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Gaming Life is Strange

Discussion in 'Community' started by Ahsoka's Tano, Oct 17, 2016.

  1. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Oct 28, 2014
    Just picked up the paperback of the comic series that follows one of the two endings to LIS from Amazon. I'm looking forward to it.
    [​IMG]
     
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  2. WebLurker

    WebLurker Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 12, 2016
    Vaguely heard of the game awhile back, but recently downloaded the first two (original and Before the Storm prequel) and really liked them. May not be the most groundbreaking game on a technical and playing level, but they really went broke on telling the story and making the characters resonate. Have to agree with other players that those aspects really stay with you after the game ends. Didn't play the sequel game (too attached to the original characters), but I did see the couple scenes that tied into the original game and gave closure to it and thought they were really well done.

    For the original game, I chose to save Chloe at the end; think most people ILR wouldn't be able to let a loved one die like that if they were in Max's shoes. The game also really sold me on the couple and that they needed each other, were incomplete without the other, etc. Was kinda surprised to learn that that ending got a lot of hate in the execution; thought it worked really well capping off that story path.

    In the second game, I chose to tell Rachel the truth. I seriously wondered how safe she would be not knowing, considering what her father was willing to do. Also, it seemed to really work as interesting set up to the original game, where Chloe discovered that Rachel had been letting her live a lie of sorts in regards to their relationship (seemed to add more reason to her anger and hurt at learning the truth) and the observations that Chloe preferred being told the hard truths of life. Also, it turned out that I played the last dream sequence with her father with Chloe deciding that she would rather have known about her own father's mistakes and sins over the fantasy of perfection (loved that scene), so it seemed like it would consistent for her to chose to take that approach with Rachel. Still, as much as I loved to hate James Amber, it was still really hard seeing him realize his relationship with his daughter had been destroyed beyond repair. Also have to really feel sorry for her stepmother, who seemed to be a genuinely good person and mother, and who's only mistake was the initial lie that she was Rachel's biological mother, being completely innocent of her husband's conspiracy against his ex.

    Wouldn't say that that was what the franchise was about at all, but it is interesting that the first two games did put LGBTQ characters front and center and did make that kinda really important to the stories they were telling; I mean, the relationships between the lead characters in each story were the main driving narrative of the story (the prequel setting up Chloe befriending Rachel and why she eventually developed unrequited feelings for her, the original game leaning pretty heavy into the story path where Max and Chloe fall in love). Heck, I've lurked on a few threads devoted to the game on other forums and there's quite a lot of threads devoted to the romance aspects of them (which love interest character/possible relationship is better? where Max, Chloe, Rachel lesbian or bisexual? was Warren a decent person or a stalker? are people thinking that the original game was a love story between the leads reading too much into things?).

    Can't say I've seen much complaint over LiS2 not having LGBTQ material as a key component (although I though the player character was bisexual in that one), but it does seem like relationships do dominate the online fanbase, from what I've seen. (Anecdotally, it seems more like to me that the Wolf Brothers of game 2 just didn't resonate with players the way the original Partners in Crime and Time did. Whether the original game was better written or just that Max and Chloe came first, I don't know.)

    Got the first couple trades, but haven't wanted to crack them open yet because of the plot (despite it being a non-canon sequel, so not affecting the canonical version of the characters in this ending, as seen in the second game (although news about the future, if true, will change that:
    The first arc ends with Max being forced by her powers to leave Chloe, where she ends up in a parallel universe where she befriends that world's versions of Chloe and Rachel. I was "sold" on the comic to read about the characters from the game, not one of them meeting AU versions of them, and don't really like the idea that "our" Max and Chloe don't get a happy ending together after everything they went through.

    However, the current and upcoming issues of the series are being marketed as having Max resolving to not let destiny win and find a way to reunite with "her" Chloe. If that's what the future of the series is going to be, I don't mind a brief diversion into another setting where Max is the only "returning" character, but I guess I'm a little hesitant to start actually reading until I know that this's isn't a bait-and-switch and that our Max and Chloe will be staying together for good.

