Quite a big surprise came out of the Xbox conference at E3 this year in the form of a Life Is Strange prequel titled Before the Storm. Of course, there were rumours abound regarding a prequel/sequel to the 2015 time traveling adventure game, but seeing as Max’s powers were a large part of the game, a prequel seemed to raise too many questions. Here we are though, with a new entry to the series following Chloe before Max arrived back in Arcadia Bay, and despite the lack of time powers, the trailer revealed some interesting scenarios to play through, and some scenes that will shed light on Chloe’s past.

There are some parts that feel rather confusing, such as the scene where a truck crashes into the car Chloe’s father is driving. Presumably, this is the car crash that killed him, referenced in the first game, but then we got a shot of Chloe in the back seat before it – wasn’t she at home with Max when it happened?

Only time will tell if the characters and environment of Life Is Strange and Arcadia Bay remain so interesting without the sci-fi element and Max’s guiding hand, but even if considered as simply an add-on to the original game to explain Chloe’s past whilst Max was gone, it could provide context to a lot of things surrounding her temperament and drive. It’s disappointing that Ashly Burch won’t be voicing Chloe, but with a new team handling the game there’s bound to be a lot that feels different.

One other major factor is that this is a prequel that fits tightly within already existing boundaries, but is still a decision-based game. Just how much can you change and choose in Before the Storm when the outcome needs to be a certain way? Or will they simply disregard continuity and have this prequel as more of a “what if” than a “what happened?” Still, seeing Chloe’s relationships form with Rachel and Frank, her brief time at Blackwell Academy, and how the other characters were before Max’s return will be interesting.

We recently got confirmation of a sequel being planned as well, so a lot more Life Is Strange is set to come. Overall the prequel is an odd choice, but it could be an interesting look into the lead-up to Rachel’s disappearance and Max’s return. Still, from what we’ve seen it looks fairly awkward, and the “illusion of choice” is never more apparent in such a restricted environment. At the moment this looks like it would’ve better suited as a single episode of DLC for the original game. Whilst we got an in-depth look into Before the Storm, and have seen nothing for Life Is Strange 2, the sequel still has much more of a hype factor surrounding it.

Shane Dover is a Melbourne, Australia based freelance writer contributing to Japanese punk news site Punx Save The Earth, punk publication Dying Scene, Diabolique Magazine and Goomba Stomp. Not just a fan of punk music, he’s spent most of his life obsessed with the horror genre across all media, Japanese cinema, as well as pop culture in general. He plays music and writes fiction, check out his Twitter (https://twitter.com/Karzid) for updates on those projects. Follow him on Twitter, and check out his work every Wednesday on Dying Scene.

Leave a comment below.

Latest Posts

Sean Baker's new film harnesses the perspective of childhood in a way that is relatable and terrifying.

Review: ‘Total War: Warhammer 2’

With Total War: Warhammer 2 Creative Assembly have done a sterling job of developing a game that appeals to fans of their own franchise and enthusiasts of Games Workshop's iconic intellectual properties.

Toronto After Dark: ‘Beyond Skyline’ Defies Everything And Refuses To Be Restrained

'Beyond Skyline' is a fun, ambitious sequel that doesn’t even require you to watch the awful original.

Toronto After Dark: ‘Sixty Minutes to Midnight’ is a Pulpy, Calculated Genre Film

'Sixty Minutes to Midnight' uses its inspiration to help get you in the mood for what it’s about to lay down, but then has enough tricks up its sleeve to feel wholly its own.
Studio Ghibli

GKids and Shout! Factory’s Studio Ghibli Releases Do Justice to the Beloved Classics

How much do these new versions differ from the the Disney releases?

Saru is the Focal Point of ‘Star Trek: Discovery’

Saru, as First Officer, is in a position to go from prey to predator, how his character develops will influence the direction of the series as a whole.

‘Flame In the Flood’: A Beautiful And Harrowing Game of Survival

Flame in the Flood is Don’t Starve meets Toobin,’ and for the most part, it works. It’s beautiful, stylish, fun, difficult, frustrating, and overall well worth checking out for fans of both survival sims and stylish indies.

Roll the Dice and Rebel in ‘Culdcept Revolt’

'Culdcept' fuses board games with card games in an odd meld of turn-based tactics and deck-building strategy.

‘My Boyfriend’s Back’ – A Wicked Satire on Teenage Brutality, Puberty, and Small Town...

My Boyfriend’s Back is a hilariously tongue-in-cheek send-up of both zombie movies and romantic teen-comedies, with a touch of social satire.