I was raw with emotion after finishing the finale of the five-episode saga. The decision I made, in the end, left me in awe and revealed how much of myself I had invested in Max Caulfield’s journey. A few days have passed since finishing the game and gathering my thoughts on the whole experience. For me, the game was less about the ending and more about the journey; for me, this game was never really about Max, but rather, Chloe, from start to finish. Max is the player character, whose primary role is to prevent danger to Chloe. However, the player experiences different aspects of her life – at different points and even in different realities.
Max has the ability to travel through time, but as with many other and the repercussions from messing with time in not only trying to figure out in prevent an event that is introduced in the opening episode but also there are other threads in the story that have their own arcs that permeate throughout the whole game. I’m going to treat all the episodes as one game instead of individually as they were released as I bought the game after all the episodes were released so my experience was different compared to some I know who bought the episodes over its release. This game really sucked me into its world because of the three-dimensional characters that inhabit this world of Arcadia Bay.
The emotional journey this game ebbs and flows through in and out as you rewind time and see the effects of your decisions sometimes its instant or sometimes it may happen down the track. The cause and effect mechanic really is the where the crux of the game lies and it’s done to great effect in Life is Strange. It really makes your choices matter and with meaning, in different ways, it really is the modern take on Groundhog Day. The way the story plays out through Max’s eyes reminds me a lot of the way Mad Max films are told which is from the outside looking in rather than Max being the centre of the story just a vessel for the story being told from another’s perspective in this case which is Chloe. I’ll have to give props to Ashley Burch who voices her with such earthy undertones and with a tinge of angst but conveying the undertone of hope that is buried underneath the emotional pain and Ashley completely owns it and made me believe in her through her journey in Life is Strange.
There is so much I could say about this game but for me personally it’s definitely in my list of emotionally driven games that made me feel my choices throughout especially with the eclectic cast of characters surrounding you. And also noting is the music. The soundtrack is the perfect blend of calm with a sombre undertone which reminded me of the Last of Us soundtrack it had that beautiful soft calmness when it needed to be as all as that pulled back chaotic undertone in the most heart-pounding of moments in the game. And taking photos throughout the game which is part of the story is great trying to find the picture perfect moment to fill up your diary is a nice touch. All I can say is you gotta experience this game and see for yourself how strange life can be when you start to change its plans which is the beautiful irony of this game.