    Also among the franchise's tie-ins is a in-universe Welcome to Blackwell Academy book that is basically a copy of a guide to the school that characters from LiS1 and the prequel (specifically, Max, Chloe, Rachel, Victoria, and Nathan) scribbled various comments and written conversations in, with the idea that we found it sometime late in LiS 1 before the very end. While not canon (the copyright page specifically disclaims that the information "counts" and that the timeline of events is stretched and/or ignored to allow for all the stuff to be written in it), it's pretty fun, showcases a lot of nice stills and concept art, and makes the most of the premise. While we generally only see one side of the characters (Victoria and Nathan are just snobby mean kids, Chloe doesn't let her guard down in regards to the tender side she lets Max and Rachel see, etc.), it's still all in character and there's a lot of joy to be had just "being" with them again.
     
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  3. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Oct 28, 2014
    I'm currently playing LIS2. I waited this long; especially after the last episode had been released this past December. While my intuition about the lead characters was accurate (they don't really click with me the way Max and Chloe did; even though they're a pair of brothers and I have a younger brother too), there's been a few side characters that I've been fond of. Right now I'm on Episode 4. I'm essentially binging through this full season over the course of about a week or so.
     
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  4. WebLurker

    WebLurker Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 12, 2016
    Liking the story so far? (IMHO, the story sounds good on paper, but the clips I've seen of it just didn't sell me, on top of the simple fact that I'm way too attached to the original characters and setting. That said, I think that having a brand new set of characters was the right call, if nothing else that it avoids canonizing either ending of the original game, so leaving the intent of both being legitimate conclusions intact.)

    I have noticed common observations and point of comparison with the original -- beyond whether the players engaged with Sean and Daniel as well as they did with Max and Chloe (and, to be fair, I think the latter were an incredibly well-written pair in terms of characterization and interpersonal dynamics, so anything would be a tough act to follow) -- are whether not controlling the character with the power is a step down from the original and if the road trip aspect preventing the game from having a consistent cast of returning characters was to its disadvantage. Speaking for myself, I really liked how the original games had a recurring cast that developed alongside the leads and became really rounded characters (not counting obvious exceptions like Eliot in the prequel and the main antagonist of the original, even if the final twists with them were interesting developments), so the lack of recurring characters would be something I'd have to get over if I ever play the sequel.

    Will have to tell me what you thought of episode five; there's a special "for the fans" thing in it.
     
  5. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Oct 28, 2014
    I've been making comments about the game in the "Game you just beat" thread after each episode. The first episode seemed to drag on until the catalyst moment where the brothers went off on their own together. The second episode was interesting because you meet up with Chris from the Captain Spirit demo (of which I'd recommend if you haven't played it yet). The third episode is my favorite to date, because you meet some interesting new characters (including one that for Chloe Price fans should be right up their alley). I won't get into spoiler details, but there's certain available choices involving that character that are pretty meaningful to Sean's (the older brother) lifestyle.

    The thing about Max and Chloe is that no matter how often they'd argue, deep down you knew they still cared about each other. As I've played through LIS2, I just feel as though the younger brother is such a spoiled brat that it doesn't dawn on him that Sean always has the best intentions; even if maybe once he chooses to spend time with someone else besides Daniel for a change. I don't want to talk about recurring characters as that would spoil scenarios from episode-to-episode, but I will say this does differ from the original LIS.

    One more thing, be sure to keep your saved files from the original LIS (as well as Captain Spirit)! They do transfer over to the new game and affect some familiar circumstances.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2020
  6. WebLurker

    WebLurker Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 12, 2016
    Will have to look for that.

    Recall the first installment of the original game was kinda leisurely paced. Second one didn't handle that so well, huh?

    I game off a computer (no console) and it doesn't seem to have that demo available on my platform. Heck, my computer is too old to run LIS2 period (or at least requires an upgraded OS that I'm not getting in order to not compromise older software I run), so I'm not sure I could access it even if it had a computer version. May have to check out a "let's play" or something.

