Life Is Strange

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Alex79uk
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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by Alex79uk » February 28th, 2017, 7:37 pm

Just finished episode 4: Dark Room.

Holy SHIT!! Whatthefuckwhatthefuckwhatthefuck!!!?

Did not see that coming!

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by Alex79uk » February 28th, 2017, 10:13 pm

Finished the whole game.

That was brilliant.

There have been some lengthy posts already so I'll keep mine brief. The game was just full of memorable moments, from the first time you realised you could rewind (something I had no idea about coming in to the game) to the altercations with Frank, talking Kate down from the roof and seeing Chloe in the wheelchair, but the stand out moment for me was the reveal of Mr Jefferson as the mastermind behind the evil plot. Genuinely chilling, he make for an excellent villain. Oh - and not forgetting seeing Chloe get shot in the head by him, that was a real OHMYGOD moment.

I know people (not necessarily on this forum) have said they found it difficult to relate to or care about the characters, but I found the opposite. Not so much relate to, but I really did care what happened to these people in the end. Although, I did sacrifice Arcadia Bay in the final choice of the game.

Just a truly excellent piece of work from start to finish, I may add some more comments once it's all had time to sink in a bit more, and I pick apart the plot, but right now, having finished it less than ten minutes ago, I thought it was damn awesome. Great story, entertaining gameplay and a rollercoaster ride all the way.

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Marco
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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by Marco » March 2nd, 2017, 5:30 pm

Having picked this up after episode 5 was released, I was able to play Life is Strange in a few sittings within a short space of time and I feel that was to the game's benefit. Although I enjoyed the first episode overall, some of the dialogue was a tad too cringy for me. Too much teen drama. Everyone an archetype. Thankfully, the characters turn out to be more rounded, the dialogue improved and the decisions more impactful. I would be interested to hear opinions of anyone who played this as each episode was released to see if this was just me.

I thought that the ability to rewind time would make decision making pointless. Instead, the freedom to blatantly dive into bins and read private letters, with the person concerned right next to me and with no repercussions, proved irresistible. I thought I was a better person than this. Apparently not. This, combined with the choices that can't be rescinded, created moments that I still haven't forgotten. It didn't feel cheap to me to take my power away but then again,
Spoiler: show
Kate lived in my playthrough
and there was always the possibility this could happen again and I wouldn't know when.

I would urge anyone who was thinking about playing this but hasn't managed to get around to it yet to do so.

Also: Foals.

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Chopper
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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by Chopper » March 4th, 2017, 12:43 pm

Hey Marco,

I also played through as each episode was released, and I had the same issues with the dialogue, though not so much the characters and choices. The speech/slang felt very off kilter to me in episode one, so much so that I actually thought for a good few episodes that the game was set 15 or 20 years ago, and maybe teenagers talked like that then in the Pacific NW. Maybe it got better as the series progressed, or maybe I made my peace with it, but I was ok with it in the end.

I thought the characters developed well, with the one bum note being the photography teacher, who regressed to an archetype, if anything.

On a separate note, one thing I've been thinking about is the ending. I was fairly dissatisfied at the time, but the idea of choosing the many, despite being largely alienated from them, against the idea of individual self determination, has resonated a bit with me since then, maybe especially in light of recent political developments. It was a pretty good choice, I think now.

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Marco
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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by Marco » March 7th, 2017, 10:20 pm

Thanks for that, Chopper. I think it was the dialogue that offended me most. I'm still not sure how deliberately awful "Go fuck yourselfie" was. It came across as something a writer thought was hilarious and clever, not something a human outside of 90s fiction would ever say.

Did anyone choose the alternative for the ending?

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by ratsoalbion » March 7th, 2017, 10:28 pm

There was no 'selfie' in the 90s though!
;)

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by chase210 » March 9th, 2017, 3:56 pm

I played episode 1 and 2 back to back, then 3 came out shortly after, then 4 and 5 etc. I thought the episodes improved dramatically from 3 onwards, maybe the ending for 2, even before the decision at the end of 2.

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by Marco » March 9th, 2017, 6:58 pm

ratsoalbion wrote:There was no 'selfie' in the 90s though!
;)
Ah, very true! I'd somehow forgotten it's a relatively new term.

However, as we've all had to hear multiple times, they've been around since the 1800s and this "generation was not the first to use images for selfie-expression". :twisted:

I really did love this game, I swear! It's good to know I'm not alone thinking it improved though.

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by Joshihatsumitsu » March 9th, 2017, 8:22 pm

It definitely improved as it went along, which is definitely preferable to the other way around!

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by Yacobg42 » April 4th, 2017, 10:21 pm

I'm sure there are games with worse writing than the first episode of Life is Strange.

