28 October 2015

"It's just rain, I smile, brushing my tears away"

In this day and age when most of the games are just odorless, flavorless, mass-marketed AAA-drivel shoveled one after another from the conveyor belt, players like us who have been playing video games over 30 years are starting to lose their faith in gaming. Along comes Dontnod Entertainment with Life is Strange, an episodic, narrative-driven, choice and consequence adventure.

Most of the time we take games as they are, just games, like we take most of the movies, books, comics or music. They are what they are. But once in a while there comes an exceptionally good game, movie, book, comic or music which breaks boundaries of its media. Life is Strange is such a case. It goes under your skin and touches something deep inside of you, and leaves a lasting impression. The last two games to achieve the same were ICO and Journey. Both touched with their sparse, wordless story-telling but Life is Strange is the first game to achieve it with a rich, multi-layered narrative.

Thank you Dontnod for showing us there's still hope, for making something very special. Life is Strange is a game with a true soul and a heart. You have dared to touch serious real-life issues, most of which are familiar to each and everyone of us. You have told us the value of friendship. You have shown us that sometimes you just have to let go of something which is dear to us. Or go the distance and sacrifice everything for it.

At the same time you haven't forgotten put a game in there too, with adventure game -like gameplay mechanics, whereas much applauded Telltale's games are in comparison even more shallow, emotionally distant, quasi-interactive picture books than they were before.

We feel privileged to have been able to spend 10 months with Max and co. in a quaint town of Arcadia Bay, a bitter autumn breeze blowing over glowing picturesque scenes, like sweet and fleeting childhood memories.

Thank you Dontnod for making us believe again.

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