    Yeah, character interactions were always a highlight of the first two games.

    Yeah, the writers nailed that from the first scene (even without playing the prequel, you can tell from the car conversation that they both badly want to fix their relationship, even if there are issues that they will need to resolve). It was a good dynamic, which made it feel realistic and gave it a story arc. Still find it hysterical that Dontnod had trouble marketing the project due to it having a pair of young women as the main characters, and that turned out to be one of the things people liked the most about it.

    That does sound annoying, esp. if these are the two characters the game focuses on. While I did like that the central relationships in the original games had their rough patches and times that the characters made mistakes or disagreed, it was counterbalanced with plenty of material that showed the positive stuff and why they wanted to be together in the first place (even Chloe and Rachel's relationship in Before the Storm, which I think was shown to have serious cracks and unhealthy elements in that story, wasn't all bad and had its good points).

    Kinda know quite a few spoilers as is. In fact, the reason I got the first two games was because I'd been watching "let's plays" of the first one and got really invested in everything despite being a passive observer.

    Seeing as I can't play the game on my computer, it might be a moot point, but good for those who do play both. (Thought that it wasn't save files, but that the game asked you which ending you picked from the original?)
     
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  7. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

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    Oct 28, 2014
    True enough. While the Captain Spirit file does transfer over, LIS2 asks you right away what you chose for the ending of the original game. Even though I played through the game twice watching both endings, I chose the
    Save Chloe
    one as my "choice" considering that was what I had in the initial run. When I play through LIS2 again at some point, I'll choose the other option.
     
  8. WebLurker

    WebLurker Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 12, 2016
    Wonder what the game does for those who didn't play Captain Spirit? Just use a default list of elements to fill in the gaps that the choices from Spirit would've plugged its consequences into?

    Picked that ending, too, as I did comment in an earlier post. Any specific reason you went that way? (I always find it interesting to read other players' observations on which ending they picked; the game runs through the same story, cut scenes, and array of options, but people seem to pull very different ideas, thoughts, themes, and reasons why their version of the story lead them to their outcome.)

    Haven't seen the "save the town" ending, mostly because I have no desire to end the story on that scenario. Personal preference; I guess the story really sold on those two characters needing to stick together. Playing the prequel game kinda solidified that, given that putting them all together really make the Chloe character unbearably tragic if she winds up dying on that restroom floor. When going through the junkyard scene in Before the Storm episode one, about the time that Chloe finds her dad's car and completely breaks down, I literally had the thought: "I don't think I'm going to be able to let her die in the original after this."

    To each their own, though. Great thing about "pick a path" stories is that you can explore all the possible outcomes to your hearts content, or regularly follow a specific narrative of your choosing.
     
  9. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Oct 28, 2014
    Well for me the choice was easy. I really, cared for Chloe's character. We'd gone through so much together over the course of the story I just felt it'd be a waste to lose her. But it's not as if the ending wasn't sad anyway. The folks at Dontnod really pulled it off by replaying "Obstacles" as the $&&& hit the fan. But I did play through the game a second time, and of course saw the alt ending. I won't reveal any spoilers, but I guess if you think about it you can imagine how it's presented.

    -------------------------
    If there's one major thing that separates the two seasons of LIS, it's that the second one really emphasizes on real world politics. Even though I didn't read into the articles that would otherwise spoil it, I saw headlines referring to that subject through the past year as each episode had been released. As I currently play through the game, I can certainly tell what they're talking about.
     
  10. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Oct 28, 2014
    Just finished the 5th and final episode of LIS2. I put the review on here. Overall I thought the game was ok, but not all that memorable. The thing that I was most pleased with were the nods to the first game. There's even a surprise character who shows up in the final episode.
     