I sure couldn't think of any while I played through it though. I jumped on that first episode early, mostly because I wanted to support a women-centric, non-violent, gorgeous-looking game. And while I did appreciate all of those things, lines like "wrong, you owe me hella cash!" were laughable enough that I doubted I would stick around. And I didn't, until my friend begged me to play the rest so we could talk about it.

More than two years after finishing the first episode, I cried openly through the ending. I'm honestly not sure if the writing got better, but I sure as hell got invested in the characters somehow. Maybe it's because, even though they're all somewhat goofy, they're absolutely true to themselves, with all their strengths and flaws. Maybe it's because the rewind mechanic offers the wonderful ability to analyze their responses to a whole host of provocations. Maybe the writers really did find their voice, and it just took a couple episodes to get there. Characters would surprise me- the conversation in the dark room with David especially stands out- but never felt like they were betraying themselves (with the possible of that Jefferson twist, although they retconned it pretty effectively).

I'm interested in what the legacy of Life is Strange will be. I feel like I haven't heard it talked about much in the time since its release, and I worry that it will be mostly forgotten as time goes on. And that's a shame. Max would take a polaroid of Life is Strange. It's an awkward, fleeting, but ultimately beautiful butterfly of a game.



(What I chose: Bay over Bae. In my heart: Bae over Bay, always.)

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by Kid Skitzky » May 23rd, 2017, 4:38 am

I've been trying to think of something to say about Life is Strange for the past ten minutes now, but I don't know if I have the language. The question I was left with by the end was: "Was I trying to save everyone because I cared about them, or did I just want everybody to like me?" And maybe that's why I let the storm destroy Arcadia Bay in the end. Maybe I finally confessed to myself that I didn't care about anyone but Chloe. I never expected to fall in love with her when I first saved her in Episode 1; I had no ulterior motive. Most people certainly don't think about what they have to gain from a situation when they save someone from a burning building or a car accident. I guess I'm just trying to find some sort of reason for me making the decision I made in the end. Maybe it's my own social commentary, a statement against the Bury Your Gays trope so commonly used in the gay tragedy genre. Or maybe I want to live in their relationship vicariously, as a closeted gay man so desperate for the idea of falling in love. I'm not entirely sure. I don't know if it even matters, because either way, I got the ending I wanted.

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by stvnorman » June 24th, 2017, 7:28 pm

Three word review: Irritating American teenagers.

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Re: Our next-but-one podcast recording (8.7.17): Life Is Strange

Post by The_reviewist » June 30th, 2017, 11:48 am

I've just marathoned Life is Strange this week, despite having played the demo on release and picking it up in a sale last year. Somehow the combination of Telltale-esque gameplay, and Dawson's Creek style teenage angst, never quite appealed to me. So it's with some surprise that I found the overall game really quite enjoyable.

It's true that Life is Strange is more than a little bit derivative, and knowingly wears that upon its sleeve. Most notably in that it tries to rework the concept of The Butterfly Effect films almost exactly, with a little splashing of Twin Peaks and a soupçon of Stephen King's 11.22.63. all of which let them concentrate on a more personal set of stories that veer from the serious to the slightly silly. Yet still managing to be largely interesting and captivating in a soap opera fashion.

That said, while I enjoyed LiS, I have to be blunt in that I found only two of the five episodes to be truly captivating. 3, and 4, where the plot really escalated and the clear ramifications of Max's time-bending superpowers became apparent. The first episode felt largely pedestrian to me, and the final episode suffered from an embarrassment of almost endings that rival the Lord of the Rings. But the utter game-breaker was episode 2. Not only did it have the least interesting plot moments, but it featured Chloe being her most insufferably teenage and moody, as well as that godawful time sink of a pointless bottle quest.
Yes, I wasn't a Chloe fan. Perhaps I have a low threshold for angsty punk types and teenage rebellion, but it took her being crippled into a wheelchair for me to start to warm to her character. Perhaps this was a result of the script littered with words like "hella" and her general gutter-slang chat or maybe Ashley Burch's performance, but I couldn't care a jot for her for more than half the game. Even to the point where I tried to see if I could let the train run her over.

Still, the game saved itself with Episodes 3 and 4, and despite being all over the place, and unevenly paced, the final episode's weird almost Deadly Premonition-like dream puzzles and eventual resolution did find me satisfied and dare I say it, even curious about the Chloe-centric sequel.

3 word review: Didn't Stop Train.

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Alex79uk
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Re: Our next-but-one podcast recording (8.7.17): Life Is Strange

Post by Alex79uk » June 30th, 2017, 3:24 pm

I can't wait for season 2 (and by can't wait I mean I'm looking forward to waiting a little while and picking it up when it's a little cheaper).

