Released back in 2015 during the heyday of Telltale style narrative drive adventure games, ‘Life is Strange’ was something of a sleeper hit. While the game was criticized for its clumsy dialogue, shoddy lip syncing and occasional lack of polish, many adored the game for its unique time traveling mechanics and a mature but relatable storyline. It didn’t hurt that the game’s gorgeous hand painted aesthetic and poignant soundtrack made the game an absolute sensory treat to play through.
Its sequel, ‘Life is Strange 2’, released its first episode three years later in 2018 to an even better reception, having sorted out many of the issues that plagued the first game. With the fifth and final episode of ‘Life is Strange 2’ about to be released on the 3rd of next month, the question becomes – will there be a ‘Life is Strange 3’? Read on to find out everything we know about the ‘Life is Strange’ franchise, and whether there is another one on the horizon.
Life is Strange Plot: What is it About?
The first game in the series, ‘Life is Strange’ is set in a small town called Arcadia Bay and tells the story of high school senior Maxine “Max” Caufield attending Blackwell Academy. The story begins with Max experiencing distressing visions depicting a lighthouse being destroyed by a massive tornado. Later, when Max is in the bathroom trying to regain her senses she watches helplessly as a fellow student named Nathan Prescott murders her childhood friend Chloe Price. Suddenly, through sheer force of effort Max manages somehow reverse time itself and snatch her friend back from the jaws of death.
Over the next few days, Max explores her newfound powers, testing the limits and honing her skills. When another one of her friends, Kate Marsh commits suicide, Max discovers that she also has the ability to stop time as she successfully convinces Kate to abandon her intention to end her life. Max then decides to put her powers to good use and begins investigating the death of another one of her childhood friends, Rachel Amber. What follows is a tale of intrigue, betrayal, heartache and sacrifice as Max uncovers the insidious underbelly of the picturesque town of Arcadia Bay.
A direct sequel to ‘Life is Strange’, ‘Life is Strange 2’ is set 3 years after the events in Arcadia Bay. However, this time the story follows two siblings – 16-year-old Sean Diaz and his 9-year-old brother Daniel Diaz. After a tragic accident involving a mysterious explosion leaves their father dead along with a police officer, the boys go on the run attempting to escape to Mexico. During a night stop at a motel, little Daniel gets emotional over their father’s death and it is revealed that Daniel possesses latent telekinetic abilities capable of causing great destruction when he loses control. Faced with this new discovery and a sudden unfortunate turn when Daniel unexpectedly falls ill, the brothers decide to change their course towards the house of their maternal grandparents. Similar to its predecessor, at its heart, ‘Life is Strange 2’ is a coming of age story.
The franchise also features the prequel adventure ‘Life Is Strange: Before the Storm’, which introduces Chloe Price from the first game as a playable character. Set three years prior to the events of ‘Life is Strange’, this game tells the story of Chloe’s friendship with Rachel Amber before the latter disappeared under mysterious circumstances.
A second spin-off titled ‘The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit’ acts as the prequel for ‘Life is Strange 2’, and follows the adventures of Chris Eriksen, a young boy with an overactive imagination who dreams of becoming a superhero.
Life is Strange Gameplay
Both ‘Life is Strange’ and ‘Life is Strange 2’ are episodic adventure games presented from a third person view. There is no combat in the game, which has prompted some to label it as a walking simulator. However, the game does allow you to inspect and interact with various objects in the game world, which is how the player solves the myriad of puzzles the game has to offer. You can also communicate with numerous Non Player Characters (NPCs) present in the game, and these conversations can take various branching paths depending on what your character says.
However, the key mechanics in ‘Life is Strange’ are undoubtedly the choice and consequence mechanic and the ability to rewind time. Max has the supernatural ability to rewind time, and this power is put in the hands of the player. You have the option of rewinding time back by a few moments at any point during the game, enabling you to undo any action you have taken or change a conversation you might have had with someone.
A key facet of the story progression is the game’s extensive choice and consequence system. Throughout the game, Max will be presented with several choices which will dictate not only her own personality, but also how others react to her presence. Certain major choices in the game have the potential to decide the fate of many of the game’s supporting characters or even completely alter the game’s ending.
All the games in the franchise are presented in an episodic format, with 5 episodes apiece for both of the main games, and 3 episodes (plus a bonus episode) for the prequel ‘Life Is Strange: Before the Storm’.
Life is Strange Developers: Who Are The People Behind It?
The original ‘Life is Strange’, ‘Life is Strange 2’ and its prequel ‘The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit’ were developed by Paris based French developer, Dontnod Entertainment, best known for titles such as ‘Remember Me’ and ‘Vampyr’. All three games were initially published Square Enix, with the mobile version (Android, iOS) of ‘Life is Strange’ later being published by the Black Wing Foundation.
The prequel adventure ‘Life Is Strange: Before the Storm’ was developed by American video game developer Deck Nine.
Life is Strange 3 Release Date: When And Where Can I Play It?
As of the time of writing, there has been no announcement for a potential ‘Life is Strange 3’. However, in an interview with Gamespot earlier this year, ‘Life is Strange 2’ director Raoul Barbet and lead writer Jean-Luc Cano expressed their willingness to work on ‘Life is Strange 3’ if Square Enix green-lights the project in the future.
Based on the ever-growing popularity of the franchise, it is highly likely that we will see a ‘Life is Strange 3’ sometime in the not too distant future. Based on the fact that there was a three years gap between the first two games, a release date sometime in 2022 seems like a reasonable possibility.
‘Life is Strange’ is available to play on most platforms, including PC, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. ‘Life is Strange 2’ is available on PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Prequel story ‘Life Is Strange: Before the Storm’ can be played on PC, macOS, Linux PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Android and iOS. ‘The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit’ is available on PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
‘Life is Strange’ Trailer
While we wait patiently for ‘Life is Strange 3’ to finally be announced, why not check out the trailer for ‘Life is Strange 2’:
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