  11. WebLurker

    WebLurker Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 12, 2016
    Yeah, get that. While I do think the game provided enough set up and development that it would be "in character" to have Max pick either option (heck, the end of the nightmare sequence basically made the emotional case for each ending), you got stuff like the sheer number of instances that the characters promised that they wouldn't leave each other, the escalation of how far Max was willing to go to protect Chloe (taking the blame for the joint is small potatoes compared to tying to shoot a thug or steal money, much less rewriting history within re-written history), multiple suggestions that they were incomplete without the other (even Joyce, who seemed to struggle in understanding her daughter in many ways, appeared to understand that Max and Chloe needed each other -- possibly even more then Max and Chloe themselves did), the suggestion that it had to be Chloe specifically (instead of someone else) getting shot to activate Max's power, not to mention that we saw how much they loved each other and that their relationship was something beyond an "average" one (something the prequels kinda ran with, between Before the Storm showing how heartsick Chloe was without Max and "Farewell" showing that they'd been joined at the hip for ages and had no signs of slowing down). Dontnod really stacked the deck on this one (although it seems like the stats show a 50/50 split between the two endings).

    Also found it really interesting that even after the player makes their choice, Max still has to be talked into letting Chloe go while she's pretty decisive if she chooses to save Chloe and tear up the photo.

    Yeah, liked that neither ending was completely positive and negative and had their own hope spots for the future (whether that be the hint that Max would be able to eventually heal from her bereavement or seeing Max and Chloe going to start a new life together). In the case of the "sacrifice Arcadia Bay," I liked how using the "Obstacles" song bookended the first game and was the right tone to fit the sad parts (the tornado hitting and the aftermath) but also work for the more hopeful parts (Chloe and Max reassuring themselves as they leave). Did kinda wish that there had been some differences depending on if the play through ended with Max and Chloe as friends or lovers (maybe a more intimate gesture then the shoulder touch for the latter?), but I don't think it's a dealbreaker and that the scene "as is" works fine for both outcomes.

    Understood it was pretty-well made. Heck, I've seen quite a few opinions online that it was "obviously" the "real" ending, the one that the game makers "wanted" you to pick because it was longer and had more work put into it (despite the Powers That Be going on record that both endings where the real one if the player picked it and the length was not relevant to anything), and the one that thematically fit the story. Not sure I agree with the latter, but I think there's a lot of interpretation within the themes of the game, so I think it's what you took from the story that affects how you think the endings work or do not work. (I mean, I know a lot of people online took Chloe's many deaths/near-deaths in the game as a clue that her original fate couldn't be cheated, while I saw it as showing that Max wouldn't give up on her.)

    Wonder if that'll make the game less "timeless" then the original, which, despite being several years old and set before its release date, still feels contemporary in terms of the story and not really tied to a specific era of the twenty-first century. (Granted, video games are not exactly a timeless medium, the way software and hardware go out of date.)

    Yeah, saw the scene with the nods to the first game (
    save Chloe
    ending version) on YouTube. Really liked it as an epilogue for the original story.
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2020
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  12. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Oct 28, 2014
    As we talked about before, the choice of
    saving Chloe
    may be considered canon since the comics that were released follow that path. I own the first two graphic novels; and to this point I haven't read any would-be connection to LIS2 which does take place in the same universe.
     
  13. WebLurker

    WebLurker Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 12, 2016
    A few observations regarding the franchise and statements we've had regarding canon, continuity and the like in the LiS franchise:

    "The point of the game is not to give that linear conclusion [at the end]. It's a choose-your-own adventure book. You can ask which one is canon, but that's not how it works in a choose-your-own adventure book." - Christian Devine (LiS writer, 2018)

    That quote meshes up with an interview I saw with the creators stating very firmly that the "canon" version of the game's story (story path to get to the final choice and which of the two endings) was whatever each player picked when playing. Also, Life is Strange 2 built their own version of post-game events for the ending that the comics built off of and the two are mutually contradictory (as far as I understand everything).

    The opening pages for the first LiS comic trade paperback (Dust) recap the games events, ending the summary with the note: "...in a multiverse of infinite possibilities, this is one version of what happened next..." (my emphasis). Emma Vieceli, who writes the comic series, also noted on Twitter: "I love when a story can inspire us in that way. I wrote a 12-chapter DragonAge fanfic novel a few years back. :D It's a way to respond to something we love! LiS is such an inspiring game. It's why I was so keen from the get-go to explain that this comic is A story. not THE story."

