Square Enix return with Life Is Strange prequel: ”Before The Storm”

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At E3 2017, Square Enix announced the prequel to Life Is Strange, originally released throughout 2015. 

Life Is Strange (2015) centered around high-school student Max Caulfield who, upon her return to Blackwell Academy, discovers her ability to rewind time.

Along with new developers – Deck Nine Games – Square Enix announced that the follow up to their 2015 smash hit will instead focus on fan favourite character, Chloe Price.

Before The Storm launch trailer

The narrative will take players through Chloe’s life as a sophomore at Blackwell Academy 3 years prior to the original game; and while there is no Max, her presence is deeply missed by Chloe as shown throughout the game. Despite there being no Max, the game will feature previous characters such as her mother Joyce Price, soon to be stepdad, David Madsen and late father, William Price. It will also include fellow students Nathan Price, Victoria Chase, as well as infamous dealer Frank Bowers.

The most exciting prospect about the prequel is the exploration of Chloe and Rachel Amber’s budding relationship. Rachel Amber’s disappearance became somewhat of a focal point in the original game – with Max using her abilities to help Chloe solve the disappearance.

Max and Chloe - screencap taken from Life is Strange (2015)

Max and Chloe: Life Is Strange (2015)

The nature of Chloe and Rachel’s relationship was fairly ambiguous in the 2015 game, but it will feature significantly Before The Storm.

The gameplay is almost identical in the prequel; players will play from the perspective of Chloe, interacting with people and objects, making decisions – no matter how big or small – that will have an effect on the overall outcome of the narrative.

The conscious decision to not include supernatural abilities in the prequel was intentional, according to lead writer Zak Garris.

The most important, most compelling aspects of Life Is Strange (2015) wasn’t the time travel,

”It was the story’s willingness to take its time to focus on authentic and relatable characters dealing with real-world issues,” Garris explained.

Before The Storm offers depth, intensity, and drama paired with a wonderfully sculptured soundtrack from Daughter.

Episode 1 and 2 of the eagerly anticipated prequel have been released, with episode 3 expected in December to conclude the extraordinary story of Chloe Price.