The first episode of the three-part Life is Strange prequel dropped last week. And while Max and her time-twisting powers are nowhere to be seen, that hasn't affected people's affection for Chloe or Rachel.
Given that Max was the more likeable of the two characters in the original Life is Strange, there were plenty of reservations about how well a prequel would work centred around Chloe. But that's the advantage of a prequel - not only did it give Deck Nine an opportunity to break with expectations about what Chloe would be like as a character, it also gave players a chance to get some closure by experiencing what Rachel is like after all this time.
One of the few leaks confirmed before E3 was the news that Dotnod's teen adventure Life is Strange was getting a well-deserved prequel, titled Before the Storm. And if you wanted to see more than the teaser shown during the main conferences, here's almost 20 minutes of gameplay.
I heard some concerns about the straightforward point-and-click adventure style of Before the Storm after the game's release last week, but you have to dig a little to see that mirrored in the Steam reviews. At the time of writing, Before the Storm is sitting at a 96% user rating from just over 3600 reviews, the same overall percentage as the first Life is Strange episode.
Patricia enjoyed Chloe's characterisation, writing that Before is Storm offered "an alternate reality, where I can be young, out, and not give a fuck".
Within minutes of starting Life Is Strange. Before The Storm, Chloe Price smoked a cigarette, stood in front of a moving train, tagged some graffiti, used a fake ID, insulted a burly man, drank beer, and nearly got into a fight. It seemed like she was trying too hard to be edgy. By the end of the first episode, I realised that was exactly the point.
The narrative and emotional impact of the first episode received a lot of acclaim, with many positive reviews praising the soundtrack, improved graphics and authenticity. The inclusion of small mini-games and dialogue also went down a treat.
Criticisms were far and few between, although a few pointed to the existence of Denuvo DRM and stuttering on even high-end machines. Other complaints were levelled at the lack of impact in choices, inconsistent animations, poorly implemented controller support, and crashes to desktop.
Here's what players are saying about Life is Strange: Before the Storm: