Life is Strange – Before the Storm

 Life is Strange – Before the Storm is a 3-part story in which we see how Chloe life is after her father’s passing and how she met Rachel and dealing with her day to day drama with her family, friends and other topics that come her way.  The game is set to be a prequel to the first Life is Strange game.

AS THE GAME IS M – FOR MATURE RATED WE ONLY REVIEWED THE GAME WITH OUR OLDER GAMERS IN OUR GAMING FAMILY FROM THE AGES OF 15 AND UP.

General Gameplay

Life is Strange – Before the Storm is a adventure game, that is all about the choices that you make and how it effects the story, for those that have played the first Life is Strange, this is the same general gameplay style.  The Game Visuals are very sharp! As the game is all about the story and how it’s told, the graphics must be clean and sharp for a game like this.  Everything from the character animation, backgrounds, and all game assets are very clear and easily seen on the screen.  Being that the game is rated M – For Mature that there are some elements of the game graphics that are more suited for more older teens and adults and this is reflected in the game graphical presentation (more on this in our Family Friendly section).  In our play testing we did not run into any issues with the game graphics.  The colors are very balanced in the game and for our gamers that have some colorblind issues, they were able to see the reds, blue and green colors in the game without any problems.  One of the major bonuses of the game is that Life is Strange – Before the Storm is in 4K, so for those that have a 4K monitor it is a real treat to play and experience in 4K.  The in-game Audio for Life is Strange – Before the Storm is very well done.  As the game is very heavy in its audio narrative so there is a lot of detail of how the characters speak to each other.  As the game is more of the mature side there is a lot of language in the spoken dialog, but it is more of delivery of how the personas are of the characters.  The sounds effects in the game are also done well and can be clearly heard.  The game overall sound is in 5.1 surround sound and can be heard both via headset and sound systems, however we would recommend for gamers that are around younger children that it would be better to play the game via a gaming headset.  In our play testing, all our gaming family members were able to hear everything that was going on in the game and was able to follow along via the audio.  There was no problems with any of the game sounds, dialog or anything else in the game audio wise.  In our special needs game testing the only issue was that some of the music was a little low for some of our gamers, but this was easily fixed by just raising the volume in the game.  As with story driven game the Controls must be accurate for a game to play properly and Life is Strange – Before the Storm does a fantastic job in this.  With the left thumb stick to move around, the right one to look around and the face buttons to interact with the game environment, Life is Strange – Before the Storm is very easy to pick up and play the game.  In our play testing we did not run into any issues with the default controller set up and everyone in our gaming family and special needs gamers were able to play the game without any issues.  As the game does not require any special controller to play the game the default controller should be fine for console players and PC gamers as well.

 “Seeing how Chloe life is an interesting tale, seeing her friendship with Rachel is a beautiful thing to see unfold, even though you know what their tragic outcome will be”

Family Friendly

As with the first Life is Strange having a M rating, the same is with Before the Storm but before you allow this to turn you away from playing the game, understand that the story is a more mature story of being a teenager and all the good and bad the comes with it.  The game is more focused on Chloe and how she met Rachel and their friendship/relationship and all that happens before the first game.  This is more of a game to explain some key elements from the first game about Chloe and why/how she is the girl that we see in first Life is Strange game.   The game also digs into more of who is Rachel and why she is so important to both the story in Life is Strange and to Chloe in particular.  To say that this is a great game is an understatement, how to say that this is a family friendly game, well it depends on who in your family is playing the game.  We recommend that anyone over the age of 15 should play the game, however parents/guardians if you feel that your gamer is mature enough to understand the elements of the story then let have it.  Life is Strange – Before the Storm does not shy away from some topics and they are somewhat present in the story.  From drug use, abuse, violence, teen bullying, and a same sex relationship it is all here but it is told in a more tasteful way and not used as more of a shock factor.  If anything, I personally felt that it was one of the better stories in more recent times that is available on the console.  To say that the game is for everyone, well it all depends on your level of comfort of the topics, some parents/guardians may not way to have younger gamers or any gamers in their family exposed to this in video games, and that is fine but for those gamers in your gaming family that love story driven games, Life is Strange – Before the Storm is a great game to have in your digital library.  Overall the game is a great game but because of the topics that it covers it may not be suitable to all in your gaming family.  In our special needs game testing, we did not run into anything other than what we covered that would be of concern for any special needs gamers.  All that played the game had a great time and did not have any issues what so ever.  Again, use discretion for extended use of a headset when gaming and you should be fine.  If you are on the fence about picking up the game, we recommend that you watch some youtube.com videos or even watch a live twitch broadcast of the game in action.  This way you can see for yourself if the game is right for you and your gaming family.

Closing

Life is Strange – Before the Storm is a fantastic prequel story that give us more insight to our favorite rebellious teen Chloe and her friendship with Rachel.  Any fan of the series will love this game and if you have not play Life is Strange this game is a good way to get familiar with the story.

Be sure to take a listen to Michael and Camille in their podcast talking more about Life is Strange – Before the Storm here!

Also if you are wondering what is the song from the trailer for Life is Strange – Before the Storm it is from Daughter and the song is called Numbers.

Good

  • A great prequel story that better explains Chole and her friendship with Rachel.
  • Great indie rock soundtrack that stays true to the game setting.
  • The game looks great in 4K.
  • Very easy controls that make it easy for anyone to pick up and play.
  • Characters that are easy to relate to and follow through the game.
  • Chole “Back Talk” ability is a great feature that better showcases her personality.

Bad

  • Some characters are not developed enough in the game.
  • Only 3 Episodes Long.
  • Some predictable storytelling.
9

Amazing

Primary game reviewer of Family Gamer Review. A loving father to two children, loving husband and avid gamer. As the primary game reviewer, my responsibilities are to make sure that the game titles that I review that I can provide the most unbiased reviews for parents and guardians out there for the game, subject matter and other items within the game. I provide the honest review for the game, not based on what the game is, but for how this would fit in for the library for the whole family to play.