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Re: Our next-but-one podcast recording (8.7.17): Life Is Strange

Post by The_reviewist » June 30th, 2017, 8:06 pm

One aspect of this game that on reflection does concern me a little, is the dubious morality at play.

The game not only tries to convince the player that it's preferable to allow an entire town to die rather than one teenage girl (who may well die anyway) and that it's better kill a man in the prime of his life, than to let his daughter be crippled and ask for euthanasia.

Perhaps it's just me but, I find Max's reasoning to be a bit, broken. Needless to say... I chose the lives of the many over the lives of the few (or the one)

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Re: Our next-but-one podcast recording (8.7.17): Life Is Strange

Post by Tleprie » July 6th, 2017, 3:56 am

I played through Life Is Strange at probably the perfect time in my life. I was just starting my 4th semester at college, where I was unhappy with my major and on the verge of changing it, though unsure to what at the time.

I connected with the characters and the setting almost immediately. I can recognize that the dialogue is less than perfect, but I was ready to embrace it and all of its hella hipster-y goodness. After all, I say things twice as dumb every day.

Also, Bae over Bay. At some point, you need to stop fucking with time. The end seemed like a fine enough place for me.

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by ThirdDrawing » July 17th, 2017, 6:16 am

stvnorman wrote:
June 24th, 2017, 7:28 pm
Three word review: Irritating American teenagers.
Mine is: Cringe-inducing American teenagers. But I felt exactly the same. Did not enjoy it.

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by hazeredmist » July 18th, 2017, 11:31 am

Wow, what a podcast... Always a treat to have Jay on the show (tip of the hat - mind you there was a serious spoiler for Heavy Rain in there from you Jay!!!) but life certainly felt strange when you realised nobody on the show was a massive fan of the game. Understandable that's not always a factor or possible when choosing a panel with C&R's output, but you have to expect some negative feedback from those who were big fans of the game and have perhaps been waiting a long time to hear you guys coo about it, then taking in a podcast like this.

I personally enjoyed the show despite being a fan of the game, I'm not afraid to hear people shitting on something I love (particularly when it's from podcasters I enjoy going on a rant - hello Josh) whether I agree with their opinions or not.

I think my favourite moment was Josh giving the disclaimer that he respected people who enjoyed the game, the story and it's writing etc, only to then verbally assault every aspect of Life is Strange and essentially character assassinate anyone who thought it was vaguely passable as interactive media :lol:

Good work all concerned, after seeing a couple of tweets I thought this would be an entertaining one and it sure was.

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by Gho5tRUN3R » July 18th, 2017, 5:46 pm

Little late to the game, but having just listened to the podcast, I rushed over as soon as I could to write up my opinions. While I agree with almost everything Josh said, I found myself won over by this game because of its setting and tone. The small town vibe really had my jonesing for the simpler days and the occasional poking in other people's business and belongings gave it a Gone Home-lite feel.

But that isn't why I felt the need to write up my opinions. I felt that no one touched on the one part that has practically ruined this game for me: the ending. Sure everyone talks about the choices, but no one seems to want to talk about the complete hijacking of the main story by Chloe and the retcon the writers pulled.

I was one of the (apparently) few people playing this episode by episode as it came out. I say this because by the end of episode 3, I began to have serious worries as to how the writers would finish this game in 5 episodes. With how much time we wasted with Chloe (maybe getting hit by the train would have been better) and the plot with Rachel's disappearance, there seemed to be little time for the story that started it all: the hurricane that destroys Arcadia Bay.

Episode 4 ends with the Rachel mystery nearly wrapped up, but still no ground work with how to save the town. Sure you could convince the homeless lady to leave, but how would you convince a whole town?

The answer we got was massively disappointing. First was that once again we have to make a choice involving Chloe's life for the umpteenth time (my roommate came in at this point of the game to say "We do not negotiate with terrorists, even if that terrorist is time and space"). But most importantly: the flawed logic that is was even connected to Chloe's life to begin with. I had to replay the first episode to make sure I wasn't imagining it, but Max was transported to the future well before she did any kind of meddling with time travel. Why then, is saving Chloe the pinnacle of this whole thing?

Unless I missed something, it seemed to me that the writers just forgot about the Hurricane for episodes 2-4 and suddenly scrambled to give us this sorry excuse for an ending. This ending pissed me off more than Mass Effect 3 and because of it, despite how much I enjoyed episodes 1-4, I find it incredibly hard to recommend Life is Strange to anyone.

Bay before Bae, but my 3 word review would be (in Ned Stark's voice): Hurricane is coming.

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Re: Life Is Strange

Post by chase210 » May 1st, 2018, 9:18 pm

The prequel is really good. I love it.

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