    In addition to the comics, Titian books also printed Welcome to Blackwell Academy, a reference book written with the conceit that we got a hold of an old text book that Max, Chloe, and others were scribbling in during the events of the original game. Despite expanding on the game's world and smoothing out continuity between the original game and the prequel, it had the disclaimer: "The publisher’s choice of imagery and text for this book is not intended to canonize any particular story path from the games Life is Strange and Before the Storm. The publisher has used artistic license with the timeframes to include written conversations between the characters. The book ‘exists’ before Max makes her final choice at the end of Life is Strange."

    I think the sum of evidence strongly indicates that the comic book is not canon -- or at least exists in a separate continuity from the one formed by all the video game installments together (e.g. "Farewell," Before the Storm, LiS1, ...Captain Spirit, and LiS2). Both the comic itself and the author appear to be saying that their material isn't supposed to be the canonical continuation. The position that tie-ins are non-canon seems to be being handled consistently, as both the comics and the Blackwell book have the same disclaimers. On top of that, not only have the people making the games been pretty consistent on the idea that all permutations of the games are valid as "canon" (each player picks their own), but, as we've seen with LiS2, they ignore the tie-in materials when writing the future games.

    This's how I think it all breaks down: Only the video games are canonical (obviously factoring in the note that each player's version is canon to them). The comics are non-canon, but do have their own continuity made up of only the original game (with ending "B" picked) plus themselves (and maybe the Blackwell book?). Not sure if that makes any sense, but there it is.
    _.
     
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  14. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

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    Oct 28, 2014
    Point taken.
     
  15. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

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    Oct 28, 2014
    The new Life is Storm 3: True Colors premiered during Square Enix Presents Spring 2021. It looks pretty interesting. To the disappointment of many fans, it's obviously not a follow up to the original game; although Steph (the girl who plays the RPG game in Before the Storm and is also present in the original) has a major role in this.

     
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  16. Moll

    Moll Force Ghost star 4

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    Jan 3, 2016
    I thought it looked really cool, pre-ordered it today on the PS4. I wasn’t overly disappointed that it didn’t follow on with the original game, LiS 2 didn’t, and that was enjoyable :)
     
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  17. solojones

    solojones Chosen One star 10

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    Sep 27, 2000
    I like that they're all in the same universe but with different characters and powers. I'm definitely looking forward to this!
     
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  18. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

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    Oct 28, 2014
    I don't know if a PS4 purchase includes an upgrade to the PS5 version, but nevertheless I'm probably just going to hold out for awhile as I wasn't planning on buying any new game until I get a new PS5.
     
  19. WebLurker

    WebLurker Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 12, 2016
    Been following that on Reddit. Looking forward to it. (Will have to wait for a Mac release, but what the heck). Def. glad that Steph is coming back. It's been announced that she's
    going to be a love interest character for the players
    , so yay.
     
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  20. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

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    Oct 28, 2014
    I'm wondering if she'll name-drop or if it's possible there'll be cameos of the North brothers; who had a definitive role in BTS. Not sure if they'd give Chloe a huge name-drop.
     
  21. WebLurker

    WebLurker Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 12, 2016
    Would be nice if Chloe (and/or Max) get mentioned, but not counting on it.

    There will be a Steph-centric DLC chapter, which has been advertised as having a familiar face pop up, with popular vote theorizing it to be one or both of the North brothers.
     
  22. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

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    Oct 28, 2014
    Max wouldn't be involved because wasn't she already gone for Seattle during the events of BTS? She probably wouldn't have known Steph; unless she was in Max's school when they were much younger.
     
  23. WebLurker

    WebLurker Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 12, 2016
    I think the only way that would work is if Max cont connected to Steph through Chloe.
     
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  24. Ahsoka's Tano

    Ahsoka's Tano Force Ghost star 6

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    Oct 28, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2021