It’s purely random and completely impulse buys like this, that really make me love gaming. Life is Strange is something I was completely looking to avoid altogether. I personally, am in the minority that the point-and-click genre in gaming, has had it’s time and has become a thing of the past. Don’t get me wrong, Telltale do the absolute best Point-and-click games on the market, but it’s not my cup of tea. And then, I stumbled across the plot of Life is Strange, and could not resist the urge to play this. I’m a stickler for Time travel, and love anything to do with it. The genre peaks my interest to the highest of heavens, and love anything to do with it. So when I saw that the basic plot was, a young highschool student had the ability to reverse time, I had to play it. I will state that this is a review on the first episode of this game, so there won’t be much covered as it was quite a short one, but it was pure awesome.
Playing as 18 year old Max Caulfield, the stereotypical highschool introvert, who returns from Seattle, to her hometown in Arcadia Bay, Oregon, taking on a scholarship as a talented student photographer at Blackwell Academy. The story starts off wild, with Max caught in a severe storm, where she finds that a tornado is approaching Arcadia Bay destroying a nearby lighthouse. These disturbing events “awaken” Max in the middle of a class lecture. In what could be almost described as lucid, Max feels that her dream was more than that, and that it was too real to be a dream. At this point we get out first taste of the point and click elements to this title. Having multiple options here to choose from, the standard and obvious in any point and click. Each event you choose from will impact how you play your story throughout each episode, very much borrowing elements from Telltale’s “The Walking Dead” series.
Being an apprehensive point-and-clicker, I found myself immersed in a story I could relate to here. It’s a little slow, but definitely not monotonous. Being able to modify your path is something we all want to do in story based games these days, but having to play them all over again is always a hefty process, unless you’re really desperate to travel down the opposite side of the path. But the ability to rewind time, and choosing a different way to go, it’s just awesome. I always love the what-if motif of story based games. There’s a great sense of decision making in this title that will only brings more excitement to what paths will bring you. Being able to discover items, that could potentially destroy a safer path taken, then immediately rewind that moment with the information that was just given to you, gives you that time control that feels God like. It’s what brings in a great sense of replay value to this title.
The feel of the game jumps from calm and contemporary, to compelling in a heartbeat. The sense of emotion that flows through you, from the story, to the music that just tells you that you’re about to embark on an emotional journey, it’s just brings you pure awesome. The look of the title won’t give you the biggest graphics, but will you give you some of the most beautiful looking scenes in a point and click adventure. From the afternoon sun hitting the stunning horizon of Arcadia Bay, immediately to the horrors of the oncoming storm, the very contemporary look, only adds to the feel of the story, of what Dontnod Entertainment is trying to tell us.
Episode One of this magnificent tale, only sets a path for many great chapters to come. It has all the feels of an old primary school novel, bought to life. Imagination, creativity, design, and a whole lot of charm, makes this great little chapter a must have for all point-and-clickers. It may be a little short, and might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but as I review this, I would recommend this title to all friends who love casual games. I can’t wait for the second chapter.