James   California, United States
I have a dickload of games you can play them with me if you want

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19.1 Hours played
I have such a huge soft spot for Life is Strange and other narratively-driven franchises, but this game falls short in way too many places for me to give it a pass.

LIS's big talent is creating these immersive, beautiful aesthetic vignettes appealing primarily to nostalgia. These scenes are soothing and lovely and melancholy, but I found that the story overwhelms its positive feelings with utter misery throughout the entire playthrough. This is primarily due to the structure of the story in which no setting or characters remain permanent fixtures outside of the two brothers. This IS an issue because it reduces player fondness for the extra characters, reducing the stakes.

Sean and Daniel are characters with tremendous potential that I feel was used pretty effectively. The overarching story trajectory is excellent, and serves up many moving moments. However, many of the story beats seemed overly convenient and yet quite predictable. It eventually became an exercise in predicting exactly what problem would cause the protagonists to rotate out of the current set piece. Dialogue between the brothers felt great. Dialogue between the brothers and anyone else didn't feel nearly as good, and was often a bit on the nose.

Graphically, the art style of LIS games is always breathtaking, and this game raised the bar with hand-drawn sketches. However, the facial animation is so obscenely bad which is just embarrassing for how long these games have been getting made. Speaking of which, graphical and stuck-model glitches happen VERY often and stop getting funny quite quickly. Also, when I finished Episode 1 all of my saves got wiped for no reason. So that was cool.

To sum up, this game brings a lot of the hard-hitting pathos and gorgeous visuals that are the hallmark of the series. However in terms of dialogue, plot points, and gameplay mechanics, the game just feels like a downgrade from the first.

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aaa Dec 24, 2013 @ 9:41pm