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Life Is Strange (Series) Review

Game image Life Is Strange
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Posted: 16 months ago, last updated 2 weeks ago.

Author: @GeekDadGamer and Jo Robertson.

OverviewOverview

This is a click/tap-to-move adventure where you play a student at high school in a sleepy American town. Despite the idyllic setting, you have a foreboding premonition of a disastrous storm. Along with this prophetic vision, you discover the ability to rewind time. As the game unfolds through relationships with friends, parents and teachers you must decide how to treat the people around you. An intriguing mystery develops along with some substantial teen angst, mental health and identity issues.

The choices you make change the story in ways you can see, and, if you so choose, you can rewind and change. At the end of each chapter, can compare your decisions to other players’.

The games can be purchased in a single episode or as a series. There are the following available:
  • Life is Strange (2013)
  • Life Is Strange: Before the Storm (2017) prequel
  • The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit (2018) a free game that introduces characters for the next season.
  • Life Is Strange 2 (2018)

DetailsGame Details

Rating:

Release Date: 19/01/2016

Platforms: Android, PC, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One and iOS

Genres: Adventure, Narrative, Puzzle and Role-Playing

Developer: @DONTNOD_Ent

CommitmentCommitment

Duration: This game will take between 15 hours and 25 hours to complete.
 
Players: This is a single player game. It takes up to 3 hours to complete each of the 5 episodes, bringing the completion time to 15 hours. To find everything in the game and experiment with alternate choices can take over 25 hours.

CostsCosts

Additional in-game purchases are offered for items that enhance the experience. It's free to play the first chapter but then has in-game purchases for subsequent chapters.

Age RatingsAge Ratings

The first Life is Strange series was rated PEGI 16 for frequent moderate violence and strong language and infrequent use of illegal drugs.

The second Life Is Strange series was rated PEGI 18 due to depictions of violence towards vulnerable and defenceless human-like characters, glamorization of the use of illegal drugs, and use of sexual expletives. The examiner's expanded these details: Content-specific issues This game contains infrequent depictions of violence towards vulnerable and defenceless human-like characters. One example of this involves a 16-year-old boy who has been forcefully handcuffed to a metal pole and unable to escape. During the scene the boy confronts his captor which leads to him being violently kicked in the face as punishment. Another example can be found in the third episode, in which a child is shot in the shoulder. The boy lets out a pained cry as a large amount of blood appears around the wound. Episode three also contains glamorisation of the use of illegal drugs. As part of the storyline the teenage protagonist and his younger brother work on an illegal marijuana plantation. They also meet up with a group of young adults who have worked on the plantation for numerous seasons and praise it as a reliable option for earning money. There is a minigame where the player must prepare the marijuana in a timely manner to sell it on. This game also contains frequent use of sexual expletives, the word “*!@?*” and its derivatives can be found throughout.

All Life is Strange games are rated ESRB MATURE.

AccessibilityAccessibility

Although this isn't a simple game, because you can rewind time without a penalty, there are no high-pressure or quick reaction blocks that can't be retried. On smartphones and tablets, there are more control options, and one enables you to navigate by tapping on the screen where you want to go.

Although subtitles are visually excellent, and internal monologue is distinguished from voiced speech with italics, there is no identification of the speaker. There isn't captioning of cross-talk and ambient speech or music and sound effects. Some effects such as thunder trigger gamepad vibration. You are reminded of your next objective with voiced directions, although these can be quite frequent and don't indicate the correct path.

Difficulty

How you can adjust the challenge of play, and assistance the game offers when you fail or get stuck.

Adjust Speed: Adjust the overall speed of the game, or rewind play for a second attempt, to ease reaction times.

Assistance

Assistance When Stuck: The game notices if you get stuck and provides assistance, such as skipping levels, hints or tutorials.

Tutorials: There are helpful tutorials, instructions and tips.

Reading

How much reading or listening comprehension is required, and how accessible this is.

Moderate Reading: Moderate reading required.

Subtitles

Large Clear Subtitles: Subtitles are large and clear, or can be adjusted to be.

Any spoken content has subtitles: All spoken content has subtitles, or there is no speech in the game.

Some Dialogue is Voiced: Some of the game dialogue and narrative is voice acted.

Controls

How you control the game, different options for alternative inputs and whether you can remap these settings to suit your needs.

Multiple Buttons & Single Stick: Can play with multiple buttons and a stick.

Mouse and Keys: Can play with mouse and multiple keys.

Touchscreen

Touchscreen controls for this game are:

One Tap Anywhere: Play with touchscreen, tap anywhere.

Two Motions Targeted: Play with touchscreen, two simultaneous taps, swipes or hold gesture.

Invert X/Y Axis: You can invert the direction required to control looking and aiming.

Rapid Pressing Optional: Quick, repeated button pressing not required or can be skipped or disabled.

Vibration Optional: Controller vibration not used in the game or you can disable it.

Image

How you can adjust the visuals to suit your needs, and offer additional information if you can't hear the game.

Outline Interactive Elements: Characters, platforms and enemies can be outlined for visibility.

Audio Cues for Visual Events: Audio is provided to indicate visual events.

Audio

How you can adjust the audio of the game and whether audio cues compensate for aspects of the game that are hard to see.

Balance Audio Levels: Set music and game sound effects separately.

Visual Cues for Audio Events: Text or other visual indicators of audio events.

System Settings

Android has accessibility settings including ways to navigate and interact, although not all games support this. Windows has extensive accessibility features. Some, like colour correction, work with games. Lots of accessibility software can be used with PC games, from voice recognition to input device emulators. PlayStation 4 has a range of accessibility settings. Some are system only, some work in games (invert colours and button mapping). Xbox One has a system features, the excellent co-pilot share controls mode and adaptive controller support for all games. iOS has a very extensive suite of accessibility settings including ways to navigate with voice and comprehensive screen reading, though most of the features don't work with games... read more about system accessibility settings.

Supported by PlayabilityInitiative


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Games Like Life Is Strange

Our experts have hand-picked the following similar games for you. These offer a similar way to play to Life Is Strange or are games with a similar theme or topic. These are good alternative games to Life Is Strange, or are a younger rated alternative for players not ready for PEGI 18+ or ESRB MATURE 17+ games.

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The information on this database is designed to support and complement the in-depth discussion and advice about video game "addiction", violence, spending and online safety in the Taming Gaming book. If you have any concerns or questions in these areas, email our editor who is quick to respond or can arrange for a one-to-one conversation.

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