At this year’s Electronics and Entertainment Expo, I was able to watch the theater presentation for Life Is Strange: Before The Storm. This is the prequel to the first Life Is Strange game and gives you more detail into the life of Chloe Price as well as the other people of Arcadia Bay. Fast-forward to the end of the summer and I was able to get my hands on a review code from Square Enix and Deck Nine Games so let’s get right into it, there’s a lot to cover.
As I previously mentioned, Before The Storm gives the players more details/backstory into the life of Chloe Price. Episode 1 is called “Awaken” and shows just how much of an issue Chloe’s life is right now. However, there will be a silver lining to all this and that comes in the form of a new relationship with a classmate, Rachel Amber!
Life Is Strange: Before The Storm relies heavily on the story as well as your choices in game. What I mean by that is, you have opportunities to answer questions/make choices to alter the actions in the episode. Everything you do will alter something during gameplay so think everything though. You start out at a concert and want to buy a shirt but have no money so you decide to un-hook the parking brake and the car rolls. There is money in the car and you can decide to steal it and use it to buy weed at the concert but this decision could come back to bite you so think it through carefully.
The game plays a lot like a “choose-your-own-adventure” book where you are given options and pick something based on those options. In turn, those choices will alter what happens in the game but there is another way you can get things to come out in your favor, the Backtalk Challenge! Backtalk challenges are similar to Telltale Games action scenes where you’re able to affect the outcome of the scene but the difference is in LIS, you need to use your words.
You will need to read (in a limited time) the given options and pick one and see how the person you’re talking to responds. Then you use that response to get what you want and move the conversation in your favor and just like with the t-shirt, you get your first taste of Backtalk challenges at the concert at the start of the game. You will have to persuade the bouncer to let you into the barn where the concert is being held after you try and do things by the book first.
The music is really good as it gives off that feel of grunge rock as well as late 90’s rock. The music matches the clothing that some of the characters wear because they’re trying to show off that grunge look! Grunge music can also be used as teenage angst/aggression and the soundtrack so far does a great job showing that!
It’s these reasons that I’m giving Life Is Strange: Before The Storm Episode 1 Awaken for the PlayStation 4 an 8.5/10. I would like to thanks Square Enix and Deck Nine Games for the review code.