Life is Strange 2 has finally been released by Dontnod Entertainment and Square Enix and fans are eager to relive the story-based, episodic gameplay brought to them in the original 2015 title. So what do we think of the first episode of Life is Strange 2?
There are many reasons why the original Life is Strange game gathered such high acclaim. The gentle colours, music and relatively slow gameplay made the game a cinematic experience, where players would watch the story unfold and be conflicted with the difficult decisions they encountered throughout the game. So how well does Life is Strange 2 replicate and live up to the hype of its predecessor?
Life is Strange 2, to the disappointment of fans, did not include the same cast of loveable characters from the original game, but instead focuses on the Diaz brothers, Sean and Daniel. The brothers are on the run from Seattle to Mexico and the story unfolds during their journey and the strange, destructive abilities that one of the brother exhibits.
The game features the same structure of gameplay. Decisions that have consequences in a ‘butterfly effect’ mode of gameplay, puzzles and exploring surroundings.
The first episode of the five-part game starts strong with interesting and engaging characters and enough emotion in the first hour of gameplay to leave players interested and wanting more. The unique atmosphere of Life is Strange games gives the story the same cinematic feel, making gameplay easy and enjoyable, even if it is quite slow-paced at times.
Life is Strange 2 introduced a political commentary woven into the game that has been met with mixed reviews. It has not been subtle in commenting on Trump’s presidency in the US, particularly what this means in the eyes of the two hispanic brothers who lead the game. Some players have criticised this, with some critics on the Reddit discussion thread for the first episode of the game feeling that the sociopolitical commentary was unnecessary, while others argued of how it positively shaped the narrative.
However, one of the biggest downfalls of the game, which also was a major problem in the first Life is Strange game, is the awkward writing of teenage dialogue. Writers of the game have shown repeated problems in nailing the way that teenagers talk, making a lot of the dialogue in both games seem slightly out-of-touch. The unconvincing dialogue has again proven to be a problem for the game, but by no means ruins the story.
The Diaz brothers are yet to prove if they will be as loveable as their spiritual predecessors, Max and Chloe of the first Life is Strange game, but the first episode of Life is Strange 2, entitled ‘Roads’, is blossoming with potential for the sequel to be just as intriguing, dramatic and emotional as the first game.
Life is Strange 2: Episode 1 is out now for you to experience for yourself. At the moment there is no release date for the second episode, but based off the release dates of the original game, fans can expect to see the second episode be released around November.