff. In summation, 5 stars, would have dove back into the original if I weren't skiing tomorrow.

The only thing more enjoyable than playing Life is Strange is watching Aiofe and Johnny from Eurogamer play Life is Strange. (With special third sleepy guest for this episode!)

"JUNKYARD, JUNKYARD, JUNKYARD!"

My sister manages a library branch, and apparently one of her staff is preparing to run a teen program around Life is Strange. They're going to play it together and presumably discuss the topics that come up, which all sounds like it would be amazing to me. I wish I'd had this way back when I was expected to teach a daily period of "life skills."

SpacePPoliceman wrote:

My sister manages a library branch, and apparently one of her staff is preparing to run a teen program around Life is Strange. They're going to play it together and presumably discuss the topics that come up, which all sounds like it would be amazing to me. I wish I'd had this way back when I was expected to teach a daily period of "life skills."

Good luck to them... I have to admit, although it is probably a good thing for them, I'd feel very awkward discussing some of those themes with teenagers.

Finally got around to playing episode 1 of Before the Storm last night. Hooooly crap, that was intense.

I also just played Episode 1 of Before the Storm. I really liked it! It was a great reminder of how much I loved the original.

Playing as Chloe, particularly Chloe prior to the events of the original game, has been a little hard to wrap my mind around. It was much easier to play as Max, as I felt I understood where she was coming from, and the types of decisions I would like to make fit with her personality--being kind to others and trying to making good choices. Very different playing as Chloe. Should Chloe pick a fight with that guy? Should Chloe rip that person off? Should Chloe consume those substances? If it were generic video game protagonist , I'd probably steer her to safer waters, but knowing I'm playing Chloe, and knowing where things will be for her by the time we get to the events of the original game, I'm trying to make choices that fit with that, even if it pains me at times. The only time I have been unable to resist doing the nice thing in favor of the more Chloe-y thing is with Joyce. I feel so bad for poor Joyce and cannot stand to make Chloe hurt her mom any more than the game absolutely forces me to.

I'm really impressed by how the gameplay continues to be interesting despite not having the time control mechanic to fall back on, and although the voice acting has some bad moments, overall it feels pretty good. I'm really happy to be spending time with these characters and this setting again.

A few spoiler thoughts on the events of the episode:

Spoiler:

Stealing the cash and the band tshirt and buying pot were all decisions that me, a 35 year old father of 2 girls was like NO! DON'T DO IT! THIS WILL END BADLY!, but me, person role playing Chloe Price said yeah, but this is just what she would do.

I'm a little confused why Rachel just showed up at this show all by herself and then found Chloe upstairs in an area that was kind of off limits, but given that she later mentions having watched Chloe talk her way in in the first place, I'm guessing we'll learn more about what brought Rachel to Chloe in future episodes.

I loved the D&D game! If there were just a way to play a few hours of that, I would.

I think I like the "fighting" mechanic? I'm not totally clear on why I'm picking the choices I'm picking and how things would go differently if I made other choices...am I really good at this, or does it not matter? Are there multiple right answers? I dunno. It's interesting, at least.

So I stole the band tshirt, and then when I dressed the next morning, I chose to wear that shirt, interested to see whether it would matter. I can't say it affected the plot, but Joyce did notice and comment on it, which I thought was a nice little touch.

There wasn't any way to get through the fight with Rachel at the junkyard without her yelling and storming off, right? Would be really interested to know if there was, but I assume not.

I found it a little frustrating that the game didn't seem to offer a way for me to acknowledge that Rachel was watching her dad cheat on her mom until Rachel finally told Chloe. It was pretty obvious, and I always find it frustrating when you the player figure out something that you the character doesn't know and you have to go through the motions of "why are you so upset, I don't understand." For such a low fidelity model, it's hilarious how easily that guy viewed through a telescope read as "DA" to me.

I'm sad they started that forest fire, but impressed with the way they foreshadowed it! I had decided that Chloe would sign the petition about fire safety (or whatever it was) and use her real name, I wonder if that will help things or make them worse...

Anyway, I look forward to going backwards in this thread and reading others' thoughts on Ep 1. Now to dive into the next episode!

SpacePPoliceman wrote:

My sister manages a library branch, and apparently one of her staff is preparing to run a teen program around Life is Strange. They're going to play it together and presumably discuss the topics that come up, which all sounds like it would be amazing to me. I wish I'd had this way back when I was expected to teach a daily period of "life skills."

That's really, really cool, SpacePPoliceman. If only to teach them some basic life skills such as "lock your unattended computer". I was playing the first two episodes of Before the Storm, and recalled snooping in the girls' dormitories in Life Is Strange as well.

I watched episode one of the Eurogamer let's play after playing through the episode, and

Spoiler:

Something that hit me really hard in retrospect was the fact that I am (based on my choices in LiS) watching these two young women plan and dream for the future... while knowing that they will both be dead so very very soon. Ouuuuch. Gosh.

This is true.

Until then though...

"JUNKYARD, JUNKARD, JUNKYARD!"

Spoiler:

Also, I still hold out hope that there's a parallel universe where Chloe hooks up with Steph and they just make out and play dungeons and dragons for all three episodes! 'Cause I would totally play that version of the game

Failing that just give me a game with Steph as the protagonist plz!

Spoiler:

Yeah, in the first episode Rachel repeatedly says things about what she's going to do in the future,
and every time I cringed and muttered something like "yeah, well, not so much..." Heavy on the foreshadowing! I saved Chloe in my playthrough of the original, but a scene early on in Episode 2 that takes place in the bathroom at the school still felt much more meaningful knowing the importance of that location to the future.

Oh gosh. I'd managed to get through two episodes, without thinking about it too much, even though I know it's there further up the road. Now I'm so very incredibly sad.