'Life Is Strange: Before the Storm' Is Emotional And Lovingly Familiar


Did 'Life Is Strange' really need a prequel? Probably not, but this first episode makes a good case for it.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/article/qvvyj7/life-is-strange-before-the-storm-is-emotional-and-lovingly-familiar


What’s most interesting about BtS after playing the first episode is that it doesn’t really seem to have an A-plot. The game isn’t a story about how Chloe grows from the person you see in the original game’s flashbacks to the original’s game “present”. Chloe has already taken on most of her characteristic personality by the time BtS starts.

The lack of a clear direction that the game will go in, leaves the player trying to fill in details or connect the dots between events and characters the way they would in the original games’ alternate timelines.

What this all means is that BtS somehow feels like a time travel game despite the lack of actual time travel in the story. And not just in the way all prequels kind of feel this way. The original game trained its players to see alternate realities and timelines in a specific way and the familiarity of BtS’s structure encourages players to bring back those same habits of investigation.

BtS feels incredibly genuine to the original in a way I didn’t expect, despite the new dev team and cast. And arguably, has a stronger first episode than the original.


I agree that this first episode is better than the first of the original, and I think it’s a byproduct of the shorter season. The original season spent so much of the first episode establishing the world and the people in such broad terms, that it never got around to making any of it feel authentic or genuine or earnest. It was all "hella"s and "fuck your selfies"s, which is good for showing players exactly what type of people they are going to be spending time with, but too much time doing that can color the experience for players, and probably turn some people off. This episode handles that establishment all in a scene and an half. Basically when Chloe is alone with her thoughts. As soon as she starts interacting with her mother, her humanity starts to show, which we really didn’t get until the second episode of the original season.


It certainly helps that a lot of the leg work for establishing character was done in the first game.

I’d be very interested in reading reactions from someone who played BtS without having played the original.


Man I have to say I enjoyed that way more than I expected. I think once the opening barn scene was over it went heavy into some great character building. Definitely had more than one WOW moment.

I think, in a way it’s better to view this as a ‘sequel’ in that it’s not necessarily meant to be a stand-alone thing. Sure you could play this without the original, but it seems like it’s more of a second helping of season one.